The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak for centenarian filmmaker
By Devin D. O’Leary
You don’t see a lot of films coming out of Portugal these days. I doubt you ever did. Filmmaker Manoel de Oliveira is from Portugal, though. He’s directed something in the neighborhood of 50 features over the course of his long career—meaning he could be responsible for a measurable percentage of his country’s filmic output. His first was in 1942. His last was this very year. I’ve never heard of any of them, and I doubt you have either. But the guy’s some kind of legend, having written and directed The Strange Case of Angélica—hitting select theaters in America right now—at the record-breaking age of 101.
It’s been a crazy week, but we finally waded through all the entries to the Alibi’s eighth annual Photo Contest and selected the winners.
The same three-dude panel who brought you the results of the first annual Villanelle Contest returned to judge the pics. Alibi Copy Editor Sam Adams has a photography degree, so he was a no-brainer. Calendars Editor Adam Fox and I, John Bear the Arts and Literature editor, have no such qualifications, only massive amounts of opinion to spread around.
Albuquerque may finally be coming out of its recession. That’s the belief of Forest City Covington, LLC, the force behind mega housing project Mesa del Sol. After a three-year delay in building the first phase, the company's finally broken ground.
It’s a funny thing about specialties of the house: Sometimes they’re the only thing on the menu worth eating. Other times, as is the case at Thai Cuisine, the specialty isn’t my favorite. In this instance, it’s kind of like a wide-noodled pho with pink broth.
Shopping at Talin is an adventure. There are so many items I’ve never seen before—especially produce—that I often buy fruit identified only by the label on the bin. When I get home, I look it up in The Cook’s Thesaurus: foodsubs.com.
Experiments in Cinema v6.3—Basement Films and the UNM Department of Cinematic Arts’ annual celebration of all things filmy and mind-bending—gets underway in earnest April 13 through 17. There will be a sneak peek this Sunday, April 3, however, at the historic KiMo Theatre in Downtown Albuquerque. This one-off screening from 1 to 3 p.m. will feature regional youth films. Artistic director Bryan Konefsky has chosen a selection of experimental student shorts to kick off this year’s festivities. Admission for this special pre-fest event is free. Log on to the Experiments website for information on all the upcoming films, workshops and parties.
It began with an ill-timed joke. Comedian Gilbert Gottfried, who has served as the squawking voice of the Aflac duck in television commercials since 2000, rather unwisely posted a couple of one-liners to his Twitter account right after the tsunami hit Japan. Sample joke: “I was talking to my Japanese real estate agent. I said ‘is there a school in this area.’ She said ‘not now, but just wait.’ ” On an offensive scale of 1 to 10, that’s about a 5. On a funny scale of 1 to 10, it’s a 3.5, tops.
A warm autumn evening, 1996. I was sitting on the front porch of the venerable Stanford House, home and hangout to various musicians from Word Salad, Logical Nonsense and Hell Hath No Fury. We were waiting for some Green Party mayoral candidate. “We” being the collective nonentity known as Rebel Radio, comprised of various activists, anarchists, musicians, freaks and weirdos.
Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong didn’t single-handedly invent jazz, but without him, it might have passed away in the cradle. Award-winning Santa Fe trumpeter and educator Jan McDonald has for decades been riding a wave of inspiration generated by a live Armstrong performance that he witnessed at age 10 in Des Moines.
Ben Wood plays banjo in The Porter Draw. He’s also a woodworker and projectionist, knows how to grow a fine mustache, and is descended from Jewish cowboys in Arizona from way back when. Below are five random tracks from his music library.
Out-of-towners The Anchor and Fiction Reform perform with local punkers Stabbed in Back, Adam Hooks & His Hangups and Emergency Ahead. The first three of the five bands are playing the Way Out West Fest in Tucson, Ariz., hence the show’s moniker, “Quest for W.O.W. Fest!” (Which could easily be confused with a gathering of massively multiplayer online role-playing gamer dorks.) Bands play for the win at Amped (4200 Lomas NE) on Wednesday, April 6, at 6 p.m. Admission to the all-ages show is seven gold.
A gallery dedicated to super-cooled molten sand in all its glory
By Christie Chisholm
Troy Lowe and Brian Burge were tired of head shops. For years, the two glassblowers made pipes because they were more marketable than pendants and marbles and the odd art piece. But the primary venues for selling their work were stores that specialized in drug paraphernalia, and it didn’t feel like a good fit. “We didn’t like being in there,” says Lowe. “It was kind of seedy.”
Virginia Maria Romero designed the first conservation stamp aimed at the wolf. Wolves are dog-like creatures that ranchers like to shoot. Romero will be on hand at Bookworks (4022 Rio Grande NW) on Thursday, March 31, at 7 p.m. to sign special copies of the stamp for $20. The same night, Craig Chapman from the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance will discuss service opportunities found in the2011 Wild Guide, a book that features information on guided hikes in remote places in New Mexico. The book can help you find environmental volunteer work, be it restoring trout habitats or planting native vegetation. It’s nice to live in such a beautiful state. Help keep it that way.
If you’re an East, West or Gulf Coastian homesick for good, fresh bivalve mollusks, weep no more. Suddenly Albuquerque is full of them. On the other hand, if you’re put off by the idea of eating this viscous morsel, I urge you to give it a try. It’s an acquired taste, but not so different from indulging in good sashimi at your favorite sushi bar or a well-made ceviche.
Senators battled as the final moments of the 2011 legislative session ticked away
By Marisa Demarco and Christie Chisholm
If an eye for an eye makes everyone blind, a bill for a bill leaves our roads messed up and our senior centers unfunded.
During the legislative session, most measures are passed in the final days, hours and even minutes. As the clock wound down on Saturday, March 19, lawmakers threw a wrench in the works to force one of the governor’s priorities through. But it didn’t work, and in the end, Gov. Susana Martinez’ “social promotion” education bill got left behind—and so did millions for improvements around the state.
Albuquerque got a little more bicycle-friendly after the City Council approved a measure to allow bikes on Tramway and other limited-access roads. Councilors removed a prohibition that kept bicyclists off a few roads at the Monday, March 21 meeting. Councilor Trudy Jones said she received hundreds of comments from bicyclists asking to be allowed to ride legally. Police Chief Ray Schultz said his officers would sometimes give warnings to those riding on Tramway and said he is in support of this change.
But watching Oliver!, aside for a few key moments, isn’t sad. It’s heartwarming, and it’s sweet, and once the plot picks up and all the main actors are introduced, it’s pretty much fantastic. Such is the way of catchy songs and lovable characters—they obscure the grim and the grime.
I ordered my first mangoneada because I thought it sounded vaguely like mango-lemonade, which seemed perfect on a warm day. Better Spanish speakers may have realized the word refers to an unscrupulous use of power, like graft or bribery. With my first slurp I began to see why. Mangoneadas are powerful and desirable. On a sunny day, you could bribe Satan with one.
There’s a bill sitting on Gov. Susanna Martinez’ desk just waiting to be signed. SB 607 will put a cap on the amount of money the state gives out as rebates to studios that shoot films and television shows in New Mexico. The bill was—at best—a compromise between politicians who were fighting to keep the film industry alive here in New Mexico and politicians who wanted to cut expenses for the cash-strapped state.
March goes out like a lion with National Geographic’s hard-hitting nature documentary
By Devin D. O’Leary
Throughout the ’50s, Walt Disney produced a series of notable wildlife documentaries called True-Life Adventures. Heavy on narration, ginned-up drama and the sort of anthropomorphism for which Uncle Walt was famous, the documentaries inspired generations of filmmakers, environmentalists and outdoorsmen.
Spring is here and that means television networks are frantically assembling shows you might want to watch this fall. At last count, 82 shows were under development. Granted, not all of them will make it past that stage. And few of the ones that do will last more than a couple of episodes.
Tenderizor—purveyor of epic heavy metal and subsequent rainbows in the dark—is something of an Albuquerque supergroup. Its five members include Steve Hammond (Leeches of Lore), Raven Chacon (Death Convention Singers, Black Guys,KILT), brothers Mike and Pat Day (Fando, Old Man) and Kris Kerby (Sabertooth Cavity). This week, Tenderizor releases its first record, Touch The Sword, out on Chacon’s label Sicksicksick Distro.
Jazz icon fields questions from local guitar heroes
By Mel Minter
Jazz guitarists hereabouts have been in a lather ever since the Outpost appearance of NEA Jazz Master Jim Hallwas announced. One of the music’s most distinctive voices, Hall has captivated listeners with a playing style that relies on space and lyricism, and he’s earned distinction as a composer, as well. Still recovering from back surgery that kept him off his instrument for about two years, the 80-year-old icon has released a brand-new album, Conversations (ArtistShare), and is back on the road.
Celebrate the enduring popularity of male sub-nose facial hair at the fifth annual Moustachio Bashio on Saturday, March 26, at 8 p.m. at the El Rey Theater (620 Central SW). Flyer art, made in the bristly likeness of a woodcut, acknowledges performances by Lost Lingo, Le Chat Lunatique, The Werks and DJ Zenova. Tickets to the 21-and-over event are $10 in advance through gladcastle.com or $15 at the door. (Jessica Cassyle Carr)
The South Valley’s Rita Maldonado is still bagging elk at age 85
By Toby Smith
If you lived in Albuquerque’s Atrisco neighborhood a half-century ago, you didn’t want to mess with any of the six Sanchez children. The mother of those kids could drop a deer at 50 yards. She could gut and field-dress an elk. She knew her way around shotguns. She drove a bus for a living.
These probably aren't the droids you're looking for
By Benjamin Radford
In the new buddy film Paul, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost play Graeme and Clive, a science-fiction writer/artist team who take a road trip to San Diego’s Comic-Con convention—the mecca of sci-fi and comic book geekery. They make stops along the way to see places of alien pop culture relevance like Area 51 and, of course, Roswell. (There’s another New Mexico connection as well—except for a handful of exteriors, Albuquerque’s very own Convention Center doubled for Comic-Con during shooting last year.)
Who are the South Side Irish? They're a proud, tough-as-nails bunch. Generally speaking, they're also rowdy and know how to knock back more than just "a couple two-tree beers," as the vernacular goes in the Windy City. And they're notorious chiselers.
Adding to the area's lore are the Gallaghers—the foul-mouthed, hard-drinking clan on Showtime's "Shameless," possibly the most functionally dysfunctional family ever to grace prime-time TV.
Regrettably, I discovered the marvelous Burque band Jenny Invert much later than many of its avid fans. I was missing out. The five-piece makes music that is a mix of rock ‘n’ roll and sweet indie, with a twist of jazz and some nods to vaudeville.
Together again, teacher and student find a common thread
By Mel Minter
Woodwind maestro Arlen Asher and trumpeter Paul Gonzales first played together more than 40 years ago. Asher was visiting the first-grade class taught by his late wife, Jo, at Albuquerque’s Montgomery Elementary School. He brought along his collection of saxes and flutes and allowed the little rug rats to enjoy a hands-on experience with them.
Most hamburgers are unhealthy, but this one is exceptionally bad for you. The inedible concoction draws attention to a performance by Ryat from Philadelphia, as well as battles between a trilogy of duos—Fart House, Great White Buffalo and ROO. This rock show happens on Sunday, March 20, at 8 p.m. at Dad’s House (601 Solano NE). Five dollars grants admission. (Jessica Cassyle Carr)
Is a company trying to suck up our water and sell it back to us?
By Christie Chisholm
Maybe you’ve never heard of Datil, N.M. It’s just a tiny town in Catron Country, a two-and-a-half-hour drive southwest of Albuquerque. Besides the pretty scenery, it’s generally unremarkable. But for the last three years, it’s played host to a furious debate on water rights.
Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of the 2011 legislative session. It’s slated to adjourn on Saturday, March 19, at noon. The brunt of the work usually happens during the last hours, and lawmakers debate well into the final nights. Here’s what’s happened so far.
The window to submit photos for the eighth annual Alibi Photo Contest closes on Thursday, March 17, at 5 p.m. Thank you to everyone who sent in their pics—be sure to check out the March 31 issue of the Alibi to see who won. In the meantime, photo-buffs can hear a talk on Edwin Land by MIT’s Dr. Victor McElheny at the Albuquerque Museum (2000 Mountain NW) on Sunday, March 20, at 1 p.m. Land was a businessman, war contractor, follower of the arts and an inventor. He worked on early smart bombs and one of his inventions led to swirly lights inside jukeboxes. He also invented the Polaroid camera. They make everything look like it’s 1974. It is important to note that while Land invented the Polaroid, he wasn’t the one who instructed you to shake it like one. That was Outkast. The talk is in conjunction with the ongoing exhibit A Passionate Light: Polaroids by H. Joe Waldrum. For more information, go to cabq.gov/museum.
Latina artists challenge notions of beauty with nightmarish displays
By Chiquita Paschal
Vistas Latinas are accomplished in getting people to think, feel and discuss, and their latest show at 105 Art Gallery, ¡Que Feo!, is no exception. The group embodies the old art school maxim of connecting the personal to the political by tackling new questions and redefining old values.
Volleyball, check. Hot wings, check. MMA, not so much.
By Ari LeVaux
If you’re into beach volleyball, you probably already know about Sneakerz. The vibe around the sandy court is coastal and chill, even as cars whiz by on San Mateo. But it can’t be that chill—one of those jerks made our waitress cry, after all.