Showing posts from August, 2021


When was the last time you experienced something truly strange ? Take a hero's story arc, delivered with amazing artwork, and throw in a touch of tarot card wisdom and you have the recipe for one of the most mind altering films of the year. Cryptozoo a film that opens Friday at Landmarks Embarcadero and Berkeley cinemas, unlocks some fresh wonderful weirdness that opens your inner heart like the mental triple bypass we all need. Cryptozoo is an adult tale of a hero trying to protect and rescue the magical beasts of the world. An open mind and some patience pays off with a wild and refreshingly different story that shakes up your senses.  And while I appreciate that we live in a time when full on animation armies deliver big budget entertainment at a fevered pace, it also feels good to set all that corporate polish aside and enjoy something that takes you out of the mainstream into bold new creative territories the bigger studios aren't ever likely to explore.  Cryptozoo is the

James Garner - Tribute

By Monica Sullivan What is it about James Garner that everyone loved so much?  He was good-looking, sure, but so are a lot of other actors who come and go without eliciting a fraction of the affection everyone felt for Garner.   Early in his career at Warner Brothers, executives would complain because Garner wasn’t in every single episode of “Maverick”.  The producers explained that Brett and Bart were brothers, so James Garner would turn up some weeks and Jack Kelly would appear in the other episodes.  The executives seemed to feel it was okay if Jack Kelly was around, but why couldn’t Brett be front and center all the time?  In every frame, even? I felt (and still feel) the same way.  Whenever I see a Bart only episode listing, I wince and watch something else.  But if James Garner is listed, there’s no way I’m switching the channel.  In “Support Your Local Sheriff” and “Support Your Local Gunfighter”, Garner plays a guy who’s on his way to some other place, Australia or something.

Udo Kier going strong in "Swan Song"

Swan Song directed by Todd Stephens debuted at the 45th Frameline Film Festival in San Francisco that ran from June 17-27. Stephens has made several films about gay relationships that have been presented at LGBTQ film festivals through the years, such as Gypsy 83 about two young Goths from Ohio that travel to an annual festival that honors Stevie Nicks. Swan Song is Stephens latest and stars German actor Udo Kier as Pat Pitzenbarger, a retired hairdresser now living in assisted living. As Gypsy 83 , Swan Song is set in Todd Stephens home state Ohio. His first Ohio tale directed by David Moreton and written by Moreton and Stephens is a coming out story of young closeted gay men - Edge of Seventeen made in 1998. Pat learns from the lawyer of his former client at his beauty salon, Rita Parker Sloan, that her final wish was to have him do her hair up after her death. For this role, Stephens brings to the screen veteran actor Linda Evans from the 1960’s Tv series smash hit Big Val