Why Is The World In Love Again

They Might Be Giants may only be two guys named John, a guitarist and an accordioner, but the music that they produce is something else. The lyrics—funny, tragic, weird, poetic, meaningless—are backdropped by consciously bizarre, irresistibly catchy, and off the wall rocking music. After twenty years, they have but two gold albums to their names, a few minor hit singles. They’ve made serious records, kids records, TV themes (Malcolm In The Middle, The Daily Show,) and unique music videos. And I am happy to say (now that I have my ticket) that They Might Be Giants are coming here to the Michigan Theatre, November 14th.

Vampire Bloodlust in Alaska

30 Days of Night easily has one of the most disturbing book covers I have ever seen, yet I was equally repelled and drawn to the image for months before I was pulled into the "light." And, well, for reasons that are still a little unclear I'm just one of many drawn to this dark and disturbing vampire saga by Niles, Steve. A cult following developed for the entire series - which has now been turned into a movie. The movie stars Josh Hartnett and is set to hit a theater near you on Oct. 19. - check out the books from us while you wait.

Happy Birthday, Jane

The dark romance, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte was published on October 6, 1847 under the title, Jane Eyre: An Autobiography by Currer Bell, a pseudonym created by Bronte. Thought to be one of the most famous of British novels, the book has all the elements of compelling Gothic romance: a brooding man, a woman madly in love with him and to top it off, a mad wife. The novel has spawned others with the same appeal including Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, The Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys and a futuristic parody, The Eyre Affair: A Thursday Next Novel by Jasper Fforde. Jane has transmogrified to screen and just recently, the musical stage.

Teen books on TV

With the new series Gossip Girl premiering on CW last week, I've been thinking about other television series based on books for teens or tweens. My list is sadly short: Gossip Girl (series by Cecily Von Ziegesar), Little House on the Prairie (series by Laura Ingalls Wilder), and of course tons of comic book-based television shows.

Sure there are movies based on teen books such as How to Deal based on several books by Sarah Dessen, I, Robot (original book by Isaac Asimov), and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (original book by Ann Brashares).

And there’s never a shortage of books based on TV shows such as Teen Titans, Smallville, and That’s So Raven.

However, when it comes to television shows based on teen/tween books, the list is short. Can you think of any?

The Diversifyin’ Late 60s/Early 70s, Part III: Why Isn’t There Rock-Blues

If rock is blues and country, then is blues-rock just bluesy blues and country? How blues is blues-rock in comparison to rock? Of course, if someone in 1956 called a group or artist “blues-rock,” it most certainly would have been redundant, but by the time of the sub-genre explosion in rock music (or as I like to call it, The Great Rock Schism) in the late sixties, all sorts of groups like Cream (and for that matter, any of Eric Clapton’s groups,) The Spencer Davis Group, The Rolling Stones, J. Geils Band, Fleetwood Mac (Peter Green’s version,) and hoards more identified themselves as blues-rock.

Support Needed for Ann Arbor Film Festival

AAFF logoAAFF logo

The Ann Arbor Film Festival has launched its Endangered Campaign to raise $75,000 in three months to support the AAFF. They're also on the lookout for talented individuals who are interested in joining in the actual production of the festival, as well as other events throughout the year. On Wednesday, September 26th, at 7:30 they will be in the basement of Great Wraps, located at 310 S. State Street, to meet with people who are interested in becoming a Festival Volunteer for the 46th Ann Arbor Film Festival. If you can't make it, or have any questions, please send an e-mail to Dave Hashim, our Volunteer Coordinator at dhashim@aafilmfest.org

Great Lakes Myth Society playing in town this Friday

Southeastern Michigan’s Great Lakes Myth Society bring their blend of folk, pop and rock music back to Ann Arbor this Friday for a performance at the Blind Pig. A common theme throughout many of GLMS’s songs is Michigan and its natural surroundings. Singer/Songwriter Timothy Monger explains, “to reference our home in song has always been a natural reaction. It was only when we noticed how strong the themes were that the desire to center our project within the Lakes took hold."
Check it out for yourself on their latest album. Side note: In the song “Marquette County, 1959” the singer croons “Jimmy Stewart came to Marquette County in 1959.” This is true and references the film Anatomy of a Murder which Jimmy Stewart did indeed film in Marquette in 1959. (It’s a gem of a film costarring Lee Remick in a sassy roll.)

Hot new (well, almost new) dvd releases from Amazon at your library

Following are several new dvds in our collection that are on Amazon's "Hot new releases" list:

We are Marshall. This film, based on a true story, stars Matthew McConaughey as Jack Lengyel, new coach of Marshall University's football team after coaches and team members die in a plane crash in the Appalachian Mountains in November, 1970. The usual football action but also some affecting performances.

10 Documentaries that Shocked the World

The September 2007 issue of Sight and Sound: The International Film Magazine has a list of 10 Documentries that Shocked the World and AADL has some of them.

Heshang - The River Elegy (Jun Xia, 1988) China
Minamata: The Victims and Their World (Tsuchimoto Noriaki, 1972) Japan
Bowling for Columbine (Michael Moore, 2002) US
The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris, 1988) US
Death of a Nation - The Timor Conspiracy (John Pilger and David Munro, 1994) Britain
BBC News Ethiopia Report (Michael Buerk and Mohammed Amin, 1984) Britain
McLibel (Franny Armstrong, 2005) Britain
Triumph of the Will (Leni Riefenstahl, 1936) Germany
The Sorrow and the Pity (Marcel Ophuls, 1970) France
For Freedom (Hussein Torabi, 1980) Iran

Then some more that need to be plugged.

The Corporation 2005 US
21 days to Baghdad 2003 US
Before Stonewall 1995 US
After Stonewall 2005 US

The Only Band That Matters

The Band went from backing Ronnie Hawkins as The Hawks to backing Bob Dylan when he did his electric tour to being the most unsung band out there. While they achieved popularity in their time, scored hits, and certainly had the respect of all of their contemporaries, history unfortunately hasn’t yet brought Music From Big Pink and The Band to the forefront of classic rock must-haves like Let It Bleed, Who’s Next, or any The Rutles record.

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