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Issue of 6/24/2009


Cover Story:



The power and the gory
by Chris Handyside
An unskilled Detroit band helped alter the course of rock 'n' roll ... by accident. So why did they disband too soon?

Features:

All mixed up by Chris Handyside
Pulling together the ultimate Gories mixtape

Goats head sloop by Detroitblogger John
Boatyard and its owner hold many surprises

Looking up by Travis R. Wright
Mark Dancey's new show is sultry and suggestive

No direction known by Curt Guyette
Recycling? Incineration? Detroit still hasn't decided.

Perfect rush by William E. Ketchum III
Finale aims at the top of Detroit's hip-hop crop

Take your best shot by Travis R. Wright
A no-compromising crew of creatives defines Detroit through its architecture and music

Ain't seen nothing yet by Jack Lessenberry
Structural problems with the state budget mean woes on the way

Columns:

Cheat Code by Bryant Franks (Cheat Code)
Swinging through the thermonuclear future with Bionic Commando

Comics (Comics)

Couch Trip by Metro Times film writers (Couch Trip)
French auteur probes the mind, while a booty battle probes the behind

Food Stuff by Metro Times food staff (Food Stuff)
Full plates for local foodies

Letters to the Editor by Metro Times readers (Letters to the Editor)

Jeffrey Morgan’s Media Blackout by Jeffrey Morgan (Media Blackout)
Mourning Brian Nelson

Motor City Cribs by Doug Coombe (Motor City Cribs and Rides)
A shrine to soul has a home with Felton and Ida Williams

Dirty dispute by News Hits staff (News Hits)
Bridge company angered by a wall of dirt

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

Tricky kink? Try this. by Dan Savage (Savage Love)
Toss my salad, but please, no kissing afterward

Reviews:

Music/Books:

The Eternal - Sonic Youth Reviewed by Laura Witkowski (Record)

Lone Survivor - Dave Edwards Reviewed by Brett Callwood (Record)

The Complete Liberty Singles - Gary Lewis & the Playboys Reviewed by Bill Holdship (Record)

Movies:

The Stoning of Soraya M. Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
The Stoning of Soraya M. is set in rural post-revolution Iran, in the grip of Islamic Sharia law. A woman accused of adultery must prove her innocence, and the penalty is death. A dutiful mother of six, the bright and resilient Soraya (Mohzan Marno) is deemed an “inconvenient wife” by her vain husband, who wishes to marry a younger, prettier woman from the next village over, but can’t wait for a divorce. So he conspires with the town elders and a phalanx of cronies to back his baseless claims of infidelity between Soraya and the gentle widower she cooks and cleans for. Slowly the walls close in around her, and everyone in Soraya’s life turns their backs on her, except for her brave, headstrong Aunt Zahra (the amazing Shoreh Aghdasloo), who fiercely battles to stop the outrage. As powerful as the film is, it occasionally feels like an unbalanced polemic in search of drama. Yet it’s hard to ignore that this 8th century barbarism took place in 1986, and there is evidence that similar atrocities continue in some parts of the Muslim world.

Year One Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Jack Black and red-hot millennial Michael Cera play slacker cavemen who take a comedic stroll through biblical times after being banished from their hunter-gatherer tribe. Along the way this Cro-Magnon Abbott and Costello meet a galaxy of Old Testament stars, including a two-faced Cain (David Cross) and his quickly dispatched brother Abel (a wasted Paul Rudd), a circumcision-happy Abraham (Hank Azaria) and his punk-ass son Issac (Christopher “McLovin” Mintz-Plasse), as well as a whole city full of Sodomites (in the city of Sodom, natch). Director Harold Ramis knows a thing or two about comedy but seems, like much of his cast, to be on cruise control here.

The Proposal Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
The Proposal is a crisp and effective exercise in rom-com construction, sticking unfailingly to the blueprint down to the last rivet. Sandra Bullock stars as the sort of ruthless, no-prisoners ice queen that, according to Hollywood, the publishing industry is wholly comprised of. The snag in her pantyhose is a visa violation on a business trip that means she’ll soon be deported back to Canada, so she instantly enlists her long-suffering assistant (Ryan Reynolds), and he caves, on the condition that she “stop eating babies as they dream.” The pretend-happy couple then zips off to Alaska for his grandma’s 90 birthday party, where they need to put on a unified cuddle front or risk being busted by the feds. Despite being a good 20 minutes too long, it's the cinematic equivalent of a Snickers bar: gooey sweet and guiltily satisfying.

Big Man Japan Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Ultra-deadpan and fitfully funny, co-writer, director and star Hitoshi Matsumoto’s Big Man Japan is the ultimate midnight movie, a wonderfully weird mockumentary that pays homage to the cheesy superhero vs. monster movies that dominated Japanese cinema during the 1960s and ’70s. The movie starts as a straight-faced doc following a long-haired, sad-sack loser named Masaru (Matsumoto), who lives in a cluttered house with a sign over the door that reads “Department of Monster Protection.” Then Masaru gets an important phone call and suddenly we’re following him on his scooter to the local power plant where jumper cables are clipped to nipples, jolting him with massive amounts of electricity, turning him into 70-foot-tall Big Man Japan, a hero who battles the ridiculous monsters that regularly attack Tokyo. The only problem is that the public has soured on Big Man Japan, sending his ratings into the toilet. To make matters worse, Masaru’s personal life is a wreck. Bouncing between investigative documentary footage and silly, CGI fight sequences, Big Man Japan earns most of its laughs via a rogues gallery of wacked-out foes, sporting names like Squeezy Baddy, Jumpy Baddy and Smelly Baddy.

Restaurants/Places:

Lunchtime Global Reviewed by Jane Slaughter (Restaurant)
Co-owners Trish Ziembowicz and Ken Karustis have built a loyal clientele of downtown workers, mostly from the First National Building and its neighbors, who are partial to the six soups a day and to the house rules: everything from scratch and made in-house (except bagels). Maybe the moderate prices buy loyalty too. The basic menu is online, but it’s supplemented every day with hot entrées, such as quiche, new soups, and panini. The soups always include at least one vegetarian and one vegan, to please the many vegans in the building. (Those bankers and lawyers never cease to surprise.) Though many if not most patrons don’t linger, taking their choices back to their desks, the lunchroom is a pleasant spot, with ochre walls and a brick-red ceiling, floor-to-ceiling windows on Congress, and giant chandeliers. Enter on Congress Street a half block east of Woodward Avenue, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday-Friday. See the menu at lunchtimeglobal.com.

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