Thursday, March 25, 2010

THUR 3/25: Talks, Film, Comedy, Art, Rock

Festival time has arrived along with Spring. The Boston Underground Film Festival... The Women in Comedy Festival... And this is just the beginning (or the middle?) of the festival fun.

Hey, a local artist is giving away a Boston Skyline necklace though our little site. Come up with a good idea for Boston's urban vista to win. There are no wrong answers -- we're just going to pick our favorite!


THUR 3/25

6pm to 7:30pm
"Israel & Palestine: Embracing Humor; Respecting Humanity": Forum
at JFK Forum, Littauer Bldg, 79 JFK St, Cambridge (Kennedy School of Govt)

It's difficult for me to laugh about the Israel-Palestine conflict, but I like the idea of incorporating some humor to build bonds.

Among those who will participate Jimmy Tingle (who's listed as "Harvard Kennedy School '10"? A classmate of Ashley Judd?), Jewish-American comedian Scott Blakeman, and Palestinian-American comedian Maysoon Zayid.

THUR 3/25

"Love Exposure": BUFF Opening Night
at Kendall Square Cinema, 1 Kendall Square, Cambridge
$10 / $8 with student ID

Some of the craziest, wild films are screening over the next week at the 12th annual Boston Underground Film Festival (thru THUR 4/1). They're starting with a big statement -- and a long one. Art films don't come much bolder than a 4-hour Japanese "romantic comedy" about a boy who must sin to bond with his priest-father, so he surreptitiously photographs women's underwear and falls in love with a misanthropist who's in love with his drag persona. It's been received as genius filmmaking by many; I'm guessing it'll be like enjoying a 4-hour fever. (Watch the trailer on YouTube.)

The only other item on the opening night is a "Tokyo Steampunk" party at TT the Bear's with 4 cool bands (you can still get in for $10, if you dress according to the theme).

They must have noticed but didn't care about the logistics of starting their opening party 2 hours before the movie ends on the other side of Cambridge...

THUR 3/25

Tim O'Brien, "The Things They Carried": 20th Anniversary
at First Parish Church, 3 Church St, Cambridge (Harvard Sq)
$5 (tix available at Harvard Book Store, 1256 Mass Ave -- or by phone: 617-661-1515)

After his service in Vietnam, Tim O'Brien wrote a memoir about his experiences (cheerily titled "If I Die in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship Me Home"). About 10 years later, he wrote this novel that has been compared to "The Red Badge of Courage" and "Slaughterhouse-Five". For many, the wounds of the war still haven't healed after 40 years. Tonight will likely include discussion and a reading of passages.

THUR 3/25

David Grann, "The Devil And Sherlock Holmes"
at Porter Square Books, 25 White St, Cambridge (near Star Market)

David Grann is one of the talented writers at The New Yorker who writes wonderfully interesting profiles about wrongfully convicted (and executed) men, a white supremacist prison gang, giant-squid-hunting scientists, and subterranean repairmen of NYC. All of these stories are collected in this tome. Yes, he also looks into the mysterious death of the foremost "Sherlock Holmes" expert.

Grann will discuss the new compilation with Atlantic editor Toby Lester.

THUR 3/25 (to SUN 3/28)

Various Times
2nd Annual Women In Comedy Festival: Night #2
at ImprovBoston, 40 Prospect St, Cambridge (Central Sq)
Many $10 or less

I know what you're thinking -- how did they find enough funny women to fill a 5-day comedy festival? (Kidding!) The performers aim to bury that kind of opinion. See the site for a full schedule. Most of the cheaper shows are in one of the two rooms at ImprovBoston. There are two promising performances tonight:

7pm to 9pm

Sketch Comedy w/ The Gun Show, OBV, and Rogue Burlesque
$10 / $7 students, seniors
10pm to 11:30pm
Muscial Improv Comedy with Trail Mix, Live Pod Shuffle, and Ex-Girlfriends
$10 / $7 students, seniors
THUR 3/25 to SAT 3/27

7pm to 10pm
at Meme Gallery, 55 Norfolk St, Cambridge (Central Sq)

Animated GIF's can amuse people for different lengths of time -- from "This is stupid" to "Wow, this is way better than the watching the dryer!"

All 99 images by 27 artists are available on the webpage, and they'll be projected on the gallery walls for 3 hours on 3 nights. To enhance the experience, DJ's will spin each night:
3/25 -- Jesse Kaminsky
3/26 -- DieRADIO
3/27 -- mrdirky
Some things are more fun when shared with other people, and it's a little weird to do ecstasy by yourself at home -- right?

THUR 3/25

Thee Vicars, Pirate Love, Thick Shakes
at O'Brien's, 3 Harvard St, Allston

This is what happens after SXSW: Cool bands from all over have already travelled to Austin, so they decide to stay in the van. These garage bands may be two of the first to get to Boston, and they've luckily hooked up with the excellent Thick Shakes for swinging garage-rock party.

Thee Vicars (a bunch of teens from England who play garage-rock so retro that the British press finds it refreshing) and Pirate Love (raggedly dark, garagey punk from Oslo) have hooked up on their way out of of the USA. Pretend it's Friday and see some new bands.

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