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z CONTACT US z Call toll-free: 800-228-0429 Cara Recine, Lifestyles and special projects editor / ext. 5075 Brenda Kirkpatrick, lists, live music / ext. 5089 Rhonda Ethridge, cover designer / ext. 5118 D.W. Norris, Lifestyles writer / ext. 5074 The Southern Illinoisan (USPS 258-908) is published daily at a yearly subscription rate of $178. It is published at 710 N. Illinois Ave., Carbondale, IL 62901. It is owned by Lee Enterprises of Davenport, Iowa.

WHAT’S INSIDE Things to do . . . .3-4 Theater . . . . . .3, 8-9 Art . . . . . . . . . . . .4-5 Coffeehouses . . . . .6 Live music . . . . . . .6

Wineries . . . . . . . . .6 Music . . . . . . . . . .6-8 Cover story . . . . .8-9 DVD releases . . . . .11 Movies . . . . . . .10-12

2010 Ainad Shrine Circus DuQuoin Illinois State Fairgrounds Southern Illinois Center (Just South of the Grand Stand) Air Conditioned

Sat., June 12th • 7:30 p.m. Sun., June 13th • 2:00 & 6:30p.m.

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I really wouldn’t mind going to this prison Henry and Fermin Esson, of Opa Locka, Fla., near Miami, told reporters they were recently granted a patent for “saggy pants” Chuck Shepherd that they say will satisfy young men’s streetfashion sense yet not run t’s clear, based on a May afoul of municipal laws Time magazine around the country dispatch, that Norway’s banning exposed felons and miscreants are underwear. of a superior class than z Federal Reserve, America’s. When Securities and Exchange Norway’s brand-new Commission, on edge: Halden prison opened in Last November, the April, the country’s King government of North Harald V headlined a glitzy Korea made an ultimately gala that celebrated what disastrous decision to has been called the world’s radically devalue its “most humane” lockup. currency, overnight Among the facilities: a making 100 North Korean sound studio, jogging won worth 1 North Korean trails, a guest house for won, and the country’s inmates’ visitors, and a citizens (as well as, scrumptious-smelling reportedly, the Dear “kitchen laboratory” Leader himself) were not where murderers and pleased. Three months bandits can learn to cook. later, without much Guards are unarmed (half fanfare, came the official are women) and announcement that the intermingle with the government’s (i.e., the rapists, drug dealers and Workers’ Party’s) chief others, dining with them finance minister, Pak and joining them in Nam-gi, had been intramural sports. The executed by firing squad. recidivist rate for z In May, the German Norwegian prisoners in manufacturer Ex Oriente general is only 20 percent Lux AG set up its “Gold to (versus 50 percent to Go” vending machine in 60 percent in the United the lobby of Abu Dhabi’s States), but it is still early Emirates Palace Hotel, to tell whether Halden’s offering gold coins and prisoners will find life one-, five- and 10-gram behind bars so pleasant bars of gold, based on the that they don’t mind current world price at the risking another stretch time of the transaction. there by returning to crime.



Transcendent science

Leading economic indicators z Cutting-edge products: (1) A Portland, Ore., inventor recently began offering a colorful patch designed to cover the area just below a dog’s tail. The “Rear Gear” is featured on the handmade-crafts’ site, (2) Tyrone

z Intelligent design: Among the new species first reported this year are a “nose” leech, a “Dracula” fish, a “psychedelic” frogfish and a “bombardier” worm, according to scientists at the University of Arizona and medical school researchers in Lima, Peru. The Peru-based leech, which is fanged and

probably has been around since the time of dinosaurs, prefers nasal mucus as a habitat. The “Dracula” fish of Myanmar, with “caninelike fangs,” has an extraordinarily flexible mouth. The multicolored frogfish has apparently adapted to live among the colorful, venomous coral off Bali, Indonesia. The “bombardier” worm, found in California’s Monterey Bay, releases glow-in-thedark projectiles when threatened. z Too much information: British and Australian researchers, writing in a journal article in March, concluded that the world’s strongest insect (relative to body weight) is the male dung beetle, which can lift more than 1,100 times its weight (equivalent for an average male human: 80 tons). Since the beetles mate inside dung patties, their every move is a struggle against the resistance posed by the feces. z Sounds like a joke: University of Michigan computer engineer Wei Lu revealed in April that he and colleagues were working on a new supercomputer design that is a radical departure from current computer architecture. Wei Lu’s design breakthrough (which has piqued the interest of the Pentagon’s DARPA think-tankers) is to model the operating system like the brain of a cat, he said, even though his supercomputer could never actually outperform the cat’s brain.

The Aristocrats!

pinched off one of his nostrils and blew mucus and blood out of the other (with contents landing on her “face, chest, arms and pants”). (2) Madison, Wis., neighbors Nina Bell, 56, and Arnessa Battles, 38, were cited for disorderly conduct in March in a dispute over Battles’ dog’s winter-long output of droppings that had just been revealed by melting snow. According to the police report, by the time an officer arrived on the scene, both of the women had smeared each other’s cars with large quantities of dog poop.

People different from us World-class swordswallower Chayne Hultgren, 32, is a veteran of such exhibitions as Scotland’s Kamikaze Freakshow, as well as this year’s Psycho Sideshow in Australia, and he holds the Guinness Book record by downing 18 swords simultaneously. Part of his skill, he told Sydney’s Daily Telegraph in April, is learning to relax his body, but he also credited his 5inch-longer-than-normal stomach and his decision to implant a row of magnets along his breastbone that he says ever-so-slightly diverts the metal swords away from vital organs. Reminiscing, Hultgren noted that once, during a show’s run in Belgium, an average of seven spectators a night were fainting (known in the trade as “falling ovations”). What does Hultgren’s future hold? “I’ve never had another job.”

z Fluids Festivals: (1) A 44-year-old man was charged with battery in Crestview, Fla., in April as a result of a fight with his SEND ITEMS to weirdnews@ girlfriend, during which he

z MOVIES z POP CULTURE z ART z MUSIC z WINERIES z THEATER z THINGS TO DO z BOOKS z AINAD Shriners Circus: Saturday-Sunday, Southern Superman Celebration: Illinois Center, Du Quoin State Today-Sunday. Metropolis; Fair Grounds, Du Quoin; features one of the original adults, $12; children, $8; Lois Lanes, Noel Neil, and Heritage Days Festival: “Smallville” actors Laura 10 a.m.-5 p.m. SaturdayVandervoort and Sam Witwer; Sunday, Schlosser Museum, a statue will also be unveiled 114 W. Walnut St., Okawville; of Neill, who is best known for old-time activities; churn playing Lois lane on the TV butter, knead bread, make show “The Adventures of hand-cranked ice cream; Superman” with actor George surrey rides; food; music by Reeves from 1953 to 1957; Thursday Night Thunder, www.supermancelebration. 11:30 a.m., The Pickin’ Chicks, net or 800-949-5740. 12:30 p.m., The Gospel Shawneetown Messengers, 1:30 p.m. and Bicentennial Year the Venedy Brass Band, 2:30 Celebration: 10 a.m. p.m., all on Saturday, and the Saturday, Coleman Tri-County Chris Talley Trio, 11:30-2 p.m. Center, former site of Dunbar Sunday; 618-243-5694 or School; Speaker, William Hayes, author of “Dreams Are Sesser 56th Forever” and winner of the Homecoming/Rend Lake NASA Public Service Metal for Days: Carnival rides, horse work on the Space Shuttle pull, tractor pull, car show, and International Space food concession stands, and Station. live entertainment, FridayFamily Day Celebration: Sunday, June 18-20, Sesser 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Kuenz City Park; 618-625-4466. Sculpture Park, Cedarhurst Perry County Fair: Friday, Center For the Arts, Mount June 18-Saturday, June 26, Vernon; make-and-take art Perry County Fairgrounds, stations; riddle game, trail Pinckneyville; tractor pulls, hikes, local musicians; wood horse shows, the annual Miss artist Art Boatright will show Perry County Pageant, horse how to create sculptures from racing, autocross, demo trees and logs using a derby and carnival; 618-357chainsaw; 618-242-1236 or 9222 or De Soto Daze Car Show: Contestants sought for car Festivals show, Saturday, June 26, De Soto Community Park, West Coal Days Celebration: Main Street; part of De Soto Today through Saturday, Daze community festival, Shawneetown; carnival, food, June 24-27; 618-867-2285 or yard sales, raffles, parade and music; 618-518-9355 Ava Homecoming: TodayFilms Saturday, Bower Park, Ava; carnival rides, food, bands The Blind Side: On outdoor and raffles; 618-318-1735 screen, 8 p.m. Friday, Walker’s Senior Fun Fest: 9 a.m.Bluff, north on Reed Station 2 p.m. Friday, John A. Logan Road, Carterville; 618-985College, Carterville; lunch, 8463, various booths, oldies music, Movies In The Park: Dusk, dance contest; door prizes; Saturday, Riverside Park, $3; advance tickets required; Murphysboro; film “Free 877-480-4040. Willy”; bring lawn chairs; free. Living history program: Under These Same Stars 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Fort – The Céladon Affair: Massac, Metropolis; Massiac Historic drama, 1 p.m. Marines, French and Indian Sunday, Orris Theater, 265 War period re-enactors; Merchant St., Ste. Genevieve, 618-524-9321. Mo.; $5; 314-361-9017;

Events Romeo and Juliet Movie: 7:30 p.m. Monday, Liberty Theater, Murphysboro; $5; part of Southern Illinois Music Festival; 618-453-6000.

Presentations A Shape in Time and Space: Tracking the Necked Discoid Grave Marker: Presentation on cemeteries given by Michael J. McNerney, 1:30 p.m. Sunday, The General John A. Logan Museum, 1613 Edith St., Murphysboro; story of an odyssey that begins in an abandoned rural cemetery in Pope County and continues for two decades; concerns distinctive grave marker in Pope County; 618-684-3455 or 618-303-0569. Mary Todd Lincoln’s Sister: 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Marion Carnegie Library, 206 S. Market St., Marion; Betty Kay will talk about Elizabeth Todd Edwards, older sister of Mary Todd Lincoln; Kay will dress the part in hoop skirts and trimmings as she portrays the sister-in-law of Abraham Lincoln; the presentation will cover Mary Todd Lincoln; 618-993-5935.

Up, up and away! Metropolis’ Superman Celebration begins today METROPOLIS — Metropolis will again become the center of the Superman universe beginning today and running through Sunday with its yearly celebration of all things related to the Man of Steel. The 32nd annual Superman Celebration begins at 5 p.m. today and will feature a slate of special guests and events, headlined by the dedication of a new Lois Lane statue in honor of Noel Neill, the actress who played Lane on the 1950s TV show “The Adventures of Superman.” There will also be science displays, contests, question-and-answer sessions with celebrities and artists, dance parties, a screening of “Superman II” and concerts. “It’s a chance for people of all ages to come together and just enjoy a weekend

of fun,” said Angie Shelton, Metropolis’ director of tourism. “You never know who you’ll meet ... and you never know what you’ll see!” Known as the “First Lady of Metropolis,” Neill has been a longtime supporter of the annual Superman event. Her statue will be unveiled 10 a.m. Friday during a ceremony at Eighth and Market streets in Metropolis. “This statue will be a lovely tribute to a lady who has given so much of herself to Metropolis,” said Lisa Gower, co-chairwoman of the event. Also scheduled to attend the festival are actors Sam Witwer and Laura Vandervoot from the “Smallville” TV show, legendary comic book artist Carmine Infantino, and Ilya Salkind, producer of the “Superman” films. — The Southern

Theatre/Performance Unnecessary Farce: 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Saturday, and Friday, June 17, 19 and 25 and 2 p.m. Sunday, June 27, McLeod Theater, Communications Building ,SIUC; comedy about two “wanna be” policemen on an unofficial sting who run into a hit man for the … Scottish mafia; $20/ $10; 618-4533001 or The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Thursday and Saturday, June 18, 24, and 26 and 2 p.m. Sunday, June 20; McLeod Theater, Communications Building, SIUC; a look at spelling bees and the quirky over-achieving kids that seem to end up in the finals; $23/ $10; 618-4533001,

FLIPSIDE Thursday, June 10, 2010 Page 3


Murphysboro hosts Movies in the Park at Riverside MURPHYSBORO — In Murphysboro, when the sun goes down the big screen lights up in with “Movies in the Park.” Shown at Riverside Park near Commercial Avenue and provided by Friends of Murphysboro and local sponsors, “Movies in the Park” are free to the public and begin at dusk. This weekend’s movie is the 1993 family film “Free Willy,” rated PG. Moviegoers are invited to bring lawn chairs and

blankets, but no glass bottles, to the park. Concessions will be sold. In case of a rainout, the movie will be shown at the Murphysboro Youth Center on Elza Brantley Road. Other “Movies in the Park” will be the 1989 Robin Williams PG-rated film “Dead Poets Society” on July 10 and the 1984 horror-comedy classic “Gremlins,” rated PG, on Oct. 23. — The Southern

Saturday’s Family Day at Cedarhurst features chain saw art demonstration MOUNT VERNON — The Cedarhurst Center for the Arts will host its Family Day Celebration Saturday at Kuenz Sculpture Park, on Richview Road in Mount Vernon, beginning at 1 p.m. This free event features a chain saw art demonstration by Marion artist Art Boatright, who will carve a red-tailed hawk from a dead stump on the sculpture park grounds. There will be a tour of

the newly renovated park and its hiking trails, and an audio tour is also available. There will also be “make-and-take” art stations throughout the grounds at this 3-hour event. Concessions will be available on the back patio of the arts center. For more information, contact the Cedarhurst Center for the Arts at 618-242-1236 or visit — The Southern

Kuenz Sculpture Park at Cedarhurst Center for the Arts

Family Day Celebration! 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. – FREE Admission!

Saturday, June 12 • Tour the Sculpture Park – learn about the artists and the many materials used to make sculpture • Make-and-Take art stations throughout the grounds • Play the “Sculpture-Hunt Riddle Game” • Chainsaw art demonstration by artist Art Boatright • Digital Docent audio tour available • Cedarmouse will be here! • Bring your camera! • Hike the sculpture park trails • Enjoy local musicians • Concessions available • Rain Date – June 19 - The celebration event is sponsored by Byrd-Watson Drug Co. and Mr. & Mrs. Doug Kroeschen. Cosponsored by DataLock/ Toni Federici, Inc. and Krehbiel & Associates

Classes Logan classes: Fiddling, guitar playing, ballroom dancing, drawing and painting, golf, private investigations and tae kwan do are among the classes offered this summer by John A. Logan College Continuing Education; classes start June 14; classes.php. Student Center Craft Shop: Variety of crafts and classes offered, SIUC; 618453-3636, www.siucstudent

Events Art Around the Square: 6-10 p.m. Saturday, June 26, Town Square, Carbondale;

area artists, hors d’oeuvres, music; free concert; 618-9240797or www.artaround

Displays, Exhibits Gone But Not Forgotten: The Power of Cemeteries: The General John A. Logan Museum, 1613 Edith St., Murphysboro; an overview of cemeteries in rural Southern Illinois during the 19th and early 20th centuries; through Nov. 15; 618-684-3455 or 618-303-0569. Creatures Great & Small: A curated group exhibition, Yeiser Art Center, 200 Broadway St., Paducah; through Saturday;

Clay Club demonstration comes to Cedarhurst MOUNT VERNON — The Cedarhurst Clay Club will host an informational session with ceramic artist and Clay Club member Cortez Hodges during the group’s monthly meeting at 5:30 p.m. June 17 at the Shrode Art Center at Cedarhurst in Mount Vernon. Hodges will demonstrate techniques for centering and throwing larger amounts of clay on the potter’s wheel. Hodges will also demonstrate how to use the Griffin Grip, a trimming chuck for leather-hard or bisque thrown pottery. Members will be able to practice throwing and try the Griffin Grip after the demonstration. Coffee and chocolate will be served. Cedarhurst is at 2600 E. Richmond Road in Mount Vernon. For more information, call 618-242-1236, ext. 249. — The Southern

Burgers Hand Made It might sound weird...but don’t knock it till you try it!

Announcing the Delicious

Hamburger Salad A mix of Romaine & Green Leaf Lettuce, Carrots & Red Cabbage topped with Tomato, Red Onion, Roasted Red Pepper, Artichoke Hearts & Feta...and Hamburger!

2600 Richview Road • Mt. Vernon 618-242-1236 An activity of the John R. and Eleanor R. Mitchell Foundation

Page 4 Thursday, June 10, 2010 FLIPSIDE

$1.00 Off Any Large Salad Exp: 6/26/2010

Dine-In or Carry-Out - Free Delivery w/$8 Minimum Order Mon-Thur 10:30-9 • Fri-Sat 10:30-Midnight • Sun Noon-6 611B S. Illinois Ave, Carbondale • On the Strip • 529-FATP

z MOVIES z POP CULTURE z ART z MUSIC z WINERIES z THEATER z THINGS TO DO z BOOKS z Claudia Torrez-Ambriz: Sculpture, Tuesday-June 25, University Museum, Faner Hall, SIUC, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 1-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; museum. or 618-453-5388. Historic Structures & Machinery V: Tuesday-July 31, Little Egypt Arts Centre, downtown square, Marion; 618 998-8530, mgrafics@ or killman@ Places in Paint: Watercolor paintings by Mary Pachikara, Componere Gallery, St. Louis; through June 26; 314-721-1181 or Karen Lynn W. Hale: Central Showcase at Realty Central, 1825 W. Main St., Murdale Shopping Center, Carbondale; paintings and gourd art; gallery hours, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-noon Saturday; through June 26; 618-4574663. Taiwan Sublime: Photographic celebration of Taiwan, Carbondale Civic Center Corridor Gallery; delegation from the Taipei Economic and Cultural Center in Chicago will introduce the exhibit; through June; 618-457-5100 or cca@ Traveling display: Highlights of SIUC photojournalism project, Chamber of Commerce, Murphysboro; display features pictures collected during an October workshop documenting a weekend in Murphysboro; through June;

Beauty in the Midst of Struggle: Gretchen M. Smith, The Tribeca Restaurant & Gallery, 127 S. Second St., Paducah; through July 7; 270-210-1753. Structure and Harmony: Abstract Works from the Permanent Collection, Beal Grand Corridor Gallery, Cedarhurst Center for the Arts, 2600 E. Richmond Road, Mount Vernon; includes works by Mary Sprague, Paul Krainak, Cheonae Kim, Herbert Fink and Alfio Bonanno; through July 25; 618-242-1236 or Slip and Stitch: Features Cedarhurst Clay Club and Fibers et Al groups, Shrode Art Center, Cedarhurst Center for the Arts, Mount Vernon; through July 25. Totally Tubular: Featuring after-school artists, Cedarhurst Center for the Arts, Mount Vernon; through July 25; Children in My Family: Framed paintings and drawings by Marlene Webb, front lobby of CASA, Benton Square through July; 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, except holidays; 618-9272804, Voices: Contemporary Ceramic Art from Sweden: Main Gallery, Cedarhurst Center for the Arts, Mount Vernon; contemporary ceramic art in Sweden; through Aug. 1. Abstract and nonobjective paintings and sculptures: From members of Little Egypt Arts Association, Shawnee

We’re Makin’ Dolls A Porcelain Doll Shop

Community College, 8364 Shawnee College Road, Ullin; main H hallway; through Aug. 20; 800-481-2242. From Humble Beginnings, Lincoln’s Illinois 1830-61: Southern Illinois Art and Artisans Center, Whittington; the exhibition presents a perspective of the Illinois Abraham Lincoln found when he entered the state in 1830; through Sept. 26; 618-6292220 or Carolyn Gassan Plochmann display: Work and life of Carbondale artist, Morris Library, SIUC; view the display in the cases outside the Hall of Presidents and other rooms; 618-453-2516. Ongoing art exhibit: Featuring photographs of Juhree Veach, mosaics from Janet Altoff and sculpture from Tom Horn, StarView Vineyards, 5100 Wing Hill Road, Cobden; 618-893-9463. Rodney Walls, Retrospective: Tuesday-July 12, University Museum, Faner Hall, SIUC; watercolor, woodcarvings, screen prints and brass work; reception, 4-7 p.m., Friday, June 25. Sense of Place/Sense of Space: Landscapes of Personal Meaning by local high school students; Tuesday-July 9, University Museum, SIUC; reception:, 4-7 p.m. Friday, June 25; photography from AnnaJonesboro, Elderado, Elverado, Harrisburg, Pinckneyville and ZieglerRoyalton high school students.

University Museum to open two exhibits CARBONDALE — The University Museum at SIUC will open two new exhibits featuring photographs and paintings from local artists beginning Tuesday. “Sense of Place/Sense of Space: Landscapes of Personal Meaning by Southern Illinois High School Students” highlights the photographs of students from Anna-Jonesboro, Eldorado, Elverado, Harrisburg, Pinckneyville and Zeigler-Royalton high schools. The exhibit runs Tuesday to July 9. “Rodney Walls: Retrospective” showcases the watercolors, woodcarvings, screen prints and brass works of deceased Chicago native and Ava resident Rodney Walls, an award-winning artist who began displaying his works in the 1960s. The show runs Tuesday to July 12. There will be a reception for both exhibits from 4 to 7 p.m. June 25. Summer hours for the museum in Faner Hall are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday to Friday, and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday. It is closed Sunday and Monday.

1318 Walnut Street • Murphysboro, IL • 618-6 687-4 4101 Hours: Tue. - Fri. 10am - 4pm • Mon. & Sat. 10am - 2pm Anytime by appointment •


Great Outdoor Patio


“Pucker Up” They Are Good WEDNESDAY-Drink Specials Music On The Patio 5:00-8:00 16 oz. Bud & Bud Light Bottles $2.99

THURSDAY-June 24th 8-11

Thomas Tillman - Georgia Country Artist-Of-The-Year

SUNDAY-Father’s Day June 20th FREE Walts Glass for All Dads - 4-10pm

★ Enjoy the Weekend ★ Friday & Saturday Open Late ‘Til Midnight The Freshest Food, The Finest Service & Best Atmosphere in the Entire Region


— The Southern

Ditch the Workout, Join the Party

Quality heirlooms for tomorrow’s keepsakes.

Classes of all kinds to suit your interests, including one of a kind doll sculpting!

Great Times at

213 S. Court - On Hwy. 37 So. MARION • 618-993-8668

Lunch Buffet Every Tues., Wed. & Thur. 11 am-1:30 pm Su. & Mo. 4 pm-11 pm • Tu.-Th. 11 am-11 pm • Fr. & Sa. 11am-12 pm

Program blends Latin Rhythms with easy to follow moves. Classes now forming. Call for details.

Affton’s Dance Academy 100 S. 13th St. • Herrin • (618) 316-88559

FLIPSIDE Thursday, June 10, 2010 Page 5


CRAVING KARAOKE? Karaoke and DJ lists are online at flipsideonline. com.

Coffeehouses, Cafés and Eateries Blues Bandits: 8:30 p.m. Friday, The Palace Pizzeria, 215 Appleknocker Drive, Cobden; 618-8934415. Jam and Open Mic Night: 8 p.m. Saturday, Yellow Moon Café, 110 N. Front St., Cobden; $15;; 618-893-2233. Sam West Trio: 8:30 p.m. Saturday, The Palace Pizzeria, Cobden.

Wineries Kevin Lucas: 6-9 p.m. Friday, Rustle Hill Dave Simmons: 2-6 p.m. Saturday, Owl Creek Vineyard Dirtwater Fox: 3-6 p.m., Saturday, Von Jakob Vineyard Apples and Hand Grenades: 3-7 p.m. Saturday, StarView Vineyards Dan Wiethop: 3-6 p.m. Saturday, Rustle Hill Winery Eastern Blok: 6-9 p.m. Saturday, Rustle Hill Winery Everyday People:

6-9 p.m. Saturday, Walker’s Bluff J Brown: 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Blue Sky Andrea Stader: 3-6 p.m. Sunday, Rustle Hill Winery Wizardisland Duo: 3-6 p.m., Sunday, Von Jakob Orchard Leslie Sanazaro: 3-6 p.m. Sunday, Walker’s Bluff Carlos Alberto: 2-6 p.m. Sunday, StarView Vineyards David & Rosaline: 6-9 p.m. Sunday, Rustle Hill Winery

618-893-9463, www. Von Jakob Orchard: 230 Illinois 127, Alto Pass; 618-893-4600, Owl Creek Vineyard: www.vonjakobvineyard. 2655 Water Valley Road, com. Von Jakob Vineyard: Cobden; 618-893-2557, www.owlcreekvineyard. 1309 Sadler Road, Pomona; 618-893-4500 com. or www.vonjakob Rustle Hill Winery: U.S. 51, Cobden; 618Walker’s Bluff: North 893-2700, www.rustle on Reed Station Road, StarView Vineyards: Carterville; 618-9858463, www.walkers 5100 Wing Hill Road, Cobden; Blue Sky Vineyard: 3150 S. Rocky Comfort Road, Makanda; 618995-9463, www.bluesky

Page 6 Thursday, June 10, 2010 FLIPSIDE

WANT TO BE LISTED? Call 618-351-5089 or e-mail

z FRIDAY z TONIGHT BENTON Duncan Dance Barn:: Spring Pond Band, 6:30-9:30 p.m. CARBONDALE PK’s: Sexy Accident/Swamp Tigers/Black Fortys Tres Hombres: Chicago Farmer/Neighborhood Flavor WEST FRANKFORT WB Ranch Barn: Little Egypt Country Band, 6:30-9:30 p.m.

z MONDAY MARION Marion Youth Center: Ragtag Band, 7-10 p.m.

z TUESDAY CARBONDALE PK’s: Whistle Pigs MOUNT VERNON Double K’s Kickin Country: Jacks-RBetter, 7-10 p.m. WEST FRANKFORT Colyer’s: Righteous Rebel Band, 7-11 p.m. WB Ranch Barn: WB Ranch Band, 6:30-9:30 p.m. WHITE ASH The White Ash Barn: The Heartland Country Band, 7-10 p.m.

z WEDNESDAY CARBONDALE Tres Hombres: Giant City Slickers, 8:30 p.m. DU QUOIN Ten Pin Alley: Piano Bob, 6-9 p.m.

CARBONDALE Pinch Penny/Copper Dragon: Brushfire PK’s: Devin Miller INA Ina Community Building: Friday Night Jam Band, 6:30-9:30 p.m. MARION John Brown’s on the Square : Barnacle Billy and the Zebra Mussels, 8:30-11:30 p.m. MOUNT VERNON The Tavern on 10th:

Ronnie Lee, 7-11 p.m. THOMPSONVILLE Lion’s Cave: Rebel Country Band, 7-10 p.m. Old Country Store Dance Barn: Country Sidekicks, 7-10 p.m. WHITE ASH The White Ash Barn: The Vintage Country Band, 7-10 p.m. WHITTINGTON Corner Dance Hall: Prospectors Band, 7:30-10:30 p.m.

z SATURDAY CARBONDALE PK’s: Moon Buggy Kids Tres Hombres: Shaggy Wonda COBDEN Fuzzie’s: Righteous Rebel Band, 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Trails End Lodge: Whistle Pigs DU QUOIN Timeout Sports Bar: Hunter, Halstead, Shreve & Steeb MARION Marion American Legion: Danny and

the Dreamers; sock hop, 5:30-11:30 p.m. Marion Eagles: Salty Dog, 8 p.m.-midnight MOUNT VERNON Double K’s Kickin Country: Jordan Carter, 7-10 p.m. The Tavern on 10th: Metal Toyz THOMPSONVILLE Lion’s Cave: Weekenders, 7-10 p.m. Old Country Store Dance Barn: Lil’ Boot & Classic Country, 7-10 p.m.

z SUNDAY CARBONDALE Key West: Ivas John Blues Band MARION Marion Eagles: Salty Dog, 6-10 p.m.

DIRECTIONS & DIGITS Corner Dance Hall: 200 Franklin St., Whittington 618-303-5266 Double K’s Kickin Country: Illinois 37, Mount Vernon 618-359-0455 Duncan Dance Barn: 13545 Spring Pond Road, Benton 618-435-6161 The Get-Away: 804 N. Douglas St., West Frankfort 618-937-3545 Ina Community Building: 504 Elm St., Ina/618-315-2373 John Brown’s on the Square: 1000 Tower Square, Marion 618-997-2909 Key West: 1108 W. Main, Carbondale 618-351-5998 Linemen’s Lounge: 100 E. Broadway, Johnston City Lion’s Cave: South Street, Thompsonville/618-218-4888 Marion American Legion: Longstreet Road, Marion 618-997-6168 Marion Eagles: Rural Route 3, Marion/618-993-6300 Marion Youth Center: 211 E. Boulevard St., Marion 618-922-7853 Mollie’s: 107 E. Union St., Marion 618-997-3424 Murphysboro Elks Lodge: 1809 Shomaker Drive Murphysboro 618-684-4541. Old Country Store Dance Barn: Main Street, Thompsonville, 618-927-2770. Orient American Legion: 404 Jackson St., Orient 618-932-2060 Perfect Shot: 3029 S. Park Ave., Herrin/618-942-4655 Pinch Penny Pub/Copper Dragon: 700 E. Grand, Carbondale/618-549-3348 PK’s: 308 S. Illinois Ave., Carbondale/618-529-1124 Ramesse: 1754 Illinois 37, Lake of Eygpt/618-995-9104 Steelhorse Saloon: 202 Dewmain Lane, Carterville 618-985-3549 Tavern on 10th: 224 S. 10th St., Mount Vernon/618-244-7821 Tomigirl’s Rollin-in: 14960 Illinois 37, Johnston City 618-983-7655 Trackside Dance Barn: 104 Rock St., Spillertown 618-993-3035 Tres Hombres: 119 N. Washington St., Carbondale 618-457-3308 WB Ranch Barn: 1586 Pershing Road, West Frankfort 618-937-3718 Whisker Willy’s Bar & Grill 13510 N. Illinois 37, Marion 618-983-5300 White Ash Barn: 207 Potter St., White Ash / 618-997-4979 Xrossroads: 101 Rushing Drive, Herrin / 618-993-8393 The Zone Lounge: 14711 Illinois 37, Whittington/618-6292039


Carbondale musician returns for ‘Sexy’ shows BY D.W. NORRIS THE SOUTHERN

Carbondale native Chad Toney is living a double life familiar to most musicians. Toney has a day job as a data analyst for a Kansas City hospital. At night, he’s a guitarist with the K.C.-based pop band The Sexy Accident, which plays a Carbondale doubleheader tonight. The band has an acoustic show with a $5 cover charge at 6:30 p.m. at Longbranch Coffeehouse on East Jackson Street and a 10 p.m. free electric show at PK’s on South Illinois Avenue. The performances are part of a 10-show, 12-day tour which stretches from Kansas City to New York City. “Since we were going east, I wanted to hit my hometown,” said Toney, a married 29-year-old father of two. “I still have lots of friends and family there, so I assumed we’d at least get a pretty good crowd.” And, the five-piece band got a pretty good deal on


The Sexy Accident, which includes Carbondale native Chad Toney on guitar, returns to play two shows tonight. The band appears at 6:30 p.m. at Longbranch Coffeehouse and at 10 p.m. at PK’s. The Longbranch show is $5, and the PK’s show is free.

lodging. “We’ll probably stay at my parents’ house,” Toney said. “They’re cool with it.” The Sexy Accident is touring with a new threesong EP, “Now That She’s Gone,” available for sale. “It’s been out for a couple of weeks, so we haven’t gotten a lot (of reviews) yet,” Toney said. “A few of the people I’ve

talked to really like the new direction. … We’re focusing more on just kind of solid songwriting with really basic, almost Motown-type grooves.” Toney joined The Sexy Accident in 2008 and played on the band’s third album, “Mantoloking,” which was recorded and produced by Steve Fisk, who also worked with

Nirvana and Soundgarden. The Swamp Tigers are on the playbill for both of the performances. The Black Fortys will play the PK’s show. Go to www.thesexy for more information or to hear selected tracks.

Angelina Ballerina joins the SI Music Festival fun in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ MARION — Another ballerina will be dropping in just before the Southern Illinois Music Festival’s production of “Romeo & Juliet.” On Saturday, WSIU is bringing “PBS Kids” character Angelina Ballerina from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to the Marion Cultural and Civic Center, before the festival ballet performance of “Romeo & Juliet” at 2 p.m. As Angelina Ballerina dances her way through Marion Cultural and Civic Center, she will be available to pose with children and families for photos at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Parents are encouraged to bring their cameras for their children’s photo opportunity with Angelina. Children can also enjoy watching videos, making cool stuff at activity stations, and fun and educational items to take home. The ballet also will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the center at 800 Tower Square Plaza. The three-act ballet features professional dancers from the Atlanta Ballet and Ballet Austin, with a score by Sergei Prokofiev and featuring the 50-member Southern Illinois Music Festival Dance Company. The performance is fully choreographed, with a full symphonic orchestra conducted by Edward Benyas. Tickets are $20, $18, $10 and $6. Call 618-453-6000 for tickets or go to for features and a complete schedule of the Southern Illinois Music Festival. — The Southern 618-351-5074

Country great Bobby Bare, others highlight Rend Lake Days Live Music all weekend

Tomberlin, Candi Carpenter and Bill Labounty, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 17; David Ball at 8 p.m. Friday, June 18; admission is free; bring a lawn chair.

one of the most influential characters in the industry. COUNTRY His captivating SCENE storytelling style instantly hooked the listener on Vince Hoffard classics like “The Lincoln Park Inn,” “Miller’s Cave” and “500 Miles Away Bobby Bare/ From Home.” obby Bare was only 27 Rend Lake Days Bare was a Music City when he recorded trendsetter. He was among 8 p.m. Saturday, June 19, “Detroit City,” one of the first artists to use Sesser City Park; part of the greatest songs in the songwriting skills of upRend Lake Days; other history of country music. and-coming talents like concerts include: Southern Instead of kicking back Harlan Howard, Bob Pride at 7:30 p.m. and resting on his laurels McDill, Tom T. Hall, Wednesday; ‘Songwriters in 1963, Bare spent the SEE HOFFARD / PAGE 8 next quarter century as in the Round’ Bobby

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Bobby Bare performs at 8 p.m. June 19 for part of the Rend Lake Days festival.

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FLIPSIDE Thursday, June 10, 2010 Page 7


HOFFARD: Bobby Bare will perform at Rend Lake Days festival FROM PAGE 7 Billy Joe Shaver, Kris Kristofferson and Rodney Crowell. “I’ve never believed in standing still with my music,” Bare said. The 75-year old Ohio native proved he marched to the beat of a different drum with classic ditties “Marie Laveau,” “The Winner” and “Drop Kick Me Jesus,” before blitzing the outlaw movement in the late 1970s with “Numbers,” “Drunk & Crazy” and “Tequila Shelia.” Bare will perform at 8 p.m. June 19 in Sesser City Park as the grand finale for the 55th annual Rend Lake Days,

sponsored by the Sesser Homecoming Association. The music portion of the festival begins at 7:30 p.m. June 16 with a concert by Southern Pride. A trio of powerful songwriters from Nashville — Bobby Tomberlin, Candi Carpenter and Bill Labounty — join forces at 7:30 p.m. June 17 for Songwriters in the Round. Honky tonk crooner David Ball will be featured at 8 p.m. June 18. There is free admission to each show. Those planning to attend should bring a blanket or lawn chair. Seating is not provided in the park. Concessions are available, including crowd favorite roasted corn.

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Migrating to Los Angeles at 18 to pursue a career as a pop singer, Bare was immediately successful. He shared time with friend Bill Parsons during one his first trips in a recording studio. They both cut “All American Boy.” Soon after, Bare was drafted into the U.S. Army. The song soared to No. 2 on the pop charts, but Parsons’ name was accidentally listed on Bare’s vocal track. After completing military service, Bare toured with major stars like Roy Orbison and Bobby Darin. He appeared on Dick Clark’s actbreaking “American Bandstand,” the most influential music program of the era. Dangling a lucrative contract offer from RCA Records, guitar guru Chet Atkins convinced Bare to migrate to Nashville, Tenn. His debut single, “Shame on Me,” soared to No. 18. He followed up with Grammy Awardwinning “Detroit City,” penned by little known writer Mel Tillis. Bare, Atkins, Jim Reeves and the Anita Ker Singers formed a package show and, at the time, were the biggest drawing country music tour in European history, quickly selling out most venues. The first country music concept album was

“Bobby Bare Sings Lullabys, Legends, and Lies.” All the songs were written by poet/author Shel Silverstein, including “Marie Leveau” and “Daddy, What If,” a duet Bare sang with his 5-yearold son. Through the years, Bare has also sung duets with Skeeter Davis, Norma Jean, Rosanne Cash and Lacy J. Dalton. Bare hosted “Bobby Bare and Friends” for The Nashville Network from 1983 to 1988. Ball spent many years paying his dues in Nashville, Tenn., before hitting pay dirt with signature tune “Thinking Problem” in 1994, then following up with hits “When the Thought of You Catches Up with Me” and “Riding with Private Malone.” His new album, “Sparkle City,” includes current single “Hot Water Pipe.” The songwriting trio has numerous hits to its credit. Tomberlin wrote “One More Day” for Diamond Rio and “A Good Day To Run” for Darryl Worley. Labounty’s “Rock My World Little Country Girl” hit No. 1 for Brooks & Dunn. Carpenter has cuts by Bill Anderson and Phil Everly. VINCE HOFFARD can be reached at 618-658-9095 or vincehoffard@yahoo. com.

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Leslie Jordan and Mark Manik rehearse a scene from ‘Unnecessary Farce’ on Tuesday. The play opens June 17 to kick off the McLeod Summer Playhouse series.

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McLeod Theater Summer Playhouse opens June 17 McLeod Summer Playhouse June 17 through Aug. 2, McLeod Theater, 1100 Lincoln Drive, Carbondale; season tickets for four shows are $67, with a family plan for $20 student tickets; single-show adult tickets are $16 to $23, single-show student passes are $8 to $10; for more information, call the McLeod Theater box office at 618-453-3001. BY D.W. NORRIS THE SOUTHERN

The McLeod Summer Playhouse is proof that live performance still has a place in a YouTube world. After being forced off the Southern Illinois University Carbondale stage for a few years at the turn of this century, the Playhouse has rebounded with a sixth-straight season on the McLeod Theater boards. Three of four scheduled shows will feature the talents of professional casts.

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z MOVIES z POP CULTURE z ART z MUSIC z WINERIES z THEATER z THINGS TO DO z BOOKS z The fourth brings to the stage local high school singers, actors and dancers. This year’s schedule boasts a Tony Awardwinning play directed by an Emmy Award-winning SIUC alumnus, a quirky musical comedy with audience participation, a classic musical, and a cops-and-crooks comedy. “It’s a good grouping of shows,” said Vincent Rhomberg, coordinator of marketing and public information for SIUC Department of Theater. “There is a little bit of variety with something for everybody. The shows are all entertaining and it will be fun to see them together.” The Playhouse’s season begins June 17 with the comedy “Unnecessary Farce,” directed by SIUC associate music professor Tim Fink. “Unnecessary Farce” follows two rookie policemen who while on an embezzlement stakeout run into members of the

Scottish mob. Shows begin at 7:30 p.m. June 17, 19 and 25. The June 27 performance begins at 2 p.m. Beginning the same weekend, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” directed by Jenny Holcombe, is a musical comedy about the quirky children who always seem to end up in the finals of those competitions. Four audience members will get a chance to participate in shows beginning at 7:30 p.m. June 18, 24 and 26, and at 2 p.m. June 20. The third show of the season is the Tony Award winner “The Drowsy Chaperone,” directed by Emmy-winning choreography and SIUC alumnus George Pinney. This fantasy-comedy is touted as being as enjoyable for longtime theater fans as it is for newcomers. “The first time I saw it on Broadway, I about fell out of my chair laughing,” Pinney said. “It’s


Jared McDaris rehearses a scene Tuesday.

hysterical. It has all the wonderful clichés of musical theater, and, as a choreographer, I really enjoy 1920s dancing.” Performances of “The Drowsy Chaperone” begin at 7:30 p.m. July 9 and 10, 16 and 17, and at 2 p.m. July 11 and 18. The Playhouse season ends with the Royal Shakespeare Company’s adaptation of “The Wizard of Oz.” Directed by Holcombe, this musical


Jared McDaris and Courtney Self rehearse a scene from ‘Unnecessary Farce’ on Tuesday. The play opens June 17 to begin the McLeod Summer Playhouse series.

features the movie’s classic songs and members of Carbondale Community Arts’ All Southern High School Theater Project. July 29 through 31 and Aug. 2 performances begin at 7:30 p.m. The Aug. 1 show starts at 2 p.m.

Season tickets for the Playhouse’s four summer shows are $67, with a family plan for $20 student tickets for 18year-old or younger family members of season pass holders. Adult tickets for individual shows run $16

to $23 while single-show student passes are $8 to $10. Call the McLeod Theater box office at 618-453-3001 for more information. 618-351-5074

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New city, new actors, same moves in ‘Karate Kid’ The Karate KidË˽

slickly menacing as Billy Zabka. And as climactic Rated PG for bullying, showdown songs go, martial arts action nothing could beat the violence and some mild cliched bombast of language; starring Jackie “You’re the Best Around.” Chan, Jaden Smith; opens (Now it’ll be stuck in your Friday at University Place 8 head the rest of the day, just like it’s stuck in mine. in Carbondale and Illinois You’re welcome.) Centre 8 in Marion. Sure, John G. Avildsen’s original 1984 movie was BY CHRISTY LEMIRE formulaic, but it was OUR THE ASSOCIATED PRESS formula. There was no doubt Daniel-San was ever Fellow children of the going to lose to rich, ’80s: Merely pondering the possibility of a “Karate arrogant Johnny, leader of the Cobra Kai, in the finals Kid” remake tears at the of the big karate very fiber of our tournament. But that was adolescence. No one else needs to say OK. He had heart on his side — and the crane kick. the words “wax on-wax Avildsen also directed off” ever again. No teen “Rocky,” so he knew a bully could possibly be as

Page 10 Thursday, June 10, 2010 FLIPSIDE

little something about playing up the underdog theme for maximum emotional impact. We were sucked in despite ourselves. Nevertheless, a new version of “The Karate Kid” is upon us. Director Harald Zwart (“Agent Cody Banks”) hits all the same notes and adheres closely to Robert Mark Kamen’s original script, down to a sweep-the-leg moment in the finale. Details have been tweaked in Christopher Murphey’s new script, including the setting: Instead of moving from New Jersey to Los Angeles because of his single mom’s new job, our young hero moves from

Detroit to Beijing, where he promptly incurs the wrath of the local thugs and learns martial arts to protect himself. (And by the way, it’s now kung fu.) But one of the biggest changes of all is the character’s age. Ralph Macchio was what, like, 35 when he played Daniel? But he looked 16, as his character was, so he seemed like a good fit. Now the character, Dre, is 12 — as is the film’s star, Jaden Smith, son of Will and Jada (both executive producers). But with his pretty face and slight build, Smith looks about 9. It’s inescapably distracting. And so neither the fighting nor the romance with a girl who’s out of his league — two key components of “The Karate Kid” — makes sense. Even after the obligatory training montage, Smith is still a tiny, lean kid. Macchio didn’t exactly bulk up, but he had an attitude about him, an East Coast swagger, that helped make his transformation into a karate master believable. Plus it’s just uncomfortable watching kids this age beat each other up to the point of serious injury; there’s no one to root for in that. Still, we must watch Dre go through the motions of learning from Mr. Han


Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith star in ‘The Karate Kid.’

(Jackie Chan), the handyman in the building where he and his mother, Sherry (Taraji P. Henson) now live. Dre hates it in China — doesn’t understand the language, can’t use chopsticks, etc. — but when he meets a pretty violinist named Mei Ying in the park, he’s smitten. School bully Cheng (Zhenwei Wang) doesn’t like this development, though, and goes on a mission to make Dre’s life even more hellish than it already was. Enter Mr. Han, who not only fights off Dre’s enemies, he heals the boy’s injuries and puts him through his own peculiar training regimen. We all know where this is headed: The Big Tournament. But first, “The Karate Kid” stops at the Great Wall and the Forbidden City — you know, just because they’re picturesque — which contribute to the movie’s overlong running time. Still, Chan is solid in an

extremely different role, one that’s much more serious and understated than his well-known, playful persona. All the trademark acrobatics are there, but without the cheerful mugging. After decades on screen, it’s refreshing to see Chan shift gears like this. Functioning in the Mr. Miyagi role, Chan also has decent chemistry with Smith. But things are awkward between Smith and Wenwen Han, the Chinese version of Elisabeth Shue’s Ali-withan-I. Their ages, her shy demeanor, her English (which is sometimes hard to understand) — all these factors conspire against them, and the film. The ending is still rousing enough to make the film a crowd-pleaser, though. But after this, hopefully some ‘80s classics like “Sixteen Candles,” “Better Off Dead” and “Revenge of the Nerds” will remain offlimits.

z MOVIES z POP CULTURE z ART z MUSIC z WINERIES z THEATER z THINGS TO DO z BOOKS z New on DVD Shutter Island **½ The sanity of a federal marshal investigating the disappearance of a woman from a mental hospital is questioned. With Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Kingsley, Mark Ruffalo. R (disturbing violent content, profanity and some nudity) From Paris with Love *** An aide to the U.S. ambassador to France is partnered with an unorthodox special agent working to thwart a terrorist attack in Paris. With John

Travolta, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Farid Elouardi. R (strong bloody violence throughout, drug content, pervasive profanity and brief sexuality) CC Shinjuku Incident *½ While searching for his sweetheart in Japan, a Chinese mechanic befriends a Yakuza boss and is given a position in the mob. With Jackie Chan, Naoto Takenaka, Daniel Wu. R (graphic violence, brief sexuality and drug use) — McClatchy-Tribune News


‘The A-Team,’ starring Liam Neeson and Bradley Cooper, opens Friday at Illinois Centre 8 in Marion. It is rated PG-13 for violence and strong language.

‘A-Team’ an inevitable dud The A-TeamË Rated PG-13 for violence and strong language; starring Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper; opens Friday at Illinois Centre 8 in Marion. BY CHRISTOPHER KELLY MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE NEWS

The charmless adaptation of the 1980s television series “The A-Team” is really three movies smashed together into one senseless whole. In an extended prologue, we learn how four Army Special Forces soldiers first began working together. Flash-forward eight years, and we find out how this formerly respectable “alpha team” was framed by the government and thrown into jail. Flash-forward another six months, and the men bust out of prison

and attempt to clear their names. By my count, that’s two origin stories and a sequel, all strung together by a series of choppily edited action scenes. “The ATeam” doesn’t have a beginning, middle and end — it’s just a series of false starts. The four lead actors — and the iconic characters whom they’re supposed to be reinventing — steadily get lost in the noise. Liam Neeson plays Col. John “Hannibal” Smith, the cigar-chomping leader of this motley gang. His chief collaborator is troublemaker Lt. Templeton “Faceman” Peck, played by Bradley Cooper. A graduate of the Matthew McConaughey school, Cooper’s idea of acting mostly involves taking off his shirt and grinning. For reasons too

convoluted to explain, Hannibal, The Face, and cohorts B.A. Baracus (Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in the role Mr. T made famous) and Murdoch (Sharlto Copley, from “District 9”) find themselves trying to chase down counterfeit currency plates that are also being pursued by a shady CIA agent named Lynch and a military contractor. Torn between these warring factions is The Face’s former flame, Army Capt. Charisa Sosa (Jessica Biel). Alas, that’s about as much of the story as I was able to figure out. As “The A-Team” drags on, it doesn’t resemble the original TV series so much as just another forgettable summer movie. It’s destined to be flipped right past when it turns up on HBO in a year’s time.

FLIPSIDE Thursday, June 10, 2010 Page 11


Dear Hollywood, it’s time for fresh movie ideas already BY PATRICK GOLDSTEIN MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE NEWS

LOS ANGELES — When a Lakers game was well into the fourth quarter, with Magic Johnson and Co. trouncing some hapless opponent, the legendary basketball announcer Chick Hearn would say, “This game’s in the refrigerator!” If Chick was around today, he’d probably say the same thing about this summer’s movie box office, which is so cold right now that you half expect to see people wearing fur coats and

hoodies into the theaters. As my colleague Ben Fritz noted in his Monday box-office story, this past weekend had the smallest total grosses of any May, June or July weekend in more than two years. That follows an awful Memorial Day weekend that earned the dubious distinction (once you adjust for ticket price inflation) of having the lowest total number of tickets sold in 17 years. Total movie attendance for the year is only down about 3 percent over last year’s banner season, but if you took “Avatar’s” 2010

Page 12 Thursday, June 10, 2010 FLIPSIDE

numbers out of the mix, attendance would be off nearly 13 percent from 2009. The weekend of June 4 saw four new movies open — “Get Him to the Greek,” “Killers,” “Marmaduke” and “Splice” — and none of them came close to dislodging “Shrek Forever After” from the No. 1 slot. To give you an idea of what that means, if you put the weekend’s numbers up against the same weekend in either 2009 or 2008, “Shrek Forever After” would’ve finished a distant third. Against similar

competition from 2007, it would’ve finished fourth. So why the cold shoulder from audiences? This is the time of year when all we hear about are the remakes and sequels and rebooted franchises coming off the studio assembly lines. But the real problem with this summer’s box office is that it hasn’t spawned a really good original movie, since it’s the original movies — like last year’s “The Hangover,” “Up” and “The Proposal” — that bring a broader swath of eager new moviegoers into

the theaters. Ask any box-office expert: If all you had were sequels and remakes, you could pretty easily chart the flow of moviegoers into the theaters. Even though some films would over-perform and some would fail to meet expectations, the end results would be pretty predictable. It’s the original films that are the wild cards. Year after year, from “Star Wars” to “The Blair Witch Project,” from “The Sixth Sense” to “The Passion of the Christ,” from “The Matrix” to “Twilight,”

they are the surprise hits that really drive the business. Original movies create a palpable sense of verve and excitement that not only propel themselves to box-office glory but expand the audience for films that follow in their wake. A strikingly original film — and there is no better example than “Avatar,” which almost singlehandedly launched the 3-D revolution earlier this year — works its magic by injecting good vibes into our moviegoing collective subconscious.

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