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Issue of 6/23/2010

Cover Story:

Radical listening
by W. Kim Heron and Curt Guyette
Why a Social Forum? Why Detroit?


Actions and reactions by Metro Times news staff
Four protest targets — and a couple of responses

Funk Duminie-est by Hobey Echlin
P-Funk, Public Enemy sideman Duminie DePorres finally debuts on his own

It's the USSF, baby by Metro Times staff
Cultural high points of the lefty confab taking over Detroit

Minstrelsy biopsy by Travis R. Wright
Author Bill Harris on the great American scar


Cheat Code by Bryant Franks (Cheat Code)
Our favorite Persian prince gets a re-do

Food Stuff by Metro Times food staff (Food Stuff)
Tasty bits and choice products

Letters to the Editor by Metro Times readers (Letters to the Editor)
Beer taxes and Helen Thomas

Metro Retro by Metro Times staff (Metro Retro)
Flipping through our back pages

Motor City Rides by Doug Coombe (Motor City Cribs and Rides)
Frontier Ruckus' 1998 Ford Club Wagon

Femme power by Jonathan Cunningham (Motor City Five)
OneBeLo talks his band of women

Legal haze by News Hits staff (News Hits)
Zoning battles over medical marijuana centers form new front in legalization war

Pink tank by News Hits staff (News Hits)
Scrapped Hummer gets turned into a colorful art installation

Night and Day by Megan O'Neil (Night and Day)

A future for the UAW? by Jack Lessenberry (Politics and Prejudices)
Charting strategies to reverse union's decline

Transformers by Dan Savage (Savage Love)
It gets a bit complicated when you change genders

Italian fantasy by Metro Times food staff (Short Order)
Our shortlist of local places to ciao down

Inside the loop by Larry Gabriel (Stir It Up)
What greening is in store for Detroit's Cultural Center



Notes for Haiti - Various Artists Reviewed by Travis R. Wright (Record)

Punk Goes Classic Rock - Various Artists Reviewed by Brett Callwood (Record)

Times New Roman - Dutch Pink Reviewed by Travis R. Wright (Record)


Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
This “year in the life” proves worthy of its subject as an amusing, fascinating and unflinching doc that never pulls punches or steps on a punch line. Rivers is so embedded in the culture, a ubiquitous TV presence since the days of Jack Paar, that it’s easy not to notice the extraordinary effort it takes to stay relevant. Like a shark, she has to keep moving to survive, even at the grand old age of 75.

Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
Since 1971, humanitarian aid organization Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) — called Doctors Without Borders stateside — have sent volunteers into hostile, chaotic world hot spots, not to extinguish flames but smother embers one patient at a time. This exceptional story doesn’t offer much history of the organization’s triumphs and controversies, but instead focuses on a handful of talented and very harried medicos at work in the Congo and Liberia. As a piece of publicity, Living is infinitely more useful than the fairly recent and melodramatic Angelina Jolie howler, even if its edges are raw. Director Mark N. Hopkins has edited together a messy, shambolic film, one reflecting the anarchic and challenging lives of its subjects.

Knight and Day Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Tom Cruise is a super spy. Cameron Diaz is super hot. At 38, she still looks great in a bikini. Blam blam blam! There’s a battery that keeps going and going and going. Foreign bad guys with lots of bullets want it. Peter Saarsgard does his sleazebag Peter Saarsgard thing. Lame comic banter. Exotic locales. Pew pew pew! A scary predator drone. Paul Dano is wasted as a Hall and Oates-loving nerd. Big explosions. Obvious plot twists. The ending features a lame joke recited by one character repeated by the other. A relentlessly ludicrous and overworked popcorn rom-com, at least the pacing is brisk, the action constant and the chase scenes frequently amusing.

For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
Gerald Peary (himself a critic) parades talking heads across the screen, from contemporary faves to seasoned vets, all furiously contextualizing and attempting to legitimize the craft. But it would’ve been better if the fussy presentation, stock music and grainy clips weren’t strictly local public television quality. Despite much state-of-the-industry hand-wringing, Peary gamely eyes the uncertain Internet future, where print decays, money vanishes and older critics get shoved aside. But fret not; as long as they keep making movies, me and my obsessive colleagues will keep talking about them.

Winter’s Bone Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
In the Ozarks, as depicted by filmmaker Debra Granik, a woman who asks for help is courting the mercy or brutality of men. To ask questions is to invite trouble. And though it is the fathers, brothers and husbands who hold all the power in the Missouri-Arkansas borderlands where Winter’s Bone is set, it is the women who struggle to define family, community, and even justice. Ree Dolly (Jennifer Lawrence) is a strong-willed, no-nonsense 17-year-old struggling to take care of her catatonic mother and two young siblings. When the sheriff informs her that her meth-cooking dad has jumped bail, and the bondsman tells her he put their ramshackle house up for collateral, the thin lifeline that keeps Ree’s family together is in danger of snapping. Winter is looming and their hardscrabble existence just became impossible. With only a week or so to set things right, Ree decides to track Dad down, which challenges her rural community’s code of silence and brings her up against some very dangerous kinsfolk. As a neighbor reminds the teenager, asking too many questions “is a real good way to get ’et by hogs.”

Toy Story 3 Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Launching into a slam-bang action sequence, Toy Story 3 begins, appropriately enough, inside a child’s imagination — young Andy’s to be exact. And what a goofy, exciting and wonderful place it is. In five short minutes, director Lee Unkrich makes clear why Woody, Buzz and the others live to be played with. But Achildren grow up into teenagers, and the film jumps to Andy’s last days at home before leaving for college (Believe it or not, it’s been 11 years since Toy Story 2). The toys that still remain in Andy’s toy chest have reconciled that they will be retired to the attic, awaiting the day when Andy has kids of his own, kids that will play with them once again. Of course, nothing goes as planned. A mix-up sends everyone but Woody (Tom Hanks) out with the trash. One escape leads to another until the toys find themselves at a prison-like destination: Sunnyside Daycare. Will the toys escape to find a real home?


Mae's Reviewed by Todd Abrams (Restaurant)
With knee-to-ceiling windows on the north and west walls, a wealth of natural light washes across the white counter and the vibrant aqua vinyl stools and chairs. Mae’s is quite clean and decent and suggestive of a fairy-tale era where young love is measured in baseball euphemisms and cigarettes aren’t yet bad for your health. Open until four p.m. every day except Mondays, Mae’s menu is naturally focused toward breakfast and sandwiches. The butter burger is a good bet for lunch: two well-seasoned, hand-formed patties come various ways on a generously buttered bun. While the buildup towards Mae’s opening might have initially brought a few people in, it’s the quality food, mood and reasonable prices that are going to bring them back.