Thursday, April 17, 2008

Week of April 25 - May 1

What’s On at the Tropic
By Phil Mann

Bear with me. This is going to be a little confusing, because this is a mélange of music week at the Tropic, and you’ll have to concentrate to keep the shows straight.

The big thing -- and take my word for it, it’s a Really Big Thing – is SHINE A LIGHT. What do you get when you combine Director Martin Scorsese, ten Oscar-nominated cinematographers, 18 cameras, and the Rolling Stones live-in-concert at New York’s small Beacon Theater? SHINE A LIGHT, that’s what. The cameras are all over the stage, putting you right there with the performers, creating an intimacy that has critics agog. Scorsese is no stranger to concert films, having cut his teeth in 1970 editing the Woodstock documentary, and shown his chops with The Last Waltz tribute to The Band and the Bob Dylan documentary No Direction Home. He’s got films about George Harrison and Bob Marley in the works. But for right now, SHINE A LIGHT is his music masterpiece. Stephen Holden in the New York Times says the movie provides “ample evidence that rock ’n’ roll may hold the secret of eternal vitality.” Come and join Mick and Keith and gang, along with guests Christina Aguilera and Buddy Guy, on stage at the Beacon and see why.

Meanwhile, down the hall in The George digital theater THE BAND’S VISIT is showing. Contrary to the title, this movie is not so much about music as it is about One Human Family. An Egyptian police band gets lost while coming to Israel to help dedicate a new Arab cultural center, and winds up in a forsaken Israel desert town with “no Arab culture, no Israeli culture, no culture at all.” But it all works out, in a way that has the film sweeping up audience favorite awards around the world.

And then on Thursday and Friday, May 1-2, the Key West Songwriters’ Festival takes over the main stage at the Tropic at 9pm each night. This is the third year of the Songwriters’ Festival at the Tropic, and we’re expecting as rockin’ a time as ever. The Festival is all over town on 25 stages, but the Tropic event is the big show. Headliners like Robert Earl Keen, Raul Malo and Jeffrey Steele; Songwriter Hall of Famers like John Oates; an amazing array of talent, all there in concert. Check for detailed info on the schedule. For this event only tickets are being handled by the Hog’s Breath at 296-4222 (not the Tropic Box Office).

Rounding out the film schedule are the continuing run of THE BANK JOB, the British heist movie that has become a word-of-mouth favorite around town. On the Special Events calendar, there’s an encore showing of THE RETURN OF THE KEY WEST PICTURE SHOW on Tuesday, and Amy Culver’s African Adventure, a special free show on Monday.

And don’t forget that the free Kids Movies on Saturday, April 26, will include a free drawing for a bicycle. Drawing at 12:30pm sharp. If that’s not enough of an incentive, both movies this week are looking good. Alvin and The Chipmunks for younger kids, and the new indie feature Pearl Diver for older ones.

See you at the Tropic. Always open to your comment at

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