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Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2003!
This week's
La Floridiana
Movie Review
Digital Divide
Ashley's Hollywood
Splash Page
Creature's Corner
Matt's Rail
Mike's Rant

On the CF Homepage:
Florida Filmmaker Update

New Schlockarama!
"The Mask"

  Number 170  (Vol. 4, No. 26). This edition is for the week of June 23--29, 2003.

Harry Potter sets sales record...
robbing "Hulk" of weekend thunder?


•  Renegade Films' Rick Danford responds to his critics


    • Forbidden Video opens for business
    • PCR hits 30,000
    • New film festival accepting submissions
And in the Lettercol...

    • Terence Nuzum re-examines THE HULK
    • Andy Lalino with more theater memories
    • Jason Liquori's take on THE HULK

OK, swear to god, this is no lie: what I meant to do in last week's issue of PCR, but forgot to, was put a teeny-tiny announcement (font size="1" for all you tech-heads) of the new Harry Potter book in the headline section and wedge it in somewhere between all the Hulk madness and "Announcements" something like this:
Oh yeah, Harry Potter book release this Saturday
Ya know, like a gag right? Now that's not to disparage our favorite boy wizard or anything, hell no, gosh gracious I wouldn't do that, I just thought "Oh my god how can they hope to topple the runaway publicity train of the HULK with this ill-timed announcement...huh? Huh?"

Jeeezis jumpin' jiminy, I've made some bad calls before, but this...this was a loo-loo. Not only did HULK not do the bang-up business it was expected to (mostly due to lackluster word-of-mouth and tepid commercials it barely grazed 65 million --respectable for most releases, but hardly "blockbuster" status), but the advance enthusiasm of the release of the new Harry Potter book, "Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix" by author J.K. Rowling resulted in...well....history.

An estimated 5 million copies of the new book flew off the shelves....the first day!! (Beating its own record 3 million for "Goblet of Fire".) Barnes & Noble's spokesman said they expected to sell a million the first week, but actually sold that many in the first 48 hours. Stores around the country and around the world were selling out and re-ordering as quickly as possible. Congratulations to author J. K. Rowling, of course, this is every author's dream and she and her publishers have every right to be proud of this accomplishment.

Meanwhile back at Hulkbuster base....Ang Lee and millions of HULK fans are scratching their heads wondering what went wrong. The most heavily-promoted comic superhero-to-movie adaptation since Spider-Man stalled at the gate. The aforementioned word-of-mouth reviews curbed the gamma-irradiated appetite of throngs of potential fans to the point where HULK was virtually a non-issue over its opening weekend allowing the boy wizard to completely dominate the news.

Certainly, Harry Potter deserves the attention. Millions of kids around the planet eat this stuff up (they have to--the latest book is 870 pages....a major investment even by adult standards). I'm just terribly terribly disappointed the Jolly Green Giant still isn't keeping up.

OK, Ang....may I call you Ang?........desperate times call for desperate measures....since this "artistic" version of the Hulk bombed, how about we team up the Hulk with Jason Vorhees and pitch them into a script where they have to battle Freddy Krueger and The Predator and The Alien? We'll call it "Hulk vs Freddy vs Jason vs Alien vs The Predator". See? That way we nail the lowest common denominator demographic, make tons of easy money, completely sell the Hulk down the river, and clear out the closet from those old "development hell" scripts like "Alien vs Predator". What? Jason fights Freddy for real later this year? RECALL IT. Tell 'em we'll CGI the WHOLE CAST--really make it big.....they ALL get caught in a Gamma Blast and grow big and monstrous and.....


Regarding "The Dark Side of Renegade", PCR #168 and Christian's many criticizms of the film festival.
Dear Christian,

In regards to your "Open Letter" on our "Saints & Sinners Film Festival" you posted on "Nolan's Pop Culture Review". First off, let me begin by pointing out that we appreciate your attendance and the constructive criticism you detailed in your review. All of the points were well taken and we will strive to do everything we can to make it a more enjoyable experience the next time out as we have done with each Festival thus far. I was a little disenchanted when at the beginning of your letter you mentioned that if you got more detailed it would make the other article seem like a love letter. That makes me feel like you hated the Festival and that would be unfortunate.

In regards to one of the biggest issues you mentioned, namely my partner Porl and his antics. What he did by screaming out at the lobby festival attendees was over the top and should not have been done. Nobody is more apologetic about that incident than Porl. However, the reasoning behind the outburst was that we had been trying to keep the people in the lobby quiet all night long so as not to take away from the Films that were playing. The Filmmakers whose projects were being showcased deserved every possible courtesy so that they would have a proper showing of their film. We attempted to quiet the crowd multiple times and it had just gotten to a very frustrating point and Porl took it a step too far. In the future we have already discussed doors, curtains and even the possibility of closing off the street in front of the theatre and allowing people to go outside to talk and socialize. Believe me, this is a major concern to us and will be addressed, but bear with us as we grow and essentially learn our way through this. Our hearts are in the right place.

As to your viewpoints on our own projects making the Festival and possible favoritism. You couldnıt be further from the truth on that point. Any film created by Renegade Films, Enigma Films or anyone from our company is not and will not be in the running for any awards what so ever. The "Wonder Boy" film as well as "My Skin" and "Web of Darkness" were non-competition entries and were not up for any awards. The "My Skin" film was shown to help promote the upcoming "Nightmare Collection" project that is due out on DVD later this year. We are promoting the project heavily and hope to get many entries from here in Florida for upcoming Volumes. The ŒWonder Boyı film was something that I had no real interest in doing but several of the Sponsors were very adamant that I have another chapter. It took up 4 minutes of screen time and was done as much for the children as it was for the Festival. If you heard the cheers from the crowd youıd know that it was a welcome addition and did not take away from the Festival what so ever. ŒWebı was the Main event and was also Non competition as we wanted to get some audience feedback for the final edit. It is in no way even close to being complete and it showed, but it was never billed as a completed project and should not have been viewed as such. I admit that maybe it needs to be spelled out more on the site as well as Press Releases and we will strive to accomplish this the next time out. The fact of the matter is that we are also part of this film community and we also want to make it in the business. I see nothing wrong with trying to promote our work as well. After all it is our Festival and we work very hard to put it on.

You have to understand something. We donıt make any money from these Festivals. What money we do get from the couple of small sponsors goes right back into the Fest in the form of Posters, flyers and T-Shirts. The money we get from the T-Shirts goes back into paying for them so weıre lucky to break even. We do it for the love of the film community and our desire to help our fellow filmmakers who canıt afford the normal festival entry fees of $30 to $50. We didnıt charge a fee until this Fest and it was only $5. That money went to the various supplies, gas and food for the people we sent flyering and all the running around for the screeners. The door and bar money goes to the State Theatre in exchange for its use. This Festival is supposed to be our way of presenting an opportunity to every filmmaker, and give him or her his or her 15 minutes if we can. We donıt turn down films because we donıt like them or think they have what it takes. We feel if they went through the time and effort to cast and produce it then they believe in it and deserve and audience. We should all be banning together to help in any way we can to make this Festival the best it can be. There are no politics and no favoritism unlike so many other Festivals that are really an ŒIn Crowdı. Only a desire to help get the word out to people who donıt think we have a strong film community here in Florida that we are not only here but are growing by leaps and bounds.

The only thing in your article that I did take some exception to was your comments on me manipulating the media and needing to do more work on my own. I donıt think you realize what it takes to put on a show of this size. There are so many intangibles that we have to deal with that for months up until show time we are consumed with it. I and my partners work our fingers to the bone sending email, writing letters, designing, gathering submissions, running them to the judges, selecting, preparing the theatre, planning and so much more. I truly donıt think you have a clear picture of what we go though to pull this off. Although I love the Festival, I am ecstatic when it is over as I am completely drained after itıs all said and done. Please bear in mind that we are starving filmmakers as well and all hold full time jobs as well as try to have a family life with children. Being as how we have no funds to speak of, we have to do what ever we can with what means we have at our disposal to raise awareness for the Festival. Not just to get people to come to our Fest but to show everyone we can that we have a thriving Film community here and give all the support we can to all of the Filmmakers that have the same dreams as we do.

We began "Saints & Sinners" with the idea of showing our material, but we have never been like that as we have always been strong proponents of the growing Film Community here in Florida and bend over backwards to help it in any way we can. We have the filmmakers come up and introduce their own projects so people can get a feel for them and see them as well as their films. Weıll be the first to admit that there are still many bugs in this little Festival, But we are getting better as each one comes together and we will continue to try and address all of the concerns as we hope to do something that every local filmmaker such as yourself can be proud of and want to be a part of.

We are very open to any and all suggestions and truly want to thank you for your email and opinions. All of them were well received and understood. We hope that "Saints & Sinners 4" will be a much better event all the way around and something you will be proud to be associated with. With people such as yourself giving a true response and not being afraid to tell us what didnıt work will make it easier for us to pinpoint what needs to be fixed so that we can continue to tweak and make you happy to come out and be a part of the next one.

Thanks for your time

Rick Danford

At long last and after months of development, FORBIDDEN VIDEO IS OPEN!!!  Forbidden Video is the project fellow fan and movie collector John Petrey and I dreamed up late last year and has been in development ever since. It is a trading post for hard-to-find, obscure, and controversial videos from his private collection and the rest of the world. Much interest has already been generated from the few sources I've exposed this to before now. Hopefully, it will grow into a highly-active and valuable part of Crazed Fanboy dotcom as more and more fans find us.  Please note: when you visit, you'll be prompted for a username and password. This is necessary to force a pass by the Terms & Conditions page, for the moment a necessary evil. Please enter USERNAME: guest PASSWORD: zipadeedoodah. This remains in effect until further notice. We hope you like this new section as much as we do!

THE WORLD OF NOLAN is in final edit. No, it will not take this long next time.
Mike Smith's retrospective on old theater experiences is still generating response. John Lewis's letter from last issue inspired Andy Lalino to remember more theaters from the Clearwater area. See this issue's Lettercol, below.
FINAL UPDATES: 6-27-03. As this issue of PCR was being "put to bed", word came in on the passing of Senator Strom Thurmond at 100 years old. There will likely be more commentary on this colorful political figure in next week's PCR.
Early this morning, Friday, 6-27-03, I was informed by Rick Sousa that he was the one tipped the scale and sent the PCR's Bravenet hitcounter to the 30,000 hit mark! Congratulations Rick! Not coincidentally, methinks, the illustrious Mr. Sousa was the one who refreshed himself the last dozen or so times to the 20,000 mark last January.
A little history: It took from March of 2000 to May of 2002 to acquire our first 10,000 hits. Then it only took from May 2002 to January of 2003 to reach an additional 10,000 hits, and from then till now (June) to reach our third set.
Please keep in mind these tallies only count visits to the PCR homepage. Please believe me when I tell you that, according to the stats on my server, site-wide our accumulated hits are literally in the millions, mostly due to our massive Archives section. I continue to be grateful for everyone's support and thank readers both old and new for sticking with us.
NEW TAMPA FILM FESTIVAL! Inspired by the success of the highly-publicized and somewhat controversial Renegade Film Festivals, but wanting to go in different directions, filmmakers Chris Woods and Simon Lynx of ICON Film Studios called a meeting Thursday night to discuss a new film festival, all horror-oriented, to debut around the middle of October. In attendance at the meeting were Andy Lalino, Eddie Sturgeon, Rick Danford, Chris & Simon of course, and yours truly. ANYONE INTERESTED IN SUBMITTING A COMPLETE OR NEARLY-COMPLETED FILM is urged to contact the organizers IMMEDIATELY at iconfs@hotmail.com or call and leave a message at 727-577-9058. The ICON Film Studios website is www.iconfilmstudios.com.

La Floridiana
This week's issue
La Floridiana by William Moriaty

Getting From Here To There - - The Story of the Bee Line Ferry and the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.

Ashley Lauren's Hollywood
This week's issue
Hollywood by Ashley Lauren

This Summer's Movies

Splash Page
This week's issue
Bookstore memories, and the closing of Merlin's books. Plus: Slush Pile, One Shots, and more! .................Click here for more

Matt's Rail
This week's issue
Matt's Rail by Matt Drinnenberg
Matt's controversial Freemasons in Washington series from last year is briefly revisited by one reader's recantation of her previous views in A PUBLIC APOLOGY

Movie Reviewmovie review
This Week's Movie Reviews:

"HULK"  reviewed by Mike Smith
This week it's Mike's turn!

The Digital Divide
This week's issue
The Digital Divide by Terence Nuzum

(Now updated with pictures!)

Creature's Corner
This week's issue
Creature's Corner by John Lewis
Part three of the Miami Trip.....HULK REVIEW...... Plus....A personal message from The Hulk himself!!! ...................Click here for more

Mike's RantMike's Rant
This week's issue
Mike's Rant by Michael A. Smith
THEATRE MEMORIES CONTINUED ........ ALL SHELDON, ALL THE TIME ........ MAYBE BURGER KING NEEDS A SPOKESPERSON ........ CHEAP AT HALF THE PRICE ........ DVD ALERT ..... .............................Click here for more

Letters to the EditorWe welcome your feedback.

Hi Club Babyboomer,
Me again. Let's just say that right off the I disagree with what most of Ed and Nolan had to say about the Hulk movie (Re: last week's issue where we entered our less-than-enthusiastic votes --N). Maybe I was expecting less and got more I don't know. But I like it a lot.

The script has to be one of the best movie scipts for a comic book movie ever. It keeps the flavor but changes are necessary to make a moving and powerful film about family dysfunction. Now I would usually be the first to yell about how they changed everything and maybe I'm just a kid of the dark '90s, but I like the psychological thriller they made out of it. I mean, let's face it, do we really want to see the Hulk being followed around by a pesky square like Rick Jones? No. Do we really want to see a villian like Ygor, a hunchback communist dwarf? Hell no. And as cool as he is, The Leader just would look dumb in live action.

So what we have is the Hulk as a metaphor. It could be said that "Hulk" is actually the first truly artistic superhero film. It takes its source material and puts a message in it.

The direction is very good, the acting is excellent, but the editing keeps this movie from being better than "X-2" (don't get me wrong "Hulk" isn't as good as "Superman" or "Batman"). The stupid music video paneling is ridiculous and unneeded. When Talbot flies through the air from a bomb blast and his silhouette is outlined in white, I was appalled. The dogs do look a little dumb but they could've been worse. The Hulk to me is still too happy-looking, but I can forgive that due to the stellar script. Nick Nolte as Dr. David Banner is definitely one of the most memorable screen villains that I've seen in a while. As for the claim that the Hulk was supposed to be a Dr. Jeckyll and Hyde for the '60s, actually Stan Lee is on record as saying that he really wanted to tell a Frankenstein for the '60s. This script honors that original intention perfectly.

As for Nolan's claim about changing the "sacred legend", well all I can say is if they make a script this good why complain? Plus, the whole mental child abuse angle is from the comic. It wasn't touched upon in the '60s but it is now part of the legend. In fact, that issue was the first I ever read of the Hulk. But yes, those stupid split-screens are so annoying I just had to say it again.

Anyway, I really liked the film and me usually wanting things to be original to the source material, that's saying a lot. Besides, "The Hulk" never was a superhero comic anyway. Hell, he only stayed with the Avengers for a couple issues. If you can one-up your source material and make a moving statement with it then you have succeeded--and Ang Lee more or less has. Minus those "I'm hip + cool" = lame panel edits.

Thanks to Count Poffula for filling in with the great Metallica review last week while I was at The White Stripes concert. The review was more than worthy.

To Hell With You All,
Terence Nuzum


Ah, Nolan, where to begin...once again PCR overloads my circuits with some of the finest real-life moments of being a genre fan of the '60s, '70s & '80s.

Movie Theater Experiences: John Lewis
I have to start off with John Lewis' reflections on his "Scarewater" theater experiences. I almost burst into tears (of envy!) as he reminisced about the '60s & '70s. In the course of my life I've met a lot of people in their '40s & '50s, but rarely do they ever speak of the classic (and not so classic) sic-fi/horror films they saw when they were younger. For once, someone in John Lewis' generation had actually remembered in detail the great genre flicks he grew up with and related them to fellow fans (Mike Smith did too, but his reminiscing centered on the late '70s/early '80s). Lewis' observations were not just the ordinary blockbusters ("The Godfather", M*A*S*H), but lovingly described theater experiences from a cult movie fan perspective, which is refreshing and necessary ("Twins of Evil", "Planet of the Vampires", "The Vampire Lovers", etc.).

It's one thing for me as an 8-year-old kid in 1975 to pick up one of my many '70s hardcover horror tomes (such as "A Pictorial History of Horror Movies" by Denis Gifford) and see those wonderful B&W production stills, for example: "The Satanic Rites of Dracula" and "Scream Blastula Scream", but it was another thing to have experienced the cult horror film of the '60s/'70s in an actual movie theater. For the most part, I never knew what that was like. Most of the venerable creature features I caught on TV were ironically enough broadcast on Dr. Paul Bearer's "Creature Feature" (which were sometimes heavily edited)! I grew up in the "Jaws", "Star Wars", "Raiders of the Lost Ark" blockbuster-era (I'm not complaining, mind you), and was not generally able to see the enjoyable creature feature movies on the big screen - the high-budget movies were rendering them extinct at the time, as were the more gory features. One almost forgets that these great movies were once shown at neighborhood theaters, and were not relegated directly to the local eerie midnight horror show. Thank you John for remembering those experiences and relating them to the PER reader, in particular the goosepimply-raising tale of your '68 "Planet of the Apes" experience.

For all the theaters you mentioned in Scarewater (which was like another planet to a St. Petersburger), John, the ones I seem to remember were: the Gulf-to-Bay Drive-In, the Sunshine Mall Twin, and the Thunderbird Drive-In. I can't recall if I saw any movies at those drive-ins (I went to the 28th Street Drive-In and the Mustang Drive-In, both in Pinellas Park, and the Garden Drive-In in the Tyrone area, which is history too). I can't recall the movies I saw at the Sunshine Mall Twin, but I do remember the theater (and the mall) itself. I should mention that I happily did manage to experience a "Dusk-to-Dawn" horror show at the Garden Drive in before it vanished - a great memory indeed!!

God, you're so lucky to have seen such classic creature features as "Navy vs. the Night Monsters" (which I saw on DPB's "Creature Feature" - loved when Billy Gray's arm got torn off!), one of my faves "Island of Terror", and the colorful "The Projected Man" at the Ritz in the '60s. Unreal. I want to go back!!!

Nolan and I were in attendance of an actual "Spook Show" at the Royalty Theater (formerly the Capitol Theater) in downtown Scarewater in October 2002. The show was put on by famous Spook Show illusionist Roy Huston and featured authentic, hand-painted backdrops from the 1940's and other magic tricks from classic, bygone eras. The show was called "One Scream Beyond" and I even did the promo poster for it (see Andy's poster and more details on the show in PCR #136!--N). I have never seen a film at the Royalty, but I can just imagine what a thrill it must have been seeing "The Exorcist" there in '73 in that grand old spooky theater. You're a lucky man. My parents would never let me watch that back in '73! Okay, I was only 6 at the time...

My favorite part of John's letter was when he wrote about the Gulf-to-Bay Drive-In and the incredible movies he saw there, most of which I've seen on either Creature Feature or VHS rentals. I still have not seen "Twins of Evil" and "Mark of the Devil 2", but all the rest of the films you mentioned I did see recently, in fact. I recall the trailer for Carradine's "Vampire Hookers" playing late nights on local TV - unforgettable! As I wrote in my last letter, I did see the great "Laserblast" at Pinellas Square 3 back in '78. Yes, "Tombs of the Blind Dead" was a great movie; I have it on DVD!

I should mention that I had the privilege of seeing "Yog - Monster from Space" at the 5th Avenue Theaters (in St. Pete.) at a week-long, limited engagement. I had to beg my mom to take me (this was '75, I think) and she patiently watched it with me as I sat in cinematic heaven for 90 minutes! Is Yog actually Cthulhu? Remember those rare "one week only!" engagements? Usually they were reserved for granola-type movies, such as "Pippi Longstocking", "The Mountain Family Robinson" films, and "Return to Boggy Creek".

Lastly, I can't believe you walked out on "Message from Space"...a cable TV classic! It still shows regularly on Showtime and FLIX!!! Great movie!!! Loved those extraterrestrial walnuts.

Moving on to other subjects...
I enjoyed all the "Hulk" observations and opinions. I haven't seen it yet, but I'm in no rush. I'm amazed at the people who only remember the TV show; it's like they don't have a clue it was based on a Marvel comic! Also, the CG is getting bashed in the press. Proves that it can look just as "unreal" (that's not a put-down) as stop-motion.

I can't believe that Mike Smith actually saw "Suspiria" at a movie theater! For some reason (probably my young age) I can't recall the movie actually playing anywhere in '77; and I was usually pretty good about scanning the movie section for the latest drive-in flicks, such as "Up from the Depths"!

A fond farewell to William "Blacula" Marshall. Yet another Great One has been taken from us.

Men Without Hats
On a final note, I just want to add to the envy I have for certain PCR columnists, specifically Will Moriaty when he mentioned that he saw the great New Wave band MEN WITHOUT HATS back in their '83 heyday. How cool is that? Will no doubt experienced their "Rhythm of Youth" tour, featuring the famous single "The Safety Dance". Like many other bands from that great era, MWH was over-talented and under-appreciated, but I firmly believe that over the course of time, many New Wave bands will be recognized for their contributions to pop culture and the music industry itself.

Actually, ROY was not MWH, first album; it was "Folk of the '80s Part III", which came out in '81, I think. That album featured the lesser hit "Where Do the Boys Go?" (not one of my personal MWH picks). ROY, however, was their best work ever, in my opinion. It's one of those albums where every single track is a winner; I defy anyone to sit still while playing it. In addition to "The Safety Dance", ROY includes great satellite singles, including the classic "Antarctica", "I Like" (which I just saw the video for on VH-1 Classic; it features some of the characters, like the famous midget, from "The Safety Dance" video), and "I Got the Message".

For completists, check out the vinyl 12" pressings of their extended remixes of the ROY singles: "The Safety Dance" (ho-hum; heard it a million times), and "I Got the Message", a great remix which includes 2 great B-sides: "Freeways" (EuroMix) and "Utter Space". "Freeways" is available on the imported version of MWH's Greatest Hits, which is called "Greatest Hats" (the cover is identical to the U.S. version, boringly called "Collection") and is required listening. "Utter Space" is harder to find, and to my knowledge is not available on CD (please, someone correct me!). Thank God for Napster...who said it doesn't serve a useful purpose? Some of MWH remixes are included as bonus tracks on the various "Best of" collections.

Unfortunately, ROY is not available in its entirety on CD (I think there have been CD-R's available). For such a classic New Wave album, I'm surprised it was never released. For cryin' out loud, you can get Re-Flex's first and only CD featuring "The Politics of Dancing", why not ROY?

MWH's later CD's were great, but they didn't quite match the grandeur and success of ROY. Their biggest post-"Safety Dance" hit was '87s "Pop Goes the World" from the album of the same name (now out of print and collectible). The album featured an Ian Anderson (of Jethro Tull fame) flute solo on the song "On Tuesday" (a great song) and other singles, some of which I don't agree should have been singles off the album ("Moonbeam", which was silly). "On Tuesday" should have been released instead. Another great track "O Solo Mio", to my knowledge was not released as a single either, which was criminal. It should be noted that MWH at this point changed their line-up, and in the "Pop Goes the World" video even featured a drum-playing snowman (in classic MWH style) and "Jenny", a new be-bop bassist (didn't they learn from ABC's '85 lineup?). A CDV (now a dead format that used to be played on laserdisc players) was even made for "Pop Goes the World" featuring the video for PGTW and tracks from the album.

In 1989, MWH released the successful concept album (okay, here we go...) "The Adventures of Men and Women Without Hate in the 21st Century" (*whew!*), which featured a more "mature", synth-less sound, and was actually an excellent CD (with a great cover). Many of the songs, like the first single "Hey, Men" centered around women's issues, such as women's rights, paralleling songwriting trends of the time (see Tears for Fears' single off their '89 CD "Seeds of Love" entitled "Woman in Chains"). Other songs were pro-environment, taking the standard artistic stance that company bad and nature good. The low point of the CD was the cheat "bonus" track...a horrible "electrofied" version of "The Safety Dance".

MWH were to release one more CD since "Adventures..." in the '90s; it was called "Sideways". Gone were the listenable synth melodies of their early years in favor of a heavy guitar(!) sound. It didn't work. Many New Wave bands rebelled against their synth monikers by turning to guitars (China Crisis, Adam Ant, Duran Duran), and sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. The lone single for "Sideways" (called "Sideways") is featured on the imported MWH "Best Of" CD "Greatest Hats".

Again, for completists, Ivan (the lead singer/keyboards) and the guitarist (Stephen, Ivan's brother) have released solo albums and worked on side projects, but plan on re-forming MWH for a new tour. To investigate what the band is currently up to, check out their official website: www.menwithouthats.com. Yes, there actually was life after the '80s.

A good place to start with MWH is to purchase their greatest hits collection, which in the U.S. is aptly called "Collection". A standout track is a cover tune of Roxy Music's "Editions of You" which absolutely will have you dancing in the streets. Hopefully this will prompt the listener to purchase their actual albums, rich in great, unexplored songs.

Well, I probably told everyone more than they need to know about MWH, but they were (and are) a great New Wave band, and one that deserves to be remembered 1,000 years from now. I envy you Bill, for getting the chance to see them in '83...that must have been something. You know, in an episode of SNL, David Spade did his "Hollywood Minute" routine (a favorite) and mentioned that he too saw MWH in '83, but they didn't play "The Safety Dance" (pairing it with a Big Country comment, claiming they did not play "In a Big Country"). Was that true? Hopefully if MWH re-forms, I will finally get the opportunity to see them perform - a big thrill indeed. Heard they are actively looking for a keyboardist. Terence, are you interested?

- Andy Lalino

Being a fan of the "Green Goliath" since I was about 6 I went to see this film first day out. I knew I would be disappointed in the graphics, but everyone assured me the directing would more than make up for it. For the most part, I was disappointed. I know that the climate is wrong for the military to be the bad guys, so the HULK's encounters with the army were few and nonfatal. I thought these sequences were the best though.

The story with his father (the center of the film) seemed irrelevant by the end of the movie (He's stone, no he's water, he's sucking the HULK dry, no wait...). As for this being an artful film, that is undeniable. But should a film with a leading character who looks like a cartoon be aimed at cultured adults or the child in all of us? I hope the solid 45 minutes of this film is enough to carry it through to a sequel. There were some hints of great things to come and now that the characters are developed maybe we can get down to some real HULK action. And let's think about using some animatronics mixed in with the CG next time. Okay? Just because the technology is old, doesn't make it bad.

Thanks for listening.
Jason Liquori

Jason, my boy! Good to hear from you. I agree with pretty much everything you said about HULK, especially about the possible use of animatronics which I think would've helped this time. I don't know if I'm enthused about a sequel, but it will probably do well enough in foreign markets do warant one.
   We need a director who really knows and respects the comic. Despite rhetoric to the contrary, (and despite being a much-ballyhooed Oscar-winner), I don't really believe Ang was the best man for this job. Sure it could've been worse, but let's see what happens now. --Nolan

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 ©2003 by Michael A. Smith    "Matt's Rail" is ©2003 by Matthew Drinnenberg    "La Floridiana" is ©2003 by William Moriaty    This week's movie review of "HULK" is ©2003 by Michael A. Smith    This week's "The Digital Divide" is ©2003 by Terence Nuzum    "Ashley Lauren's Hollywood" is ©2003 by Ashley Lauren Lewis    "Creature's Corner" is ©2003 by John Lewis     "Splash Page" is ©2003 by Brandon Jones    Thanks to Rick Danford for his response to Christian Dumais    Add'l thanks to Terence Nuzum, Andy Lalino, and Jason Liquori for their input in "Letters"      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2003 by Nolan B. Canova

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