Posted inFilm

Flaming Creatures

Flaming Creatures Forget everything you might have heard about the late Jack Smith’s legendary bisexual, orgiastic, superlow-budget, experimental 1963 masterpiece–a lot more is going on here, artistically and otherwise, than either Jonas Mekas or Susan Sontag has ever suggested. This jubilant, celebratory 45-minute film holds up amazingly well; despite its notoriety and censorship during the […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Hick, the Spick and the Chick

The Hick, the Spick and the Chick As priests have probably known for centuries, listening to confessional storytelling gets old real fast. But not the way Paul Turner, Antonio Sacre, and Donna Jay Fulks tell stories. Their tag-team approach to autobiographical performance transforms this potentially onanistic art into a community event. Like a group of […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Feelgood Folderol

Tall Tales & Small Miracles Tellin’ Tales Theatre at Live Bait Theater By Justin Hayford On numerous occasions during Tall Tales & Small Miracles writer-performers Tekki Lomnicki and Laura Dare say that “we are all the same person.” As I listened to them speak or sing this sentiment with a kind of grade-school-teacher earnestness, I […]

Posted inColumns & Opinion

Savage Love

Hey, Faggot: I’m not sexually experienced, but I am totally in love with my new man and I want to please him in every way possible and drive him wild with desire. I want to blindfold him and tie his hands, maybe even handcuff him. But then what? We are not into pain. I feel […]

Posted inMusic

Mark Eitzel

MARK EITZEL Mark Eitzel’s dictatorial control over American Music Club was one reason the group imploded a few years ago: as much as his able band mates contributed, he never let them forget whose vision they were to adhere to. But the lack of tension proved deadly on Eitzel’s 1996 solo album, 60 Watt Silver […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Baby Richard Go-Round

By Michael Miner The Baby Richard Go-Round Is a last word possible on “Baby Richard”? The Tribune just spent a week arguing with itself about the now six-year-old boy, possibly adding to the confusion and certainly failing to resolve it. The story so far: “Richard” is born in March 1991, while his father, Otakar Kirchner, […]

Posted inMusic

Spot Check

SPIRITUALIZED 8/8, DOUBLE DOOR Spiritualized’s recent Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space (Arista) is an audacious dose of sweeping pretension equal to any 60s heavy psych or 70s prog: choked with strings, horns, paisley organs, and tranced-out accordions, not to mention the pedal steel of B.J. Cole and the piano of Dr. John, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Government Serving the People

July 30, 1997 Government Serving the People Chicagoans weary of indicted and convicted aldermen will be relieved to learn that their disgraced elected officials shouldn’t be blamed for destroying public confidence in city government. Turns out it’s just another press conspiracy. Several of the aldermen who voted against a new ethics ordinance at last week’s […]

Posted inFilm

Irma Vep

Irma Vep Olivier Assayas wrote and directed this dark, brittle French comedy (1996), most of it in English, about a film company shooting a remake of Louis Feuillade’s silent Les vampires. An unexpected masterpiece, Irma Vep was assembled so quickly that it has an improvisational feel and a surrealist capacity to access its own unconscious–two […]

Posted inMusic

Kelly Willis

Kelly Willis There must be something in the water down in Austin that gives good country singers bad luck: the city’s been home to a number of terrific, individualistic artists who for no good reason have failed to register with the mainstream. Lucinda Williams’s stubborn meticulousness, for example, has put her at loggerheads with various […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Tartuffe

TARTUFFE, Stage Two Theatre. The press material for this show makes a big deal out of Stage Two executive director Timothy Mooney’s new adaptation of Moliere’s comedy, about a religious hypocrite and the gullible aristocrats who pamper him. But as far as I can tell, the only advantage Mooney’s translation has over Richard Wilbur’s justly […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Underground Explosion

Underground Explosion By Linda Lofstrom At first glance Jay Bliznick looks more like a bouncer than the head of a film festival, even an underground film festival. But he’s quick to dispel any preconceived notions about underground films. “A lot of people make the mistake of identifying underground films as strictly films that were made […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Shining Moments

Nathan Lerner: A Lifetime of Photographic Inquiry at Illinois Art Gallery, through August 15 From Our Perspective: Postcards from the Neighborhood at the Chicago Historical Society, through September 7 Student Photographs at Jane Addams Center, through September 1 By Fred Camper Nathan Lerner, a Chicagoan born in 1913 who died earlier this year, made both […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Bailiwick Directors’ Festival

Bailiwick Directors’ Festival Bailiwick Repertory’s annual showcase of generally unknown pro, semipro, and student directors features one-acts ranging from established classical and contemporary selections to untested material. There’s a lot more of the latter than the former in this year’s fest, which includes a number of efforts by writer-directors. Coordinator Jonathan Pitts promises greater selectivity […]