November 2nd, 2012 | by WW Arts & Culture Staff Features | Posted In: Willamette Weekend

Willamette Weekend

14 things to do in Portland, Nov. 2-4

     
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Friday, Nov. 2

Hitchcock Festival
[FILM] Alfred Hitchcock is getting extra attention this fall thanks to a feature film and an HBO original movie. See Hitchcock’s best films, including Vertigo, Psycho and Rear Window. Read more hereCinema 21, 616 NW 21st Ave. Multiple showtimes, Nov. 2-7. See cinema21.com for schedule.

Po'Shines Chitlin and Jambalaya Fest
[FOOD] Chitlins are pig intestines. It’s a Southern thing. North Portland nonprofit soul-food cafe Po’Shines raises money for the eatery’s culinary-training program for at-risk kids. Po’Shines Cafe de la Soul, 8139 N Denver Ave., 978-9000. Friday- Saturday, Nov. 2-3.

OryCon
[GEEK] Now in its 34th year, OryCon is Portland’s oldest sci-fi convention. This year’s con, titled “Apocalypse How?,” will feature a masquerade ball, art show, writers workshop, sci-fi-related vendors and special guests. Portland Doubletree Hotel, 1000 NE Multnomah St. 10 am-8 pm Nov. 2, 10 am-9pm Nov. 3, 10 am-2 pm Nov. 4. $60 at door, children 6-12 $30, children 5 and under free. 

Menomena, Radiation City, Parenthetical Girls 
[MUSIC] Taking a more sonically aggressive and lyrically focused approach than on previous albums, Menomena released its fifth full-length album in September, which, as suggested by the title, Moms, revolves around the theme of both the absence and presence of mother figures in the musicians’ lives (Seim’s mother died when he was 17; Harris was raised by a single mother). The record contains the same masterful production and quirky wordplay Menomena is known for, but this time it’s a little more personal. EMILEE BOOHER. Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside St., 225-0047. 9 pm Friday, Nov. 2. $16 advance, $18 day of show. All ages.

The Afghan Whigs, Van Hunt 
[MUSIC] Time-swept iconoclasts even during their grunge-era heyday—when they were the first Sub Pop signees outside the Pacific Northwest, and about the only act of note off that starkissed roster to leaven their fuzzedup riffs and drugged-up anomie with soulful vocals—the Afghan Whigs faded away shortly before the turn of the millennium. But as the adoring response from soldout shows among this extended reunion proves, the Ohio troupe was sorely missed. The three original members (swelling to six on tour, with sidemen picked up during vocalist Greg Dulli’s stints with the Twilight Singers and the Gutter Twins, plus various solo jaunts) still know their way around a corrosive spiral of guitars. And Dulli, ever fond of interposing bizarre cover choices between bars of the original, retains a dashing hint of menace. JAY HORTON. Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St., 284-8686. 9 pm Friday, Nov. 2. $35. 21+.


Saturday, Nov. 3

Nile Hagen: Recovery 
[VISUAL ARTS] Two years ago, while recovering from multiple concussions, Nile Hagen picked up a SLR camera and started snapping pictures. Some of the images, such as Recovery 1, with its warning sign planted on the ledge of a cliff, held resonance to the burgeoning photographer’s precarious recovery. Hagen’s images aren’t just limited to personal narrative and symbolism, however; they cover a broad range, including some rapturous photographs of landscapes and night skies. This is a promising debut from an emerging artist with an eye for composition, color value and content. RICHARD SPEER. Nov. 1-Dec. 1. Graeter Art Gallery, 131 NW 2nd Ave., 477-6041.

The Homecoming 
[THEATER] Harold Pinter’s The Homecoming is deceptively simple: Son Teddy brings bride Ruth home to meet the family, which is to say, he pushes his wife of six years into a North London all-male den of workingclass grime and impotent posturing. The men of the house jockey for some vague position; small talk is laced with resentment and the threat of bodily harm. Ruth becomes a bit too familiar with her in-laws. But realizing Pinter’s dowdy-absurdist world requires the actors to live in uncomfortably long pauses that border on missed cues, and there’s a cadence to Pinter’s dialogue that’s hard to nail down: a kind of pidgin of non sequiturs, blunt insults, meaningless asides and sporadic rage that somehow meld into effective interaction. This all plays out in a dusty bachelor pad that doubles as a decrepit shrine to a longdead woman from another era. The cramped Back Door Theater forces the audience into uncomfortable intimacy with the dismal sitting room and its attendant bitterness, rage and erotic manipulation. It’s the perfect venue. SAUNDRA SORENSON. The Back Door Theater, 4319 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 418-2960. 8 pm Thursdays-Sundays through Saturday, Nov. 17. $15-$20.

Metz, Bison Bison 
[MUSIC] Calling Metz a “guitar band” would be inaccurate. Sure, the Canadian trio wields its axes with force, and the whole construction of the group—three guys whipping up an unfussy, viciously loud racket—is, in part, a reaction against its home country’s predilection in recent years toward chamber-pop orchestras driven by glockenspiels and fluegelhorns. But, like its curmudgeonly forefather, Steve Albini, the group shows less affection for the instrument itself than the dirty, vituperative noise it can be used to create. In truth, Metz would probably play cement mixers and chainsaws if they were more convenient to haul around in a van. In any case, the group’s self-titled debut is still one hell of a scraping, gnashing guitar record, recalling the unrepentant abrasiveness of Albini’s Shellac and Big Black, while also writhing with post-hardcore angularity. Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water Ave., 894-9708. 9 pm. $10. 21+.

Mark Farina, Chali 2na, Roc C, Oh No, Mercedes, Cloudy October, SKNY MRCLS
[MUSIC] Mark Farina is a legend in the world of electronic dance music for his ability both to lift a party into the atmosphere and to bring it back down to earth. Moving from Chicago to San Francisco in the ’90s, Farina became known for DJing highenergy house sets, then spinning hours’ worth of chilled-out, downtempo music he dubbed “mushroom jazz.” He’ll showcase both styles here, joined by rapper Chali 2na, the booming voice that powered much-missed throwback hip-hop crew Jurassic 5. That’s not all, though. Along with Oh No, brother of hyperprolific godhead producer Madlib (and no slouch in that area himself), 2na and rapper Roc C will also perform a full set of songs from their new collaborative project, Ron Artiste. No matter what you think of them, whatever you do, don’t throw your drinks at the stage. Refuge, 116 SE Yamhill St. 9 pm. $15 advance, $20 day of show. 21+.

Brooklyn Castle
[FILM] The focus of Brooklyn Castle, the first directorial effort by Katie Dellamaggiore, is the incredibly successful chess team from I.S. 318, a public middle school in Brooklyn. But as much as the students and their families are the stars of this documentary, they share top billing with the collapse of the U.S. economy. That boondoggle casts a long shadow on the events of this film, as teachers and administrators struggle with budget cuts that threaten the school’s extracurricular activities and electives. You can see the weight bearing down on the adults as much as on the kids. But through this lens, the success of the chess team shine that much brighter. Same goes for the overarching goal of the film: to encourage parents and educators to protect extracurricular programs and electives. The kids in Brooklyn Castle are the icing on this dense cake. They are a charming, poised bunch with relatable personalities and appropriately lofty goals spurred on by the success they’ve achieved playing chess. Dellamaggiore presents their stories with clear eyes, avoiding the cloying emotion that could have hindered such a fine and uplifting work. ROBERT HAM. Fox Tower, 846 SW Park Ave. Multiple showtimes.


Sunday, Nov. 4

Sci-Fi Authorfest VI
[BOOKS] Recharge the inhaler and set phasers to kick-ass for the Sci-Fi Authorfest VI. More than 20 science fiction and fantasy authors will converge for a book signing, including Kevin James Breaux, Alyx Dellamonica and Todd McCaffrey. PENELOPE BASS. Powell's Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, 3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd., Beaverton. 4:30 pm. Free.

Kushal Das and Swapan Chaudhuri
[MUSIC] In this Kalakendra concert of Hindustani classical music, Calcuttaborn sitar master Das joins awardwinning, California-based tabla virtuoso Chaudhuri, who has accompanied stars from Ravi Shankar to Ali Akbar Khan to Stevie Wonder and Mark O’Connor. BRETT CAMPBELL. First Congregational Church, 1126 SW Park Ave., 228-7219. 4 pm Sunday, Nov. 4. $10-$25.

The Sea and Cake, Matthew Friedberger (of the Fiery Furnaces) 
[MUSIC] John McEntire is not only one of the finest drummers you’re likely to hear in your lifetime, but the Chicagoan is also a fantastic and underrated studio producer. Nowhere is this more apparent than on the work he has done both behind the drum kit and behind the scenes for the Sea and Cake’s latest album, Runner. McEntire lets the quartet’s modern pop bask in the glow of warm electronics and an aura that encourages Archer Prewitt and Sam Prekop’s jangly guitar lines to slink provocatively around one another. ROBERT HAM. Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside St., 231-9663. 9 pm Sunday, Nov. 4. $15. 21+.

Wreck-It Ralph
[FILM] Following the release of Tangled in 2010, Walt Disney Animation Studios announced a hiatus from princess movies. Rich Moore’s Wreck-It Ralph is the entertaining result. John C. Reilly voices the title character, a villain in an 8-bit arcade game called Fix-It Felix Jr. In the world behind the arcade screen, Ralph isn’t a villain; he’s just a guy working a thankless 9-to-5 job. He gets tossed in the mud every day and can never win a medal. The film opens with Ralph in a support group for villains, including Bowser, Zangief and Clyde from Pac-Man—a few of many cameos by beloved game characters. Ralph’s irrepressible need for validation in the form of a medal leads him into an Area 51-style shooter game before culminating in a high-speed race through the colorful candy world of Sugar Rush (ridden with product placement). Along the way, Ralph bumps into Jack McBrayer recycling his 30 Rock shtick, a gruff captain “programmed with the most tragic backstory ever” (Jane Lynch) and an obnoxious little glitch (Sarah Silverman). You don’t need to know much about old games to enjoy this alternately funny and touching film, but it rewards those who do. PG. JOHN LOCANTHI. Multiple theaters and showtimes.

 
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