6 items from 2016
Nile Rodgers, rock journalist Legs McNeil and more recall the birth of punk and the gritty, gross glory of Cbgb in the first installment of 1973: Shaping the Culture, a new video series from Rolling Stone, presented by HBO's new show Vinyl.
Hilly Kristal opened Cbgb & Omfug — "Country, Bluegrass, Blues and Other Music for Undernourished Gormandizers," though McNeil notes Kristal frequently changed the meaning of the "U" — in 1973 in the heart of the Bowery, at that time one of New York's nastiest neighborhood. The location, however, was the perfect place »
It was the decade of Cbgb and disco, bankruptcy and blackout. Now TV dramas are drawing on the Big Apple’s most creative and dangerous decade
When Vinyl, HBO’s much-hyped new drama about the music industry in 1970s New York, starts next Sunday, it will be the first of a host of shows celebrating that decade in the Big Apple. In the summer, Netflix will air Baz Luhrmann’s The Get Down, which looks at the birth of hip-hop in the South Bronx during the same period, while David Simon, creator of The Wire, will return to HBO with The Deuce, a drama about the porn industry in New York during the 70s and 80s, starring James Franco and Maggie Gyllenhaal.
And it’s not just television that thinks New York in the 70s is where it’s at. One of the most eagerly awaited novels of last year »
- Sarah Hughes
Last week, the producers of Robert Mapplethorpe biopic Mapplethorpe revealed that Girls actress Zosia Mamet will portray the late photographer's close friend Patti Smith in the film. She will not be the first actress to play the punk singer onscreen, though, as actress Mickey Sumner played Smith in the 2013 film Cbgb – and Saturday Night Live star Gilda Radner hilariously spoofed her in 1979, a few months before the Patti Smith Group put out Wave.
In the lengthy sketch, Radner played tank-top-wearing, bouffant-armpitted punk yelper "Candy Slice" who was performing at a »
Bar None: Van Groeningen Returns to Musical Inclinations for Vibrant Sibling Portrait
Belgian auteur Felix Van Groeningen, the front runner of the Belgian New Wave, returns with his fifth feature, Belgica, a portrait of two estranged brothers reuniting to open a successful night club, an experience forcing them to reexamine both their shortcomings and sometimes toxic enabling of each other’s worst tendencies. The film follows a career high for Van Groeningen, who scored an international breakout with 2013’s The Broken Circle Breakdown, another musically inclined drama which netted him an Oscar nod for Best Foreign Language Film. Though his latest still includes unpredictable emotional highs and lows within a familiar set of family and friends, his latest is more sobering by comparison. With a killer soundtrack this is a well-proportioned character piece for its two leads, requiring a bit of patience for the film’s rather lofty running time »
- Nicholas Bell
Alan Rickman, the British actor who portrayed likable villains in films like Die Hard and the Harry Potter series, has passed away. "The actor and director Alan Rickman has died from cancer at the age of 69. He was surrounded by family and friends," his family wrote in a statement confirming the actor's death, the BBC reports.
Rickman's acting career began on the stage with a stint in the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) as well as roles on numerous BBC productions. In 1987, a RSC production of Les Liaisons Dangereuses came to Broadway, »
2016 has gotten off to a brutal start for great British entertainers. As the world gets over the death of David Bowie a few days ago, it has been set in shock again as acting legend Alan Rickman has died in London.
Rickman had been suffering from cancer and his death was confirmed on Thursday by his family. It's the worst kind of coincidence - Bowie and Rickman were 69 years old and passed after battling cancer, and a week before that British musician Lemmy also passed away from cancer just days after turning 70.
Rickman's distinct features and immediately identifiable diction were admired by generations of actors and made him synonymous with playing antagonists - something he famously wasn't a fan of as he preferred to play the dashing leading man role which he did manage to do in some of his work.
Coming to fame with a key role in The BBC's mini-series "The Barchester Chronicles, »
- Garth Franklin
6 items from 2016
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