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MOVIE REVIEW
"Mission: Impossible: III" by Mike Smith
BLACK DOG BITES BACK
Illegal Immigration Day....New Orleans Jass Festival....Visa the New Green Card? by Josh Montgomery
MIKE'S RANT
Mission: Impossible....I Didn't Mean Me!...Day Without Immigrants...OK, Now I Understand....Hey, Who Do I Have To Sleep With...Movie Notes....My Favorite Films -- Part 18: "E. T. The Extra-Terrestrial" by Mike Smith
LETTERS
Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2006!
    Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our seventh calendar year!
Number 319  (Vol. 7, No. 18). This edition is for the week of May 1--7, 2006.

Re-direction
Plus
  • The Florida Collectibles Show in St. Pete
  • The Tampa Film Review Reminder for May
  • Indie Film Review: "Delivery"
  • Fake Ronda Storms MySpace Page Removed  Announcements

  • Dear readers, this has been a most trying week, work-wise, for me and I apologize for everything running way late. I have been working overtime hours at the hell-pit of despair due to a severe staff shake-up. Anyway, we're pretty much there now (and I'm exhausted anyway), so...enjoy!

    I want to address one thing right now....

    Last week's Lettercol and the tone of PCR in general lately...
    It was made abundantly clear to me by close sources and several readers that last week's Lettercol went a little far, perhaps too far, in sharing the PCR staff's [what is to us] typical parry-and-thrust on heated political topics. It upset readers that it decended into name-calling and resulted in a demand to ban political subjects from ever being covered in PCR again, and that politics isn't "pop culture" anyway.

    I admit the Lettercol got a little out of hand. BUT....to those concerned that we'd killed each other behind-the-scenes, rest assured no damage was done within the group that wasn't already present from, say, message board exchanges in the past. Our skin is pretty thick when it comes to being attacked and we're used to it. I talk to Brandon nearly every day, and he's fine. Not crazy about being the lone target in the current melee, mind you, but fine.

    I am bullish to the point of obsession about free speech and the unbridled debate/exchange of ideas and controversy. I include politics and always have and I do consider it part of pop culture, by way of influence (some current popular movies wouldn't exist without it). It is my contention that if you give someone who really doesn't know what they're talking about enough rope, they'll hang themselves, I won't have to do it for them, and I've been right time after time. However, both sides of the issues here at PCR have taken the current Administration's policies seriously to the point of neurosis. It is the most divisive Presidency I've ever known. And I'm including Nixon and Carter's terms.

    The Lettercol as well as the Message Board was designed for commentary and interaction with the world outside, not PCR-staffers hell-bent on in-fighting. While the public thrives on edgy discussion, they probably don't care for hate-filled name-calling which this got to be after the viscious cycle of repetitive dogmas played out. I realize now our strong political feelings taking up ever-increasing room on this website may be affecting the public's perception of the current direction of PCR. While I have no intention of remaining silent in regards to the current Administration, and will not restrain my writers either, I do realize a subtle course change may be necessary to keep the peace in fandom assembled.

    Starting with the next issue of PCR (or the one after that), there will be NO commentary, reviews or special op-eds on the homepage AT ALL -- they will be linked to their own pages, and more easily avoided by those who wish to. Further, the Lettercol will be more conscientiously edited with the politically gun-shy in mind. (Full-out battles will continue on the Message Board however, even encouraged -- no changes there.) This is something that's been brewing for some time, but last week's episode finalized my resolve. After a subtle re-design, there will be a more obvious relationship to arcane pop culture, and contain only links to the week's columns and announcements, INCLUDING mine.

    And speaking of re-design...
    Even though I had just changed the design of Crazed Fanboy for 2006, I had become concerned that it still too closely resembled "blog" sites and not enough like the e-zine I intended it to be. That was the actual impetus for change well before the latest bru-ha-ha started. That said, while some people find politics uncomfortable, I cannot go quietly into the night about it and I will continue to write and seek feedback. But in the future, it will be something wary readers can avoid if desired (like the Message Board).

    And we'll get back to the business our readers are looking for: a review of popular culture by an outstanding group of writers here at PCR.

    Thanks to all for taking the time to voice your concerns. I'm bullish, but not unreasonable.


    The Florida Collectibles Show in St. Pete
    Will Moriaty signs his book at his first convention as a book-seller. Missing from this shot are assistants Josh Sullivan and Jen Thompson
    The first time I expected to see fellow PCR writer William Moriaty signing his book (William Moriaty's Florida) at a dealer's table was at the late, lamented NolanCon 2005. That bitter pill put aside for the moment, I had the opportunity to see the old boy in action at his own table at the Florida Collectibles Show, which was held last Sunday at The Coliseum in downtown St. Petersburg.

    The 15,000 sq. ft. Coliseum is a grand old establishment, dating back to the early part of the 20th century and host to many big events, concerts, meetings and exhibitions over the decades. It was an appropriate venue for this, a celebration of all things Florida-centric with an emphasis on old-time traditional Florida. If you remember weird old travel pamphlets, saved newspaper or magazine clippings, kitchy souvenirs, or recall a roadside attraction, chances are you'd've found something to your liking here. Of special interest was an appearance by The Florida Highwaymen, a group of painters who sold their wares roadside in the '50s and '60s. They are still painting and some were doing it on-the-spot at the convention.

    Author Tim Dorsey, left, and PCR publisher Nolan Canova meet at last!
    Tim Dorsey and William Moriaty, Florida authors and convention guests, share a light moment.
    In fact, I'd say at least half of the dealers were art-related, the rest a blend of knick-knacks, books, folk art, and the above-mentioned collectibles. All pretty amazing stuff, incredible talent in this area like I've always said. For a complete rundown of all guests and speaker forums, please see the announcement in PCR #318. The event organizers did not seem especially interested in media-oriented materials like videos or vinyl LPs, as none were present, at least none that we found. (Regular readers may remember Dan Tuchman commented on this situation in PCR Lettercol #317.) It's not so much pop culture and much as it is local culture. And that's OK by me!

    Speaking of books, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Tim Dorsey (Stingray Shuffle, Triggerfish Twist, The Big Bamboo), whose table was not far from William's. Tim recalled the photo gag where Will and I re-staged the back cover of Triggerfish Twist as published way back in La Floridiana, PCR #118.

    A Rogue's Gallery from the April 30, 2006 Florida Collectibles Show: from left, Terence Nuzum, William Moriaty, Charlie Carlson, Nolan Canova
    Florida's Man-In-Black, Charlie Carlson, (Weird Florida) was right next door to Will! Charlie was away from his table speaking at a special forum when we arrived, but we didn't have to wait too long before his large-framed self came into view. Reunions like these are always memorable and well worth the effort.

    Seated at William's table were St. Pete punk artist Josh Sullivan and his significant other, Jen Thompson, who were helping with table-sitting if Will needed to leave his post for whatever reason. I understand business was brisk and more good folks were introduced to the Crazed Fanboy/La Floridiana universe, always a good thing!

    My traveling companions, Terence Nuzum and Vinnie Blesi, managed to find quite a few interesting areas to investigate. While walking around, Terence and I bumped into occasional PCR op-ed writer Hugo Morley, who'd picked up quite a few things already. As we were conversing, the show's promoter, Annette (I never did get her last name), picked me out of the crowd and introduced herself. Younger than I would've expected, we had a very pleasant, but all-too-brief encounter, mainly to comment on the good turn-out and share details on a future show.

    So if you're in the mood to bathe in the rich history of vintage Florida, see some beautiful artwork, collect some cool souvenirs, and meet some famous authors along the way, all housed in the historic Coliseum of St. Petersburg, make time to visit the Florida Collectibles Show the next time it comes to town!


    The Tampa Film Review Reminder For May   by Paul Guzzo
    The next Tampa Film Review, presented by 1 Day Films, will be held on Friday, May 12 from 8 10 p.m. at International Bazaar, located at 1600 E. Eighth Ave. in the Centro Ybor Complex. Tampa Film Reviews is a monthly showcase of local independent films and is held every second Friday of the month and is free.

    Mays films will include:
    Office Devils: What it's like to work inside the evil lair of maniacal arch enemy of James Bond. Deep with in the volcano is there love starting brew? Will it be too late to do anything about it before Mr. Bond shows up himself to eradicate everyone?
    Written and Directed by Carl Homer
    Executive produced by Joe Davison
    Duck Feeder: Sandra is worried about her friend Dave who has been sitting at the park for the last couple of days feeding the ducks in hopes to meet a girl he saw there a week ago. Sandra the asks his flat mate Tim to go an have a chat with him at the park. Will Dave find happiness or just run out of bread?
    Written by Stuart Walkins
    Directed and Produced by Joe Davison
    Battered Sausage: A young boy must overcome his inabilities if he's ever to catch the chips truck. So he starts out on a course of fitness. Does he succeed of fall flat on his face?
    Written and Directed by Emily Blickem
    Produced by Joe Davison
    Veverly by Gloria Rozier
    Works by Will Dawson

    And more!

    1 Day Films feels that there are very few, if any, regular outlets in the local area for local independent filmmakers to showcase their films. Hopefully, this monthly event will provide that outlet for everyone, from experienced local independent filmmakers to local college and high school filmmakers experimenting with film production for the first time. 1 Day Films promises your film will be shown!
        Coffeehouse Film Review was awarded a 2005 Best of the Bay Award for BEST REASONS TO BELIEVE THE LOCAL FILM SCENE IS ALIVE AND WELL.
        International Bazaar is a place where the arts, culture, entertainment, food, music and dance connect in harmony. Come explore and shop for items from over 100 countries representing cultures in their traditional and modern styles. Explore, enjoy, learn and shop. They promise you an enlightened and fun experience.
        1 Day Films is looking for film submissions for future events. For more info, email pete@tooprod.com or paulguzzo@hotmail.com. All genres of films are accepted feature length, shorts, documentaries, comedy, horror, love, art, drama, foreign language, experimental etc. No pornography!

    Visit www.thetampafilmreview.com for more.


    Orlando Indie Film Review
      by Nolan Canova

    DELIVERY
    Written and directed by Jose Cassella
    Starring Matt Nelson, Tara Cardinal, Kevin O'Neal, Threa Danae Melissa Gruver, Vinny DeMauro, and Petra Bukalo
    www.KSFilms.com

    DeliveryMontgomery Goth (Matt Nelson) is a gentle loner with a traumatic past, trying to put the pieces of his life back together while working as a delivery boy for a local pizza restaurant. He has no friends, no life and no prospects for the future, until one day he meets Bibi (Tara Cardinal), and life seems to finally change for the better. But a series of events will test Montgomery's sanity and awaken the demons inside of him, unleashing a murderous rampage that will keep everyone from ordering take out for a very long, long time.

    So goes the official plot summary of Delivery, the newest release from KS Films out of Orlando. Last year I reviewed director Jose Cassella's film Wish and gave it quite the thumbs up (see PCR #278 under "Coffeehouse Film Review for July). Mr. Cassella was kind enough to send me a screener of Delivery for review.

    I'm sure many of us geek-loner types can identify with Monty, the socially inept, overweight, overaged pizza delivery boy -- and some of us can, no doubt (if unfortunately), identify with his tormentors. Monty's a sad and easy target for abuse. A huge but quiet, soft-spoken man, he's frequently mistaken for being mildly retarded or something and being a delivery boy at roughly 30-35 years old isn't helping. But there's more to Monty's story than simply his looks.

    Monty's father was a pizza delivery "boy", as was his father before him. Monty's father's portrait as "Employee of the Month" hanging on the wall of the trailer where Monty lives is a constant reminder of his roots. Sadly, it looks like he comes from a long line of losers. In a frightening series of flashbacks, it's slowly revealed that as a boy, Monty witnessed his own father's suicide, following a particularly nasty fight with the missus. The adult Monty has started to wonder if his fate is genetically sealed.

    On this particularly bad day, nothing is going right for Monty, from abusive customers who call him every name in the book, to an abusive boss who does likewise, to his car breaking down and getting towed off to an abusive impound lot. But whoever Monty encounters on his pizza route seems to enjoy being abusive. (I hate to admit it, but these are funny scenes in a cruel and sadistic kind of way. Besides, I can identify with the clerk-vs-the-abusive-customers part -- a familiar part of bottom-rung retail jobs like I have.) My favorites are the lesbos who try and get out of paying the pizza bill by sexually arousing Monty (and the audience) -- female frontal nudity alert! -- and the old lady who provokes him into cussing, resulting in still another complaint to his boss. Still...it makes you wonder how much one is expected to take before blowing a gasket.

    Thankfully, one of Monty's customers, a young female artist named Bibi (Tara Cardinal), takes some pity on him and tries to be his friend...and a little more. Unfortunately, her family thinks this must be some kind of joke. Once Monty experiences true love, however, the ongoing and unnecessary interference of everyone around him finally blows that gasket I was referring to. And things get REAL ugly and REAL bloody, REAL fast!

    Like Wish, director/cinematographer Jose Cassella makes terrific use of (what I assume to be) Hi-Def video and creates a beautiful film-look. His chops as a photographer turned me on to Wish and they're similarly employed here to enhance the viewing experience of Delivery.

    This is a well-cast movie. Besides the the sympathetic portrayal of Monty masterfully pulled off by star Matt Nelson, I fell in love with his girl-next-door co-worker at "Pie In The Sky" (love that name). She seems genuinely concerned for him...and she's a cutie. His boss is your arch-typical cigar-chomping mental case, the actor more resembling a 50-ish used car salesman. The white-trash woman at the impound lot nearly steals the show, even if she is a little heavy-handed (think Carol Burnett doing "Mama" on amphetamines).

    The special make-up effects during the show's climax are very well done and well worth the wait. Music is appropriately creepy and professionally applied.

    The funny/horrifying epilogue hints at a sequel -- if director Cassella plays his cards right, he could have a Jason-esque franchise on his hands!

    Highly recommended


    Fake Ronda Storms MySpace Page Removed   
    This is more for the amusment of Tampa Bay Area folks...

    St. Pete Times reporter Gina Vivinete has resigned after being uncovered as the mastermind behind the popular and hysterically funny Ronda Storms MySpace page.

    Long-time readers may remember that Storms is the County Commissioner who single-handedly very nearly shut down Tampa's public access television after calling it "publicly-funded pornography" in 2002. The MySpace page spoofed Storms' ultra-Christian, homophobic views and could be convincing to the casual observer as a genuine page. Storms, horrified and offended, had the page taken down. An investigation revealed Vivinete as the owner of the page.

    In a released statement, the St. Pete Times said something to the effect of Vivinete's credibility as a reporter being irreparably harmed by the incident. Storms has said in the past that she believes the St. Pete Times and The Tampa Tribune are involved in conspiracies to harm her reputation. I mean worse than she already does to herself. So this incident should, of course, prevent anything like this from ever happening again.

    Gina....The Weekly Planet has a pretty good sense of humor, check 'em out.


    Announcements
    Happy Birthday Wishes go out to Steve Beasley, currently a resident of New Zealand. Steve turns 49 years old today as I write this (Cinco de Mayo, May 5th).


    Reminder to everyone about the Tampa Giant Comics Con and Toy Show this Sunday at the Doubletree Inn on Cypress Ave in Tampa. There will be comics writers and artists there, plus indie film people. For more information, please visit their website at: http://www.comicbookconventions.com/tampaconvention


    From Concerned Citizens for CITIZEN X (CCCX),
       In a daring escape attempt out the back of a Blam's Club semi-trailer, Citizen X apparently got away somewhere near Arcadia. Citizen X took the opportunity to flee during a scanning failure of RFID stock to sneak away during this backroom crisis.
       We currently have members frantically searching for Citizen X before the entire Supercenter crew is brought in with their scanners in hand, as it had been rumored that Citizen X had a RFID chip implanted in his wrist. He may be running through the hostile territory of Arcadia as we speak, with his hand cut off at the wrist.


    FREE COMIC BOOK DAY
    As always, our main goal for the Fifth Annual Free Comic Book Day is to promote reading to children through the use of comic books. We give out three free comics to anyone who shows up and there will be plenty of other bonuses given away as well. We always team up with local schools, libraries and other businesses to get the word out. This year's Free Comic Book Day is Saturday, May 6th beginning at Noon and going on until at least 9:00 PM. This year, we brought some pretty interesting friends along, so it should be a great time for everyone. You can find more general info at: http://www.freecomicbookday.com/

    We're going to have some members of the 501st Legion who are Star Wars Stormtroopers, Clone Troopers and others who spread the magic of Star Wars through incredibly authentic costumes. They team up with a lot of charities and we'll be making a donation in their name to a charity for their agreeing to help us promote Free Comic Book Day this year. We're most likely going to donate to www.ForKatie.org , a great charity which was actually set up by the 501st Legion.

    We're also having Terry Cronin and Pat Martin from Students of the Unusual, a horror comic produced by Terry and some other local creators that's gotten wonderful reviews all over. They also run the Melbourne Independent Filmmakers Festival through 3 Boys Productions.

    Famous Faces has teamed up with some local libraries and schools to help promote reading, especially towards younger kids who have so many other ways to spend their free time. We've also bringing back our summer reading program at West Melbourne Public Library where children can get coupons for free comics anytime they read a library book all summer long. We should have some other libraries aboard as well, but still working out the details.

    If there's any way for you to spread the word about the 501st Legion and all the great things they do to help charities, I think that would make for a great story. Terry has also been featured on Tech TV, G4 and the Independent Film Channel as he's been great about getting all sorts of publicity for his innovative comics. Check out his site if you get a chance at www.StudentsOfTheUnusual.com . They will be giving out and signing comic books and reviewing artist's portfolios as well.

    This year's selection of Free Comic Book Day issues is the best one we've ever seen with something for everyone. Marvel put out their first ever original story for FCBD with new characters the Runaways featuring the Astonishing X-Men in preparation of all the excitement surrounding X-Men 3: The Last Stand coming out later this month. DC put out two wonderful comics this year. One is aimed at younger readers featuring the Justice League Unlimited based off the hit cartoon, while the other one is aimed at all ages with something for literally any age group: Superman/Batman is an action packed over the top book written by Jeph Loeb of Lost and Smallville. We've also got some great Star Wars, Disney, Transformers, Simpsons and GI Joe comics for this year's big event. It should be a lot of fun, and more than anything, we always get a few children hooked on comics and reading in general, and that's the real reason we participate in such a great event.

    Thanks,

    Rick Shea
    Famous Faces & Funnies
    3146 Lake Washington Road
    Melbourne, FL 32934
    321-259-3575 store
    321-432-8049 cell

    -------------------------------------------
    Dear Students,
    The Students of the Unusual were invited to be part of the festivities at Famous Faces and Funnies in Melbourne next Saturday. As many of you know May 6th will be "Free Comic Book Day" and the good folks (Rick, Steveo & Dave) of Famous Faces & Funnies will be providing free comic books for those who come out. (all ages!)

    Pat, Jeff, myself and hopefully Bob (3 Boys Productions) will be meeting and greeting and reviewing aspiring artist portfolios as well as promoting our new special issue that is in the works and talking up the recent Students of the Unusual Filmmaking Contest! Lots of great filmmakers have been involved in this project like Ricardo Porven, Steven Shea, John Taddeo and many more! There was recently a nice article about it at The Pulse posted by Jennifer Contino.

    STUDENTS OF THE UNUSUAL FILM UPDATE
    One of the fabulous new stories we'll have in the new issue is an old myth about the "Womanatee" illustrated by the great Dove McHargue!

    In what can only be seen as Kismet, today I was shocked to see a pod of our loveable manatees mating in the Indian River! Spring-time is certainly here. I snapped a picture and I hope you enjoy it.

    Hope to see you next Saturday!

    Best regards,
    Terry Cronin
    Students of the Unusual

    Please consider making a donation to help support Crazed Fanboy! Click on the "donate" link below and give whatever you can. I sincerely thank you for any and all consideration.---Nolan
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    "Mike's Rant" is ©2006 by Michael A. Smith     "La Floridiana" is ©2006 by William Moriaty     "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2006 by Michael A. Smith    "Citizen X" is ©2006 by Vinnie Blesi    "My Middle Toe Is Longer Than Yours" is ©2006 by Mark Terry      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2006 by Nolan B. Canova    
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