Archive for July 2009

Weekly Film & Music Picks #2

Week #2 Movies

1. Into the Wild (2007)

This Sean Penn film, Martin Scorsese’s The Departed (2006), and Alexander Payne’s Sideways (2004) are my three favorite films of the past five years.

Based on John Krakauer’s bestselling non-fiction book, Into the Wild tells the incredible story of Christopher McCandless, a free-spirited Emory University alum who abandons his upper-middle-class family and lifestyle for an adventure to the Alaskan Wilderness. McCandless is well-portrayed by Emile Hirsch, but the film’s true star is Penn. Widely regarded as one of Hollywood’s greatest actors, Penn demonstrates outstanding directorial and screenwriting talent throughout the film (which was snubbed at the Oscars). Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder enhances Penn’s work with an original, acoustic guitar and mandolin-heavy soundtrack.

2. That Thing You Do! (1996)

Written and directed by Tom Hanks, this film celebrates music’s “one hit wonders” by capturing the rise and fall of a fictional 1964 Pennsylvania rock band (not coincidentally) named “The Wonders.” The film’s title is also the name of the band’s hit record (written by Hanks and Fountains of Wayne frontman Adam Schlesinger). This orginal track (nominated for an Academy Award) is incredibly catchy, and it could easily be mistaken for a Lennon-McCartney song on Please Please Me.
Simply put, this is one of those movies I can watch on a loop and never get tired of. Screen it, and I’m sure you’ll feel the same way.

Week # 2 Music

The Wallflowers: Collected 1996-2005

Jakob Dylan isn’t a fraction of the social leader, poet, or musical icon his father Bob is. But he’s still one of the most talented singer/songwriters of the last fifteen years. His band, The Wallflowers, burst onto the commercial music scene with their incredible 1996 album Bringing Down the Horse. After rapidly reaching stardom with their hit single (and probably my favorite song of the nineties) “One Headlight,” the band seemed to shy away from the limelight in later years. Because of this, their other albums have gone unnoticed by many music fans.

The band is currently touring the U.S. in support of their new “Greatest Hits” album. Be sure to check out their recorded work, or come see them live at The Fillmore New York in Irving Plaza on Monday, July 6th (tickets are available at

Songs to check out:
– One Headlight,  6th Avenue Heartache, The Difference, Three Marlenas, Sleepwalker, Letters from the Wasteland, Beautiful Side of Somewhere