Three Imaginary Girls are giving our lives over to SIFF this week

Last week I explained in this space that I wasn’t going to the Sasquatch festival this year because I opted to cover the Seattle International Film Festival again this year and this is the first week. I went to the Opening Night Gala last night and had a blast, even if the crowds were more than a little overwhelming to get food and/or alcohol. I was talking to another music writer friend last night who asked what the next rock show I was going to was and I couldn’t answer it because I’ve only picked out my SIFF agenda for the next week or so.

Here are a few films playing this week at SIFF that may be worth your time and attention.

We Live in Public, playing Saturday, May 23 at the Neptune at 7pm and Monday, May 25 at 11am at the Egyptian

We Live in Public is the newest film from documentary filmmaker Ondi Timoner, who directed one of my favorite rock documentaries, Dig!, which followed The Dandy Warhols and Brian Jonestown Massacre on what BJM’s Anton Newcombe thought would be the beginning of a new wave of music (the rebirth of garage rock). One band flirted with stardom while the other encountered a host of issues (all of which can be traced to Newcombe directly) that kept it from achieving superstardom. Of course, garage rock did become a huge trend in music, but it was led by The Strokes and The White Stripes, not The Dandy Warhols or Brian Jonestown Massacre, for better or worse.

I haven’t seen We Live in Public yet, although it is at the top of my must-see list (and I have seen Timoner’s previous film, Join Us, a riveting documentary about a creepy, religious cult in South Carolina). It follows the lives of internet mogul Josh Harris, who started a website that films he and his girlfriend in their apartment 24 hours a day.

All Tomorrow’s Parties screens Tuesday, May 26 at the Egyptian at 9:30pm and Thursday, May 28 at the Neptune

I was ambivalent towards this movie. It really has no consistent narrative or structure and uses too much footage from a Patti Smith interview from the 1970s. What I do like about it is the music. All Tomorrow’s Parties is the long-running (10 years now) festival whose idea was traced to Belle and Sebastian and their associates and has since found its way stateside. The idea is to get a band to curate a festival and book the bands they liked. You had one troubadour thanking Portishead for asking him to play ATP and then admitting he doesn’t even know who they were. The backstage footage makes the film worthwhile – like comedian David Cross confronting a heckler after his act went south fast. Early in the film you see a performance by the Nick Cave project Grinderman that is really compelling.

See you out and about,

Chris Burlingame
Three Imaginary Girls

In high iPod rotation:
Jarvis Cocker
Miniature Tigers

(Three Imaginary Girls is a Seattle-based website that showcases the great music of the Northwest and beyond to music lovers worldwide. We post a Seattle live show calendar to help you fill your day-planner with loads of great shows, as well as record reviews, live show reviews, and an imagi-blog to entertain you throughout the day.)

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