Jul 282010

KET to feature local short films

By Ben Allen

On August 1, KET’s Reel Visions: A Spotlight on Kentucky Filmmakers—a new series that showcases the talents of film artists from Kentucky—enters its third season. Each Reel Visions program presents a half-hour collection of some of the best short-films from filmmakers native to or living and working in Kentucky, featuring everything from experimental art films and animations to quirky short stories and off-the-beaten path documentaries.

Filmmakers have the opportunity to have their work viewed across the state—a level of exposure that may have previously been unattainable—while viewers unaccustomed to the world of independent filmmaking get a glimpse into some of the best offerings of film fare in the Commonwealth. Check out the first show of the new season on Wednesday, August 4 at 10:30 P.M. on KETKY and Thursday, August 5 at 10:30 P.M. Continue reading »

Jul 282010

By Sugar Shock

Our regular reporter Troy Lyle apparently has a legitimate job somewhere that prevented him from attending our bout this past weekend in Florence, Kentucky, against the Black and Bluegrass Roller girls (BBRG). He asked me to write this in his stead.

There’s nothing quite like getting your ribs nearly shattered by a girl twice your size, and then finding your pen so you can take notes on it.

We, the Rollergirls of Central Kentucky (ROCK), started off the night by scoring 46 unanswered points. Our jammers took turns blasting through the pack while our blockers shut down BBRG’s jammers. Halfway through the first period, BBRG had yet to score. Continue reading »

Jul 282010

By Stan Heaton

I’ve been excited about this movie for a long time.  After Christopher Nolan’s success with The Dark Knight, I couldn’t wait to see what he would dream up next.  And with Inception, he doesn’t disappoint.  The basic concept is that dreams can be shared, and because they can be shared, the dreamer’s subconscious is susceptible to attack.  This is where Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) comes in.  He specializes in navigating the mind, and he is the best in the world at training the subconscious to resist attack.

Training minds and stealing ideas from people while they dream is really just child’s play for Cobb and his team.  The real challenge is planting an idea in someone else’s head without them realizing where the idea comes from—a process called inception.  The plot is full of twists, turns, and a few good secrets, so I won’t ruin the movie by belaboring the narrative.  The important detail to know is that an energy mogul named Saito (Ken Watanabe) wants Cobb and his team to perform inception on the heir to a rival energy empire. Continue reading »

Jul 142010

Southland Christian buy Lexington Mall

By Andrew Battista

On July 13, leaders of Southland Christian Church held a public forum on the Lexington Mall property, which they have agreed to purchase from the Maryland-based Saul Centers, Inc. The terms of the transaction have not been disclosed publicly.  Southland held the meeting to solicit feedback from neighbors, nearby business owners, and anyone else interested in how the property would evolve in the hands of Lexington’s largest megachurch.

Southland’s contract with Saul Centers, Inc. is well-known by now, as is the fact that by purchasing a commercial space appraised at over $10 million, the megachurch will expand its brand to a third campus while effectively removing as much as $100,000 in annual tax revenues from the already-depleted LFUCG budget.  Like all churches, Southland is a nonprofit organization and therefore will render unto Caesar duty from only a portion of their new property: the sections that indisputably exist to make money (i.e., the Applebee’s and Perkins facilities that are lumped into the sale). Continue reading »

Jul 142010

“Kids making a future growing fresh food”

By Beth Connors-Manke

There was a guy who kept coming back. It was three times, I think. The first time he was considering if he’d buy anything. He had 35 guys to cook for, so only the big pile of collard greens would be in his ballpark. But it didn’t seem like he’d cooked greens before so they didn’t tempt him. As for the okra, green beans, mint, and potatoes, there weren’t enough on the table for that size dinner. (The entire lot of tomatoes had sold out to a neighbor up the street.) He walked away.

A few minutes later he was back. This time he just wanted to give a donation to the kids and ask more questions. What were they doing? How did it work?

This was a Saturday morning, there was a table full of just-harvested vegetables, but this wasn’t the Farmer’s Market downtown. This was 7th and Elm Tree, right next to the East 7th Street Center, the home of Kids Cafe. The growers and sellers were a group of young northside do-it-yourselfers, part of the S.E.E.D.S. program. Continue reading »

Jul 142010

Photo: Guy Mendes

By Derek Brown

Thursday July 22nd

Ben Sollee and Daniel Martin Moore w/ Yim Yames.

The Lexington Opera House. 401 W Short Street. $25. 8 P.M. All ages.

In Kentucky few topics are as fiercely debated as the future of coal.  Lexington native Ben Sollee decided to use to the power of music to shine a light on this divisive issue for the rest of America to see.

Outraged by the destructive effects of surface mining in the eastern portion of his home state, Sollee organized a collection of local musicians to spread awareness on the controversial practice of Mountaintop Removal (MTR) in Appalachia. All artist royalties from Sollee’s latest album, Dear Companion, are being donated to Appalachian Voices, an environmental organization dedicated to combatting irresponsible strip mining practices in the eastern United States. Continue reading »

Jul 142010

Active citizens and the PSC take action for cleaner water in Lexington

By Miranda Brown

Momentum is building to stop the proposed coal-burning Smith power plant in Clark County, just upstream from Lexington. Citizens continue to speak out against the plant and in favor of a cleaner, job-producing solution. At the most recent permit hearing for the plant, Lexington resident Erika Skaggs put things into perspective for the audience and the Army Corps of Engineers: “Every time we lose a stream, a source of clean, fresh water to pass onto our children—that is a disaster.”

For years, East Kentucky Power Cooperative (EKPC) has been planning to build a coal-burning facility just southeast of Winchester on the Kentucky River. The utility provides energy to parts of 87 of Kentucky’s counties.  EKPC’s original intent for the new plant was to increase overall generating capacity so that newly joining regional cooperatives could be supported even during peak use seasons. However, since hatching the original plans, new cooperatives have backed out of joining EKPC, and high energy prices have further reduced the demand for electricity. The site for the proposed 276 megawatt plant, and its proposed coal ash landfill to store waste, is less than 20 miles upstream from Lexington’s drinking water intake. When coal ash pollutes drinking water, there is risk of mercury and arsenic contamination—among other fears that accompany the presence of coal waste. Continue reading »

Jul 142010

Wendell Berry and Top 20

By Danny Mayer

“We did not expect and we did not invite these challenges. But even in the presence of such obstacles, our commitment to mission and mandate remains the same. Our shared ambitions are still before us, fixed on our collective horizon, unmoved by time or fate or by short-term challenges we cannot control.”

Lee Todd, President’s Budget Message, June 17, 2008

“Rather than trying to be nationally or globally prominent as a great research institution,if the University of Kentucky would meet its local responsibilities and really meet the needs of the land and the people of this state, it would be a city on a hill.”

Wendell Berry

On June 23, the Lexington Herald-Leader informed area readers that Kentucky author Wendell Berry was in the process of removing his papers from the University of Kentucky special collections archives. Berry, a UK alumni and former faculty member in the UK English Department, sent a letter to the university dated December 20, 2009 in which, according to the Herald-Leader, he “excoriated his alma matter” for voting to accept last October a $7 million dollar gift-bribe from Alliance Coal to construct an unneeded dormitory for male basketball players, to be unsubtly named the Wildcat Coal Lodge. Continue reading »

Jul 142010

By Michael Dean Benton

Frustrated by the dearth of decent films in the theater that I can review I have decided to start a new column dedicated to bringing to attention film on DVD that should not be missed. We may, currently, be seeing the slow strangulation of collective cinema viewing of thought-provoking films in the communal theater, as 3-D spectacles, action blockbusters and infantile narratives dominate the cinemaplex.

Thankfully, though, at the same time, we are also benefiting from the worldwide online explosion of a “collective cinephilia” (Jonathan Rosenbaum) brought about by the technology of the DVD format and the global scope of online film criticism/studies. So, while still recognizing the benefits of theater screenings, we should also turn toward the potential of films on DVD and the possibilities for cultivating the appreciation of film through these new technologies. Continue reading »