David Bowie’s A Reality Tour could have used some Aladdin Sane

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 5, 2010 By Steve Newton The first time I saw David Bowie in concert was at the Pacific Coliseum in early ’76 on the Station to Station tour. While it was an entrancing show—all blinding white light and Earl Slick’s biting, feedback-laden guitar—the Thin White Duke’s performance was clinical and … Continue reading David Bowie’s A Reality Tour could have used some Aladdin Sane

Tommy Bolin’s spirit revived with rerelease of Come Taste the Band

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 16, 2010 By Steve Newton Seventies-rock fans who remember guitar great Tommy Bolin will be pleased to know that the only album he recorded with Deep Purple before his drug-overdose death in 1976 will be rereleased in North America on November 2. 1975's Come Taste the Band, which was conceived, written, … Continue reading Tommy Bolin’s spirit revived with rerelease of Come Taste the Band

Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers get the Classic Albums treatment on Blu-ray

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, AUG. 10, 2010 By Steve Newton When Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers played Vancouver in June they only played one song off their breakthrough Damn the Torpedoes album, which was quite a surprise (and disappointment). After viewing the new Eagle Vision Blu-ray, Classic Albums: Damn the Torpedoes, and hearing Petty and his cohorts enthusiastically analyze each … Continue reading Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers get the Classic Albums treatment on Blu-ray

Horror review: Skyline

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 15, 2010 Two alien-invasion flicks were released in Metro Vancouver last Friday, but Monsters only opened at one theatre while Skyline made it into at least a dozen. Judging by how much the latter film sucks, it should have been the other way around. As Skyline begins, good guy Jarrod (Joe Perry look-alike Eric Balfour) and … Continue reading Horror review: Skyline

Horror review: Saw 3D

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 1, 2010 Saw 3D is the seventh Saw I’ve seen, and maybe the sickest—which is exactly what I said about Saw VI. They’ve also been calling Saw 3D “the final Saw” in the trailers, but I’m sure that’ll depend on box-office profits. Jason Voorhees’s fourth outing was titled Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, but that didn’t … Continue reading Horror review: Saw 3D

Horror review: My Soul to Take

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 12, 2010 For his latest horror outing, writer-director Wes Craven tried to inject elements from his two best slasher flicks, A Nightmare on Elm Street and Scream, but something went terribly wrong along the way. What he wound up with was a witless stab-the-teen time-waster that could be his worst film ever. And … Continue reading Horror review: My Soul to Take

Horror review: Buried

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 6, 2010 A few years ago, I was sleeping in the bunk of an old camper and I woke up feeling claustrophobic for the first time in my life. I had to clamber over my startled wife in the dark and exit that cramped space, pronto. It was a very … Continue reading Horror review: Buried

Horror review: Devil

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, SEPT. 20, 2010In the recent supernatural thriller, The Last Exorcism, a character states, “If you believe in god, you have to believe in the devil.” In the new supernatural thriller, Devil, a character states, “If you believe in the devil, you have to believe in god.”Either way, somebody’s going to hell.After a … Continue reading Horror review: Devil

Horror review: The Last Exorcism

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, AUG. 25, 2010 Thirty-seven years after The Exorcist, the makers of The Last Exorcism decided to meld William Friedkin’s classic shocker with the low-budget 1999 blockbuster The Blair Witch Project. The result is a fairly absorbing pseudo-documentary demonic-possession flick with all the bodily contortions and jittery camerawork you’d expect. Patrick Fabian stars as Cotton Marcus, … Continue reading Horror review: The Last Exorcism

Horror review: Piranha 3D

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, AUG. 21, 2010 Sometimes when I’ve had nothing better to do I’ve pondered the worst way to die. Getting hacked to death is right up there—glad I don’t live in Somalia—but being eaten alive by wild animals usually wins out. It helps when you remember hearing, as a kid in school, … Continue reading Horror review: Piranha 3D

Horror review: Predators

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JULY 9, 2010 The only role I ever enjoyed Arnold Schwarzenegger in was the one he was born to play: the cyborg assassin in The Terminator. I never bought into any of his other one-note characterizations, including the Rambo-like hero of Die Hard director John McTiernan’s 1987 sci-fi action-horror, Predator. Although that movie introduced a … Continue reading Horror review: Predators

Horror review: Splice

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JUNE 2, 2010 On paper, Splice looks promising. First off, it’s directed and cowritten by Vincenzo Natali, who helmed 1997’s compelling Cube, a Saw-inspiring horror thriller about seven strangers stuck in a booby-trapped maze. Splice stars Academy Award winner Adrien Brody of The Pianist fame, as well as Oscar nominee Sarah Polley. Then there’s the fact that Guillermo del … Continue reading Horror review: Splice

Horror review: A Nightmare on Elm Street

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, APRIL 30, 2010 I remember seeing the original A Nightmare on Elm Street when it was released in 1984 and thinking it was pretty decent as far as slasher flicks go. Its FX–heavy death scenes were a lot more inventive than the stalk ’n’ stab routine that defined most ’80s body-count films, and … Continue reading Horror review: A Nightmare on Elm Street