Friday, March 30, 2012

Weekend Arts Agenda: 13 Most Beautiful

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Dean and Britta plays music for Andy Warhol's screen tests, Fahamu Pecou hosts karaoke in Ben Roosevelt's dive bar, and more this weekend. Details after the jump

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Film Clips: The Wrath of the Titans is unleashed

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 10:34 AM

OPENING TODAY

Perseus must battle the Titans, the worlds greatest warriors, in order to save his father Zeus from Hades
  • Legendary Pictures
  • Perseus must battle the Titans, the world's greatest warriors, in order to save his father Zeus from Hades

INTRUDERS (R) This film follows Mia, a young girl who is writing a horror story for a class project. As she expands upon the tale, her nightmares reveal the hooded monster she created in her story. The more she works on the story the more real the ominous hooded figure becomes, until eventually he is real. Mia's father can't believe it at first, but Mia's horror story becomes a true one as she and her father fight to stay alive.

ISLAND PRESIDENT (PG) This documentary follows the life of President Mohammed Nasheed of the Maldives, an island nation at the lowest elevation of anywhere in the world. After successfully introducing Democracy to his country, Nasheed is now faced with the battle of convincing the rest of the world to take global warming seriously. As the world gets warmer, Nasheed's country slowly is being swallowed by the rising sea levels due to melting polar ice caps. This thought provoking documentary is an insightful way of addressing the issue of global warming with a human element.

GOON (R) Sean William Scott stars as Doug, a guy who just doesn't fit in with his family of geniuses, especially when his career choice is being the bouncer at a club. His life seems pretty bleak, until one day when attending a hockey game, Doug gets in a fight with one of the players and knocks him out cold with one punch. The entire hockey arena goes ballistic when they see this, and Doug finds himself being offered a spot on the team. It seems he has finally found his calling, until the only other hockey player with a more bad ass reputation than Doug lets him know that he is out to get him.

MIRROR MIRROR (PG) Julia Roberts stars as the evil queen in this remix of the classic Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs tale. The evil queen banishes Snow White into the fore in order to swoop in and steal the prince who has fallen in love with Snow White. But Snow White has different plans and enlists the help of seven little dwarfs to try and save the prince from marriage to the evil queen who is only after his money.

WRATH OF THE TITANS (PG-13) Perseus, one of the earliest heroes of Greek mythology, must face the dangerous underworld to save his father Zeus. Zeus has been taken captive by his son Ares and his brother Hades. Epic battles ensue, pitting Perseus against the infamous Titans like Cyclops, Medusa and a cast of other mythological monstrosities.


DULY NOTED

ATLANTA FILM FESTIVAL (Multiple Locations and Films) The 2012 Atlanta Film Festival begins tonight and continues throughout the end of March and into the first day in April. With screenings at Midtown Art Cinema, The Plaza Theatre, The Goat Farm, The Rialto, The Strand, Woodruff Arts Center, and Paris on Ponce among others locations, this year's festival is a film junkie's can get his or her fix pretty much anywhere in Atlanta. Film shorts, documentaries, films with Atlanta connections will be lighting up screens all over the city, in addition to lectures and film-making competitions. Visit here for more info and here for a complete list of the screenings.

THE CABIN IN THE WOODS (R) The closing night film of the Atlanta Film Festival features a horror story that follows the trip of five friends to a remote cabin in the woods. As things start to get a little creepy, the audience thinks they are seeing the same old recycled horror story. But as the movie progresses and the twists get more and more absurd, this movie begins to turn the formulaic horror movie genre into something unique and different. Following the screening, there will be a festival-closing party. Sat. March 31, 7 p.m. Midtown Art Cinema 931 Monroe Drive Atlanta GA, $30

THE FORGIVENESS OF BLOOD (NR) Winner of Best Screenplay awards at the Berlin and Chicago Film Festivals, director Joshua Marston (Maria Full of Grace) weaves a story around an Albanian family stuck in a bloody feud with neighbors when a small misunderstanding escalates into murder. With the patriarch of the family on the run, the rest of the family must pull together to survive. Midtown Art Cinema 931 Monroe Drive Atlanta GA

TITANIC (3-D) (PG-13) James Cameron's Academy Award-winning, 1997 blockbuster returns to the big screen with a new three dimensional treatment on Wed., April 4. It's the same love story between DiCaprio and Winslet, just with way more intense scenes of the ship sinking.

W.E. (R) Madonna, who wrote the script and directed the film, retells the real life story of King Edward VIII and American divorce Wallis Simpson by juxtaposing their story with a contemporary love story between a Russian security guard and a New York Trophy wife named Wally Winsthrop. Winsthrop, who is infatuated with the love story behind King Edward and Simpson, finds love of her own in an unlikely place during her journey to understand Edward and Wallis' relationship. UA Tara Cinemas 2345 Cheshire Bridge Road NE

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ATLwood: Clint Eastwood, champion of Midtown dining

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 9:20 AM

First The Boy is Mine and now It All Belongs To Me? Dont be fooled, Brandy and Monica do know how to share
  • Allan Bardwell AB Graffix
  • First "The Boy is Mine" and now "It All Belongs To Me"? Don't be fooled, Brandy and Monica do know how to share

Star Sightings

Sheryl Crow had dinner on the patio at Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse this past weekend with her son and friend after visiting the Legoland Discovery Center in Phipps Plaza (that will make you work up an appetite for sure).

— Singers Brandy and Monica were spotted at the W in Midtown last week at a private event where more than 500 VIP guests were serenaded by Brandy who sang a portion of Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” prior to joining Monica to preform “The Boy is Mine.”

— According to the AJCBuzz, Clint Eastwood has been all over Midtown (dining at the Four Seasons, South City Kitchen Midtown and Veni Vidi Vici this week), Kevin Bacon took in “The Hunger Games” at Atlantic Station and dined at Spice Market, and T.I. stopped by Twist.

— Michael Jai White, who played Gambol in The Dark Knight, was spotted hanging out at Whiskey Park on Friday, posing for photos with fans and dancing with friends.

Current Filming

Trouble with the Curve, starring Clint Eastwood, Amy Adams, and Justin Timberlake, filmed at Amicalola Lodge on Hwy. 53 West in Dawsonville at the start of the week before moving on to Turner Field for the rest of the week.

— The J.J. Abrams pilot for NBC, "Revolution" (an "intense action drama which looks at a group of people trying to find their loved ones and stay alive in a world where there are no longer any forms of energy") filmed at Stone Mountain Park on Tuesday. The crew has also recently been in East Atlanta as well as the quarry (yes, the one from "The Walking Dead") on the westside as well.

Adult Children of Divorce starring Jane Lynch, Adam Scott and Jessica Alba has been in downtown Decatur (mostly at No. 246) and production isn't hard to find because yellow signs saying "A.C.O.D." with arrows are all around pointing the way!

— The "Vampire Diaries" is filming a high school scene (probably on Covington Hwy) in Decatur.
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— The "Untitled Kevin Williamson Pilot" is filming in Lawrenceville.

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Fresh Slice: 3/30/12 — Georgia Lawmakers' war on women done for the year

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 9:12 AM

VIDEO: Many Georgia Democratic women representatives walked off the floor in protest during the vote of House Bill 954 chanting "Women will remember in November!" The bill passed the legislature and became law by the end of the night. (Joeff Davis)

1. Late into the night, Georgia lawmakers finally passed HB 954, the "fetal pain" bill, which outlaws most elective abortions after 20 weeks, reduced from 26 weeks. (There are all sorts of caveats. Just file it under: "Nuts.") We join Alabama, Oklahoma, Indiana, Nebraska, Idaho, Kansas, and North Carolina with similar restrictions. In other words, we're following those guys. Good. Lord.

2. I'll be honest: I hope to win $540 million tonight and never have to write about the 2012 Gold Dome freak show again.

3. This, however, I'm intrigued by: According to ATLawblog.com, a whistleblower lawsuit was filed by a former Atlanta Director of Treasury Services Edward Tuohy against the city. He says he was fired after he refused to circumvent proper financial guidelines, despite being instructed to do so by his boss, Chief Finance Officer Joya De Foor. You'll recall that De Foor herself was let go five days later under weird circumstances. Interesting. Veeeery interesting.

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5 things today: This Ain't California, Fahamu Pecou

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 7:00 AM

1. This Ain't California screens at the Landmark Midtown as part of AFF
2. Karaoke with Fahamu Pecou at Ben Roosevelt's The Blue Flame at Get This! Gallery
3. Oryx and Crake and Adron play the Earl
4. Jon Reep performs at the Punchline
5. The D'Air Project presents Shadow of a Doubt

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5 things today: This Ain't California, Fahamu Pecou

Posted By on Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 7:00 AM

1. This Ain't California screens at the Landmark Midtown as part of AFF
2. Karaoke with Fahamu Pecou at Ben Roosevelt's The Blue Flame at Get This! Gallery
3. Oryx and Crake and Adron play the Earl
4. Jon Reep performs at the Punchline
5. The D'Air Project presents Shadow of a Doubt

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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Atlanta Daily World building spared

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 4:11 PM

Yesterday, the Atlanta Urban Design Commission voted against allowing the demolition — even partial demolition — of the Atlanta Daily World building on Auburn Avenue.

Maria Saporta published this press release issued by ADW publisher Alexis Scott and Valerie Edwards, executive vice president of the developer the Integral Group ...

The Atlanta Urban Design Commission ("UDC") denied the demolition application Integral submitted on January 31, 2012. We appropriately respect the board's research, deliberations, and decision concerning the former home of Atlanta Daily World newspaper. Neither seller nor buyer plans to appeal the UDC's decision.

As longtime residents of the Sweet Auburn community, we are especially encouraged by the recently conveyed commitment to preserve the building that formerly housed the Atlanta Daily World, as expressed by certain government leaders and historic preservationists.

As these individuals and groups bring forward practical solutions to the sale and restoration of 145 Auburn Avenue, we look forward to working with them.

Integral remains committed to its projects in the corridor and the former home of the Atlanta Daily World remains available for purchase.

The Sweet Auburn District was Atlanta's original Live, Work and Play community. It once embodied an economic vitality that we all should seek to restore.

It's a win for preservationists, particularly the Historic District Development Corporation, the group behind a petition to save the structure.

Commenters on the Saporta Report weren't quite as convinced it constitutes a victory. "atlurbanist" wrote ...

Awesome — that makes 2 deteriorating, unusable (in it's current state), former newspaper buildings downtown [the old AJC building is vacant as well]. I just hope this one doesn't end up with trees growing out of it as well.

I also hope that this isn't a bad omen for the promise of economic development along the streetcar route.

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I'm not saying the AJC's nationwide 7-month investigation into school cheating is complete bullshit — I'm just saying there are some 'irregularities'

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 2:21 PM

AJC-schools-cheating-story.jpg
  • CL File Photo

On Sunday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution published a series of stories suggesting that, according to its own seven-month investigation, "196 of the nation's 3,125 largest school districts had a high degree of suspicious results on standardized test scores, which could point to instances of cheating."

I'm about to tell you, in a very long and involved way, two things about that statement:

1. That's technically true, and there are probably instances of cheating flagged within that 196 number, but that number is most likely tremendously overstated and the data used to arrive at it is deeply flawed.

2. The paper knew this and decided to publish anyway, because it didn't have the time, resources, or desire to dive deeper into these numbers.

I say this based on conversations I've had with school administrators, detailed responses by the districts themselves, and an expert who advised the paper and told it specifically why these numbers were not only wrong, but irresponsible to publish. In fact, I'm more certain of my conclusions than you should be of the notion the AJC's report indicates widespread cheating on the level the story asserts.

Let's just say I want to start a conversation about what these irregularities show. That logic and wording was good enough for the AJC to all-but-indict nearly 200 school districts - and hire a marketing firm to help it do so - as harboring cheaters, so it's good enough for me. Jump with me and let's discuss:

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Catie Donnelly doodles all over 'The Best Show on WFMU'

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Todd Barry by Catie Donnelly
  • Courtesy Catie Donnelly
  • 'Todd Barry' by Catie Donnelly
Closing in on the impressive 12-year mark, The Best Show on WFMU with Tom Scharpling holds a special place in the extremely passionate hearts of comedy nerds worldwide. To quote Spin's recent, fantastic profile, "Trying to explain The Best Show on WFMU to someone who hasn't heard it can be one of the most frustrating takes on the planet. It's a radio show. Let's at least start there. It airs out of listener-supported station WFMU in Jersey City, New Jersey… The simple explanation is this: For three hours each week, a guy named Tom Scharpling gets on the radio, plays some cool records, takes some phone calls, and then his friend, Superchunk and Mountain Goats drummer, Jon Wurster, calls up and acts like a jerk."

Pretty niche, weird thing, right? Not so much.

During the past dozen years, the show has amassed a wide-ranging audience, not to mention some very famous guests. Comedians Zach Galifianakis, Aziz Ansari and Marc Maron have stopped by, as have musicians Andrew W.K., Aimee Mann and Carl Newman. One time, during WFMU's 2008 fundraising marathon, Scharpling, Ted Leo, Ben Gibbard and Patton Oswalt covered Abba's "Take a Chance on Me." Yep, pretty special. Extremely passionate. Comedy nerds.

Another such nerd is Catie Donnelly, an Atlanta resident who works in software and has been drawing for fun since she was in middle school. Like many Best Show devotees, Donnelly is glued to Twitter on Tuesday nights when the show airs, interacting with fellow fans. But her fandom is a little more serious than most, if only because she live-draws the show each week. Her "about" page explains: "Catie is a person who draws ridiculous shit all the time." I caught up with her to find out more.

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Protesters protest protest bill and an unlikely coalition is built

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 1:20 PM

A NEW COALITION Atlanta Tea Party co-founder Debbie Dooley, Georgia AFL-CIO President Charlie Flemming (glasses) and Pastor Jean Ward (at mic) lead a chant of We Own the Dome! at this mornings protest against SB 469.
  • Joeff Davis
  • A NEW COALITION: Atlanta Tea Party co-founder Debbie Dooley, Georgia AFL-CIO President Charlie Flemming (glasses), and Pastor Jean Ward (at mic) lead a chant of "We own the Dome!" at this morning's protest against SB 469.

About 100 people representing a broad coalition of groups rallied this morning to oppose SB 469, which they fear would stifle free speech and would dramatically increase penalties for protesters.

According to Ben Speight, an organizer for Teamsters Local 728, the bill criminalizes forms of free speech and political protest by imposing fines for picketing outside any private residence and tacking "conspiracy" onto some criminal trespass charges that protesters often face. If you plan as a group to commit criminal trespass, like recent foreclosure protests, you could be charged with committing conspiracy, meaning each person participating will not only be charged with a misdemeanor, but also could get two years in prison. That's stiffer than the penalty for conspiracy to commit murder.

Speakers at this morning's rally included members of Atlanta's religious community, the co-founder for the Atlanta Tea Party, and the president of Georgia's AFL-CIO. Other groups opposing the bill include Georgia Conservatives in Action, Common Cause, the Sierra Club, Georgia Right to Life, Amnesty International, Occupy Atlanta, and many Tea Party groups across the state.

"If this bill is passed, innocent people that are exercising their First Amendment rights could be hauled off to jail," said Debbie Dooley, co-founder of Atlanta Tea Party at this morning's rally. Religious groups could also be affected according to Rev. Johnny Hill, who serves as professor and dean at Interdenominational Theological Center: "SB 469 does not limit provisions of penalizing groups for protesting private space, even faith-based groups could be charged. If a church is concerned about an abandoned building in a community or a business, like a liquor store, they will now be subject to being jailed for protesting. It is a very dangerous legislation with which everybody should be deeply concerned."

The bill is expected to be voted on today in the House. If it passes, it will go back to the Senate for approval before heading to Gov. Nathan Deal's desk.

"A community labor coalition is committed to civil disobedience action if the law passes," says Roger Sikes, organizer with Atlanta Jobs with Justice. "We have a bail fund that has about $5,000 at the moment that will be for people who go to jail today in opposition of 469," he says, emphasizing that they will only commit disobedience if the bill passes both the House and the Senate. "First we must reach a critical mass of people who are willing to be arrested and we are currently very close to that number, we are signing people up as we speak."

At the time of this post, the bill was still not on the calendar to be voted on today, the final day of this year's legislative session. "I think we have this bill killed," Debbie Dooley told CL shortly before this post went live, citing the fact that it is not on the House calendar yet. "We think it would be on the calendar if they had the votes to pass it. We have confidence that a lot of legislatures will not vote against First Amendment rights. We plan on being here all day and all night. We are going to make sure this bill is killed."

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