Author Archive for Alan Zilberman

DC Shorts, Showcase 2: Experimental Narratives, Life on a Bike, and Creepy Dolls

Short films offer an opportunity for filmmakers to experiment with genre and narrative. In DC Shorts' Showcase 2, we see the product of some of those experiments. A handful of the selections strip away plot until there's barely anything left. But the best short in Showcase 2 (The Morning After) is also the most conventional, [...]

One Track Mind: The Raised by Wolves, Sadie Hawkins

Standout Track: No. 3, "Freddy Freaker," from Sadie Hawkins, the debut album from Bethesda band The Raised by Wolves. An ideal end-of-summer track, it channels straightforward power-pop, layering synths over bright guitars. But it's the guitar work of Ben Eskin, 23, that pushes the song into memorable territory. At first, he's content to sound like [...]

Nat Faxon and Jim Rash talk The Way Way Back

In the understated, observant coming-of-age comedy The Way Way Back, Duncan (Liam James) is not looking forward to the summer. His father is out of the way, so he’s spending it with his mom (Toni Collette) and her overbearing new boyfriend Trent (Steve Carrell) at a small beach community. Trent is the sort of guy [...]

One Track Mind: Wild Fruit, “Barn Burner”

Standout Track: No. 1, "Barn Burner," the opening track from Wild Fruit’s new 7-inch. The song—a remastered version of a tune originally released in 2012—gets a charge from its fuzzy guitars and a throbbing bass line, but it's Franck Cordes' snarling vocals that’ll push your hair back. When Cordes sings, "I've been around long enough [...]

Source Festival: A Frontier, as told by the Frontier, Reviewed

If you can get past the cumbersome title, A Frontier, as told by the Frontier is a smart coming-of-age drama about our need to preserve ritual. Playwright Jason Gray Platt constructs his unlikely plot around an unspoken apocalypse: There was some sort of cataclysm, and four naïve teenagers only have a dim sense of what [...]

Source Festival: Momentum, Interrupted, Reviewed

The Source Festival offers more than innovative theater. In addition to its full-length plays, there are strings of 10-minute plays where playwrights struggle with a truncated length, and then there are “Artistic Blind Dates,” which are weirder still. In the Blind Dates, artists from different disciplines collaborate for six months on a unique piece of [...]

A Boozy Brunch With Imperial China

We’re halfway done with our meal when Imperial China frontman Brian Porter says to his bandmate Matthew Johnson, “Patrick is giving away his drum kit.” He delivers the news in a matter-of-fact way, as if it’s a foregone conclusion, and Johnson is not exactly surprised. (Update: Gough denies the allegations.) Instead, he’s a little sad and [...]

Interview: Jesse Eisenberg Talks About Now You See Me and Never Watching Movies

Actor Jesse Eisenberg is known for playing neurotic, awkward characters. In his 2003 debut Roger Dodger, he played a bumbling high school kid who asks his chauvinistic uncle for help with women, and of course, he earned an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg in 2010’s The Social Network. His latest is [...]

Imperial China Announces Its Final Show

Bummer: D.C. experimental punk band Imperial China has decided to break up. On its website, the band writes:
After three albums and 94 shows, Imperial China has decided to call it quits so we can focus on our jobs and new music projects. Our last show will be Wednesday, May 29, at the Black Cat with [...]

Silver Circle, Reviewed

Dystopias are supposed to serve as cautionary tales. In 1984 and Brave New World, respectively, George Orwell and Aldous Huxley borrowed the tropes and rhythms of fiction to build terrifying worlds that showed us where we could be headed if we weren't careful. With the new independent animated film Silver Circle, director Pasha Roberts tries to continue [...]