SXSW ’09 Boudin Barndance Chronicles Day 3 (3/15/09)

The celluloid shindig continued on an early note, at least for a Sunday morning, by checking out one of three “shorts” programs in this year’s SXSW lineup. Personally, I dig the shorts as much as anything and always make it a point to see all the programs. Kind of the variety store approach to film viewing. (For you South County types, the Courthouse Center for the Arts in West Kingston runs a monthly indie film shorts program featuring films from the previous summer’s Rhode Island Film Festival. Worth your while.) “Reel Shorts 3” was the title and it featured eight films all of which were highly worthy of anyone’s attention (i.e., these suckers were all read good!). Noteworthy was the hilarious Thick as Thieves about muggings that lead to friendship, Thompson about a couple of outcast high school types and their unique relationship, and Wings about a couple of “angels” trying to earn promotions until things literally backfire. Honorable mention goes to The Golden Pose which while pretty terrific, turned me onto the music if Oregonian Richard Swift whose music provided the backdrop and whose latest recording (As Onasis I and II, Secretly Canadian Records) I scooted over to Waterloo Records later in the afternoon and grabbed. It’s real, real cool.

Next up was doc pic 45365 which focused on the doings in the middle American ‘burg Sidney, Ohio. (It’s the zip code.) I’ve seem stories like this and I have to say not a whole lot of new ground was broken. A little Friday nights lights, etc., while I liked it there just seemed to be something missing. Maybe it was the fact the filmmakers introduce us to the everyday lives of people in Sidney, but bring nothing to any sort of conclusion. Scale of 1 – 5, I’d put this one at a 3.

Next up was supposed to be Adventureland, but there was such a mob scene waiting to see this one that there wasn’t a chance in hell I’d get in. On a side note, it supposedly opens in theaters in about a month, so it can wait. The fallback was a complete 180, a doc called Burma VJ which chronicled the attempts by underground video journalists in Burma to risk their lives at getting news and images form this oppressed country out to the rest of the world. Put simply, there’s not a lot of smiling and happy faces in Burma (and note much hope, either). Highly depressing and eye opening at the same time, this one is must viewing and had involvement by HBO, so maybe they’ll show it in the not too distant future. Â

Oh yeah, what about today’s chow. Well, my son since he’s been living here (2006) has been raving about this taco joint on Riverside called El Taquito. Gave it a shot after the morning run along the trails of Ladybird Lake and have to say the Al Pastor was a definite keeper and as good as any breakfast taco I’ve had here in taco-town. They also had a pretty heavenly thing called a Gringa where they line a corn tortilla with melted cheese on the grill and stuff it with whatever you want. I choose frijoles and it was tasty as heck. Dinner found as a favorite staple, Shoal Creek Saloon for the Sunday chicken-fried steak special with mashed taters and green beans. Shoal Creek does chicken fried as good as anyone.<...