We've all been in the position where our party friends crap out on us at SXSW. Someone gets too drunk, too sober, has a fight with his girlfriend, her boyfriend, or, worse than anything else, runs out of cash.
Art Attack found some people at SXSW that you should seek out to party with, instead of your own general-population losers. These people are party with a capital P, or at least they photograph well.More »
Wednesday was the first official day of music at SXSW here in Austin, with a black cloud of denim, beards and loafers overtaking the city from the Interactive nerds.
Photos By Marco Torres Dave Grohl is seen here at his keynote speech sporting mature reading glasses, a crisp button-up, rock cred, and knowing full well your girlfriend would throw acid in your face to make out with him for ten minutes.
This also means that the fashion scene got a whole lot easier on the eyes, or more questionable, depending on your POV.
Let's look at this year's crop of Sixth Street models, shall we?More »
The concept of Ubisoft's upcoming Rocksmith video game is simple enough to explain to someone: Imagine Guitar Hero with a real guitar. And now that Guitar Hero has shuffled off this mortal coil and into cold storage until another generation's irony-hungry hordes pick it up, Rocksmith should pick up the slack.
Craig Hlavaty Guitar Hero for purists?
Last Thursday during SXSW in Austin, I got a sneak peek at Rocksmith when I was invited to a tour bus outfitted with three or four stations set up with the game, before the bus embarked through the city so the rest of the population could try their hand at it.
The game doesn't come out until September, but it's very much in its final stages of development. The version of the game I played may be somewhat different come release.
The concept of Rocksmith is this: You can plug any electric guitar into the Rocksmith hub (which looks like a guitar pedal), put on a headset, and play to your favorite rock-and-roll songs. Instead of colored keys on a tiny, plastic guitar, you have a real guitar experience.More »
True story: Art Attack was supposed to be in Mexico this week, but we forgot to renew our passports. So instead of hitting the beach, we're accepting the best consolation prize the world has ever known, a long weekend in Austin and SXSW. True, we've got three members of the under-10 set tagging along, but the feat is a lot more family-friendly than it used to be.
Jenny Staff Johnson The Silos at Yard Dog: Family-friendly...up to a point.
Time was, we got through the fest fueled entirely by bourbon, Mexican Coke and movie-theater-sized boxes of candy. Now we plan ahead and get home before dark: There's a box of apples and cookies in the car in case the kids get peckish.More »
Buck Brannaman is a no-nonsense man. This kind of comes with the territory with cowboys, but even among the stoic men and women who spend their lives around horses and cattle, Buck stands out. He's a former trick roper, a family man, a partial inspiration for The Horse Whisperer, a master-class horseman, and a victim of horrific child abuse. In the fantastic documentary Buck, director Cindy Meehl illustrates these things are not coincidental; they are, in fact, the causes and effects that have made Buck who he is. Meehl's documentary unfolds with ease and skill, covering a couple years in Buck's life as he travels around the country performing four-day horse clinics that teach people how to work with their horses, a process that usually requires them to overhaul their own personalities a bit. He makes a convincing and heartfelt case for the care and proper treatment of these animals, and he never sounds preachy or condescending. He's just plain honest. As one of his friends says of Buck, "God had him in mind when he made a cowboy."
Buck Brannaman, subject of the documentary Buck
Sports documentaries often have an edge over other non-fiction stories simply because they've already got a narrative built in: Seasons start and end, players rise and fall, and successes and failures on the field are easily projected onto the broader lives of the men and women involved as symbolic of their own struggles. But that doesn't mean all sports docs are automatically good. In fact, it's just the opposite. It takes a genuine storyteller to make the kind of skillful film that can rise above the rest. Thankfully, co-directors Dan Lindsay and T.J. Martin are that good, and their film, Undefeated, is an uplifting, bittersweet, thoroughly moving look at the lives of some young men learning to be stronger than their years. It screened recently at the South by Southwest Film Festival.
There's something amazing and endearing about watching Flea cry while he talks about how his daughter gave his life real meaning. This is, well, Flea: crazy-good bassist, crazy-crazy rock star, tormenter of Marty McFly. And here he is, openly weeping as he talks about the way his life was enriched by having a kid, and how he learned to grow up in ways he'd never imagined. Such are the charms of The Other F Word, an entertaining, heartfelt, and engaging documentary that recently played the South by Southwest Film Festival. Director Andrea Blaugrund Nevins starts with an interesting hook -- what happens when punk rockers become dads? -- and uses it as a springboard for fascinating looks into the personal lives of some of the biggest names in the genre over the past 30 years.
Flea in The Other F-Word
It would have been so easy for Turkey Bowl to totally fall apart. The brief film (about 62 minutes) takes place in real time as a group of friends in their late 20s come together for a touch-football game that gradually reveals more about their relationships. It almost screams "film festival gimmick." Happily, the film is so much more than that. It's a hilarious and engaging story that's perfectly paced and wonderfully acted. The short running time is ideal, too. It would have been possible for writer-director Kyle P. Smith to pad the film with tangential subplots that dig more into the flirtations between certain pairs, or reach for some yearning and probably inaccurate summation of life at that age. But to do so would have compromised the enjoyable, sweet, and fantastic comedy he's created. It is, honestly, the most fun I've had at a movie in a long time.
Last week, we gave you our picks for the best bets at the SXSW Interactive Festival in Austin, which is becoming a hot ticket to rival the flagship music festival. Today we look forward to the SXSW Film Festival (March 11 - 20), which for years has been Texas' highest profile film-industry conference.
And while early reports suggested that SXSW's biggest premiere this year would be Jodie Foster's The Beaver, with comeback-hopeful Mel Gibson as a man who combats his depression with a beaver hand puppet, we're happy to say there are several much more intriguing films in the offering (though unfortunately Austin-area resident Terrence Malick won't be screening his much anticipated Tree of Life--boo).
Click ahead for our top five picks.More »