Cannibals meet David Bowie

Wow, time is flying by with the 3rd week of ORF having come and gone! The crowd this week loved the mix of stand-up comedy, David Bowie inspired brit-pop on stage, and cannibalism on screen. Where else are you going to experience all that in one night?

Blonde Elvis began our evening with a baroque-psych and brit-pop infused jam session. With their energetic pacing, stage presence, and hypnotic flute stylings, Blonde Elvis put on a retro, nostalgia-inducing, glam rock-influenced show that wowed the crowd. The audience even showed their support with a Tim the Tool Man Taylor-inspired grunt, as pointed out by frontman Jesse James Laderoute.

In a nice surprise, between the band and film, we were treated to the self-deprecating comic stylings of a finalist for Sirius XM’s Top Comic at JFL42, Ryan Dillion. Dillion had a short but very entertaining set involving everything from watches set on “girlfriend time,” to problematic Bulldogs, to awkward invitations for tea.

Our film for the evening was Ana Lily Amirpour’s follow-up to 2014’s A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT, THE BAD BATCH. The film starts out with a young woman thrown into a world of “undesirables” that include cannibals, cult-leaders, and an assortment of scavengers in-between. With its vast, desert setting, the film was a perfect pairing for a warm evening under the stars.

The film feels like a blend of MAD MAX: FURY ROAD, TANK GIRL, with a sprinkling of the post-apocalyptic video game series FALLOUT for good measure. With a cast featuring relative newcomer Suki Waterhouse, GAME OF THRONES favorite Jason Momoa, as well as seasoned genre stalwart Keanu Reeves (not mention the stunt casting of Jim Carrey), THE BAD BATCH seethes with “cool.” While messy and anxiety-inducing for a weaker stomached audience, die-hard gore-hounds were able to feast (this is a film about cannibals, after all). The soundtrack is an eclectic blend of 80s/90s nostalgia pop featuring the likes of Culture Club, Ace of Base, and contemporary EDM, such as Die Antwoord, Black Light Smoke, and Nicolas Jaar/Darkside (a Burning Man soundtrack if there ever was one). In an age of rising political mayhem, THE BAD BATCH’S dystopian future may not be such fantasy after all.

Make sure to check out next week where we will be treated to a performance by pop meets soul group Park Eddy, with Jordan Peele’s directorial debut GET OUT! Consider purchasing tickets in advance, as this horror-mystery is bound to pack a large crowd.

Remember to share the hashtags #MoviesMusicBeer #OpenRoof17 throughout the summer.
–Michael Marlatt