1. The kindness of strangers: I lied yesterday. I had every intention of seeing a movie at the USA Film Festival. But when I walked into the lobby of the Angelika, a stranger offered me his plus-one for the opening event of the Dallas Wine and Food Festival, talking place simultaneously in the theater cafe (his wife was stuck at work). Chamberlain’s chef Richard Chamberlain — dishing out the pomegranate-glazed salmon appetizer himself — also was preparing a burger with all the gourmet fixins, goose-fat French fries, and an expresso shake with chocolate truffles rolled in pistachios — not to mention the wine.
Guess what I did?
Highlights were a champagne-method Brut from Laetitia in the Arroyo Grande Valley of California and a Dow’s vintage Port, which beautifully complemented the shake. The festival continues tonight and through the weekend.
2. Well, I’ll eat my shoe: Errol Morris’ documentary The Thin Blue Line led to the overturning of a Dallas murder conviction. GQ profiles the iconoclastic filmmaker in an extremely long interview/feature in the May issue. Skip to Page 9 for a behind-on-the-scenes look at the locally relevant film. Morris also relays his experiences with mentor Werner Herzog, who has launched a 1,000 directing careers with his out-there philosophizing, including Lee Kazimir’s deeply affecting More Shoes, which recently played the AFI-Dallas film festival. Morris’ latest film, Standard Operating Procedure, is about the implications of the Abu Ghraib photographs.
3. Speaking of wacky artists: We reported Tuesday on Dallas-born singer Michelle Shocked’s Pegasus News interview in advance of her appearance tonight at House of Blues. Now Thor Christensen has alerted us to a rambling three-hour conversation she had with Dallas Voice in which she said she didn’t realize the Voice was a gay publication — she’s trying to avoid them — and called homosexuality a sin. See, Michelle’s a Christian now. Goofy as ever, too.
4. Dreadlocks hang out a little longer: Rockwall’s Jason Castro survived elimination on American Idol last night, despite his challenged reading of “Memory” from Cats during Andrew Lloyd Webber week. Webber was among those giving Jason poor reviews.
5. Kickin’ it, New Orleans style: This weekend’s Denton Arts & Jazz Festival has quite the lineup.