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PCR Archives 2002
PCR Archives 2001
PCR Archives 2000
Crazed Fanboy homepage
Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2002!

La Floridiana
Deadguy's Dementia
Movie Review
Digital Divide
WooWoo Express
Mike's Rant

(Listed above indicate "final edition" status.)

Michael A. Smith's
The Omnipresent M. Smith homepage and Email                    

Matt Drinnenberg's
The Masters of Horror

Terence Nuzum's
Viddywell Productions

William Moriaty's
T.R.E.E., Inc.

Established A.D. 2000, March 19.  Now in our third calendar year!
   Number 124 (Vol. 3, No. 32). This edition is for the week of August 5--11, 2002.

The Renegade Film Festival
Siamese twins separate
Close call for Fla elections...again

When I started The World of Nolan public access TV program a couple years ago, one of my main purposes was to bring to light as much local talent as I could, particularly in the way of filmmakers. I had to produce it on a shoestring budget--actually on a zero-budget--but I did what I could. Fast forward to 2002, and what has taken place just this year in Tampa is staggering. The coalescing and spirit of cooperation between heretofore disparate groups of artists has gained admirable momentum.

Sidestepping for the moment the "Tampa Bay Idol" talent search knock-off of American Idol (do your cities have versions of this too?), this is as good as it gets.

Personal boondoggle
Several issues ago, I published the whole kit 'n kaboodle about the Saints and Sinners Film Festival organized by Rick Danford and Renegade Productions. Not only were they spotlighting the work of several area filmmakers, Troma Entertainment was going to be onhand to debut "Toxic Avenger 4: Citizen Toxie"!  I was looking forward to attending this landmark event with other PCR staffers. Then, in one of those damnably timed things that always seems to happen to me, just days before the weekend, I suffered the personal setback of a job layoff that screwed my plans for the whole year. I was in no frame of mind to cover anything, Terence had already decided not to go, Drew was moving to an Orlando college that weekend, and Will, thinking I was going to go, made other plans. So, I sent old friend and local actor Gus Perez. Thank you, Gus.

"Really great films"
First off, Gus was tremendously impressed with the calibur of talent in the films, particularly the acting---very consistent. Re: the environment, according to Gus, there was a two-tier thing happening with the State Theater layout--two video projectors operating on two different floors, but both visible because one was on a balcony. They would play some films, long and short, then break for snacks (I figure you could basically just wander in and out, tho). Each film was introduced by its director and/or producer. There was also a competition for a top prize.

I was sent a list of all the films being shown, which I will get to in a minute, but what Gus remembered were these: "Bleed" (Icon Studios), "Unraveling Amelia", "Wonder Boy", "Don't worry it's only your imagination", and "Looking in the fishbowl". Of these, by far the one that made the biggest impression was the horror-thriller "Don't worry it's only your imagination" in which creatures attack you automatically if it's dark (even if it's only because your eyes are closed!). "Bleed" from Icon Studios took top honors for the festival, however, and friend Andy Lalino's trailer for his horror short, "Filthy", was evidently quite a hit (Gus didn't remember if he saw that or not--hey, it's his frst time out as a "journalist"!). Also, fellow webmeister and comics fan/writer/artist (WINTER) Noeland Collins' film "Afterlife" (Present Day Productions) were among those I wanted some feedback on, but Gus must've been out of the building when that came on. As far as "Citizen Toxie", that wasn't exhibited until after midnight, Gus bailed around 10:15pm. Since he'd been there off and on since 4:00pm, I can't hold that against him.

"More successful than we expected"
The complete list of films sent to me by Rick Danford were, in order: Bleed, Lunch Break, Unraveling Amelia, Wonder Boy, Tea Party, Child of the Apocalypse, Hit & Miss, Wool, Afterlife, Don't worry it's only your imagination, Looking in the Fishbowl, Good Golly Miss Molly, Fashion Statement, Clarks, Love's Relic, Punchbuggy, and Pay Phone. Some of these were not in the competition and a few were not completed in time, so only showed trailers. Somewhere in there was Andy Lalino's trailer for Filthy as well.

From Danford: "We here at Renegade Films want to give a special thanks to everyone who helped us put together this incredible Film Festival we had last night. It far exceeded our expectations and goes to show how strong the film community in central Florida really is. For those of you who couldn't make it out to the event, we had a line around the corner to get in when we opened the doors at 4pm. The first film went on to a packed house as every seat was taken on both floors and people stood in the aisles and sat on the stairs. The theater was filled to capacity the entire night with a great crowd who applauded and truly appreciated the films we brought them throughout the course of the show. We introduced each of the filmmakers and allowed them to introduce their works and they were warmly greeted by the crowd each time. Bob Ross of the Tampa Tribune, Steve Persall of the St. Pete Times and Peter D'Alessio of Yo Soy Irini were the judges."
The overall winners they selected were: Saints ( Non Thriller / Horror ) Winner: "Looking in the Fishbowl" by James Henshen & Jeremy Habig Sinners ( Thriller / Horror ) Winner: "Bleed" by Icon Studios

Rick has pledged another festival very soon (according to Andy, maybe as soon as three months), if for no other reason than there are several hours' worth more videos to show there wasn't time to before. Congratulations on a job well done and let's not let up now! Oh, and for the record, Christian Dumais of Legion Studios said I will attend the next one even if he has to come pick me up himself! LOL, that's the spirit.

Malaysian Twins, joined at the head, separate. Shades of a movie plot.
   This is a miracle, it really is, the newborn Malaysian twins joined at the top of the head being successfully separated after twelve hours of surgery in Los Angeles, and expected to recover completely. Medical science never ceases to amaze me, and I wouldn't think of trivializing it, but it reminded me of a movie plot.
   Several years ago, my friend and make-up FX whiz, Corey Castellano, was working on an Orlando-based filmed feature called "Oliver Twisted". The plot involved a telepathic girl and her homicidally-insane brother. The girl would have visions of his murder victims before and during their executions. They share a special bond through the movie. Plot spoiler: turns out brother and sister were twins born conjoined---at the top of their heads!
   Let's hope the Malaysian twins' doctor had a better touch!
Florida elections ballot narrowly misses another snafu.
   My God, will we ever get this right? I knew this was coming the moment I saw the new "ballots". The new touch screen voting machine was unveiled a few days ago and on it were the words "Vote for one pair" underneath the name of a single political candidate. What it meant was for one candidate and his running mate (not shown). What was likely to occur was people voting for two candidates, thereby nullifying their vote!
   Well, before you could say "Katherine Harris is resigning under a cloud", they recalled the machines and changed the word "pair", simply dropping it. So, the new machines will just say, "Vote for one." Let's hope it plays in West Palm Beach.

I'm not in a particularly celebratory mood this month, all things considered, but just in case anybody wants to know (or cares), this upcoming Tuesday, August 13th, is my birthday, and I will turn (gulp...drumroll) 47 years old. Holy Kee--rist Jeezis, it's hard to even see that number as real. I keep thinking of other 47-year-olds I've known and where they were and how they looked at the time. From fiction, everyone from George McFly ("Back to the Future") on up. From real life: Family members. TV celebs. Fellow public access producers (there's a lot of them in that age bracket).
   Nearly every prediction I made as a teenager about my life's likeliest progress was off by a mile. But for chrissake, who's ever right about that?

La Floridiana This week's issue
La Floridiana by William Moriaty
Notable Commercial Aircraft Crashes In, Bound For, or Bound From, Florida
Make no mistake--even after the September 11, 2001 tragedy, flying by commercial aircraft is the safest form of transportation possible. Your chances of being involved in a fatal accident are incredibly higher in any other form of transportation, particularly in your own automobile! Being a major tourist destination, Florida is, and has been for decades one of the most heavily traveled states in the nation, so it only stands to reason that we've had our fair share of accidents, which also includes commercial aviation..... ...................................Click here for more.

Deadguy's Dementia This week's issue
Deadguy's Dementia by Michael Scott
Eric and I did our auditions for Howl-O-Scream at Busch Gardens on Friday. At one point during the auditions everyone was separated into groups of ten (Eric and I got separated) and marched out onstage in front of regular Busch Garden visitors, and told to do some audition material based on requests of the judges. I'll gloss through it here..... ..................Click here for more.

Movie ReviewMovie Review
This Week's Movie Review:
Review by Nolan Canova
I was really looking forward to this treatment by director M. Night Shyamalan (who did "The Sixth Sense" which I adored), especially with the added weight of superstar Mel Gibson in the lead role. I figured this combination couldn't miss. Well, it hit and it didn't.... ........................................................Click here for more.

The Digital Divide This week's issue
Music News and CD Reviews
by Terence Nuzum:
Check out reviews of the latest by Sonic Youth, The Flaming Lips, and Wire! .........................Click here for more.

Murder on the Woo Woo Express This week's issue
Murder on the Woo Woo Express by Patty G. Henderson
Are you house hunting? If you are, you're in luck. The Express will be a trip to two open houses this month. Haunted houses, of course. This August issue was one of my favorites to put together because anything with a haunted house in it is a real treat for me. You couldn't figure that out from my own supernatural mystery, THE BURNING OF HER SIN?...... ........................Click here for more.

Mike's Rant This week's issue
Mike's Rant by Michael A. Smith
AN EYE-WITNESS DESCRIPTION OF THE ROCK 'N ROLL HALL OF FAME IN CLEVELAND! .............................................Click here for more.

Letters to the EditorWe welcome your feedback.
I received many heartfelt and encouraging letters last week in response to my annoucement of my sudden layoff from work. As an editorial call, I decided against publishing them as it's a bit of a depressing subject, but I wanted everyone to know: YOU MADE A DIFFERENCE. After such an unusually low point in my life, I feel a lot better now and it's all because of you.

Among those who helped cheer me up via email: Rick Sousa, Vince Blesi, Andy Lalino, Christian Dumais, Scott A. Gilbert, Stephen R. Beasley, and in particular, Mike "Deadguy" Scott. In their columns for PCR, Matt Drinnenberg and Michael A. Smith really came through. In person, Will Moriaty, Terence Nuzum, Drew Reiber, Scott van Sickle and Corey Castellano were and are my towers of strength. And my guardian angels, Count Poffula and Lauré are always there for me.

The Pop Culture Review isn't going anywhere. Not with support like that. We're moving on with the mission.

(Aside to everyone I told this to, particularly Christian Dumais: remember when I said I'd pay a price for having such a successful Spring season? And remember I said I'd probably be hit by a truck? Well, now we know---the layoff is "the truck". Let that be a lesson to you---it never fails.)

Love and best to all,
Nolan B. Canova

To send an email to Letters to the Editor write to: Crazedfanboy1@aol.com.  Any emails sent to this address will be assumed intended for publication unless you specifically instruct me not to. I can and do respond privately, if that is your preference. Frequently, it's both ways.---Nolan

"Mike's Rant" is ©2002 by Michael A. Smith    "La Floridiana" is ©2002 by William Moriaty    The movie review "Signs" is ©2002 by Nolan B. Canova    "The Digital Divide" is ©2002 by Terence Nuzum    "Murder on the Woo Woo Express" is ©2002 by Patty G. Henderson    Thanks again to all who wrote last week about my personal situation       All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2002 by Nolan B. Canova

Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of  Nolan B. Canova ©2002; all rights reserved.