Medical Documentary Steps It Up
Cody: The First Step, a documentary about Albuquerque native Cody Unser who was tragically afflicted with transverse myelitis at the age of 12, will have its New Mexico premiere this coming Wednesday, July 8. The film follows Cody’s founding of the Cody Unser First Step Foundation to help find a cure for her disease. In addition to charting her own emotional and physical struggles, the film examines where science and politics intersect. For the last five years, Cody has lobbied state legislatures and Congress to push for stem-cell research, which offers the key to her recovery. Doors open at the KiMo Theatre in downtown Albuquerque at 5 p.m. The screening will start around 5:45 p.m. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased by calling 768-3522. For more information on the Cody Unser First Step Foundation, visit cufsf.org.
Anvil! The Story of Anvil
Failure is not an option for headbanging band or inspiring documentary
At age 14, two nice Jewish boys from the snowy suburbs of Toronto named Robb Reiner and Steve “Lips” Kudlow bonded over their love of heavy metal music. They made a pact to form a band, play some kick-ass music and keep on rockin’ until they become old men—all of which, true to their word, they have done. If you’ve never heard of Reiner and Kudlow’s lifelong labor of love, the self-proclaimed “demigods of Canadian metal” known as Anvil, don’t feel too bad. Few people have. Ask the right headbanging veteran, though—as Sacha Gervasi’s love letter documentary Anvil! The Story of Anvil does—and you’re likely to get a nostalgic lecture. Lemmy from Motörhead, Slash from Guns N' Roses, Lars Ulrich from Metallica, Scott Ian from Anthrax, they all agree: Anvil is the real deal. The band’s seminal 1981 album “Metal on Metal” predated the work of Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax and Megadeth and helped birth the outrageous spandex-and-leather era of MTV’s “Headbanger’s Ball” and beyond.
Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen
Worst ... blockbuster ... ever?
This past weekend, Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen opened to some of the worst reviews in recent memory (only 20 percent positive on RottenTomatoes.com) ... and the second-largest box office opening in history ($200 million in its first week). These two facts have led certain very vocal defenders of the film to dredge up the old argument that movie reviewers know nothing, that they are out of touch with modern American tastes. Michael Bay likes it when things explode. He doesn’t care why they explode. And neither should you, you Evian-sipping elitist! It’s summertime, damn it, and audiences just want to have some fun at the movies!
As Seen on TV
Billy Mays R.I.P.
These last couple of weeks have been rough ones for the entertainment industry. A number of icons have passed away in quick succession: Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson. The “Rule of Three” was proved true with the deaths of these well-known celebrity figures, each of whom had contributed to the evolving television landscape in specific and impactful ways. Late-night television, sexy detectives and MTV would not have been the same without them. But as the tumultuous week came to an end (In what direction was a show like “Entertainment Tonight” supposed to point its cameras?), there came news that a fourth Idiot Box icon had shuffled off this mortal coil. Noted TV pitchman Billy Mays was dead at age 50 from a heart attack.
The Week in Sloth
“Naked Science” (National Geographic Channel 8 p.m.) NGC gets all us closet pyromaniacs in the holiday mood by exploring the science of fireworks.
1939 (TCM 8 p.m.) Turner Classic explores the cinematic year many consider the best in the history of Hollywood. Among the films released that year: Gone With the Wind; The Wizard of Oz; The Women; Ninotchka; Goodbye, Mr. Chips; Mr. Smith Goes to Washington; Of Mice and Men; Wuthering Heights; and Stagecoach. Stick around after the documentary for a few prime examples from the year in question.