I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book. - Groucho Marx

TODAY IN NETWORK AWESOME MAGAZINE


by Brian Correia
Feb. 18, 2018
To paraphrase Charlie Murphy, disco is a hell of a drug. Disco, that sparkly spin on (or bastardization of, depending on how attached you are to the Black Flag patch on your chained-out bomber jacket) rhythm and blues, pretty much had the whole world dancing in the 1970s. The mirror balls flew high, the bass-lines bumped, and the floors lit up1. Everyone from your dad to Liza Minelli was boogie-oogie-oogie-ing until they just couldn’t boogie no more. The epicenter of this movement, if you could get in, was Studio 54. The drug of choice was, of course, cocaine.
Brian Correia is a budding computer scientist and aspiring writer from Boston, Massachusetts who couldn't decide which hip-hop lyric to put in his byline. The top three, in no particular order, were as follows: “cooler than a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce,” “spiced out Calvin Coolidge loungin' with six duelers,” and “I got techniques drippin' out my buttcheeks.” He is on Twitter (@brianmcorreia) and Tumblr (brianmcorreia.tumblr.com) like the rest of the kids.

by Johnathon Davis
Feb. 15, 2018
When The Video Dead was released (straight to video in fact) in 1987, the home movie viewing experience was a very different thing compared to what it is today. There weren’t any free streaming devices or any of the other services many of us take for granted. Instead we had the once mighty neighborhood video rental store. It was often a very Mum and Pop kind of affair, a symbol of simpler times where hometown charm had not been beaten to the ground by pop culture. The selection of these stores was always eclectic, and varied based upon each respective owners individual tastes. There was a “we’ve got a little bit of everything” air about these places which later corporate contenders decidedly lacked a great deal of. Sure Hollywood Video was great and all when they first came to my town in North Dakota, but given the choice between them and old time local favorite Video Magic not much further away I don’t have to tell you which one I frequented the most...
Johnathon lives in Portland, Oregon. He makes collages. He also writes things for Network Awesome, as well as his weekly movie review blog which can be found at http://fshomevideo.blogspot.com. You should read it, it's really terrific.

by Brian Correia
Feb. 5, 2018

In the eponymous book that accompanied the release of Slacker in 1992, director Richard Linklater helped to describe his first major film with a staggering quote from Greil Marcus' Lipstick Traces: "The moment of true poetry that brings all the unsettled debts of history back into play... a near absolute loathing of one's time and place... a voice of teeth ground down to points... the note held until disgust turns into glee." Marcus may have written this about the punk movement, but Linklater’s was right on the money to include it. For one thing, Slacker is a punk song of a film – plotless and made with untrained actors on a shoestring budget. The passage, particularly that last part about disgust-glee, sums up Slacker perfectly.

Richard Linklater has lived in Texas for his entire life. He was born in Houston in 1960, went to Sam Houston State University, dropped out, and moved to Austin. He spent his early days there working odd jobs, “reading and eating Hershey's Kisses,” and presumably occupying himself with thoughts and activities not too far removed from those of the oddballs in Slacker. Linklater claims he was “completely oblivious to the fact that anyone of [his] generation might or could be doing anything.” It was a fateful Dead Kennedys concert, according to Linklater himself, that inspired him to do something. Having become increasingly interested in film, he picked up a camera. He has not put it down yet.

Punk is as appropriate a touchstone as any for Slacker -- the film has also been likened to those of the hippie era and is a painfully evident product of the early nineties. But its DIY spirit is nothing if not a...
Brian Correia is a budding computer scientist and aspiring writer from Boston, Massachusetts who couldn't decide which hip-hop lyric to put in his byline. The top three, in no particular order, were as follows: “cooler than a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce,” “spiced out Calvin Coolidge loungin' with six duelers,” and “I got techniques drippin' out my buttcheeks.” He is on Twitter (@brianmcorreia) and Tumblr (brianmcorreia.tumblr.com) like the rest of the kids.

by Brian Correia
Feb. 4, 2018

For the greater part of the twentieth century (and especially in the wake of the World Wars), Italy was a hotbed for film. Whether it be the precocious kid from The Bicycle Thief, the cold hard stare of “The Man With No Name,” or the technicolor inventive gore of giallo, Italian filmmakers have produced more than their share of legendary celluloid. The singular career of Federico Fellini alone assures that Italian films will never be left out of a “best films evar” conversation among the type of people who refuse to call movies anything but “films”. And rightfully so. But like any other cinematic heavyweight, Italy has produced its fair share of films of... questionable merit. In fact, as the careers of old standbys like Fellini and Mario Bava faded to black, the late seventies and majority of the eighties saw Italian film fall into a bona fide slump. Poorly made and derivative flicks became the order of the day.

In that era, poorly made and derivative science fiction flicks were especially prominent. In the wake of Star Wars’s massive success, Italy wasn’t the only country scraping the bottom of the barrel for two bit robots, bleeps, bloops, pastel laserbeams, space aliens, and tight-fitting costumes (In fact, I’d venture to say that every movie studio in the world probably produced at least one turd in the process of trying to get that George Lucas money) but based on director Alfonso Brescia’s output alone, Italy was among the worst.

Enter today’s selection, Cosmos: The War of the Planets AKA Battle of the Stars AKA Cosmo 2000: The Planet Without a NameAKA Year Zero: War in Space AKA Red Skull Caps For Everybody...

Brian Correia is a budding computer scientist and aspiring writer from Boston, Massachusetts who couldn't decide which hip-hop lyric to put in his byline. The top three, in no particular order, were as follows: “cooler than a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce,” “spiced out Calvin Coolidge loungin' with six duelers,” and “I got techniques drippin' out my buttcheeks.” He is on Twitter (@brianmcorreia) and Tumblr (brianmcorreia.tumblr.com) like the rest of the kids.

by Ryk McIntyre
Feb. 4, 2018

Ah, the 1980s... the global tension, the regrettable fashions, and Max Headroom. It all made so much sense to us back then. Now, looking back, it looks as absurd as wearing leg-warmers while standing in line to buy Spandau Ballet records. And yet, at the time, so many of us did just that.

For the uninitiated, Max Headroom (played by Matt Frewer) was a distillation of so much of the 1980-s zeitgeist: the slightly-edgy (read: on cocaine), stream-of-consciousness (read: borderline hip Tourette’s Syndrome), tending towards shallow smarm that encapsulated our vision of the Future (read: we were pretty sure we were doomed at the time)...

Ryk McIntyre is a Multi-Hyphen sort of person. Poet, critic, performer, workshop facilitator and co-host at both GotPoetry! Live (Providence) and Cantab Lounge (Cambridge,MA). He's been living in RI for the past 6 years, with his wife and daughter. Ryk has performed his work at Boston's ICA, NYC's New School, Portsmouth, NH's Music Hall and Lollapalooza, to name just a few. He has toured the US, performing in countless Poetry open mics and festivals.  He turned down Allen Ginsburg once.