Insight News

Sunday
Nov 23rd

Bobby Rush Revue returns to Wilebski Blues Saloon

Bobby Rush Revue returns to Wilebski Blues SaloonBlues master Bobby Rush, one of the enduring elder statesmen of American Blues music, returns to Twin Cities next week for two shows Saturday night, May 15, at Wilebski’s Blues Saloon, 601 Western Av., St. Paul.

It will be a grand reunion performance event. Rush helped build the legend of Wilebeski’s as a bona fide Blues saloon a couple of decades ago when over the years, Rush brought his world-famous Blues Revue to the St. Paul Club.

Where Bobby Rush went, other Blues masters followed. Wilebski hosted the giants of the idiom including Buddy Guy, Muddy Waters, Johnny Taylor and others.
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Book review: “The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates”


Book review: “The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates”
“This is the story of two boys living in Baltimore with similar histories and an identical name: Wes Moore. One of us is free and has experienced things that he never knew to dream about as a kid. The other will spend every day until his death behind bars for an armed robbery that left a police officer and father of five dead.

The chilling truth is that his story could have been mine. The tragedy is that my story could have been his. Our stories are obviously specific to our two lives, but I hope they will illuminate the crucial inflection points in every life, the sudden moments of decision where our paths diverge and our fates are sealed...

It is my sincere hope that this book does not come across as self-congratulatory or self-exculpatory… Rather, this book will use our lives as a way of thinking about choices and accountability, not just for each of us as individuals, but for all of us as a society.

This book is meant to show how, for those of us who live in the most precarious places in this country, our destinies can be determined by a single stumble down the wrong path, or a tentative step down the right one. This is our story.”

-- Excerpted from the Introduction (pgs. xi-xiv)
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Black Film Festival is platform for independent filmmakers

Black Film Festival is platform for independent filmmakersOn Saturday May 8, Minneapolis’ own Fine Line Music Café is getting a Hollywood makeover with an East Coast twist, by hosting a Fashion Show Fundraiser to benefit the 8th Annual Twin Cities Black Film Festival scheduled for this October 15th – 17th.

TCBFF, founded in 2002 by Natalie Morrow, was created to give Independent African American filmmakers a platform to showcase their work within the community while providing opportunities for national exposure. The organization is also responsible for splicing the flair and magnetism of urban Hollywood with our upper Midwest flavor, to narrow the gap between tinsel town and our own backyard.

Apart from the annual Film Festival, through Morrow’s work with the TCBFF, Minneapolis has been fortunate enough to attend a multitude of premiere events hosted by the company, that celebrate African Americans in motion picture, literary and performing arts.
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Lord, Save Us from Your Followers: DVD asks whether Christianity has lost its way

Lord, Save Us from Your Followers: DVD asks whether Christianity has lost its wayHow is it that Christianity has come to be so closely associated with the Religious Right and conservative political causes? This is the fundamental question being asked by director Dan Merchant in Lord, Save Us from Your Followers an alternately humorous and sobering look at how far the practice of Christianity has deviated from the teachings of Jesus.

“You can tell you’ve created God in your own image,” suggests one of his interviewees, author/activist Anne Lamott, “when it turns out God hates all the same people you do.” Her tongue in cheek assessment of the state of religion in the U.S. reflects the perspective shared by Mr. Merchant, who proves himself something of a Michael Moore here, as he perambulates the country, microphone in hand, deliberately provoking outrage amidst an array of self-righteous Bible Thumpers.
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Behind the Burly Q : “Revealing” documentary revisits golden age of burlesque

Behind the Burly Q : “Revealing” documentary revisits golden age of burlesqueWith roots in 19th Century vaudeville and minstrel shows, burlesque enjoyed its heyday in the United States in the 1930s when it emerged as the country’s most popular form of live entertainment until the advent of television, porno films and the women’s movement would signal its demise. The genre originally featured both comedians and dancers backed by a live band, although eventually the striptease acts came to be the only things the audiences wanted to see.

The curvaceous cutie pies who plied their trade as ecdysiasts are proud members of “America’s Greatest Generation,” that rapidly-disappearing set whose ranks are thinning at an alarming rate as they pass away due to old age. But thanks to actress-turned-director Leslie Zemeckis their contributions to the culture have been preserved for posterity, recounted in fascinating fashion in Behind the Burly Q, a revealing documentary cobbled from a combination of file footage and dozen of interviews with historians, surviving strippers and may of their offspring.
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The Back-up Plan: J-Lo too old to play Ingenue in stock romantic comedy

The Back-up Plan: J-Lo too old to play Ingenue in stock romantic comedyBefore becoming a mommy in 2008, Jennifer Lopez had practically perfected the romantic comedy genre, always in the role of a damsel-in-distress waiting for a dashing knight in shining armor to rescue her from dire circumstances. Whether playing the lowly housekeeper in Maid in Manhattan, the underemployed temp worker in Monster-in-Law or the perennial bridesmaid in The Wedding Planner, J-Lo had a knack for generating the right combo of chemistry and vulnerability to be convincing opposite any leading man.
At 40, Lopez frankly looks a little long in the tooth to resurrect that innocent, coquettish character when there’s obviously a lot of maturity etched into her now middle-aged face. Nonetheless, she throws herself into The Back-up Plan with an admirable gusto, even if the flick ought to be featuring a considerably younger actress.
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The Losers: Zoe Saldana back in the flesh for DC comics adaptation

The Losers: Zoe Saldana back in the flesh for DC comics adaptation Zoe Saldana was basically unrecognizable playing the lead role of Neytiri in Avatar because her character was covered from head-to-toe in gobs of blue makeup when not a completely computer-generated, digital creation. So, if you want to see Zoe in the flesh, she currently has two movies in theaters, the dreadful remake Death at a Funeral and this equally-disappointing screen version of a DC comic book series.

The ill-timed release of The Losers comes right on the heels of the surprise hit Kick-Ass, a groundbreaking Marvel Comics adaptation which opened up #1 at the box office only a week ago. On top of that, both pictures revolve around a female heroine, a coincidence certain to lead to further comparison.
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