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Posted inArts & Culture

29th Chicago International Film Festival: The Week’s Worth

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 8 Rudy A worthy addition to the “faith, grit, and hard work conquers all” genre that includes Rocky and Hoosiers (which was directed by David Anspaugh and written by Angelo Pizzo, the same team that created Rudy). This is a surprisingly involving, deceptively straightforward story of an average–maybe less-than-average–guy who dreams of going […]

Posted inArts & Culture

In the House of Sargon

IN THE HOUSE OF SARGON Michael Zerang at Link’s Hall, through October 9 Michael Zerang is a skilled, creative performer who’s always worth watching because he so relentlessly challenges himself, experimenting in new and exciting ways. And he’s provided an entertaining, enjoyable, and at times strange evening of performance art with his premiere of In […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Radney Foster

Radney Foster looks like the kind of guy whom rockabilly bonehead Ronnie Hawkins would’ve affectionately called “Peabody:” clipped hair, wire specs, his nose poised to bury itself in a book. And while it’s true Foster’s eloquent country-rock solo debut Del Rio, TX 1959 proves he’s a literate type, his boyish, bookworm looks are a welcome […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Three Flat Walkup

THREE FLAT WALKUP Curious Theatre Branch What amazes me most about Curious Theatre writers is the way they mix rich, musical language with morbid, ugly images. No group can wax poetic about rats the way Curious can. No theater is better at turning an ordinary romantic betrayal into an underground, worm-infested odyssey. And no company […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Are You Being Helped?

IT’S SHIFTING, HANK Goat Island at the Wellington Avenue United Church of Christ Gymnasium, through October 10 In this time of liquidation sales, of mass firings and closings, of people choosing whether to pay the rent or the electric and phone bills, there may well be a feeling of helplessness about the simplest things. And […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Story In an August meeting at a Tampa, Florida, church, representatives of the Union of Independent Klansmen and the all-black Pan-African Inter-National Movement vowed to work together to create an independent African nation for African Americans. The groups agree that integration in the U.S. is impractical and that relocation payments should be made to […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Betty Carter

This year has seen reissues of Betty Carter recordings from 1958 (I Can’t Help It on GRP) and 1965 (inside Betty Carter on Capitol Jazz). And with this month’s release of At the Village Vanguard (Verve), all the albums made for her own Bet-Car label–for which she recorded in the 70s and early 80s–will be […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

In the late 50s after Sputnik was launched, I used to see it crossing the sky at sunset from my parents’ backyard in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. The sunlight would reflect from the satellite’s skin and I would see it like a small moving star in the early evening. Today there are […]

Posted inNews & Politics

A Man and His Worms

With gnats flitting about his face, Ken Otto pours yellowish slop from a dark green garbage bag into a wooden bin. The unmistakable stench of rotting kitchen waste fills the air in this subterranean pump room, lit by a single overhead bulb. He stops and peers into the bin, then adds another splash of the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Wake Up and Smell the Coffey

To the editors: After some thought, I felt compelled to write to you about the extensive article about Daniel Coffey [“The Architect Who’s Rebuilding Chicago,” August 27]. I feel your reporter did not do an adequate job of either research or reporting. I am also wondering how the typical people-friendly style of the Reader became […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Bad craziness in the ‘burbs. Shortly after school began, 10,000 pounds of outdated canned and frozen food–some dated 1985–was discovered in a Michigan City, Indiana, high school kitchen and hauled to the local landfill, reports the daily News-Dispatch (September 15). “My concern,” said the school superintendent, “is that some of this was not noticed like […]

Posted inMusic

Honky-tonk man

Dwight Yoakam has made a career of pissing people off, from his overt dissing of the Nashville establishment to his often brittle and unsympathetic interviews. Last Friday at the Aragon he tried it with his own fans, but they couldn’t stay mad at him long. The crowd was largely country, but there were also signs […]