Days of Lore

The’s: “We will rock you.”

The’s: “We will rock you.”

Just a pinch of Lynch I like weird people. I like weird food, weird music. And I like weird films. But it’s been a while since I’ve seen a David Lynch film. The last one I watched was probably Lost Highway way back when, so I was a little out of practice going into the screening of his latest three-hour epic Inland Empire at the ninth annual San Francisco Independent Film Festival.

Accompanied by the No. 1 member of the “Lynch mob” (I just made that up off the top of my head), CN&R Calendar Editor Jason Cassidy, I crept into the darkened Castro Theatre about a half-hour into the proceedings. I saw Laura Dern’s striking features. I became frightened …

Don’t think, just watch It wasn’t until about an hour in that I remembered there is an art to watching the artiness of Lynch, at least for this novice: Don’t try to follow the “plot.” Don’t try to analyze. Just sit back and let the freaky freak you.

The film takes place on the set of a movie where the actors are informed that the original version was never completed after two of the actors were murdered. That’s all I got. From there Lynch blurs the lines between reality and the filming of the movie. I couldn’t tell what was real, which day it was, who was who—but I could appreciate Lynch’s use of lighting to create creepy mood, and his use of digital film for a raw and grainy effect. He then goes and drops in a couple of dance numbers, and a room full of people with rabbits’ heads sitting idly to off-timed canned laughter (the latter taken from a 2002 Web-only Lynch film called Rabbits). Lynch might be insane. Most likely he’s tapping into a dark corner of gray matter that we all have but are afraid to use. Inland Empire is scheduled for release on DVD in June.

Pornos and pancakes This being the opening night of the film festival, there was a swanky after-party for those holding the magical golden ticket stub. Not only that, it was at a place called the Porn Palace … so I guess it was more skanky than swanky (again, off the top of my head).

We entered the hallway to a wall of chains and whips and leather to one side and a small jail cell on the other. The inside resembled the interior of a castle—with ornate pillars and torture devices on the walls—except this castle was filled with hipsters, three bars, a couple of DJs and a large screen with, what else, porn.

We ate quesadillas and pancakes and drank beer and some sort of sweet, vodka-splishy-splashy concoction, listened to dance music, people-watched and watched hard-core porn—then Jason wanted to leave before I could see how the movie ended. I was very, very, very, very, very frustrated.

Tuning in Tokyo One other film I wish I could have seen at the film festival was Pamela Valente’s Rock ‘n Tokyo, which takes a look at four bands from Japan’s underground rock scene, including the extremely popular and incredibly loud Guitar Wolf, all-female rockabilly trio The’s, Jet Boys (Tokyo garage band whose singer/guitarist likes to show off his goods) and Nine.

Guess we’ll have to wait for the DVD (there’s no release date as of yet). In the meantime, catch a glimpse at

Safe and sorry I received an e-mail this week notifying me that Valentine’s Day also marked the beginning of National Condom Week.

The e-mail read: “The Butte County Public Health Department would like to remind people to love responsibly, protecting themselves against the risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV by practicing safe sex, which includes using latex condoms.”

Sage advice, I thought, although STI just doesn’t sound as sexy as STD.

The e-mail continued: “If you have any problems with this file, please call me.”

“Oh no,” I thought. “Maybe this file is infected!” Lucky for me I had, indeed, put a condom on that morning. I proceeded … and so far so good.