Hot Docs – Weekend Primer

Posted on by Ricky in Hot Docs, Movies | Leave a comment

Toronto – Every year, around this time, Toronto is home to the great Hot Docs Festival. It is North America’s largest documentary festival. There are all kinds of documentaries about all things that will probably depress you (as most documentaries do), but every year there are some quality documentaries that come out. Lets face it, documentaries are good information pieces and then when you go out afterwards to the bar or meet a girl at a party, you can recite some info you learn from these documentaries and impress them with your knowledge of the problems that some random kids in some non important third world country has. You can be like ‘Yea? Darfur? Have you heard of the issues they have in kazmikistan? Yea, its FAR WORSE then Darfur .. the kids there eat glass for desert’. It’ll get you props. Specially if you can shed a tear.

Anyways, here is some documentaries that interest me:

Emoticons (w/ Kids with Money)
Its about six girls obsessed with the internet. “these girls are lost souls in search of contact, consolation, help, friendship and love. “. I say, let them be obsessed with the internet, I work for an internet company, these people pay my bills probably.

Kids With Money
Its like a documentary version of the Hills, I gather. Some statement about consumerism is probably made.

7:15 @ Rom,

Carny (9:45 pm Saturday at Royal, other times available)
I imagine its about Carnies, so thats interesting enough by itself. It can also be about Carnivores, like Lions and Pumas. That’d be cool too. Either way, it should be good. Theres also a British Sea Power song called Canvey Island. I started that sentence thinking it was Carney Island, but I was wrong.

Montery Pop (11:55 pm Saturday, Bloor)
This movie is about the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967, during the Summer of Love. You know, 1967, that year was nicely recapped in Forrest Gump. Expect a lot of Janis Joplin, and other hippies in this documentary. Also, Rick James saying ‘Coke .. its a hell of a drug’. Haha if only. I should make documentaries.

The Last Continent (12:45 @ Bloor, Sunday)
Its about Anarctica, its made by French-Canadians. Supposed to have some gorgeous pictures, being the Earthy guy that I am, that stuff appeals to me.

Junior (sunday, 7 pm at Alliance)
A documentary about Arnold’s 1993 movie about a man who gets preg– No, its actually a french canadian documentary about the lives of junior players. If you are a hockey fan, this will appeal to you.

Ps. Yes I know I don’t really have much information on these documentaries, but you can always click on the link to read the actual synopsis. I mean, those guys probably paid some publicist who probably spent a few hours typing up those descriptions.

Heres a song for all your troubles

Concert Review: Hot Chip, April 16, The Phoenix

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts | 10 Comments

Toronto – Hot Chip live is awesome. Awesome awesome awesome. Theres really no other way to review this concert. The opening act – sucked. I don’t know who they were, but they seemed to think that rhyming in front of some electro beats can get it done. NOPE. They also ended one of the songs with one of those really large distortions of sound or something that was absolute rubbish and made me want to go cry for mama. Thank god they were done rather quickly.

Hot Chip came on some time after that, the break between the opening act and them was not very long, and that was great. From that point on, for about an hour and 20 minutes maybe, it was pure mayhem. Consisting of maybe five people or something, the band came on stage, said hi to everyone and proceeded to just rock it. I think they started out with ‘Shake a Fist’. I can’t recall. Either way, they went to ‘Hold On’ right afterwards and the concert shifted from a wow to a WHAAAAAAAAAAT. Their album material is nothing compared to their live show. The energy, the beats, the seamless transition from one song to the next – they had most people in the Phoenix moving (it is Toronto, town of the non mover mans).

By the time the faint beats of ‘Over and Over’ started churning thru the system halfway thru the set, they pretty had reach the point where you are like ‘THIS IS AWESOME’ to random strangers around you, and yes, that song sounds better live (I know, its possible) then it does on album.

Anyway, I could go on, but I am thinking you get the idea already. Hot Chip is spectacular live, you can not miss them if they are visiting your village. I think I danced so much I lost half the weight I gained while dining on fabulously great food in Asia. So that’s another bonus.

5 / 5

You can tell a concert is great when you are still pumped about it the next day. Now that’s a good time.

Grand Theft Bus, April 12th, El Mocambo

Posted on by Wade in Concerts, Everything | 4 Comments

(Toronto) This past Saturday night, the well established Fredericton band, Grand Theft Bus, made an appearance here in Toronto for a CD release party at the El Mocambo for their latest, Made Upwards. As soon as I walk into the bar with my entourage of transplanted Frederictonians, I was greeted by fellow Frederictonian #84873, Chantelle Moobear, and her crew of transplanted Frederictonians. We gave each other the secret handshake and bought ourselves several rounds of Keiths. The night was off to a good start.

The last time I saw Grand Theft Bus live, some time in 2001, I remember them having a jammy, musical improvisation feel to them. Seeing them at the El Mocambo on Saturday night, I didn’t get this feel so much. They were tight, loud, a bit poppy, but still had the funk feel that I remembered. They were so funky that I found myself shuffling amongst my fellow Maritimers on the always sticky El Mocambo floor. The stand out performance of the night came from their shirtless drummer, Bob Deveau, who I was informed by several members of my entorage that he is one wicked drummer. Grand Theft Bus have some mad drums. Enough said.

If you ever find yourself on a bar stool somewhere between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia looking to make some conversation with the locals, throw out the name Grand Theft Bus and see who you hook.

Have a look for Grand Theft Bus in Halifax this Friday, April 18th, at the Seahorse.

Thanks to Kyle at Forward Music Group (more on them later)

Travel Review: Ocean Park, Hong Kong

Posted on by Ricky in Everything | 1 Comment

Hong Kong – Yup, this blog covers anything and everything. This is your one stop shop. Obviously, I just spent the past three weeks in Asia so most of my posts will be Asia related. Lets take a look at Ocean Park in Hong Kong. I will pretty much say this, Ocean Park is a top notch tourist attraction. One of the best I’ve been to, and I have been to both Sea Worlds, Disneyland, Disneyworld, Universal Studios in Florida and LA, MGM, Six Flags and Fujiama Park in Japan among others.

A little info first – Ocean Park is both an amusement park and an aquarium. It has two main areas, and the areas are separated by mountains, so you can take a cable car ride from one to the other. The cable car ride is spectacular, as you get a good view of the South China sea:

cable car

So what makes it so great? Well, its got a bit of everything. Lets take a look at the animal side – We got the freakin Pandas, which are arguably the cutest animals on Earth. You can literally stare at these things for hours and not be bored. I don’t even know why.

Then there is also a Jellyfish exhibit, Dolphins, Sea Lions, Seals, Sting Ray, Shark tank and a very impressive aquarium. The aquarium is crazy good, and has all kinds of massive fish, manta rays and sea turtles in it. Its hard to describe how many fish they have in that thing. I was wondering what they would taste like, but thats me. The jellyfish exhibit is great. At first I wasn’t even sure if I was watching a tv or was it an actual tank. As far as animals are concerned, the only thing they lack is a Killer Whale, otherwise there is not much u can complain about. They even have Parrots, Owls and Hawks and stuff like that.

The picture above shows you some of the amusement park rides that the park houses. There are several more and while they aren’t the craziest rides, you do still get some excitement. Think about it, these rollar coasters (theres 3) are all on the side of a frickin mountain over looking the ocean. So when you are up at the top, you feel as if you are higher then you are. I think they are building a really really big rollar coaster as well, so it’ll be improved.

The lineups can get a bit long at times, so go early. Theres a lot of shows to watch (dolphin show, sea lion show, bird show, feeding of the sharks) so make sure you have time for that too. The food there is decent, and for the non experimental people, theres a mcdonalds in the amusment park for you.

This place is a definite must go for all tourists to HK.