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Saw Sideways last weekend. First, let me say I'm probably not the right person to review this film. I'm tired of the suffering, quirky everyman movie. I have a hard time finding films of this genre charming any more. What I find charming is escaping reminders of my day to day life, not watching someone else's normally bland but occasionally funny existence. This is why I don't watch reality TV. I don't have the patience for bickering idiots at my job, much less in my entertainment.
Sideways is the story of a suffering, quirky everyman whose sole passion happens to be wine. It could be comic books, as in the previous version of this film with Paul Giamatti as suffering, quirky everyman Harvey Pekar in American Splendor, or it could've been music, such as in another version of this story with John Cusac as suffering, quirky everyman Rob Gordon in High Fidelity.
It's not that these stories lack charm. The acting in Sideways is fantastic. It's just that they feel so fuckin' redundant. I thought Hollywood was getting a little repetitive with the remakes of my childhood classics (Tim Burton, I'm looking at you), but to essentially remake the same story every two years seems absurd.
So I'm not going to another one. Next time some 30-something year old white guy is bummed he's unloved, underpaid and underlaid, get him to make a punk record, but keep it off the screen. I've seen it. Hell, I've LIVED it.
But if you haven't seen a suffering, quirky everyman tale in a while (where have you been?), Sideways is a good one. It's very well acted, nicely shot, has some funny moments in it and the same romantic ending they all have. Personally, I'd recommend American Splendor over this one. At least it has moments of animated comic book art, some interesting scenes with the actual Harvey Pekar, and a wonderful Crumb impersonation. The Life Aquatic is another fine suffering, quirky everyman story with lots of escapist visuals and the added level of a satire of Jaques Cousteau. But Sideways lacks any such distraction and if there's anything a suffering, quirky everyman like myself needs it's a distraction.

For those people that think the Right is doing the right thing in this country, you should be careful where you get your propaganda from:
If you're one of those right-wingers that only believes it if it appears on Fox News, here's their take on it:,2933,147087,00.html
Or if you prefer a more in-depth discussion, check out the version:
And this on top of the stories that made the national news about pundits paid to hype the president’s agenda?
I'm sure the president wants it to stop - wants it to stop being exposed anyway…
Question for you republican voters - if the agenda is so right for America why do they have to pay people and use deception to get Americans to buy it? Don't you have to wonder, at least just a little bit?

We got another comments on the anti-Smith’s rants of late:
I always thought Smith's to be a lovely house; a place to see a good show if the sound man wasn't asleep (a too common failing). Too bad none of the staff have previously worked at the Point or StarBar.
I thought the last Fleshtones show there would be relatively low key. The only tables were up on the risers. No problem; the guitar player took to them like a Dall sheep. Rock and roll prevailed over yuppie scum.
Degenerate SR

We also have a review of the Winter Formal show at the Earl last Friday, featuring more local musicians than you could shake a drumstick at, performing a mélange of hits from 1970-1980. It was swell but I ain’t got around to downloading and uploading the pictures yet. Stay tuned.

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