Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

November 12, 2014 at 10:58am

Nerd Alert! Nolan brothers, "Rosewater" at The Grand, Todd Barry at Tacoma Comedy Club

With a delivery that sits somewhere between controlled exasperation and a hypnotic, stoic ache, Todd Barry never lets loose.

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Nerd news this week had a bit to do with the Nolan brothers, Christopher and Jonathan. Jonathan Nolan was announced to be in talks with HBO to be adapting Isaac Asimov's classic sci-fi series Foundation. The Nolan stranglehold on (relatively) hard science fiction has continued, after Jonathan's writing partnership with his brother, Christopher, on the likes of Interstellar, as well as HBO's JJ Abrams version of Westworld. Of course, Asimov's brand of science fiction was dense with plotting and impenetrable logic, which has notoriously eluded the Nolan brothers, as staunch opponents of Interstellar, Inception and The Dark Knight will tell you. Still, critics of the Nolan brothers may well point to their frequently impersonal storytelling as quite fitting for Asimov's robotic world.

Christopher Nolan, meanwhile, has signed on to guest edit December's issue of Wired magazine. Ostensibly as a way to shore up viewership amongst intellectuals for the space exploration of Interstellar, Nolan's edit of the magazine will also take advantage of the magazine's format to present a "five-dimension"-based layout, so that as the reader gets deeper into the magazine, the concepts presented will grow further complex. For those not completely invested in getting their minds blown, photos of Matthew McConaughey may or may not be present.


Last year, Daily Show host Jon Stewart took a few weeks off from his show to make his directorial debut. As anyone who's been paying attention to the comedian over the years from his satirically political hosting duties could've predicted, his filmmaking debut would bear little resemblance to that of his acting roles, in fluffy things such as Death to Smoochy, Half Baked and The Faculty. Instead, Stewart decided to make a pointedly political movie about journalist and one-time Daily Show guest Maziar Bahari.

After appearing on The Daily Show, Bahari went to Iran to document the elections, and was imprisoned for more than 100 days over allegations that he was a spy. The film follows Bahari (as played by Gael Garcia Bernal) as he is tortured for information that doesn't exist, and Stewart emphasizes the dark humor inherent in being stuck in a situation without escape. Bahari survived, but more importantly, he survived with his humanity intact.

Rosewater opens at The Grand Cinema Friday, Nov. 14.


One of the greatest comedians working is heading to Tacoma. Todd Barry's comedy is defined by his deadpan delivery, which barely conceals an acerbic wit. As anyone who's seen his scathing appearances on Louie can attest, Barry is more than just a measured joke-teller. There is a surging undercurrent to Barry's comedy that elevates him above the level of your standard, low-key wit. Whereas other subtle comedians might come across as meek, Barry never seems other than in full control of his presence and his material, which may make him one of the most frightening stand-ups out there. 7:30 and 10:30 p.m., Tacoma Comedy Club, 933 Market St, Tacoma, $20 253.282.7203

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