Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Trailer Released for Animated Version of The Dark Knight Returns

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 3:26 PM

Film buffs hailed Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy for its dark, gritty take on the character. But the nerds would always tell you that Frank Miller was the one who deserved the real credit, as Nolan's depiction was based in large part off of two comics penned by the writer and artist: Batman Year One, and the book that is generally considered one of the greatest comics ever written, The Dark Knight Returns.

That four-issue series, published in 1986, depicted a gritty, noir-ish Gotham 10 years after Batman had retired. The city had subsequently slid backwards into a nearly post-apocalyptic state. Unable to take it any longer, Batman returns from retirement and goes berserk on crime, defeating the head of a mutant street gang and conscripting its members as his personal army. Eventually, the president sends in Superman to try to stop him. It's a dense and compelling read that in large part redefined the character and what comics could be.

And now that Nolan's trilogy has wrapped, an animated version, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1, is set to be released Tuesday, Sept. 25, though it will tragically be a straight-to-DVD release. A trailer for the film was released today, and it features the gritty storyline paired with the vivid crime-fiction art style of Batman: The Animated Series. It also doesn't hurt that Batman is voiced by Peter Weller, aka, Robocop.

Check the trailer out below:

[ Video is no longer available. ]

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Snoop Dogg Announces Name Change, Reggae Album

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Snoop Dogg hit it big when he was 18, and never really dropped out of the public eye, meaning his evolution as an artist—and to some degree, as an adult—has been meticulously documented and followed by millions worldwide.

On July 30, he held a press conference announcing the next step in that public evolution: a name change from Snoop Dogg to Snoop Lion, paired with the announcement of a new reggae album and his desire to leave rap behind.

You can hear a preview track from his new album, Reincarnated, here.

VICE media sent a team of filmmakers with Snoop to Jamaica to document the new album and his new identity. That film is set to premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, which BW film guru George Prentice will be attending. Will he smoke a blunt with the man, return with dreadlocks or start referring to himself as Jahrge Prentice? Stay tuned.

[ Video is no longer available. ]

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Peter Jackson Will Stretch The Hobbit into a Trilogy

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 3:10 PM

Peter Jackson made a pretty big announcement on Facebook July 30: The Hobbit will be stretched into three movies.

The second and third films will be compiled using material from appendices and existing characters.

Here's what Jackson had to say:

It is only at the end of a shoot that you finally get the chance to sit down and have a look at the film you have made. Recently Fran, Phil and I did just this when we watched for the first time an early cut of the first movie—and a large chunk of the second. We were really pleased with the way the story was coming together, in particular, the strength of the characters and the cast who have brought them to life. All of which gave rise to a simple question: Do we take this chance to tell more of the tale? And the answer from our perspective as the filmmakers, and as fans, was an unreserved "yes."

We know how much of the story of Bilbo Baggins, the Wizard Gandalf, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur will remain untold if we do not take this chance. The richness of the story of The Hobbit, as well as some of the related material in the appendices of The Lord of the Rings, allows us to tell the full story of the adventures of Bilbo Baggins and the part he played in the sometimes dangerous, but at all times exciting, history of Middle-earth.

So, without further ado and on behalf of New Line Cinema, Warner Bros. Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Wingnut Films and the entire cast and crew of “The Hobbit” films, I’d like to announce that two films will become three.

It has been an unexpected journey indeed, and in the words of Professor Tolkien himself, "a tale that grew in the telling."

Cheers,

Peter J

More than 10,000 people have "liked" the post so far, indicating there is a decent chance the films might be well-received. The first installment of the trilogy is set to be released in December.

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Scenes From a Scene #050—Jac Sound

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 3:07 PM

A love of music does not a musician make. But an unflinching desire to play, write and create unique sounds backed by solid talent can certainly help.

Just ask Jeff Cochran, aka Jac Sound, a Nampa native who has been through the musical ringer. One band after the other has fallen by the wayside, but Cochran continues to play on.

On June 16 in the lot behind Payette Brewing Company, Cochran played the first set at Art and Ale with hardly a soul in sight—unless you count the food truck.

But he could have fooled the nonexistent crowd into thinking there was a party happening with his lively indie/folk sound produced on a myriad of musical instruments.

BW caught up with Cochran as he sipped Mutton Buster Brown in this, episode #050 of our ongoing music series Scenes from a Scene.

[ Video is no longer available. ]

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Do You Have Student Debt? Tell Us About It.

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 9:39 AM

An internally circulated survey of student debt has revealed some surprising facts about Boise Weekly staff. Of 18 respondents, half borrowed more than $10,000 to attend college, four received no other form of financial aid besides student loans, and four said that their higher education has not contributed significantly to their finding employment after graduation.

It's not an uncommon story: 60 million Americans have outstanding student loans totaling more than $1 trillion, and according to Forbes, 60 percent of college graduates don’t find work in their fields of study.

With so many in debt, student loans affect every sociological unit, directly or indirectly, from nuclear families to multinational corporations.

In the case of BW staffers, even though 39 percent of respondents were between the ages of 30 and 40 years old, only 11 percent of respondents indicated that they had no outstanding student debt, suggesting that the cost of education can follow adults well into their working lives—long after the completion of degrees.

Boise Weekly is researching an article about student debt in the Boise area, and we want to know what you have to say about it. Click on the link to the survey to share your own experience with student loan debt.

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Need Something To Do Tuesday?

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 at 6:00 AM

Worry not, aspiring gardener cursed with a black thumb. There are plants rugged enough to endure your lack of green skills. And today, you can learn all about such plants—as well as get a mini lesson in literature.

The Idaho Botanical Garden will present an installment of its 2012 Lecture Series at 7 p.m. in the Meditation Garden. The event has two titles: Pioneer Garden Plants for the Contemporary Garden, or What We Can Learn From Willa Cather—evidently so you can focus on either the gardening or the lit aspect.

The American author gained quite a bit of notoriety for her novels—including My Antonia, Death Comes for the Archbishop and O Pioneers!—which involve mentions of the gardens of pioneers/homesteaders, who probably had a harder time cultivating greenery sans modern conveniences.

Mary Ann Newcomer will talk about the rugged plants that served prior generations, which can be used in today's gardens as well. The lecture is FREE for IBG and Osher Lifelong Learning Institute members, as well as children younger than 6. Nonmembers can get in for $5, $3 for seniors and $2 for youth ages 6-12.

The lecture series will continue Tuesday, Aug. 14, when Priscilla Wegars presents Chinese in Idaho: Bogus Basin. Visit IBG's website for more info.

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Monday, July 30, 2012

Scientists Engineer an Artificial Jellyfish From Rat Hearts

Posted By on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 11:28 AM

The Philip K. Dick novel upon which the film Blade Runner is based is called Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The book features a world in which people hide their shame at not being able to afford real pets by using electric android pets to fool their friends and neighbors. Should you be in the mood to follow suit, you're now in luck as "science" has just created the world's first artificial, electrically powered jellyfish.

From an article in the Telegraph:

The tentacled artificial creature, made from silicon, has been dubbed "Medusoid" because of its resemblance to the snake-haired character from Greek mythology whose gaze turned people to stone.

It is able to mimic the swimming movement of a jellyfish thanks to muscle cells from rat hearts which were implanted onto its silicon frame and grown into a pattern similar to the muscles of a real jellyfish.

By applying an electric current to a container of conducting liquid, the scientists demonstrated they could "shock" the muscles into contracting so that it began to move through the water.

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Need Something To Do Monday?

Posted By on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 6:00 AM

Being an outsider can be rough—heck, S.E. Hinton even wrote a book about it. And yet, it's a feeling that is exceptionally commonplace, especially during those pesky adolescent years.

Tonight, you can hear stories of feeling out of the loop and share your own when Story Story Night presents Outsider: Stories of Strangers in Strange Lands. Featured storytellers Laura “Wally” Johnston, Arlen Andrew Donald and Clay Morgan will brave the Story Story stage at The Rose Room and disclose tales of a family vacation to Mexico, a "Scottish stranger in a strange Idaho," and "mythic beast in wild backlands."

After the featured storytellers weave their tales, the open story slam will commence. Have a drink at the full bar and then disclose your outsider story if your name is drawn from the vessel. The winner will net a stay at Boise Guest House and a gift certificate to Rediscovered Books.

Music is provided by Dan Costello and the evening will be hosted by the always lovely Jessica Holmes.

The show starts at 7 p.m. and costs $5 at the door, but for $7, you can purchase your ticket in advance online and get in at 6 p.m., instead of 6:30 p.m. If you've ever been to Story Story Night, you know that extra half hour is worth the $2, unless you don't mind standing.

After the show, the party moves to Red Feather Lounge/Bitter Creek, where ticket holders can take advantage of a special drink offer.

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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Need Something To Do Sunday?

Posted By on Sun, Jul 29, 2012 at 6:00 AM

Is it just us, or does "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" seem a bit whiney? Asking to be taken out and bought assorted game-time goodies like Cracker Jacks and peanuts?

Well, today, you can counterbalance the neediness of the classic ballpark song by taking others to witness the all-American sport. The Boise Hawks will take on the Tri-City Dust Devils at 7:15 p.m., and you can bring the whole family without breaking the bank.

The Hawks run Family Funday Sundays throughout the season. Bring in a nonperishable food item and $34 will not only net you better snacks than peanuts and Cracker Jacks (hot dogs and Pepsi products) but four seats, as well. If you break it down, and that's $8.50 per person for food and hours of bat-swinging, base-running, possible-foul-ball-catching fun.

And tonight's family fun can involve the entire gang—including beloved pets. It's also Zamzow's Bark in the Park night, so get there early and enjoy a pre-game dog parade. You can also bring Fido to the park for $10 (human included) and sit in a special pet-friendly section, but take the heat into consideration.

The kids' park at the stadium will transform into a dog zone, with product samples and activities for pets and owners. Prizes will be awarded for pet and owner look-a-likes and pups can play fetch on the field following the game. Call 208-322-5000 for more info.

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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Saints and Sinners Do the Charleston at Prohibition Underground

Posted By on Sat, Jul 28, 2012 at 10:08 AM

Prohibition Undergrounds casino games were most popular.
  • Andrew Crisp
  • Prohibition Underground's casino games were most popular.

"Flapper" style, heavily frilled dresses and pinstripe suits were the costumes of choice on Friday, July 27, for Idaho State Historical Society's Prohibition Underground event.

A shining brown Hudson Essex Super Six, dating back to the 1920s, sat near the door of Idaho State Historical Museum. Nearby, a table held a real Thompson machine gun and a feather boa, ready for portraits near the car.

"The fact that history isn't all boring, you can have fun with it—I think that's a bigger goal of tonight," said Sarah Phillips, curator of the Prohibition-era history exhibit Wicked Waters.

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