August 25, 2002

Ziggy Stardust & The Spiders From Mars

ziggyD.A. Pennebaker's live concert film, recorded July 3, 1973. My friend Michelle and I spent half the movie discussing how Bowie kept his bits & pieces from slipping out of his one-legged skintight costume. (Brattle Theater)

August 24, 2002

083 Wunderbar

I occasionally incorporate my own handwriting into the cover art; with this mix I took that one step further. In ye olden days, when I had time to burn to perfect the sequencing of my mix CDs, I would write each candidate song's title on individual slips of paper and arrange and rearrange them. In this case I literally scanned in these slips and integrated them directly into the back cover art. I don't think I had decided to do this when I wrote out the slips, so my handwriting on the back cover is organically sloppy; I deliberately wrote the front cover text to look as slick as possible and still look like I wrote it myself.
  1. "No Excuses" Alice In Chains [unplugged]
  2. "Finest Worksong" R.E.M. (live in Athens 1/19/92)
  3. "Back in Black" AC/DC
  4. "Spinning Around Over You" Lenny Kravitz from Reality Bites
  5. "Hey Hey What Can I Do" One of my favorite Led Zeppelin songs is the b-side of the 'Immigrant Song' single.
  6. "Blue Sky Mine" Midnight Oil, from their last album before they dropped off my radar screen, Blue Sky Mining.
  7. "The Sweetest Thing" One of my favorite U2 songs is the b-side of 'Where The Streets Have No Name'
  8. "Harvest Moon" Neil Young & The Stray Gators featuring Linda Rondstadt
  9. "Around The Bend" Deep within Pearl Jam's Neil Young period- from No Code, written by Stone Gossard.
  10. "Window Seat" John Wesley Harding
  11. "Passenger Side" Wilco
  12. "Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid" Daryl Hall & John Oates; from their 'we've gone beyond rock & soul to 80s dance rock' album, Big Bam Boom.
  13. "Teach Me To Breathe" From Dave Pirner's soul album Faces & Names.
  14. "Only The Song Survives" John Hiatt
  15. "Drunken Angel" Lucinda Williams
  16. "Walk A Thin Line" A cover of the Fleetwood Mac song, by a reunited Blake Babies (2002)
  17. "Charm Attack" Leona Naess
  18. "When You're Falling" Afro Celt Sound System featuring Peter Gabriel
  19. "Let's Be Friends (Skin To Skin)" Bruce Springsteen
  20. "Your Body Is A Wonderland" John Mayer
  21. "Why Does The Sun Shine? (The Sun Is A Mass Of Incandescent Gas)" [Live] They Might Be Giants

They Live

theyBest movie fight scene of all time. Really not enough plot for a feature film- would have been better-suited for a Twilight Zone episode. (Coolidge Corner Theater Midnight Show)

August 19, 2002


boundSmart, taut, Hitchcockian thriller. The Wachowski brothers honed their cinematographic tricks before tackling The Matrix. Did I mention the hot lesbians? (Brattle Theater)

August 18, 2002

Repo Man

repoSilly and punk. Lots of fun on no budget. My favorite moment is when Estevez repos his first car, spots the Virgin Mary statuette on the dash, and throws it out the window. (Brattle Theater)

August 16, 2002

The Fifth Element

Another Luc Besson film costarring Gary Oldman. A Day-Glo carnival ride. Everyone chews scenery (Milla Jovovich, Gary Oldman, Chris Tucker) except Bruce Willis, who is mild and understated. I saw it at the Coolidge Corner Theater, where they left out one of the reels. This was the first time this ever happened to me. It was an odd, very old fashioned error: Around the time where Korben Dallas has been drafted to take a spaceship to Flohston Paradise and meet the blue diva lady, suddenly 10-15 minutes has gone by and the ship is about to take off. I ducked out to the lobby to tell someone, but it didn't do any good, and no one else in the theater seemed to notice. (Coolidge Corner Theater Midnight Show)
Fun Casting Note: I just discovered that the actress who plays the VIP Stewardess whom Ruby Rhod goes down on (Indra Ové) also played the New Orleans whore whom Lestat stuffs into a coffin for a joke in Interview With The Vampire! Two memorable roles...

 ALSO by Gary Oldman on STUB HUBBY:

August 13, 2002

The Player

A fine premise: what if Hollywood doesn't just figuratively use up and throw away screenwriters: what if a producer literally murders a screenwriter? A fun movie with a great ending. (Brattle Theater)

August 11, 2002

The Kid Stays in the Picture

kidFunny, engaging, innovative documentary. Robert Evans wrote an autobiography, and recorded his own book-on-tape. The book-on-tape, in which Evans delightfully reads his gravelly patter, became a Hollywood cult obsession. I listened to it circa 1995, and really enjoyed it. The movie was inspired by the book-on-tape, and the narration for the movie is taken directly from it. (Kendall Square Cinema)

August 9, 2002

Léon: The Professional (International Version)

This entry is for a Coolidge Corner midnight show - I went to a bunch of them in 2002.
Wow, I just love Gary Oldman in this movie. He's a force of nature, and his barely contained fury, his clever mania, and that summer suit are just magnetic. I am fan of many of his movies, but this might be my favorite performance. So many great moments! Right now I am fixated on the moment when he catches Mathida in the men's room and interviews her. The look on his face when he learns
  1. She's out to kill him for herself; and 
  2. He killed her brother
is powerful stuff.
I have been a fan of this movie since I first saw it in the 1990s. I watched the US cut on Amazon Video last night (October 2017) and I noticed some new moments:
Gary Oldman and his crew arrive to kill Mathilda's family at noon. Already that morning Léon has gone see a Gene Kelly movie, and he's already back in his apartment by noon? I know New York City is the cultural capital of the world, but there's really a movie house that has a 10am matinee in Léon's neighborhood?
It's not obvious enough that Léon lives in three different apartments. After her family is killed, Mathilda goes with Léon and they move into a furnished hotel room, and later, they move to a third room. I've seen this movie many times and visually these three apartments all look the same (they all look very European, but that's a different issue). It would be helpful for the storytelling if each apartment were easier to tell apart. When the SWAT team arrives to rout Léon at the second hotel, their room is at the end of the hallway, just like his original apartment was at the end of the hallway.
I loved Danny Aiello as Léon's boss/gangster Tony. When Léon tells him to give his money to Mathilda when he dies, Tony looks away when he replies "You can count on me", and I haven't decided whether he intends to keep the money, or he's too emotional about losing Léon to look him in the eye. Regardless, I found it interesting that at the end of the story, Tony gives Mathilda the same speech about the money as he did to Léon.

ALSO by Gary Oldman on STUB HUBBY:

August 4, 2002

Full Frontal

fullLike a summer camp for movie stars. Written by Coleman Hough, one of my fellow alumni, Emerson College Class of 1994. Never heard of her before... (Loews Church St, Harvard Square)

August 3, 2002


signsI feel my experience with this movie was tainted by a full house crowd in a weird mood: they kept laughing at odd times. I found the movie scary and exciting, although the ending was kind of unsatisfying. (Showcase Cinemas Randolph)

August 2, 2002

Road to Perdition

roadPaul Newman and Tom Hanks save this movie from mediocrity. Jude Law's not bad either. There are lots of weird inconsistencies, like the time of year: In the last third of the film, it seems to change from winter to spring overnight. Sloppy plotting, too- did the director really think we would forget that Jude Law's character was still lurking about? Hanks's sudden death seemed painfully obvious from miles away.