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THE FREDERICK BROWN JR. AMPHITHEATER June 24
CONTENTS • JUNE 2017 • VOLUME 25, NO. 11
PaulCelebrating Anka 60 years
PROUD MEMBERS OF THE BUTLER AUTO GROUP
EARS! ING 25 Y T A R B E EL
15 Churchill 15 Chef Rusty Hamlin 16 Ron Funches 17 Carlene Carter 18 Valerie Tosi 18 George Schlatter
TO SEE OUR
ENTIRE SUMMER CONCERT SERIES & SPOTLIGHT CONCERTS
GO TO: www. amphitheater.org or visit us on twitter and Facebook
Earth, Wind & Fire Tribute
www.amphitheater.org • 770.631.0630 You may purchase tickets @ the Fred Box Office or online: www.ticketalternative.com or by phone at 1-877-725-8849 201 McIntosh Trail, Peachtree City 30269
18 04 Around Town 05 On Tap 06 Atlanta on a Dime 07 Under The Lights 08 New Releases 08 Station Control 14 Movie Reviews 18 16 Albums
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SumGmuidee r OUR ANNUAL SUMMER MOVIE
insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 3
Around Town JUNE 1 - SUNDAY, JUNE 4
Atlanta Food & Wine Festival The Loews Hotel
The Atlanta Food & Wine Festival is a four-day culinary experience celebrating the South. Indulge in a variety of Learning Experiences, Tasting Tents, Dinners & Events and Master Classes all designed to educate and entertain guests from the novice to the connoisseur. Visit atlfoodandwinefestival.com.
FRIDAY & SATURDAY JUNE 2 & 3
Events and Performances taking place this Month
forms the soundtrack live. Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O'Connor star in one of the greatest and most successful musicals ever filmed. A story on Hollywood's silent-movie era is filled with memorable songs, lavish routines and Kelly's fabulous song-and-dance number performed in the rain. Visit AtlantaSymphony.org
SATURDAY, JUNE 10
Tunes from the Tombs
Historic Oakland Cemetery
Candler Park Music Festival Candler Park, Atlanta
This popular neighborhood festival is a live music filled weekend. Lineup includes Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Railroad Earth, Lake Street Dive, Matisyahu, and more. Enjoy fare from 20 local food trucks and restaurant vendors, a local artists market, adult field games, Terrapin Draft Lounge, plus a craft cocktail bar. The 5K will be held Saturday at 8:30 am. For ticket info visit CandlerParkMusicFestival.com.
Atlanta Symphony Hall
Watch Singin' in the Rain like never before as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra per-
SUNDAY, JUNE 18
Family Food Fest Atlanta
Georgia Railroad Freight Depot
Family Food Fest Atlanta, a Multicultural Father's Day Food Tasting Celebration made its debut in 2015 at the Georgia Aquarium. This year it will be held at the Georgia Freight Depot. The producers of Family Food Fest have been doing a successful Father's Day food tasting event in Atlanta for 15 years. This year includes a new barbecue cook-off. For more information visit familyfoodfestatlanta.com.
TUESDAY, JUNE 20 Tunes from the Tombs, Historic Oakland Cemetery’s annual summer music festival, brings some of Atlanta’s favorite bands to the city’s most unique performance venue. Rock in Peace with cold drinks, the hottest food trucks, kid’s activities, and much more. The festival runs from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., with gates opening at noon. All proceeds from Tunes from the Tombs benefit Historic Oakland Foundation. Visit oaklandcemetery.com for ticket information.
FRIDAY & SATURDAY JUNE 9&10 FRIDAY, JUNE 16 Singin’ in the Rain
on 1050 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. Tickets available at yesjazzmatters.org.
The Wrens Nest
Enjoy an evening of jazzy music with featured artist Rita Graham, Theresa Hightower, Roy Lee Johnson, Madoka Oshima, Tu-Tuff Band, & The Edwin Williams Experience to name a few on Friday, June 16, from 8:00 pm -11:00 pm at the Wren’s Nest
Books & Booze
City Winery @ Ponce City Market
Ponce City Market’s Posman Books and City Winery are teaming up to put a new spin on the term “book club.” Books & Booze starts June 20th at 7 p.m., and literature lovers can purchase their copy of the month’s selection today from Posman Books and later bring it to Atlanta’s urban winery to enjoy a “spirited” discussion among fellow readers. Posman Books' General Manager Marc Stiles will host. June’s book is “American Gods” by Neil Gaiman. Visit citywinery.com for more information.
JUNE 20 - JULY 23
Cinderella Della Circus Center for Puppetry Arts
Cinderella Della Circus will bring high-fly-
ing thrills to the Center for Puppetry Arts. Created by the Center’s Artistic Director Jon Ludwig, this show will balance both puppetry and the circus through fairytale magic. Visit puppet.org for more info.
THURSDAY, JUNE 22 Sunset Sips
Chattahoochee Nature Center
Sunset Sips is a laid back, family friendly event taking place on the 4th Thursday of each month, 6:30 9:30p.m, April - September (except July). June’s performer is the two piece band Sainte Jane, consisting of Lauren St. Jane and Jeremy Ezell. Listen to music of Lucinda Williams, Linda Rondstat and Bonnie Raitt. Visit chattnaturecenter.org.
TUESDAY, JUNE 27
An Evening with Alan Alda
Marcus Jewish Community Center
This month the Book Festival of the MJCCA welcomes back iconic actor, bestselling authorvAlan Alda. Alda will present his book, If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face?: My Adventures in the Art and Science of Relating and Communicating, an indispensable guide to communicating better —based on his experience with acting, improv, science, and storytelling. Q & A and book signing following the program. Visit atlantajcc.org
Go behind-the-scenes of a reality TV dating show in this OFF-BROADWAY
HIT MUSICAL COMEDY!
Y D O B YO O N N U LL VES BOOK & LYRI
ITAMAR MOSE S
GELYING!” “HUA IN T R ENTE LANTA —AT WN INTO
FREE* AT PIEDMONT PARK! JUNE 14-17 $15 Reserved Section (close to stage)
MUSIC & LYRI CS BY
$35 Table Seating *Free General Admission Seating
404.584.7450 40 04.58 • HORIZONTHEATRE.COM
PG 4 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
On Tap this Month MAJOR EVENTS COMING TO ATLANTA
Thursday-Saturday, June 8,9&10: Fox Theatre
THE AVETT BROTHERS
e Avett Brothers are coming to Atlanta's Fox eatre for three shows to take place on ursday, June 8, Friday, June 9, and Saturday, June 10th. All shows are at 8 p.m. Last June the Avetts released their 9th studio album, True Sadness, and additionally, the album was the most played album on Americana radio stations in 2016, according to the Americana Music Association. Tickets may be purchased at Foxeatre.org
Friday, June 23: Atlanta Symphony Hall
Over the past two decades, Grammy Award-winning trumpeter and composer Chris Botti has become the nation’s largest selling instrumental artist. His mesmerizing performances with a stunning array of legends such as Sting, Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, and Andrea Bocelli have cemented his place as one of the most brilliant and inspiring forces of the contemporary music scene. Tickets at AtlantaSymphony.org
Saturday, June 24: The Fred Amphitheatre
Anka became famous during the late 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s with hit songs like "Diana", "Lonely Boy", "Put Your Head on My Shoulder", and Having My Baby". He wrote such well-known music as the theme for e Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and one of Tom Jones's biggest hits, "She's a Lady", as well as the lyrics for Frank Sinatra's signature song, "My Way". See the legend perform live. Tickets at Amphitheatre.org
Sunday, June 25: Infinite Energy Center
ENRIQUE IGLESIAS & PITBULL
SUMMER FILM FESTIVAL
Two of music's most captivating live performers will share the stage when multi-platinum selling and multiple Grammy Award-winning global superstars Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull reunite for a co-headlining tour with special guest CNCO. e Inﬁnite Energy Center, formerly Gwinnett Center, is a 90-acre lakefront campus just minutes outside of Atlanta. e Arena seats 13,000.Tickets at InﬁniteEnergyCenter.com
E F R EE N T V E
Sunday, June 25: Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Sheryl Crowe’s music incorporates elements of pop, rock, folk, country and blues. She has released nine studio albums, two compilations, a live album and has contributed to a number of ﬁlm soundtracks while selling more than 50 million albums worldwide. Known for her catchy lyrics to hit songs like “All I Wanna Do”, “If It Makes You Happy” and “Soak Up the Sun.” See her perform under the stars. Visit ChastainSeries.com
Fox Documentary Ft. Steamboat Willie
Casablanca July 20
Mary Poppins Sing-a-long July 23
Harry Potter Films I-VIII
Beauty And The Beast Sing-a-long
Sunday & Monday, June 25 & 26: City Winery
Dave Mason has a rich history in Rock n’ Roll. He was an original member of Derek and the Dominos, a key band member for Traﬃc, and had many hits of his own. Not many music legends in their 60's perform with the same energy and vitality that deﬁned their early days. Dave Mason is a rare exception. He enjoys a zest for live performances and continues to write and record. Tickets available at CityWinery.com
Saturday Morning Cartoons July 29
Aug. 5, 12, & 13
FOR DETAILS AND FULL SCHEDULE VISIT FOXTHEATRE.ORG OR CALL (855) 285-8499 insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 5
EVENTS HAPPENING FOR SMALL CHANGE IN ATLANTA
Know of a low cost event happening? Event@AtlantaOnADime.com By Marci Miller
Saturday & Sunday June 3 & 4
Chattahoochee Nature Center $8 Members; chattnaturecenter.org e expanded "Butterﬂy Encounter Exhibit” allows visitors to the festival to hand-feed more than 250 free ﬂying butterﬂies. Enjoy the show when masses of butterﬂies ﬂy free and land on kids and ﬂowers after their release in front of the Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion. Meet Ms. Chrysalis as she explains how these magical creatures metamorphosize. Learn about the ways you can help bring more butterﬂies to your garden. All ages will enjoy this fun event featuring live music; entomology exhibits; arts and crafts; face painting, butterﬂy parades, food trucks and more. A great event to kick oﬀ summer and create amazing memories.
June 7, 14, 21 & 28
theatrical experience. Parents and their children will witness world-class artistry in Aurora’s amazing facility in downtown Lawrenceville. At roughly 45 minutes long, these lively performances are designed perfectly for the young attention span but are fun for the whole family.
Sunday, June 11
ATLANTA STREETS ALIVE
Westside Route; Free Event atlantastreetsalive.com
Atlanta Streets Alive closes miles of Atlanta streets to cars, and opens them to residents for exploration. ese events include everything from live music to sports to dancing to how-to demonstrations. "Open Streets" gets communities active while changing the way they view their own neighborhoods. Bring your bicycle or just your feet, and get ready to explore your community streets in a safer, healthier, more livable way.
Aurora Theatre in Gwinnett $7 Ticket; auroratheatre.com
Sunday, June 11; 1- 4 pm
Aurora eatre brings the best puppeteers, magicians, storytellers, jugglers and musicians, as a part of this series intended for youngsters to have their ﬁrst
Woodruff Arts Center Free Event; woodruffcreateATL.org
and artistic programming for free at e Woodruﬀ. Atlanta Symphony Orchestra invites pirates of all ages to enjoy a swashbuckling afternoon of songs from its newest family-friendly production, Plundering Pirates of Symphony Hall. At the High Museum of Art, families will delight in Painter and Poet: e Wonderful World of Ashley Bryan, a children’s picture-book art exhibition celebrating the renowned author and illustrator.
Thursday, June 15; 7:30 pm
PERFORMANCE IN THE PARK Piedmont Park Free Event; atlantasymphony.org
Led by Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Assistant Conductor Joseph Young, this year’s concert will follow a “Song and Dance” theme, featuring David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance,” Tchaikovsky’s Polonaise from Eugene Onegin, Brahms’ Hungarian Dance No. 5, and a special performance of Haydn’s Trumpet Concerto featuring Principal Trumpet Stuart Stephenson.
Friday, June 16
OUTDOORS CLUB KICKOFF
Heritage Sandy Springs Museum FreeTour; heritagesandysprings.org e Heritage Sandy Springs Outdoors Club gives residents and visitors an opportunity to get outside and exercise while enjoying our city parks! Each week, the club will meet at one of the 16 parks for a leisurely hour-long urban hike. On June 16, take part in a Flashlight Friday Night Urban Hike and Movie!
Saturday & Sunday June 24 & 25
OLD FOURTH WARD FESTIVAL Historic Fourth Ward Park Oldfourthwardparkartsfestival.com
e Old Fourth Ward Arts Festival at the Historic Fourth Ward Park is a two-day celebration of the arts while honoring the rich history of our community. e Festival takes place Saturday, June 24 from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, June 25 from 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
FREE FAMILY FESTIVAL
Atlanta Streets Alive Westside Route • Free Event atlantastreetsalive.com
Families are able to experience educational
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Your Neighborhood Pizzeria!
Spend an evening under the stars listening to live music with friends. Come the 2nd Sunday now thru September for music along the river.
Atlanta’s Favorite Pizza! Multiple Atlanta Locations: JohnnysPizza.com PG 6 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
Sunday, June 11, 6:30 pm • Hear the smooth jazz of Carol Albert
Under The Lights
ON STAGE THIS MONTH
HOW TO USE A KNIFE
Now Playing Through June 25 Horizon Theatre (404) 584-7450 HorizonTheatre.com HOW TO USE A KNIFE is a sharp-edged comedy in the hustle and bustle of a Wall Street restaurant. This melting-pot of a kitchen sizzles with secrets in this fast-paced feast. George is a down on his luck master chef. He is a recovering alcoholic who hits rock bottom and faces his last chance to turn his life around. His kitchen is nowhere near the kind of ambitious culinary environments he worked in before. The story surrounds two rowdy Guatemalan line cooks, a nosy busboy, and a mysteriously reserved East-African dishwasher. Set during busy dinner shifts, the play bursts with grinding suspense, crackling energy, and piercing surprise as secrets from the past come to a boil. It is a story about guilt and second chances.
THE DANCING HANKERCHIEF
Thru June 18 Theatrical Outfit (678) 528-1500 TheatricalOutfit.org THE DANCING HANDKERCHIEF is a beautiful fable, told through song, dance, stage magic, and puppetry, about an aspiring rocker-girl who falls into a magician-dad’s bag of tricks. This world premiere with songs by E m m y , Grammy, Oscar and Tony-winner Robert Lopez, tells the story of Mysterioso the Magician and his curious child Bastienne who, through an epic separation and reunion, learn to see each other in a truer, hope-filled light. A Balladeer sings delightful tunes that paint a comic and fantastical world inhabited by a beckoning handkerchief, an otherworldly suitcase, magical creatures and one gigantic, ravenous rabbit. A unique hybrid theatrical extravaganza, The Dancing Handkerchief will mesmerize patrons small and tall.
THE DANCING GRANNY
June 10 - 18 Oglethorpe Conant Arts Center (404) 733-5000 AllianceTheatre.org/granny The first show of the Alliance Theatre’s 2017/18 on-the-road season is THE DANCING GRANNY, a world premiere inspired by the children’s book by beloved illustrator and author Ashley Bryan. In The Dancing Granny, Ananse, the clever spider of African folklore, tries to trick Granny into dancing away from her garden so he can take her vegetables. But his plan backfires when he is drawn into the dance himself. The Dancing Granny is being adapted for the stage by Jiréh Breon Holder, 2017 winner of the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition for his play Too Heavy for Your Pocket.
June 13 - 18 The Fox Theatre (855) 285-8499 BroadwayinAtlanta.com/MammaMia
This sunny, funny tale unfolds on a Greek island paradise. On the eve of her wedding, a daughters quest to find the identity of her fathers brings three men from her mother’s past back to the island they visited 20 years ago. Inspired by the storytelling magic of ABBA’s songs from “Dancing Queen” and “S.O.S.” to “Money, Money, Money” and “Take a Chance on Me,” propels this enchanting tale of love, laughter and friendship, as they have the time of their lives. MAMMA MIA! is a celebration of mothers and daughters, old friends and new family found. Mamma Mia! is one of the most successful musicals of all time, the eighth longest running show in Broadway history and one of only five musicals to have run for more than ten years on Broadway. The West End production is now in its eighteenth year. To date, Mamma Mia! has been seen by over 60 million people worldwide in 50 productions in 16 different languages.
“BOMBASTIC ENERGY!”–THE SACRAMENTO BEE
HOW TO USE
A KNIFE BY WILL SNIDER
A SHARP-EDGED COMEDY!
A melting pot of cultures in a restaurant kitchen sizzles with second chances and secrets.
MAYthru 19-JUN 25 Now June PRESS OPENING: MAY 26 25
EUCLID & AUSTIN AVES. IN LITTLE FIVE FI POINTS
404.584.7450 • HORIZONTHEATRE.COM
flx insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 7
THE LATEST DVD, BLU RAY & VOD RELEASES By John Moore
(Universal Studios Home Entertainment) It’s admittedly a little surprising that one of the most impressive social thrillers of the year came from one half of the comedy duo Key & Peele. Jordan Peele wrote and directed this brilliant psychological thriller about an African-American man (Daniel Kaluuya) who is brought home for the weekend by his white girlfriend (Allison Williams) to meet her family for the first time. It doesnlt take long to realize something disturbing is going on. Easily one of the most impressive horror movie to tackle racism since Night of the Living Dead, the premise is tailor made for today. Fantastically, written, acted and directed, there is not a false move in Get Out.
PLASMATICS - LIVE! ROD SWENSON’S LOST TAPES 1978-81
(MVD Visual) Despite being a wildly influential and highly entertaining band, there is not a ton early footage out there of Wendy O. Williams and her group, the Plasmatic. This
rare live footage was recorded during the band’s early years (late ‘70s/early ‘80s) by Williams’ longtime partner, Rod Swenson, who recorded all the band’s videos. This collection includes some of the Plasmatics’ first shows, when they took the stage at CBGBs. Some of the footage is grainy, but the sound is solid and the historical significance to the world of punk rock can’t be ignored.
I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO
(Magnolia Home Entertainment) Tackling racism in America via documentary is certainly not a new thing, however directing Raoul Peck manages to put forth one of the most fascinating examples in recent memory. Working from the unfished book, Remember This House, by essayist, novelist and playwright James Baldwin, the director explores racism through Baldwin’s own experiences as well as his relationships with a trio of civil rights leaders: Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr. and Medgar Evers. Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, the film goes deep into the divisions that are still wildly visible today.
WALK DOWN NOSTALGIA LANE BY BENJAMIN CARR
OSTALGIA CAN PROVE TO BE a strong draw, leading us down strange paths. We buy lava lamps and albums on vinyl. We get Star Wars prequels. We buy tie-dyed clothing and hang on to well-worn outfits for way too long. Those who make a living deciding which shows will air know this and therefore will keep going back to the well as long as we line up for a sip of nostalgia water.
TWIN PEAKS (Showtime)
Twenty five years ago, coffee-loving FBI Agent Dale Cooper solved the murder of homecoming queen Laura Palmer, chased a monster into a parallel dimension and got trapped there. The saw mill burned down. The quirky town with the jazzy score and the ‘50s era outfits stopped telling us its stories after its movie Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me. Because it was perhaps the strangest show in television history, equal parts mystery, hip comedy, psychosexual nightmare and art project, Showtime jumped at the chance to produce it when creators David Lynch and Mark Frost said there was more story to tell. Four episodes of the new series have been made available, and not much about it makes sense so far, even by Twin Peaks standards. The new show centers on Cooper’s attempts to escape the Black Lodge, the red-curtained dimension that the wilder aspects of the original show featured, and to catch his evil doppelganger, possessed by the spirit of Killer Bob. Other members of the cast and other stars from Lynch projects have shown up, including Naomi Watts and David Duchovny. But the new season of Twin Peaks is impossible to decipher, more than a little maddening and perhaps exactly what we should have expected it to be.
DIRTY DANCING (ABC)
AN EVENING WITH
JUNE 8-9-10 FOX THEATRE
TICKETS ON SALE NOW! F O X T H E AT R E . O R G 855-285-8499 T H E AV E T T B R O T H E R S . C O M PG 8 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
As far as disasters begat from nostalgia go, this ABC TV-movie musical retells the story of vacationing Baby and dance teacher Johnny’s Catskills romance from the 1987 movie. But this one does it with less dancing. And less dirty. It is, in all fairness, a total mistake, unnecessary and inferior to its original product in every way. The original movie, while not exactly a masterpiece, was at least a fun, engaging and sexy bit of cinema. Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze had tremendous chemistry and the dances in it felt legitimately daring. Also, it had Broadway veteran Jerry Orbach - as Baby’s father - putting her in a corner and providing the story with some dramatic weight. The new one manages no depth, no sexiness
Twin Peaks and - I repeat - very little dirty dancing. It feels less substantial than a Hallmark movie. Poor Abigail Breslin, a one-time Oscar nominee, does her best as the awkward lead character, and Cole Prattes has muscles and seems a decent dancer. But the two of them have zero chemistry. And the terrible choice to make the characters sing while dancing just means that they become mediocre at both. And then, worst of all, there is a new narrative framing device that ruins the original movie’s ending.
Meanwhile, FX has returned with the third season of its excellent drama set in the world of the classic Coen Brothers film. While the second season jumped back in time to the 1970s, the newest season returns us to the near-present. The events take place in 2010, and the show centers on a pair of wildly different brothers - both played by star Ewan McGregor - at odds with one another over a stamp. Because this is Fargo, it quickly provides us with bloody, murderous twists this time involving an air conditioning, terrifying villains and nice, decent police officers trying to get to the bottom of all the crimes. Because creator Noah Hawley knows how to deliver this masterpiece anomaly of a show every single year, every episode has become more compelling and more twisted. Fargo continually manages to deliver on their high expectations. It takes you from the original product as its jumping-off point, then it gives you more. Its makers commit to strong, smart choices. And they make a point of rewarding their audience.
Taste of the Month-Barbecue! 1811 Piedmont Rd. 404.607.1622 fatmattsribshack.com
3420 Piedmont Rd. NE (Buckhead) Loviesbbq.com 404.254.2848
In the hustle and bustle of Buckhead Lovies is an unexpected, down to earth comfort food spot that celebrates contentment, convenience and community. With roots firmly planted in Atlanta, Lovies is a dream come true for friends Nate, Drew, and Kay who now provide the greater Atlanta community with the same great food, friends and family had come to expect. When you visit Lovies, you’ll first be greeted by the irresistible smell of slow cooked meat just before you’re given a heartfelt welcome upon entering. Everyone can feel at home in the casual atmosphere that’s brimming with Atlanta pride – complete with a row of seats salvaged from the 1996 Olympics stadium. Custom-built twin Stump’s smokers ensure their food is smoked to perfection. Lovies is built on simple ingredients, tried and true traditions, and a commitment to serving smoked comfort food with a big serving of hospitality.
foxbrosbbq.com 1238 Dekalb Ave NE 404.577.4030 120 Ottley Drive 404.414.0826 (Catering)
This awardwinning barbecue restaurant is located just south of Little Five Po i n t s . Opened in 2007, FoxBros. Bar-B-Q is known for their unique Southern-style barbecue with a Texas flair, serving up whole hog, smoked brisket, and wings with original side dishes to the hungry masses. To complement their que, the Fox brothers developed a sauce that mixes the flavors of Texas with the heat of the South. Today Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q has become a staple for Atlanta natives and visitors alike. Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q is the Official BBQ of the Atlanta Falcons and will serve up their famous ‘que to hungry Falcons Fans at Mercedes Benz
Call ahead for Fourth of July Catering!
pignchik.net 4920 Roswell Rd. 404.255.6368 5071 Peachtree Ind. Blvd. 770.451.1112 1815 Briarcliff Rd. 404.474.9444
Pig-N-Chik ranks among the top BBQ restaurants on Facebook and on first taste you can see why. The ribs come St. Louis cut and are cooked until they show a pink smoke ring. All the meats are served naked without sauce so the true flavor of the meat comes through. Their homemade BBQ sauces are found on the tables and their barbecue is served accompanied with a slice of thick white bread to mop it up. AJC food critic John Kessler writes, “It is glorious stuff, as every barbecue should be but rarely is.” PigN-Chik is a family friendly, community oriented barbecue restaurant that offers something that everyone will like; all at affordable prices. From barbecue ribs and barbecue pork to turkey, beef brisket, chicken wings, smoked salmon and a variety of salads, they’ve got a menu filled with irresistible dishes. Your children will love their kid's menu, featuring a tasty selection of chicken fingers, corndogs, beef and pork sandwiches and pork ribs. Pig-N-Chik offers catering to parties large and small. All three locations offer Dine-in, Delivery and Catering. Call them today for 4th of July Celebrations.
Bone Lick BBQ
678-457-0275 (CATERING) • LIVE BLUES NIGHTLY (404) 607-1622 • 1811 Piedmont Ave. NE fatmattsribshack.net WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER
Atlanta’s Favorite Family Style BBQ
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PigNChik.net Sandy Springs / Buckhead 4920 Roswell Rd • 404-255-6368 Chamblee / Brookhaven 5071 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. • 770-451-1112 Emory Area 1815 Briarcliff Rd. • 404-474-9444 WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER • WE DELIVER
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Since 1990, award winning Fat Matt's Rib Shack has been one of Atlanta's favorite hot-spots. They feature great BBQ, live blues nightly and a casual setting for the whole family to enjoy. Not limited to the North Carolina or Kentucky styles, Fat Matt's uses their own seasoning and cooking technique. These ribs are smoked to perfection and literally falling off the bone. The ribs can be ordered as a whole, half slab, or on a sandwich. They also serve great barbecue chicken and pork. The signature side is their Rum Baked Beans, but they also have delicious Brunswick Stew, Mac & Cheese, Collards, Potato Salad, and Cole Slaw. Fat Matt's serves nine beers on tap and more in bottles. Seating is available inside and out. During the busiest times a little patience is required but tables generally turn over quickly. They feature live blues seven nights a week. Check out their website for nightly band listings.
Stadium later this year. This summer, find them at the Terrapin Taproom and in Section 153 at SunTrust Park. For Fox Bros. on the go, visit the Que’osk, located at 120 Ottley Drive in Armour Yards. Call today (404) 577-4030 or visit foxbrosbbq.com.
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Fat Matt’s Rib Shack
We’re Smoking the Good Stuff!
327 Edgewood Ave. (Old Fourth Ward) Bonelickbbq.com 404.343.4404
Bone Lick BBQ is Atlanta's first chef-driven BBQ joint. They use traditional techniques and modern playful twists to bring you the best BBQ Ribs, Pork, Chicken and Brisket. Instead of focusing just on North Carolina, Kansas City or Texas barbecue, Bone Lick BBQ took inspiration from all three. They have created barbecue that is delicious, big and bold with a decent amount of spice and a rich, smoky flavor. It started decades ago when Chef Mike LaSage first tasted the smoky deliciousness of some BBQ that his dad brought home from a road side shack. That taste changed his life. He spent decades chasing the memory of that flavor all over the country, going from one BBQ town to the next. After all that time gathering barbecue knowledge from the best the country has to offer, Mike mastered the lifelong culinary quest to creating the perfect barbecue. Mike's Bone Lick BBQ, one of Atlanta's first "Pop-Up" restaurants, was born. Bone Lick BBQ quickly became a name on many Atlantan's lips as they lined up on Monday nights to sample this southern gold. Once Atlanta Magazine named it the best in the city, it became clear to Mike + Co. that a brick and mortar needed to be built. 1133 Huff Rd., in West Midtown Atlanta, would be its home. Bone Lick BBQ recently opened its new location in the Old Fourth Ward on Edgewood Ave. above the Music Room. Bone Lick offers dine-in and takeout or delivery through Zifty.
Call for Catering! (404) 254-2848 • loviesbbq.com Now Serving Breakfast! Mon–Fri 7am–9pm • Sat & Sun 8am–9pm
3420 Piedmont Rd. NE (Buckhead)
BONE LICK BBQ MAKE EVERY MEAL EPIC.
327 EDGEWOOD AVE • ATL •30312
insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 9
Summer Guide FILM FESTIVALS
FOX THEATRE: COCA-COLA SUMMER FILM FESTIVAL
The 2017 Coca-Cola Summer Film Festival takes place at the Fox Theatre. Guests are encouraged to sing-a-long to Walt Disney’s animated gem “Beauty and the Beast,” as well as the Julie Andrews’ timeless classic “Mary Poppins.” New this summer, all eight “Harry Potter” films will be showing at the Fox Theatre with triple- and doubleheaders throughout August. Fan favorite Saturday AM Cartoons will be returning, and in celebration of its 75th anniversary, “Casablanca” will have fans “playing it again” with Rick and Sam. Coca-Cola Summer Film Festival will showcase films on its impressive 26-foot high x 56-foot-8-inch wide big screen. Patrons will enjoy movies under the “stars” beneath the Fox Theatre’s distinctive blue sky with twinkling stars and fluffy clouds. For select showings, enjoy a magical preshow experience including a sing-a-long with a vintage cartoon and performances on the world-renowned Mighty Mo organ. The festival kicks off Sunday, July 16 with a FREE afternoon at the movies! For film schedule and ticket information visit the Fox Theatre Ticket Office, online at FoxTheatre.org or by calling 855-285-8499.
BROOKHAVEN: MOVIES ON THE TOWN
Come on out for the 5th Annual Movies on the Town series at Town Brookhaven Thursdays, June 1st through July 27th! Movies begin at dusk. This year offers an exciting blend of animated and non-animated movies perfect for families, date nights, girls’ nights, groups of friends and more. Arrive early, grab dinner from one of the area restaurants and eat on the green space. Thursday evening specials are also being offered by several retailers. Areas have been designated for blankets and chairs. No pets, outside food/ drinks or coolers. The June Schedule: Moana (June 1); Sing (June 8); Back to the Future (June 15); Legally Blonde (June 22), Rudy (June 29). Visit TownBrookhaven.net/events for full summer schedule or click on the Movies on the Town tab on their Facebook page facebook.com/TownBrookhaven PG 10 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
ATLANTIC STATION: MOVIES IN CENTRAL PARK
Atlantic Station’s outdoor summer movie series, Movies in the Park, is offering free movie screenings each Thursday evening in their Central Park through August 3 (No showing July 27). Moviegoers can also enjoy meal deals each week from 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. from a variety of Atlantic Station restaurants. Movie screenings will begin at dusk. Pets are welcome. The June schedule: The Fugutive (June 8); The Little Rascals (June 15); Sabrina (June 22) and Twister (June 29). Visit AtlanticStation.com for full summer schedule.
Osborn. There will be over 200 beers and wines plus several of your favorite food trucks. The event is put on by Spiral Entertainment known for putting on events always full of cold drinks, great music, and beautiful people. For ticket visit SpiralEntertainment.com.
Beer, wine and soft drinks will be available as well. All the restaurants will be open for business and many will serve special Summer in the City menus. Traditionally the Decatur Beach Party was a ticketed and gated event. This year the gates are gone, entrance is free, and the program has expanded to include more performances and activities. For more information go to VisitDecaturGA.com or Decatur Beach Party Facebook page.
DULUTH ARTS FESTIVAL Duluth Town Green • June 10 & 11
ATLANTA SUMMER BEER FEST Historic 4th Ward Park Saturday, June 17
B AT THE MOVIES
B98.5’s annual series of free movies taking place Saturday nights through August. Their giant 45’ screen travels each week to different metro Atlanta locations. All movies are open to the public and begin at dusk. Concessions will be available. The June schedule: The Secret Life of Pets & Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (June 3) Suwanee Town Center; Sing (June 17) Taylor Farm Park, Powder Springs; The Secret Life of Pets (June 24) Glenloch Recreation Center, Peachtree City. Visit B985.com for full movie and location schedule.
GEORGIA TECH: FLICKS AT TECH
Georgia Tech’s favorite summer film series is back in 2017 as Flicks at Tech! The Georgia Tech Student Center and Georgia Tech Athletics have partnered to host the series (formerly Dodd After Dark), which will include three films in various locations across campus. The 2017 Schedule: Moana (June 9); Hidden Figures (June 23); Beauty & The Beast (July 27).
SUMMER FESTIVALS & EVENTS
VIRGINIA-HIGHLAND SUMMERFEST Virginia Avenue June 3 & 4
Taking place the first weekend in June, the Virginia-Highland Summerfest offers an Artist Market featuring works of over 200 artists and craftsmen from all over the Southeast. Summerfest always features delicious food from an array of festival vendors and local restaurants. The Kidsfest offers games, crafts and activities for children of all ages. Live music will be held on stage and will feature a variety of local musicians along with nationally acclaimed singer songwriters. Over a 1,000 runners will compete in the Summerfest 5K on Saturday through the neighborhood streets of Virginia-Highland. Visit vahi.org for more info.
BROOKHAVEN BEER FEST Brookhaven Park • Saturday, June 10 Summer is the time for beer and the 7th annual Brookhaven Beer Fest. This year’s Beer Fest takes place on Saturday, June 10 from 3 - 8 pm. Now at its new location at Brookhaven Park on Peachtree Rd. at
With an emphasis on the visual arts and family fun, this two day event is presented by the Atlanta Foundation for Public Space. One of the most vibrant and fastest growing communities, Duluth is home to one of the largest and most enthusiastic art buying communities in metro Atlanta. The Duluth Spring Arts and craft festival is excited to bringing back the tradition to the arts community. The festival will feature up to 125 painters, photographers, sculptors, leather and metalwork, glass blowers, jewelers, and crafters. Also on hand will be artist demonstrations, live acoustic music, a children’s play area, plus festival foods and beverages. Visit DuluthArtsFestival.com
The Atlanta Summer Beer Fest features over 200 beers from local and other great breweries from all over the country. The event takes place Saturday, June 17 from 4 - 9pm at the Historic Fourth Ward Park. Besides the suds, the Fest also offers a selection of wines. There will be live music and plenty of fun attractions including the return of the Bud Light Game Zone. Be sure to check out their Facebook page to get all of the updates. Tickets are $40 in advance, $45 after June 8 and $55 the day of the event. Tickets may be purchased at AtlantaSummerBeerFest.com
DRAGON CON Labor Day Weekend September 1 - 4
SUMMER IN THE CITY DECATUR Downtown Decatur Square Friday, June 16; 5 – 11 p.m.
What do you get when you combine the Decatur Beach Party, a cultural community festival, and the Brick Store Pub’s 20th anniversary? An exciting, beach-themed, performance-rich celebration, now known as Summer in the City. The beach meets with street with sand, dancing, live music and pop-up performances. The event will bring back some Beach Party favorites, including the 60 tons of sand, kid’s activities, and a wall for rock climbing. A rockin’ band, Bogey and the Viceroy, will perform live from the stage on the MARTA plaza beginning at 8 p.m. The event will include plenty of funnel cakes, kettle corn and other carnival food for sale.
Dragon Con returns for to Downtown Atlanta over Labor Day weekend. The convention is held at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis, Hyatt Regency Atlanta, Atlanta Hilton, Sheraton Atlanta and Westin Peachtree Plaza. Dragon Con is the largest multimedia, popular culture convention focusing on science fiction and fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music and film in the world. Dragon Con boasts close to 40 fan-based tracks, a film festival, parade, art show, comics, pop art exhibits and displays, nightly concerts and parties. Visit DragonCon.org
COMMUNITY CONCERTS & PLAYS CONCERTS BY THE SPRINGS Sunday, June 11 Concerts by the Springs has been a beloved community tradition for 21 years.
Spend a night at a beautiful outdoor venue, socializing with friends and neighbors, amazing entertainment, delicious food, and more. It’s the place to be on Sunday nights during the summer! GLOW, a highperformance show band specializing in exceptional vocals and dance music, will perform on June 11. The rest of the 2017 season features Kinchafoonee Cowboys (July 9), The Rupert’s Orchestra (August 13), and The Tams (September 10). Gates open at 5:00 p.m. with the free concert from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Coolers welcome. Beverages are sold during the concert, with proceeds benefiting Heritage Sandy Springs. Attendees may also visit on-site food vendors, or pre-order picnics from select local restaurants. Presented free of charge by Heritage Sandy Springs – a nonprofit whose mission is to promote history, steward a community park, and enhance the cultural identity of Sandy Springs. More details, including the menus, can be found at HeritageSandySprings.org.
SUNDAYS ON THE RIVER CONCERTS June 12, 19, 26
a reality TV dating show that follows attractive singles pairing up to find love. Among the tangled web fighting for affection are a slew of wacky contestants - the hunky Christian, the sexy party girl, and the uptight schoolteacher. Whether you love or love-to-hate reality TV, you’ll laugh at this fast-paced, high stakes game of love. General admission tickets will be available for free for each performance, but must be reserved online in advance. Reserved Seating section tickets are $15 (plus a small service charge) and get you in the reserved seating area up close to the stage. Tickets are available online only at HorizonTheatre.com.
4TH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS PEACHTREE ROAD RACE Tuesday, July 4 The AJC Peachtree Road Race, organized by Atlanta Track Club, is the largest 10K in the world. In its 48th running, the race has become a Fourth of July tradition for thousands of people throughout the metro Atlanta area and beyond. The race, which starts at Lenox Square, once again has its finish line at Piedmont Park in Midtown. Race time is at 7:30 AM so get up early to line-up along Peachtree and cheer on the runners. Event participants and spectators are strongly encouraged to take MARTA. MARTA will begin running at 5 a.m. on race day. For more information on the event visit PeachtreeRoadrace.org
4TH OF JULY AT CENTENNIAL OLYMPIC PARK Tuesday, July 4
The Chattahoochee Nature Center on Willeo Road in Roswell is offering great nighttime entertainment this summer. Their Sundays on the River Concerts series is held the second Sunday of each month through September. Enjoy a night out with families and friends and listen to the smooth jazz sounds of Carol Albert on June 11 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Other performances this summer: Bob Bakert (July 9 ); Gwen Hughes & “Grit Hits!” (August 13); Bob Bakert (Sept. 10). This is the perfect way to wrap-up the weekend at an outdoor concert at the Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion. Visit chattnaturecenter.org for more details.
NOBODY LOVE’S YOU IN PIEDMONT PARK June 14 – 17 in Piedmont Park
Audiences couldn’t get enough of Horizon’s Nobody Loves You, and so they’re bringing it back this time for free and under the stars on the large stage in Piedmont Park June 14th through the 17th. Thousands of free tickets are available to the public. “Nobody Loves You” is the hilarious Off-Broadway hit musical about
Centennial Olympic Park is joining forces with Lenox Square to make the park’s 4th of July Celebration – featuring the Southeast’s largest fireworks show – even grander. Centennial Olympic Park has welcomed upwards of 30,000 spectators to Downtown Atlanta in the past for their celebration. The gates of Centennial Olympic Park open at 6 p.m. for the 4th of July Celebration. The fireworks synchronized to music begin about 9:40 p.m. Arrive early since gates close when the park is full. Free admission. For more information visit GWCCA.org.
STONE MOUNTAIN PARK: FANTASTIC FOURTH CELEBRATION July 1 – 4 Experience the Lasershow Spectacular an Atlanta tradition that promises to wow your family with state-of-the-art digital graphics and awe-inspiring effects. The show includes a lighting feature at the base of the mountain shining up like fingers of light showcasing the 825 foot mountainside. Laser beams bounce around in harmony with the music. The special patriotic fireworks finale will immediately follow the Lasershow all four nights. Show begins at 9:30 p.m. Visitors may bring blankets and lawn chairs. For more information visit StoneMountainPark.com.
r e m m Su e d i u G
3142 Hill Street, Duluth, GA 30096
3/9/17 3:41 PM
insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 11
BY STEVE WARREN
T’S SUMMER, WHEN FILM CRITICS wish we could go into hibernation and movie goers spend each weekend on the latest raunchy comedy or overblown epic often a sequel, remake or reboot of some faded franchise. They are all listed below and we also mention some smaller releases that are worth seeing. Of the blockbusters, we look forward to: Atomic Blonde, Baby Driver and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets as potential guilty pleasures.
low-key drama about the working class in Northern England. The title character (Dave Johns), a 60-ish widower, helps Katie (Hayley Squires), a single mother, when the government won’t help either of them.
IT COMES AT NIGHT
Things go bump in the woods when Joel Edgerton secludes his family in a remote cabin to avoid a deadly pandemic, but Christopher Abbott’s family arrives begging for help. Should charity outweigh security?
Like other comic superheroes but with balls, Amazon Princess Diana (Gal Gadot) discovers the extent of her powers when she leaves her sheltered island to try to stop a war from destroying the rest of the planet. Another wondrous woman, Patty Jenkins (Monster) directed.
CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS: THE FIRST EPIC MOVIE
Kate Mara plays the real-life Marine who had to fight to save Rex, a combat dog, after he saved her and many others in Iraq. The film was directed (Gabriela Cowperthwaite) and mostly written (Pamela Gray and Annie Mumolo) by women.
MY COUSIN RACHEL
At least one summer movie is intentionally silly, as two fourth-graders (voiced by Kevin Hart and Thomas Middleditch – yes, it’s animated) hypnotize their principal (Ed Helms) into believing he’s an underdressed superhero.
Olivia De Havilland and Richard Burton starred in the 1952 version of Daphne Du Maurier’s novel. This time it’s Sam Claflin who falls for the kinswoman (Rachel Weisz) he suspects of murdering his guardian.
GOD OF WAR
PARIS CAN WAIT
Japanese pirates threaten to take over China in the 16th century in Gordon Chan’s action epic starring Vincent Zhao, Sammo Hung and Wan Qian.
Documentarian Vanessa Gould takes you behind the scenes of the New York Times Obituary Department to show how they choose whom to highlight and do rapid research to turn out mini-biographies that make good reading.
A generation ago it looked for five minutes like Tom Cruise might become a serious actor; then he discovered there was money in franchises. Cruise meets a mummy (Sofia Boutella) who’s out to avenge an ancient wrong as Universal reboots one of their horror classics, with an eye toward future combos in a broader “Dark Universe.”
When your marriage is in trouble, what can you do but start a band? Well, it might work for Zoe Lister-Jones (who also wrote and directed) and Adam Pally; and if not, at least they’ll get some good songs out of their potential arguments and laugh and sing all the way to divorce court.
I, DANIEL BLAKE
Director Ken Loach turns out another
PG 12 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
Can a married American woman (Diane Lane) spend two days in a car with a Frenchman (Arnaud Viard) without hanquepanque happening? Either way, the food and scenery are magnifique.
I thought this Pixar animated series ran out of gas in Part 2 but the boxoffice proved me wrong. Slick promoter Sterling (Nathan Fillion) turns Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) into a modern racecar, but can he defeat a new nemesis, Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer)?
ALL EYEZ ON ME
Demetrius Shipp Jr. stars as Tupac Shakur in a
biography that finds Jamal Woolard reprising his role as the Notorious B.I.G. from Notorious. It’s got the music, the murder and everything between, but will both coasts embrace it?
I love Kate McKinnon but this comedy about five girlfriends who accidentally kill a male stripper during a wild Miami weekend may be harder for her to save than Ghostbusters. Scarlett Johansson, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer and Zoë Kravitz round out the quintet. Kate, don’t quit your Saturday Night job.
Unable to draw crowds to better movies, Mark Wahlberg avoids a midlife career switch to burger-flipping by getting caught in another crossfire between humans and mechanical monsters. Lord Anthony Hopkins and Oxford professor Laura Haddock add intellectual heft but with Michael Bay at the helm you’ll get your fill of carnage and destruction.
BEATRIZ AT DINNER When her car breaks down, holistic healer Salma Hayek winds up at a business dinner with her polar opposite, real estate tycoon John Lithgow, in a dark comedy written by Mike White and directed by Miguel Arteta.
THE BOOK OF HENRY
Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow finds terror on a smaller scale in the backyard of 11-yearold wunderkind Henry (Jaeden Lieberher), his mother (Naomi Watts) and brother (Jacob Tremblay), when Henry discovers what’s going on next door.
Demetri Martin wrote, directed and stars in the title role of a man whose mother’s death puts him at odds with his father (Kevin Kline), because they have different approaches to grieving. Yes, it’s a comedy.
47 METERS DOWN
Movies about a boy and his dog used to be a thing; now it’s a girl and her shark (Open Water, The Shallows). Sisters Claire Holt and Mandy Moore are trapped underwater in a shark cage during a Mexican vacation. The title’s likely to scare off Americans who don’t dig the metric system.
Bryan Cranston goes off the grid, living in the garage like a homeless man and observing his wife (Jennifer Garner), who thinks he’s missing, in Robin Swicord’s adaptation of an E.L. Doctorow story.
TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT
Sam Elliott stars as an actor whose glory days are far behind him, but he finds a new romantic interest (Laura Prepon) the same week he gets bad news from his oncologist.
Restored for its 30th anniversary, James Ivory’s adaptation of an E.M. Forster novel stars James Wilby as a gay Englishman of a century-plus ago who falls in love with Hugh Grant, then Rupert Graves, when their love dared not speak its name.
Ansel Elgort plays a getaway driver with awesome mixtapes. He tries to go straight when he falls in love with Lily James, but crime boss Kevin Spacey won’t let him. Jamie Foxx and Jon Hamm co-star in the Atlantafilmed thriller.
DESPICABLE ME 3
Steve Carell voices not only Gru but also his twin Dru (usually a sign of desperation when they run out of plots). They fight like brothers but the real antagonist is former child star Balthazar Bratt, voiced by South Park’s Trey Parker. But who cares? We just go to these movies for the Minions.
A woman (Sofia Coppola, Best Director at Cannes) remakes a feminist movie. What a concept! Colin Farrell assumes Clint Eastwood’s role in this drama about a wounded Union soldier who stumbles into a Virginia girls school where Elle Fanning is a student, Nicole Kidman and Kirsten Dunst are teachers. Line up in alphabetical order, girls!
To send their daughter to college, Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler open a casino/strip club in their basement. Well, it’s better than crowdfunding, i.e., digital panhandling; and this is a comedy, not a documentary.
is Orthodox, the story of a widowed Hasidic grocery clerk (Menashe Lustig) fighting for custody of his son in a culture that says children must be raised by women.
AMITYVILLE: THE AWAKENING
Does anyone really want to see another movie about that haunted house? In this version Jennifer Jason Leigh moves in with her three kids (Bella Thorne, Cameron Monaghan, Mckenna Grace) and would you believe? spooky things happen.
THE NUT JOB 2: NUTTY BY NATURE
The first Nut Job overachieved so the squirrels are back. Will Arnett voices Surly, who is faced with homelessness when the sleazy mayor (Bobby Moynihan) permits a tacky amusement park to be built on the site of the city park where the squirrels live. You can bet they won’t go quietly.
THE LITTLE HOURS
If The Beguiled were an irreverent comedy set in the Middle Ages, it might be this raunchfest about an escaped servant (Dave Franco) finding refuge with benefits in a convent.
Two women (Valeria Bruni Tedeschi and Micaela Ramazzotti) flee a psychiatric facility to see if life on the outside is any saner, in a dramedy by Paolo Virzi that won Italy’s Oscar-equivalent for Best Picture, Director and Actress.
SPIDER MAN: HOMECOMING
It’s another series reboot, although Tom Holland’s Peter Parker debuted in Captain America: Civil War. Mentored by Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), the high-schooler puts on tights to save the world from Michael Keaton – er, the Vulture. We’re told to expect more humor – Deadpool-ish but ageappropriate.
THE BIG SICK
Kumail Nanjiani (Silicon Valley) co-wrote and stars in a comedy, based on events in his own life, about a Pakistani comic trying to avoid an arranged marriage while his all-American girlfriend (Zoe Kazan) lies in a coma.
Kenneth Branagh, Mark Rylance and – Harry Styles?
African American girls want to have fun too. In what sounds like a black version of the fun parts (i.e., nobody dies) of Rough Night, Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish have a wild weekend at Essence Fest in New Orleans.
VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS
By the 28th century various lifeforms will be living in harmony – or not – in one corner of the universe; and people (Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne) will still fall in love, at least in Luc Besson’s futuristic fantasy.
For an encore to winning the Oscar, Casey Affleck plays dead. Haunting his old house to be close to his wife (Rooney Mara), he explores the mysteries of life and love in a ghost story that’s played for tears, not scares.
I hope it’s not a bomb. I’ll watch Charlize Theron in anything, from perfume ads to tired franchises (F&F, Mad Max) she’s brought in to reinvigorate. In this graphic novel adaptation she plays an MI-6 agent sent to Berlin on assignment during the Cold War. James McAvoy (Split) only plays one character.
THE EMOJI MOVIE
A GHOST STORY
A fictional meeting in Northern Ireland brings together Democratic Unionist Party leader Ian Paisley (Timothy Spall) and Sinn Fein politician Martin McGuinness (Colm Meaney) for a road trip, in a drama directed by Nick Hamm.
WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES
More monkey business. (Why should my jokes be original when the movies aren’t?) Who are you gonna root for when Caesar’s (Andy Serkis) nice apes are fighting a nasty human army led by Woody Harrelson? At stake, according to the studio: “the fate of both their species and the future of the planet.” No pressure.
Can emojis be as big as Legos in the animated world? You’ll hear from T.J. Miller, Anna Faris, Sofia Vergara, James Corden; and I won’t tell you who Patrick Stewart voices, but didn’t he play Jean-Luc Poopard?
AN INCONVENIENT SEQUEL: TRUTH TO POWER
If you haven’t noticed, it’s warmer than it was in 2006 when Al Gore’s first documentary on climate change came out and won an Oscar. The followup follows the former Veep through two years of worldwide travel on behalf of his (and our) cause.
THE DARK TOWER
Stephen King’s epic fantasy series proved the horror master was at least a two trick pony. The first part to hit the screen finds Roland, a.k.a. The Gunslinger (Idris Elba), pursuing the Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey) through Western settings in his search for the Dark Tower.
THE HITMAN’S BODYGUARD
As long as the checks clear, Ryan Reynolds will always...protect and serve Samuel L. Jackson. They don’t get along but they have to work together against Gary Oldman in this action comedy.
New York City still has a dark side and the streets can still be mean! Ben Safdie, who co-directed with his brother Joshua, plays the brother Robert Pattinson is trying to get out of jail after a bank robbery gone wrong. Jennifer Jason Leigh and Barkhad Abdi co-star.
It was the Summer of Love in San Francisco in 1967, but there were riots in Detroit, and a police raid that resulted in three black men being killed and seven severely beaten. Kathryn Bigelow’s film about the event stars John Boyega, Anthony Mackie and Will Poulter.
Inner city Baltimore is the setting for Amanda Lipitz’s documentary about a high school girls’ step dance team and the challenges they face in senior year.
A prize winner at Cannes for director Taylor Sheridan (writer of Hell or High Water), this drama stars Elizabeth Olsen as an FBI agent assisted by local tracker Jeremy Renner in investigating the death of a woman on a reservation.
In this backstory of the deadly doll, its creator and his wife bring a nun and several orphaned girls into their home, with predictably unpleasant results.
Indie films are often unorthodox. This one
Two more crooked brothers (Channing Tatum and Adam Driver) plan a robbery during a NASCAR race in Charlotte, in the comedy that brought Steven Soderbergh back from a brief retirement. He’s attracted a terrific cast we don’t have space to list.
Who wants to be a plus-sized white female rapper when she could stay home in New Jersey being underappreciated? Patricia Dombrowski (Danielle Macdonald), that’s who! The movie sparked a bidding war at Sundance, so maybe she’s got a chance.
John Corbett stars in the true story of Michael Spurlock, who left the corporate world to become a pastor, only to have to challenge developers on his new job in order to protect Burmese refugees.
Another inanimate object proves deadly to teenagers in a movie where it’s suicidal to take a selfie. Millennials will have to be accompanied by someone who can explain what a Polaroid camera was.
Seventh time’s the curse! A bullied high school girl (Joey King) is given an antique music box by her father (Ryan Phillippe). As promised, it grants her seven wishes – but the side effects include death.
In 17th-century Amsterdam an artist (Dane DeHaan) becomes smitten with the married woman (Alicia Vikander) he’s been commissioned to paint. Tom Stoppard wrote the screenplay, which also deals with “Tulip Mania,” a financial boondoggle.
Christopher Nolan leaves Dark Knights for darker days of WWII, specifically the 1940 evacuation of 300,000 Allied soldiers, besieged by Germans on the eponymous French beach. The cast includes Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy,
Elle Fanning and Nat Wolff voice the young heroes who escape from an orphanage to pursue their dreams in Paris. She wants to be a ballerina and he an inventor. The animated feature is a Canadian-French co-production. insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 13
Movie Reviews BY STEVE WARREN
1/2 You may wonder if Baywatch can survive without the starpower of Pamela Anderson and David Hasselhoff (don’t worry – they have cameos) – or if you have taste, you wonder how the 1989-2001 TV series survived with them. Now it’s a movie, set in Florida but filmed in Georgia. There are lots of pretty girls in skimpy bathing suits but the emphasis is on Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron, so even though they wear shirts most of the time you can call this a pecsploitation movie. There’s a ridiculous plot involving Priyanka Chopra as a ruthless woman who is not only a major drug dealer but is also in real estate, paying off politicians to let her privatize the beach and killing the ones who don’t cooperate. Sounds like a job for the police, but who needs them when you have lifeguards around? Mitch (Johnson), the leader of the family-like group, is always looking for major crimes to solve, even though their unauthorized actions are technically illegal. Matt (Efron) is a disgraced Olympian seeking a fresh start. He and Mitch lock horns right away, with mild dissing to cover up their intense mutual dislike (which will, of course, develop into a bromance). Another new recruit is Ronnie (Jon Bass, this month’s Josh Gad), who’s too geeky to believe he has a chance with CJ (Kelly Rohrbach). She returns his interest too soon and too obviously, even if he’s too dumb to realize it. This lightweight and lighthearted movie wisely stresses humor, since it can’t be taken seriously; but most of the good laughs are in the trailer.
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES (PG-13)
Yo ho ho and a bong of WHAT?!!! Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) has been putting the “high” in the high seas since 2003. There’s not a spliff in sight (it’s a Disney movie) but it’s the Caribbean, mon, and we know stoner humor when we smell it, even on a character who’s supposedly drunk on rum all the time. I wasn’t looking forward to Another Summer Sequel (ASS for short), but low expectations can be a blessing sometimes. This one grabbed my attention from the beginning and pretty much held it to the end with a consistently entertaining combination of humor, adventure, romance, the supernatural and some terrific effects. Depp’s Sparrow is the most tired element but even he has some really funny lines. The complex script eventually unites
Jack with two other fugitives – Henry (Brenton Thwaites), who’s trying to break a curse on his father (Orlando Bloom), and Carina (Kaya Scodelario), an astronomer accused of being a witch – in the search for the Trident of Poseidon, which can right all wrongs or something. Jack is pursued by Capt. Salazar’s (Javier Bardem) ghost ship and Capt. Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush). Action overwhelms all the other elements in most of the second half, but not so much that I mind if the pirates sail to fight again.
I, DANIEL BLAKE (R)
Potentially as depressing as anything on screen today, I, Daniel Blake is leavened by the ironic portrayal of the frustrations facing the common man (and woman). Daniel Blake (Dave Johns) is an analog man in a digital world. When he says he can’t file a form online he’s told there’s a telephone alternative – but he has to go online to get the number. A 60ish widower in the north of England, he’s recovering from a heart attack. His doctor says he’s not healthy enough to resume work as a skilled carpenter but the government says he’s not sick enough to collect benefits. He’s begun the slow process of appealing their decision, but will he live long enough to have the appeal heard? Though he plays the grumpy old man, Daniel is quick to help Katie (Hayley Squires), a young woman with two children he meets at the welfare office, asking nothing in return. They’re not freeloaders, just proud, desperate people doing the best they can. The bad news about Ken Loach’s film is that the accents are often unintelligible to American ears, but the good news is that you’ll get the point of every scene, even if you miss some of the words. It’s recommended for anyone who’s faced any of the Catch-22s of modern bureaucracy.
PARIS CAN WAIT (PG)
1/2 I’ve never wanted to keep Paris waiting. It’s one of my favorite cities. In this movie, written, produced and directed by 80-yearold Eleanor Coppola, Paris keeps us waiting. About as much of the ending takes place in the briefly-glimpsed French capital as the beginning features Alec Baldwin. He plays Michael, a movie producer at the Cannes Film Festival who sends his wife Anne (Diane Lane) driving to Paris with his French partner, Jacques (Arnaud Viard). Michael wonders if it’s safe to leave Anne alone with a Frenchman,
even one well into middle age. We wonder too. There doesn’t seem to be much sexual tension between Anne and Jacques; they talk about flirtation more than they practice it. But the one-day drive extends to two and they’re healthy heterosexuals who bond as they get better acquainted.... Get your mind out of the gutter! Paris Can Wait is more of a travelogue than a romance, and even more of a foodie movie because Jacques knows where all the good restaurants are. It’s rather like Steve Coogan’s The Trip series, without the laughs. The meals are lovingly photographed, not just by Coppola but by Anne, an amateur photographer who must have the world’s most boring Facebook page. Jacques acts as driver, tourguide and translator, offering tidbits about Roman relics and how Provence got its name. With far more screen time than the Eiffel Tower, Lane looks great and seems more certain than Coppola what kind of movie she’s making.
“Who hasn’t had the impulse to put their life on hold for a moment?” Howard Wakefield (Bryan Cranston) asks rhetorically. A moment maybe, but months on end? Anyone who’s seen Wakefield, if they have had that impulse, will never have it again. After a rough day at his Manhattan law office and a wicked commute, Howard’s not eager to see Diane (Jennifer Garner), the wife of 15 years he’s been fighting with; so he goes to the attic-y room over their freestanding garage, which offers a view into the house through a large window. He doesn’t intend to spend the night but after he does, staying off the grid feels like a good idea. He doesn’t tune in or turn on, just drops out. While Diane reports him missing he starts living like a homeless person, eating out of trash cans but still sleeping in the garage. He denies that it’s a game but never says what it is. Because there’s not much to see in Howard’s life, a lot of time is devoted to flashbacks and fantasies. Cranston’s narration is almost the only voice we hear, attempting to keep us on his side while we observe only a fraction of the effects of his irresponsible behavior. I can see why the concept, from an E. L. Doctorow short story, might have appealed to writer-director Robin Swicord, but the comedy-ish she’s turned it into doesn’t work. Howard’s hiatus from life may seem like a lark to him, but it doesn’t fly on screen.
THE HERO (R)
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES PG 14 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
Lee Hayden (Sam Elliott) isn’t really a hero but he played the title role in The Hero 40 years
ago and will play a hero today for anyone who will hire him. They’d better hurry because he’s 71 and, with pancreatic cancer, may not make it to 72. Having just gotten the news Lee doesn’t want to share it, but he wants to mend fences with his ex-wife (Katharine Ross) and their daughter (Krysten Ritter). On the bright side, while visiting his best friend/pot dealer (Nick Offerman) he meets Charlotte (Laura Prepon), a woman attracted to men twice her age; and a group he’s never heard of wants to give him a lifetime achievement award. Fortunately for actors like Lee, there are writer-directors like Blake Haley who make modestly budgeted films like this (and I’ll See You in My Dreams, in which Haley also cast Elliott) for adult viewers. The Hero is a slow, sad, simple slice of life that probably gives Elliott more closeups than he’s had in the rest of his career combined. It’s not one to see when you’re in a party mood, but it’s a well-made drama. “Movies are other people’s dreams,” Lee says; and Haley has dreamed up a good one.
Here’s the cure for your Downton Abbey withdrawal symptoms. Maurice hasn’t changed in the 30 years since it was released, but the world has. Although much had changed in the two previous decades, gay love stories were still rare in mainstream cinema and you didn’t see them every night of the week on network television. No country had legalized samesex marriage and most LGBT entertainers remained closeted. In many ways little had changed since the pre-WWI period of Maurice, when decent folk wouldn’t even think about “the unspeakable love of the Greeks.” But even then men were falling in love with each other, risking prison, social ruin, unemployment and blackmail to do so. Maurice Hall (James Wilby) has been attracted to boys since adolescence but didn’t dream of acting on it until, at Cambridge, he meets Clive Durham (Hugh Grant). They become chums, then chums with benefits; but back in the real world Clive breaks Maurice’s heart by telling him their romance can’t continue. Clive tries marriage, Maurice tries hypnotherapy; they remain friends. Then Clive’s gamekeeper, Alec Scudder (Rupert Graves) develops a crush on Maurice. It’s an impossible situation, with Maurice risking all he has and Alec risking what little he has; but this is a movie (based on an E.M. Forster novel), so they just might make it. James Ivory went on to direct a dozen more films, few as good as this one. Grant became an international star while Wilby and Graves have worked steadily, mostly in British TV. Maurice is a pleasure you no longer have to feel guilty about. See the rest of our movie reviews at insiteatlanta.com/movies.asp
TO CHURCHILL, WITH LOVE
New Look at Churchill paints the War Film as Intimate Relationship Drama
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
RRIVING THIS MONTH TO coincide with the 72nd anniversary of the Normandy Invasion, “Churchill” is the antithesis to the standard overblown war film. The chamber drama is as revealing as an intimate, handwritten letter to a loved one, detailing the doubts, mounting anguish and internal dramas that beset the blustery world leader. Of course, the story of Winston Churchill is an oft-told tale and anyone with an interest in world history is familiar with the WWII-era events and often cartoonish portrayals of the British politician as a sullen raconteur. But in the hands of director Jonathan Teplitzky, the D-Day story details the personal struggles of the aging Churchill, portrayed with eerie resemblance and self-effacing resonance by distinguished actor Brian Cox (The Bourne Identity, Manhunter, Braveheart). The supporting cast is equally stellar featuring an especially affectionate performance from Miranda Richardson (Tom & Viv, Damage, Empire of the Sun) as Clementine Churchill, the staunchly supportive wife of the charismatic leader. INsite recently spoke with Richardson about the film and her expectations of portraying familiar and historic characters. “Churchill” is not your standard war film, and that makes it all the more compelling. I agree and the fact that it goes into the domestic side was especially interesting to me. We have enough of those slam-blam kind of movies. You can play them in your console anytime you like. I believe it’s much more
interesting to see a story of character. That’s what attracted me, Brian and everyone else to the movie. It’s a great script which goes behind the mask.
very nice feeling to the entire production, it was small but perfectly formed. A great script, an enthusiastic director - so Brian and I got along immediately. We have similar instincts.
It’s especially timely today, with the intense focus on the world stage and the personal lives of the politicians. Yes and in this instance, Churchill really needs to hear what Clemmie has to say to him. Whether it’s harsh and you have to sort of buck up and get practical or whether it’s gently persuading him to look at things in another way. They were absolutely indispensable to each other. Churchill could not have done what he did without Clemmie at his side. The fascinating thing about this story is she’s not really been this out in the open; people don’t know much about her. She was always on his arm, but she’s still a shadowy figure.
Such as? We didn’t over-rehearse. It always turns out differently that you thought it would anyway, so you just work things out on the turf. We’re both theater-trained, we’ve both done everything over time. He’s done a lot more classical work than I have, but there’s a sort of resilience that theater gives you. And a certain amount of technique that theater brings. It comes in handy no matter the medium.
Is it difficult to portray a very real, very historic public figure? I think you’re always aware of the responsibility - whether they’re alive or no longer with us, really. The responsibility is possibly greater if they’re still on the planet. But it’s always exciting to imagine how to inhabit a public figure. Everyone in the public eye is, to some extent, performing. Churchill certainly was. How was the on-set dynamic between you and Brian Cox? Well, there really wasn’t much work to do. We’ve enjoyed each other’s work over time. We hadn’t worked together before but there was a
There’s a great chemistry between the two of you as actors and the characters themselves. There’s a little endearment that they had between them, yes. It built up over the years. It started with their children, though we don’t deal with the children at all in this film. But it came out of a really sweet family environment so there’s an unspoken affection which has sort of assimilated within the movie. There’s a gentle sort of rap across the knuckles when she enters the room, a definite sort of “Hello, I am here.” And Churchill responded to that because they obviously had a deep affection for one another. There’s a definite thread of love that runs throughout the film, even in the tense, decision-making moments of doubt. Yes and we have to think about times and how people expressed themselves, particularly within those times. They were both under huge strains at this point in the war, but it doesn’t
mean that love wasn’t there. If a longtime relationship can’t stand a little temperament, then it’s a very sorry thing. You filmed it a year ago; what is your take on the film in retrospect? It was a really good experience, but I was aware of that at the time. The process is what moves you on in life. If the film is great but it was a horrible process, then that’s what you’ll remember. If it’s a lovely process and the film is also good, then it’s the icing on the cake, really. Churchill has been examined many times, but this production is an essential piece of the story and a very British, very adult film. I’m glad you feel that way. It’s intimate, it’s domestic and it doesn’t patronize that audience. It’s not all rush, rush, rush. It lets you take some time to really know the story.
FROM THE KITCHEN TO CENTER STAGE
Atlanta-Based Chef Rusty Hamlin is Ready for His Moment in the Spotlight
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
grilled Hamlin for details.
USTY HAMLIN HAS BEEN obsessed with food since he was a kid. After deciding early in life that food was his passion, his path has led from the Culinary Arts Institute of Louisiana to massive stadium tours as Executive Chef for the Georgia-bred, Grammy-winning Zac Brown Band. On tour in “Cookie,” his custom mobile kitchen, he hosts elaborate Eat ‘N’ Greet culinary events where fans can dine on his original creations and mingle with the band. But now Hamlin - who is also Executive Chef and Owner of Atkins Park in Smyrna - is out of the kitchen and in the spotlight as he takes a bite of reality television as a contestant on Food Network Star, premiering this month and running every week through mid-August. The winner gets their own show on the network and the competition is fierce. INsite recently
How did you get involved with the series? I’ve been honored to have been on TV several times and of course being with Zac for several years now. I have some friends on the Food Network and it’s an outlet that highlights not only your cooking abilities but your personality.
Food has been a part of your life for a long time now. When I was in the 10th grade in Baton Rouge, I knew I wanted to either fly jets or cook. I loved them both. But the cockpits were a little too small for me so I decided to go cookin’. I dove into it and went to culinary school right outta high school. When did you decide to move to Atlanta? I decided to spread my culinary wings, if you will, and came to Atlanta in ’96 and just learned a whole bunch from the chefs around here. To really dive into the traditions of southern food was so amazing to me. You were so steeped in the Louisiana food traditions, how did Georgia-style cuisine compare? The personality of the foods are very similar and the history. I think that’s one thing that sets me apart from other chefs is that I really love the history of food. Over the years, I’ve really delved into food cultures, whether it’s Italian or Korean or Asian-style foods. I just try to learn as much about the different histories of food as I can and
how they all match with soul food and southern food in general.
How did you meet Zac Brown? A bartender friend took me to see him down at the Dixie Tavern out on Windy Hill Road. He was killin’ it on stage, just him and his guitar. That was in 2002 and that’s when our friendship started. You hatched the “Eat and Greet” concept before he even had a recording contract. Yeah, we were sitting around a campfire one time with a mason jar of goodness and we decided we wanted to bring a better experience to the fans on tour around the country. At that time, he was playing seven days a week around Atlanta. And now it’s been about eight years that I’ve been bringing that experience to the fans. So you’ve been a part of the concept and the crew since the very beginning. Yeah we didn’t even know what it would be like. I went down to South Georgia and pulled a 14-foot trailer out of 10-foot weeds, brought it back up to Zac’s house and started working on it. Gutted it and added refrigeration and a propane set-up and we started taking it out on the road. There were a lot of long days but I think I learned a lot myself in the process. Then when “Chicken Fried” hit big, Zac said, “Let’s build us a real trailer.” We turned a 54-foot trailer into a professional kitchen. You’ve had quite an adventure with Zac.
The whole thing has been crazy. From Zac saying, “You wanna jump in the Scout and drive to over to Athens for a show?” to selling out Fenway Park three days in a row. And my culinary skills have grown as the band has grown. I’ve had great comradery with chefs from around the country and that’s important to me to be able to share experiences with food. And to share music with Zac and the fans. Now when Food Star premieres, we’re gonna be all together, watching and laughing and just having a good time. The creation of music and food are very similar and both tend to create a bond with the consumer. Yeah, they do. A songwriter developing a story with music is very similar to me developing flavors on a plate. When someone looks at one of my plates I want them to know, “That’s Rusty.” It’s a very defined way of cooking. It’s fun, colorful and flavorful. You’ve been around Zac and the creation of music for so long, do you play as well? On tour with Zac, a lot of times when we check into hotels and stuff, somebody behind the counter will say, “And what instrument do you play?” I play the sauté pans. That’s only thing I know how to play. Season 13 of Food Network Star premieres Sunday, June 4th at 9pm ET/PT on the Food Network. For information about Zac Brown’s Eat N Greets, visit zacbrownband.com
insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 15
Album Reviews READY TO RUMBLE!
REVIEWS BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH AND JOHN B. MOORE
Singles: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack – Deluxe Edition (Legacy)
Believe it or not, there was a time when Cameron Crowe put out great movies, with even better soundtracks. For proof, look no further than the 1992 soundtrack to his movie Singles about a group of 20-somethings in Seattle. The record included tracks by some of the best bands from that region, at a time when Grunge was still being discovered by much of the country. The original soundtrack included cuts from a slew of Seattle bands like Alice In Chains, Peral Jam, Mother Lovebone, Soundgarden, Chris Cornell, Mudhoney, Screaming Tress, The Lovemongers (a side projects for the sisters from Heart) and even go way back to include Jimi Hendrix. The soundtrack also boasted two great songs from Midwesterners Paul Westerberg and Smashing Pumpkins. As part of the 25th anniversary of this Gen X staple, Legacy is re-releasing this album on vinyl as well as a deluxe edition on two CDs. While all of the additions are great, the Holy Grail here is the additional Cornell and Westerberg tracks. Among the Cornell gems is a beautiful, previously unreleased song, “Ferry Boat #3.” The Singles soundtrack marked the first glimpse of Westerberg’s solo spin off from The Replacements. Along with contributing the song “Dyslexic Heart” and “Waiting For Somebody” (both here on the original soundtrack and as acoustic versions on the second disc) he provided the score for the film. The second CD also includes a never-before released song, the instrumental “Lost in Emily’s Garden.” –JM
Take Me to the Trees (Self-Released)
The UK-based New Wave band Modern English have had a hell of a time shaking that one-hit wonder label. Ever since their early- ‘80s hit “I Melt With You” took over radio, thanks in large part to its inclusion on The Valley Girl soundtrack, the band is remembered for little else. To be fair, the group didn’t help matters by re-recording it again in 1990 for their album “Pillow Lips.” But, they take a big step towards keeping relevant with their latest record, “Take Me to the Trees,” their first in seven years and easily one of their best. The record reunited four of the
original five members for 10 satisfying tracks. Their trademark synth is still here, but is blended in much better with the guitars and other instruments for a more cohesive, less dated sounded. The band, having decided to forgo the traditional nostalgia jukebox path many of their peers have long since resigned themselves to have opted for a more contemporary take on their music and as a result have rarely sounded better. –JM
Positively Bob (River House Records)
In the early ‘80s, Willie Nile’s was burdened with the oftendreaded “New Dylan” label. It was bandied about in reviews and promotional material. He didn’t rise to Mr. Zimmerman’s status but he soldiered on, releasing a consistently satisfying catalog of raw, intelligent and decidedly heartfelt rock and roll music. Now along comes Positively Bob, the crowdfunded follow-up to two previous releases - the gritty, guitar-dominated American Ride and the introspective, piano-injected If I Was A River. Ironically it’s a batch of ten songs written by Bob Dylan. The new disc was inspired not by his initial hype-sticker praise, but by participation in a recent Dylan tribute night at New York’s City Winery. Along for the ride are frequent collaborators Stewart Lerman, James Maddock and the core of his live band (Matt Hogan and Johnny Pisano). Just as Dylan himself does on an almost nightly basis, Nile reinvents the songs to suit his own vision of the material. “Blowin’ in the Wind” sounds like it was inspired by the C.B.G.B.’s scene of Nile’s early days in the New York club scene. “The Times They Are A-Changin’” morphs into a boisterous Springsteen-like exaltation. Even the hoary old “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35,” typically this critic’s least favorite Dylan composition, gets an instantly amusing reboot. Highlights abound but one of the true standouts is Nile’s emotive plea during the cautionary narrative of “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall.” It’s quite appropriate that the included version of “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” is delivered with a loose and hooky roots-rock attack that would have been completely at home as a bonus track on one of Nile’s first two albums. –LVS
See more reviews at insiteatlanta.com
Taste of the Month – July THE CITY’S
BEST BURGERS Space: Monday, June 26 • Street: Friday, June 30
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PG 16 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
Actor/Comic/Wrestling Fan Ron Funches Rules the Ring in Funch-A-Mania
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
try to make the project better.
HEN BUSY COMIC/ACTOR Ron Funches was in Atlanta a couple of years ago, he was huddled backstage at the now-shuttered Improv, hunched over a tiny laptop and laughing heartily at the larger-than-life antics on the screen. Now the newly svelte performer is headed back to town, 140 pounds lighter with two innovative television series roles (Undateable and Powerless), a vinyl comedy album and several movie appearances (Trolls, Get Hard) under his much-shorter belt. The unabashed wrestling fan calls his current cross-country tour Funch-A-Mania and even his merch is ring-themed. The jovial Funches recently called INsite from the west coast before he left on a tour that brings him to Smith’s Olde Bar on June 23.
You really made a big impression on Undateable, which is still one of my very favorite TV shows. It’s so crazy, even when I go out on the road now, even when Powerless was on the air, I’d go to clubs and there on the wall would be “Ron Funches from Undateable” - not Powerless!
Last time we talked, you were watching Wrestlemania before your set at the Improv. (Laughs) Yeah, that sounds like me.
People really liked that show. The final season was performed live. Was there much pressure to do a sitcom in one take? Yeah! Absolutely there was a lot of pressure but in some ways it was very freeing, at least for me. I was like, “Ok, I know I’m going to make a mistake, so I just have to recover and trust my teammates to pick me up.” So it was fun because we only had one chance. I think coming from standup, they knew they had people who were comfortable with performing live in front of people.
With that many comics in one place, there must have been a lot of adYou are a true wrestling fan. libbing on set. I just love it. There’s so much Yeah and when we went live, excitement and robes and more and more of that stuff JUNE 23 feather boas! I’ve been a fan started to happen. Because it SMITH’S OLDE BAR since I was about five years old. was hard to control the timing. When I lived in Chicago, my If a joke hit you could either cut uncle would take me out to the stuff or expand bits. Rosemont Horizon and we would see all the old guys like Jake The Snake, Hulk Hogan and What made you want to do stand up in the Earthquake. I just fell in love with it. first place? For me it was kind of hard to do anything else. There’s a great picture of you wearing a real I was just one of those people who flew from job wrestling robe when you played in Charlotte a to job just waiting to get fired because I never couple months back. had a passion for anything else but comedy. If I Yeah that was so awesome! Meeting [legendary don’t have a passion for something it shows. So WWE referee] Charles Robinson and wearing the only thing I knew really was stand-up and the Rick Flair robe. That’s like a $50,000 robe. It comedy in general. was amazing.
I was bummed when Powerless was canceled a few weeks ago, that was a great show. You and me both! It was a really fun show and we had a great cast. Ya can’t fault the cast for sure. Vanessa Hudgins and Danny Purdi and Alan Tudyk. But you know, sometimes shows just need a little bit of time to get their feet under them and get a following. But we’re in an era when networks don’t really give you that time anymore. If you don’t have a hit right away, you’re pretty much out and that was the position we were in. You tend to work well with good ensemble casts. I think so. I always like to be a plus; I don’t like to be the negative. I like to come in and add something whether it’s my own jokes or just pitchin’ jokes to my castmates and stuff. I always
What was that initial spark that interested you? I found “I Love Lucy” when I was very, very young. That quickly replaced cartoons for me. I was just watching I Love Lucy and Mary Tyler Moore and Mama’s Family and the Cosby Show. My mom would take me to the video store and I’d get a wrestling tape and a stand-up comedy tape. Pretty much what I still do now. You’ve said your son was a big factor in your comedy career. Yeah when I found out my son had autism, I knew I needed to have a career to support him. I thought, “Well what’s that one thing you always thought you could do?” My mom gave her blessing “As long as you’re going to do it full force and to provide, then that’s what you should do.” So I put everything into it. That’s what I still do and now here I am.
CARLENE CARTER IN THE COMFORT ZONE The Country-Rock Pioneer is Back on the Road and on the Record Going into the studio with anybody is always a learning experience. Whether it’s about making records or the creative process of that person or how they see something that I’ve come up with. And sometimes I go, “Oh my god that’s so much better than what I had in mind, thank you!” It was very much like that for us making this record.
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
N MANY WAYS, JOHN MELLANCAMP’S SAD Clowns and Hillbillies is the perfect bookend to 1974’s often-overlooked classic The Junkie and The Juicehead Minus Me by Johnny Cash. The Cash record, the 48th album from the prolific performer, featured performances by Roseanne Cash and It’s definitely a non-traditional duet album. members of the Carter Family - buoyed by a selection of It’s not and I love that. We just had a joyful time singing tunes that balanced the secular and the gospel. together on the road and we became really good friends. Sad Clowns, the 23rd album from genre-defying It was just a comfortable, natural progression. Mellancamp, also teeters between heaven and earth. The pivotal star of both projects is Carlene Carter, a 3rd You’ve had three distinct eras of music and now you’re generation member of the esteemed Carter Family. In ’74, the Queen of Americana. she was just finding her voice. Today her inimitable style Oh, I don’t know about the queen! I used to sort of is cemented with a legacy of wildly varied recordings reinvent myself about every 10 years or so. But I guess it’s from throughout her mercurial fourgoing all right for me with Americana. decade career. I guess you can’t get more Americana In the late ‘70s, while based in London than me. Or the Carter family. and married to Nick Lowe, her records joins John Mellancamp with bristled with the cheeky jangle of pub special guests Emmylou Harris In 2008, you really came back strong rock and ‘60s-injected pop. In the ‘90s, and Lily and Madeleine after a very serious personal period. she played the modern Nashville game, JUNE 27 • CHASTAIN PARK Yeah it was a good long period of with an impressive string of radiotime. I got messed up on drugs and stuff friendly material. Now she’s settled and my mom and my sister and then firmly in Americana, which welcomes all aspects of her John[ny Cash] died. It all happened in the space of about former incarnations, influences and blood relatives. seven or eight months. I just couldn’t sing anymore for Insite spoke with Carter from her home in the a while. I could physically sing but every time I started mountains of Northern California. to sing anything, I’d just start crying. Because there’s
Your music has never seemed particularly dated. Do today’s current events shape your songwriting? Well I just think art will survive humanity. I look at it like, the Great Spirit that made us all is one creative kind of guy right? Or girl. I’ve had a wonderful love affair with creativity for all of my life, just visualizing things. I’m a song crafter, I can craft a song and I can hone and sharpen it and make it all fit really nicely. But the ones that really stick with me are the ones that come from somewhere else. They come from a feeling. And there’s no words to completely describe it. It’s just a “knowing,” I guess. An organic knowing. How does it feel to be in your fourth decade of making records? I’m enjoying this period because I don’t have anything to worry about, as far as like “making it.” It just is what it is. When you first start out in your early 20s, you think, “I’ve just gotta ‘make it.’” And then what do you do when or if you do make it? You just keep doing it! I’ve known artists who were never quite happy with what they had. They were always getting more plastic surgery or whatever it took to try to look current. Or stay valid. But I’m in a really comfortable place now because I’m really enjoying the things I’m doing now. Some were written over 100 years ago, if not more, when I’m playing Carter Family music. And I’m adding to my catalog as I go along. I love collaboration and I really enjoyed working with John so much. We have a special bond that we kind of know what the other ones going to do. It’s pretty neat in regard to singing together. You’ve had a number of impressive collaborations over the years.
something of each one of those people in every song I sang. So after some grieving and getting healthy enough to be able to come back, I ended up writing [the 2008 album] Stronger in a very short period of time. It took just about a month for that whole album. And it was very healing to make that record. Then to come back and do the Carter Girl record a few years ago was even more healing. I was able to do that as a way of celebrating the music and not just as a tool for healing my heart although it ended up being that, anyway. I could finally go out and sing the songs with a smile and really great enthusiasm and not a big tear running down my cheek all the time. Unlike some songwriters, you’ve really lived your songs. In the beginning, I thought I had to have my heart broken or I thought I had to have unrequited love or something going on to create some sort of drama or hardness in my life in order to be creative. That’s kind of how it started. But now it’s not that way for me at all. I can still write things that I have deep feelings about but I just wait for these things to come to me. More than going out and looking for it. And there such a difference in the pressure of the whole Nashville machine. Oh in the ‘90s, they were just up my butt all the time. “Oh we need a new record, we need a new record.” And I was like, “I have been touring 250 days a year and now you want a record?” Forget about it, it’s not going to happen. I could’ve done it but it wouldn’t have been the record that really came next.
the same time. And then here comes The Clash. So there I am, in the middle of Nick Lowe and The Clash on the radio in London! I’m thinking, “This is great!” I didn’t like the the sort of segregation of styles that was going on in country music at the time so that was incredible for me. But I was really just trying to find my own way. I was way too rockin’ for country music at that time and I was also way too country for rock. So I guess I was kind of ahead of myself!
I PRAY BEFORE I GO ON STAGE EVERY NIGHT. I ASK GOD TO PLEASE LET ME ROCK LIKE HELL.
That’s such a different mindset from the London period. Yeah, I made a lot of wacky records and decisions but I had to grow up and find out who I really was to be able to speak my truth and share a piece of myself with every single song. But now I’m finding it really enjoyable and fulfilling. Ultimately it was so creative and fun back then because I didn’t have any genre restrictions while I was over there.
You had a cool clique of people to work and hang around with: Nick Lowe, Dave Edmunds, Elvis Costello, all those guys really love country music. The first time ever heard myself on the radio was [her 1978 single] “Never Together (But Close Sometimes).” And it came on right after Nick’s “I Love The Sound of Breaking Glass,” because both of our records came out at
But now you have the luxury of all that history to lean on and you can either do everything or you can choose to do nothing. It’s a great place to be. But I can’t not do nothing because there’s still a fire in me. But also, hey I gotta pay the bills, baby! I just want to be more productive than I have been and achieve more than I have. I probably would’ve had another Carlene record by now if I had not done this one with John. But it’s been perfect in the way it’s worked out because it’s giving me even more time to come up with my next record. For Sad Clowns, Mellencamp has said he originally wanted to make a religious record. I assume by “religious,” he meant gospel, right? Yeah we talked about getting some really, really old hymns and taking the lyrics and basically doing what A.P. Carter did, which was to take the lyrics and make them into new songs with new music. So John picked you for the project because of your connection to gospel and country. I think it’s because he knows I have a strong spiritual connection. I pray before I go on stage every night. I ask God to please let me rock like hell. insiteatlanta.com • June 2017 • PG 17
VALERIE TOSI DROPS IN
California-Based Comedian/Actress Visits Georgia for a Series of Shows
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
ALERIE TOSI IS ONE OF THE hardest working comedians in show business. Sure, her name isn’t as familiar as fellow comic Dave Chappelle, but if her work ethic pays off, she’ll be playing the same big halls as the popular star of the Chappelle Show. While he plays at least 12 shows in town this month in the cavernous Tabernacle, Tosi is slated for performances at all of Atlanta’s major comedy clubs and a couple of nontraditional venues as well. The centerpiece is the Mermaid Comedy Hour on June 6 at the Highland Inn. It’s an Atlanta-centric edition of the monthly show she produces at the Hollywood Improv. The five-dollar ticket price easily makes it the best entertainment bargain of the month. And there’s a lot of bang for those five smackers. Tosi has gathered eight of Atlanta’s best female comics for the performance. INsite spoke with Tosi by phone from her home in Los Angeles. You are gonna be all over Atlanta in June, just like Dave Chapelle. It’s funny you mention him because at last month’s show, toward the end of the night, Dave Chapelle showed up and asked if he could drop in. He ended up doing a two-anda-half hour set. It was crazy. That’s a long performance.
Tell me about it! But The Improv told me they’ve seen him go longer. They’ve seen him do three hours. Usually that place has a meticulously timed schedule. But there’s no way to tell Chappelle to cut it short. Well what happens when people of that notoriety show up, we’re kind of on their time. So the show that night started at eight and I think we were out of there by one. He was running around town, working on new stuff.
A lot of comics love to play in Los Angeles because they can drop in at all the main clubs in one night. That’s kind of what you’re doing in Atlanta, just spread out over a few days instead of one long evening. Yeah in Atlanta I’ll be popping into a bunch of different venues. I was out there last year a couple of times for festivals and I’m lucky enough to have met a lot of really cool comics, so it’s pretty easy for me to jump up on other shows when I’m in town. Tell us a little more about the Mermaid Comedy Hour. It’s a great concept. I started it in November 2015 so it’s been going for about a year and a half now. It started in a smaller theater in Hollywood and I moved it to the Improv a few months ago. There’s a festival in Texas that got a lot of flak because they didn’t have many female comics on the line-up. Their excuse was that not enough women applied. So I set out to start running a show that was an all-female lineup. I hate
when people make those, you know, “Tits and Laughs” type shows with the most horrible names. “The Little Black Dress Show” or something awful like that. Why can’t it just be a comedy show? For the love of God, can it just be a comedy show? The format quickly became popular within the scene. Right and to prove a point, the whole first year I did it I didn’t rebook a single female comic. And in that year I booked over 75 different women, just in Los Angeles. That doesn’t even include the shows that I’ve taken around to different festivals across the country. So really it’s not the women don’t apply to the festivals, it’s just that the festivals are not really making the effort.
Has that sort of sexism affected you personally? For me I started doing improv and sketch comedy first. I did that for years and there were improv teams. Sometimes it would have way more men than women, but when I started doing standup I started in Los Angeles and it hasn’t been a huge issue. But there are still times I’ll notice I’m the one of the only women on the lineup. The cool part about running the Mermaid show is now I’ve sort of became a good source for brokers when they’re trying to find women for their shows. I’ll get emails or calls asking for names and I have a slew of contacts that I can share. Speaking of names, who are the comics on the Atlanta version of Mermaid?
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, CAN IT JUST BE A COMEDY SHOW?
We have Lace Larrabee, Jen O’Neill Smith, Mia Jackson, Paige Bowman, Samm Severin, Amber North, Olive Lynch and Cherith Fuller. I’ve put the word out for anyone who might be in town to stop by and drop in. So you never know who might join us. You’re becoming a very important conduit for women in comedy. And that’s kind of nice. I’ll be happy to take that role responsibly. The Mermaid Comedy Hour is 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 6 at the Highland Ballroom. Tosi is also slated to play the Punchline on June 4 at 9 p.m., The Star Bar at 8 p.m. June 5, Laughing Skull and Joystick Gamebar on June 7 and Relapse Theater at 8 p.m. June 8. For more information visit valerietosi.com or Facebook @ mermaidcomedyhour.
SOCK IT TO ME?
Laugh-In Celebrates 50 Years of Hilarious Social Commentary
BY LEE VALENTINE SMITH
ICHARD NIXON’S APPEARANCE on an episode of “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In” is cited by many as the most crucial five seconds of the 1968 Presidential Campaign. Veteran television producer George Schlatter still jokingly “blames” himself for those pivotal, briefly humanizing moments when the controversial Republican contender looked directly into the camera to deadpan a questioning version the show’s familiar catchphrase: “Sock it to me?” It’s just one of many highlights of the program that debuted as a one-off variety special on NBC in September of 1967. Five decades later, the good folks at Time-Life are issuing the definitive box set of all six seasons of the trendsetting program, painstakingly presented in a massive 38-disc set. Spanning the momentous Vietnamera years of ’67 through the spring of ’73, the psychedelic, pun-packed, innuendo-laden PG 18 • June 2017 • insiteatlanta.com
series is binge-worthy and gif-ready for a new generation. INsite chatted with Schlatter, Laugh-In’s quickwitted, multiple-Emmy-winning creator by phone from his office in Los Angeles.
just did a clip montage of the political humor for the infomercial for the DVD set. Everything in it could be run today because it’s so still topical. And it would probably get us into some of the same trouble as it did back then.
September marks the 50th anniversary of the first episode of the show. It’s just amazing to think how long it’s been. I’ve been going through all of it for this collection, 144 episodes! It’s funny how much of it I remember from having been there working with the censors, the sponsors and the incredible cast.
When you go back through the archives to pull clips, it must instantly bring back those crazy times. Yes, and the people. When you go back, you realize there was Goldie [Hawn], there was Ruth [Buzzi], Lily [Tomlin], Judy [Carne], Jo Anne [Worley] and Arte [Johnson]. It’s so gratifying to me, all the wonderful people I had the chance to worth with.
The references to world events and global politics really mark it as a time capsule of the era. The interesting thing is we’re politically right where we were when we came on the air. We have not solved one problem since then. At this point will it ever be resolved? Then as now, I still believe it’s the comedians who are the only ones who can get us out of this mess. They’re the only ones who can tell the emperor that not only does he not have any clothes, he’s not very well-endowed! Back then, comedy activated the audience and it led them to get involved. You can’t wait for the politicians to do it, you have to use the Internet and social media and all that stuff. I think that may be our only solution now. Like ye olde court jester. Exactly! He was the only one who could stand up and say anything - and get away with it. We
And of course Dan Rowan and Dick Martin as the suave but subtly subversive hosts. When did you meet them? I was booking the Frontier Hotel in Vegas. I was all over the place back then. After Ernie Kovacs died, I was helping [Kovacs’ wife, actress] Edie Adams put together a nightclub act. That’s when I met Rowan and Martin; they were her opening act. They weren’t TV stars yet, but they had a helluva nightclub act. Did you build Laugh-In around them? No, the show was built without any hosts. [Original sponsor] Timex wanted to buy the show, but they wanted to have a host. Rowan and Martin were a little older than the rest of the cast, wore tuxedos and didn’t interfere with the format so we put them in as the hosts. Their routines were long and kind of rambling so we’d have them do one of their things and just talk.
The rest of cast were equally inspired choices. Into everyone’s life a Goldie Hawn should fall! We had a group of such funny young character people who weren’t comedians or from sitcoms but were just funny people. They didn’t fit into any category but they fit beautifully into LaughIn. We put a group of performers who didn’t have a home and a group of writers who didn’t have a home into brief little character bursts. Then we added some social commentary. When you needed that much material for an hour show, you touched on a lot of subjects. Connected with innovative quick-cut edits. Yeah, but that was just my own minimal attention span coming into play. See, NBC didn’t have anything to put on opposite Lucille Ball and Gunsmoke, which were the number one and two shows at the time. And they owed me a favor. I said I wanted to do the show my way with no interference. They said sure - but I don’t think they really meant it. Then you became the number one show on TV by the next year. But the most gratifying thing is I really think we helped end the war. I think we probably made the public much more aware of world situations - through comedy. We were bawdy, irreverent and impudent and because of that I think we really made a difference. “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh In: The Complete Series” begins shipping on June 12 and is available via: timelife.com/products/laughin
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Atlanta's Entertainment Monthly featuring our annual Summer Guide. The top events, concerts and must dos of the summer! We also look at summ...