The Five Best Films I Saw At SXSW 2017

Noel Wells SXSW

by Andrew Osborne

Does moviegoing matter? And with so many options for consuming entertainment, is there still a distinction between small and big screens?

In the mainstream blockbuster world, theaters have become theme park attractions with vibrating D-BOX seats and 3-D Imax beasties tearing each other to CGI shreds.

But what makes a low-budget indie worth leaving the couch? It’s a question the South by Southwest film festival in Austin, TX wrestles with year after year, and here are five solid answers from the 2017 edition.

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10 Alternative Facts About Veep

by Andrew Osborne

Joe Biden may have been the most accomplished former vice president to speak at this year’s SXSW multi-media festival in Austin, Texas — but Selina Meyer was easily the funniest (in clips from the upcoming sixth season of “Veep”, premiering April 16th) as the cast and executive producers of HBO’s savage political comedy revealed the following alternative facts about their show to real news panel moderator Chuck Todd…

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Statesmanship!

palpatrump

Reported by Andrew Osborne

In a final meeting of the Galactic Senate before dissolving it, Emperor Palpatine called for unity while vowing to crush the Rebellion and their “pitiful little band.” Forcefully denying reports that his Jedi Council appointee Anakin had, in fact, slaughtered all the younglings in the Jedi Temple, Palpatine nevertheless declared martial law and banned all incoming hyperspace travel until further notice. Asked for his reaction to the speech, Senator Binks (a recent Palpatine appointee to the Bureau of Speaking Correctly) responded, “Ooh! Me-sa think he-sa very statesmanlike to not Force Blast any-sa people or Tweet-sa for whole time he-sa talking. I-sa worried before, but now me-sa trust-sa him completely and know-sa Empire gunna make-a galaxy great again, okeeday?”

Best of 2016: Movies

by Andrew Osborne

hero_dont-think-twice-2016

Many films are well-made, but the ones that land on my own personal Top 10 each year have something more: some memorable element, some unique quality or emotional connection that reverberates down deep — a special something that was in fairly short supply this year, with the following notable exceptions:

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Best of 2016: TV

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by Andrew Osborne

Once again this year, most of the best writing, directing, and acting was on the small screen, as exemplified by my picks for 2016’s must-see TV:

Wild Cards (shows I’ve heard good things about yet aren’t on my list ’cause I haven’t really watched them):  Black Mirror, Bojack Horseman, This Is Us, The Americans, The Good Place

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Best of 2016: Books

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by Andrew Osborne

I didn’t have much time for reading this year (partly because I was preparing my own novel, Building Heaven for publication…now available in Kindle and paperback editions!) — but the following fiction, non-fiction, and funny books still managed to penetrate my pea-brain in the Annus Horribilis that was 2016.

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Best of 2016: Audio & Live Performance

johnny

by Andrew Osborne

There were many things to hate about 2016 (including some of the events referenced on this very list)…but here are the performances, live and otherwise, that helped me to get through the drama of this accursed Year of the Monkey.

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