|January 18, 2019
Dear Friends and Neighbors,
The other morning I was getting dressed in the dark and I realized that I couldn't see the color of my t-shirt. I've been in cave tours before where, deep in the bowels of the earth, the lights are turned off. I remember feeling frightened. It was so dark that I couldn't see my hand in front of my face, and the uncertainty that surrounded me felt heavy and oppressive. I've always known that without light it's impossible to see anything, but the understanding that I need light in order to see color came like an epiphany the other day. With the state of the world as it is today, I often feel like I'm fumbling around in the dark looking for a safe way out. I may not be able to find one, but if I generate just a bit of light, and if you light a candle, too; if we all shed light on the darkness of our world, then who knows what might happen. Even if a safe and sane way out of this mess isn't readily available, we can still see the beauty of each other's faces. We can take joy in the beautiful colors that make up our world.
Mary Oliver, a poet who taught me much about paying attention, died this past week. Her poetry illuminated the beauty of even the simplest creatures, like a grasshopper on a blade of grass. For most of our species' existence, we have believed that we were the center of the universe, but now we understand that we lead a treacherous and perilous existence on what is essential a speck of dust. Our cosmos contains unfathomable distances and I'm not sure, but I think time probably bends around back on itself, too. In the face of this, I can only stand in silence, but I am so thankful that Mary Oliver, whose work is infused with a deep spirituality, has made it possible for me to find some connection to the mysteries of the universe.
When Death Comes
When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox
when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?
And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.
When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.
WHAT'S HAPPENING THIS WEEK
A Neil Breen Film
Friday, Jan 18 @ 7:00pm
Tickets: $11 in advance; $15 at the door
Back by popular demand!
Starring Neil Breen, Sara Meritt, Siohbon Chevy Ebrahimi
Identical twin brothers become hybrid A.I (artificial intelligence) entities, yet torn in different directions to achieve justice for humanity.
STRAIGHT TO HELL RETURNS
Projekt Records Movies in the Dark
Friday, Jan 18 @ 9:30pm
Tickets: $5-$10 sliding scale, no one turned away for lack of funds; $8 ADVANCE TICKETS AVAILABLE.
Straight to Hell is a 1987 independent action-comedy film directed by Alex Cox and starring Sy Richardson, Joe Strummer (of The Clash), Dick Rude, and Courtney Love. The film features cameos by Dennis Hopper, Grace Jones, Elvis Costello, and Jim Jarmusch. Band members of The Pogues, Amazulu, and The Circle Jerks are also featured in the film.
The film has been called a parody of Spaghetti Westerns, and concerns a gang of criminals who become stranded in the desert, where they stumble upon a surreal Western town full of coffee-addicted killers. The film is based on Giulio Questi's Spaghetti Western film, Django Kill... If You Live, Shoot! (1967), which Cox was given permission to adapt.
The film borrows its title from The Clash's 1982 song of the same name.
This is the 2018 director's cut version.
Alex Cox on his website says that after he saw the Redux version of Apocalypse Now (1979), he wanted to make a new version of STH using digital techniques that he couldn't use at the time (like the color change, digital blood, etc). He worked with Collateral Imagine who did the effects of Cox's Repo Chick (2009) to do the digital effects. The film is also six minutes longer, which Cox regretfully admits to cutting at the time of release.
Free CD to first 50 people on line.
CALCUTTA IS MY MOTHER
Saturday, Jan 19 @ 3:00pm
Tickets: $18; ADVANCE TICKETS AVAILABLE.
Calcutta is My Mother is a feature length documentary telling the story of one transracial adoptee and her first journey back to the city of her birth.
Reshma McClintock was born and abandoned in Calcutta, India in March of 1980. She was adopted and arrived in Portland, Oregon, where she was raised, the following June. In this honest, raw film, Reshma details her connectedness to the family she knows and loves and her struggle with feeling disconnected from her Indian roots.
The film captures her first return to Calcutta on the 35th anniversary of the day she left for her new life in America. During her time there, Reshma strives to connect to her heritage, understand newly discovered grief, and reconcile her love for her adoptive family and longing for the family she has never known and may never find. Calcutta is My Mother is the emotional documentation of Reshma’s journey home; of her losses, gains, and search for identity.
Following the screening, there will be a Q&A session with Reshma and Michael Hirtzel, director.
Best of the Fest: Portland Dance Film Festival
Saturday, Jan 19 @ 7:30pm
Tickets: $12 advance; $15 door
Join Portland Dance Film Fest for a special screening of nine Award Winning films from the 2018 Festival!
Dive back into the films that got audience awards and accolades! This incredible night of Dance for Film is the prelude to the call for submissions for the 2019 Season. PDX Dance Film Fest will be announcing the recipient of PDFF’s Oregon Dance Film Commission for the 2019 Season as well.
SHIVTA by Or Meir Schraiber - Best Choreography
Digital Afterlives by Physical TV - Best Editing
LADIA by Congosto Films - Best Sound
Shadow Animals by Jerry Carlsson - Jury Award
SWEETGRASS by The Holding Project - Audience Award
What’s Real? by Conrad Icon Kaczor - Best Cinematography
"Are you holding me, or am I holding myself?" by Cesar Brodermann - Best Short
TWINS "You must be related!" by Rootwood Films - Best Mini
House of Joy by Oregon Dance Film Commission artist: Robert Uehlin & Raven Jones - Audience Award
GREAT GREAT GREAT
Indie Romantic Drama
Sunday, Jan 20 @ 2:00pm
Tickets: $5-8 suggested, no one turned away for lack of funds.
Most relationship movies are about fiery beginnings and endings, but the reality is that most of us are somewhere in the middle. Our relationships aren’t underscored by symphonies of strings and romantic declarations, and they don’t end in a murderous rage. They’re just fine, most of the time. Until they’re not.
In the span of Lauren and Tom’s five-year relationship, they’ve never had a fight. Their sex life is fine. They get along fine. Everything is fine. At least it seems that way, until Lauren's parents announce their divorce. Lauren is shaken because she suddenly sees a lifetime of “just fine” yawning ahead of her and Tom, and it immediately makes her hungry for a better, fuller future. She just has to decide what “better” really means. One moment she resolves to double down on her commitment to Tom, and the next moment she’s ready to blow the whole thing up. So she does what any reasonable person would do. She doesn’t choose. She does both. In a doomed attempt to have everything she wants without giving anything up, Lauren simultaneously starts an affair with her boss, rents a bachelor apartment, and asks Tom to marry her. When they start to plan the wedding, and her no-strings affair gets complicated, Lauren struggles to save what’s most important to her before she loses it all.
At the deliciously queasy core of GREAT GREAT GREAT is the lead performance by newcomer Sarah Kolasky, who delivers a vulnerable and deeply relatable portrait of a woman who makes us squirm with discomfort while asking us to love some of the most unlovable parts of ourselves.
The Poe Show 2019
Sunday, Jan 20 @ 8:00pm
Tickets: $5 at the door
The name Poe brings to mind images of murderers and madmen, premature burials, and mysterious women who return from the dead. Poe, himself, is seen as a morbid, mysterious figure lurking in the shadows of moonlit cemeteries or crumbling castles.
If you enjoy journeys to the dark side, then please join us for The Poe Show, an annual variety show, celebration, and roast of Edgar Allan Poe, his works, and his lasting inspiration in the arts.
On January 20th, 2019, 209 years and a day after the man was born, join us for an evening showcase featuring music, skits, readings, and other performances, plus more macabre merriment in honor of the legend whose bizarre characters have captured the public imagination for generations.
Clinton Street Resistance Series
King: A Filmed Record...From Montgomery To Memphis
Monday, Jan 21 @ 7:00pm
Tickets: FREE!!! Please donate generously if you can to The Children's Book Bank
Join us at the Clinton for the fifteenth annual tribute to Martin Luther King Jr., and celebrate MLK Day with the screening of this historic documentary, nominated for a Best Documentary Oscar in 1971.
King: A Filmed Record...from Montgomery to Memphis is the landmark documentary that chronicles the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., from the beginnings of the Civil Rights movement in Montgomery, Alabama, and culminating with his assassination in Memphis in 1968. Originally screened in theaters for only a single night in 1970, King: A Filmed Record combines dramatic readings by Harry Belafonte, James Earl Jones and Paul Newman, among others, with newsreel and archival footage to create a powerful and comprehensive record of Dr. King's legacy and the American Civil Rights movement. King: A Filmed Record is an indispensable primary resource of a pivotal moment in American and world history.
Tonight's nonprofit partner is THE CHILDREN'S BOOK BANK, which fills homes and lives with engaging, culturally diverse books because all children deserve to have books of their own. When they do, magical things happen — books ignite curiosity, spark the imagination, and open young minds to limitless possibilities.
Celebrating 46 Years with Roe v Wade
Tuesday, Jan 22 @ 7:00pm
Tickets: $5-10 sliding scale; no one turned away for lack of funds
Women's reproductive rights remain under attack, so let's revisit life before 1973 with the screening of two important documentaries, A GIRL LIKE HER and JANE: AN ABORTION SERVICE.
A GIRL LIKE HER is the real story of 'sex and the single girl'. It reveals the hidden history of over a million young women who became pregnant in the 1950s and 60s and were banished to maternity homes to give birth and surrender their babies for adoption. They were told to keep their secret, move on and forget. But, does a woman forget her child? Hear what they have to say now about the long-term impact of surrender and silence on their lives.
This fascinating political look at a little-known chapter in women's history tells the story of "Jane", the Chicago-based women's health group who performed nearly 12,000 safe illegal abortions between 1969 and 1973 with no formal medical training. As Jane members describe finding feminism and clients describe finding Jane, archival footage and recreations mingle to depict how the repression of the early sixties and social movements of the late sixties influenced this unique group. Both vital knowledge and meditation on the process of empowerment, JANE: AN ABORTION SERVICE showcases the importance of preserving women's knowledge in the face of revisionist history.
Portland Psychedelic Society Monthly Speaker Series
Wednesday, Jan 23 @ 7:00pm
Tickets: $5-10 suggested donation; no one turned away for lack of funds
Every day, we enter into the visionary world of dreaming, encountering the potential for insights into the self and the world around us. How can psychedelic disciplines help us harness those nightly visions for greater personal growth?
In this illuminating lecture, artist and scholar Gwyllm Llywwd describes how a combination of plant medicines, creative practices, and daily exercises can help us unlock the potential of our dreaming minds.
Drawing from ancient mystery school practices, modern Jungian methods, and his own artistic practice, Gwyllm will provide insight to how a deeper study of dreams can open doors to achieve lucid dreaming, spiritual insight, enhanced creativity, and profound personal development.
This event is to promote education and harm reduction -- no illegal activity will be tolerated.
Clinton Street Resistance Series: KICK-ASS, January 28; THE WIZ, February 4; CHUCK BERRY: HAIL! HAIL! ROCK 'N' ROLL, February 11; DO THE RIGHT THING, February 18; CRY FREEDOM, February 25; THE GREAT MUPPET CAPER, March 4; THE BIG SICK, March 11; DOGMA, March 18; MEET THE PARENTS, March 25.
In the world I lived in, heroes only existed in comic books. And I guess that'd be okay, if bad guys were make-believe too, but they're not.
Portland Premiere of THERE is Friday, Jan 25 @ 8:00pm. After 23 years as an immigrant in the US, Bogdan comes back to Bulgaria for the first time. Q&A with director Bogdan after the screening!
Like political cartoons? January 25 @ 7:30pm, we've got MR. FISH: CARTOONING FROM THE DEEP END, an intimate documentary that follows the artist (Mr. Fish) as he struggles to stay true to his creativity in a world where biting satiric humor has an ever-diminishing commercial value.
Portland Film Community Table Read is Sunday, Jan 27 @ 6:00pm. A live public on-stage full cast reading of a feature film script.
Castle Thunder Cinema presents PANDORA'S BOX on Tuesday, January 29 @ 7pm. PANDORA’S BOX is director G.W. Pabst’s best-known masterwork, crafted especially for the ineffably vibrant Louise Brooks. Crafted at the end of the Silent Era, the film brings together the best techniques of Weimar cinema in a tapestry of archetypes. Portland-based sextet Abronia’s atmospheric stir of angular psychedelic western sound blasts a call to arms perfectly suited to Pandora’s Box and the film’s contest between love and violence.
The Portland Premiere of THE UNTOLD STORY is Wednesday, Jan 30 @ 7:00pm. Hollywood star Edward Forester's career and personal life may have hit rock bottom, but not his spirit. At age 63, the handsome actor moves into a tiny apartment and must start over again. He quickly learns who his 'real' friends are and meets Catarina, a neighbor who can barely make her own life work. It is through her encouragement, and "in-your-face" friendship, Edward realizes the only way back to the top is to believe in himself for one more shot at success.
A BREATH AWAY, WINNER of the Best Film Award at Fantasia Film Festival screens February 1 @ 7pm. When Paris is submerged in a strange mortal fog, survivors take refuge on the city’s upper floors and rooftops. Without news, electricity, water or food, one small family struggles to survive the catastrophe. But as the hours pass, they are forced to face reality: rescue teams aren’t coming. If they hope to make it out alive, they will have to risk going out into the fog.
Rad Max presents "So Bad, It's Rad!!!" on Friday, February 1st at 9:30pm. Music/movie night a set or two from Rad Max, a hard-edged trash pop band from Portland, OR, and the cheesy, trashy 80s flick, MIAMI CONNECTION. In 1987 motorcycle ninjas tighten their grip on Florida's narcotics trade, viciously annihilating anyone who dares move in on their turf. You've got the drug dealers, the drunk bikers, the kill-crazy ninjas, the middle-aged thugs, the "stupid cocaine"...and the entire MIAMI CONNECTION!!!
It's our Fifth Annual Groundhog Day Community Event with the screening of, what else?, GROUNDHOG DAY. We've got other surprises in store for you, too, including a trivia contest with lots of prizes.
Will Hornyak, Janet Liu, Anne Penfound and John Wydler will use stories to answer an age-old question — “What Is Love?” — Saturday, Feb. 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Portland Storytellers Guild’s monthly show at the Clinton Street Theater. Tickets are $12 on line and $15 at the door.
Another screening of STANDING ON MY SISTERS' SHOULDERS is Sunday, February 3 @ 3pm sponsored by Democratic Black Leadership Caucus with the support of Nasty Women, GP Now and the Democratic Stonewall Caucus. This documentary presents original interviews with many of the Civil Rights movement’s most remarkable women. In the name of freedom and equal rights, these women bravely faced great adversity and risked their physical safety, their jobs, and even their lives. When asked how they did it, one activist said, “I was standing on my sisters’ shoulders.”
Buenas Intenciones presents a night of Experimental music on Wednesday, February 6 @ 7pm, with internationally know musicians Alex Otaola from Mexico City, Todd Clouser and local musician Paul Allen. A dialogue between two guitars based on improvisation plus abstract versions of traditional American and Mexican songs, which seeks to dilute geographical/stylistic boundaries. Music will be paired with a talk by Zazil Collins and Todd Clouser editors of the bilingual Spanish/English book Músicos en la Ciudad de México/Musicians in Mexico City.
Please join the Portland Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation for a very special evening, Friday, Feb 8, which will feature world champion surfer, author, and activist: Shaun Tomson. Shaun will give a presentation about his most recent book, The Code--The Power of "I Will." His lecture will focus on leadership and the importance of creating a personal code to create a purposeful life and achieve optimal performance. After the presentation, Shaun will be available to sign your books.
Sorry for the long list of upcoming events, but I'm having knee replacement surgery on January 28th, so my newsletters may not come for a few weeks. Wish me luck with my recovery!
Don't Shoot Portland hosts a Community Service & Feed In on the third Saturday of each month. On January 19, come out and collect food, clothing, and supplies to distribute to local shelters and our community members.
Counter Rally for Reproductive Justice (in opposition to Oregon Right to Life Roe v. Wade memorial & march) will be held at Pioneer Courthouse Square on January 19 @ 1pm. Please show up with the intention to support and stand in solidarity with one another in the face of those who would shame people who have chosen or are considering abortion.
5th Annual Reclaim MLK Protest for Human Rights and Dignity is Sunday, January 20, 2019 from 1 to 5pm at Peninsula Park. Join hundreds of children and young adults and deliver the message of Human Rights and Dignity while honoring the Birthday of Dr Martin Luther King Jr. We must continually reclaim his work to build non violent direct action as a form of resistance against all forms of violence!!
The next big chance for Americans to ooh and ahh at the sky happens on January 20, 2019. For just over an hour, the moon will turn an eerie red. This total lunar eclipse should be visible everywhere in the U.S. except Hawaii.
THESE DRUMS, SAXOPHONES, BAGPIPES AND VIOLINS KILL FASCISTS featuring: Arrington de Dionyso, Sam Klickner, Sara Lund, Lisa Schonberg, China Star, Keelin B. Mayer, John Krasbauer and VERY SPECIAL GUEST David Watson, experimental bagpipe player from New Zealand/NYC. Thursday January 31st at Turn! Turn! Turn!
Celebrate the Year of the Pig at Lan Su Chinese Garden February 5 through 19. Chinese New Year, the most colorful and joyous of all Chinese festivals celebrated at Lan Su, features lion dances, cultural performances, martial arts, calligraphy, family-friendly craft making and much more! Activities take place daily. See a schedule of events and start planning your visit at lansugarden.org/chinesenewyear
The fourth Portland Winter Light Festival (PDXWLF) takes place February 7 - 9. It's FREE and fun for all ages. PDXWLF is a vibrant outdoor art festival featuring interactive light-based art installations, dynamic live performances, stunning kinetic fire sculptures and educational programming.
To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.
Don't be a stranger. Come see us soon.