On a neglected side-street of Manchester’s city centre, Gorilla sits quietly in the surrounding sprawl. To its right, past a tunnel perfectly sculpted for a stealthy, drunken evening piss, lies Dog Bowl; a bar teetering on the edge of achingly hipster, offering ten-pin bowling as a cacophonous aperitif to overpriced culinary dirge. Given that even the local trams feature caricatures with Monopoly Man moustaches, it seems an inescapable aesthetic. While the stereotype can cause an itch when you’re handing over double for a Jameson and Coke, it’s a welcoming and, eventually, comfortable world to sparsely visit. Within Gorilla, where that sub-culture seems defined, Tim Heidecker and Neil Hamburger proved, in more ways than one, that assumption is all too often erroneous.… [continue reading]
Editing is a true passion for Dominick Nero. As a contributor to such powerhouses as Super Deluxe and A.V. Club, it’s only natural that he understands its power. Because of that very fact, his work has seen enormous success and respect. While many artists approach the internet with intense cynicism, Nero embraces its stage wholeheartedly. His editing has become just another way for him to express his drives. He’s someone who sees the potential in social media, using it every step of the way as a tool for development. A master of comic timing and editing techniques, Nero has his finger resoundingly on the pulse.… [continue reading]
Gregg Turkington‘s Our Cinema Oscar Special should have been a triumph. Instead, Tim Heidecker found a way to derail proceedings regardless of his absence. It could have been an evening of insightful movie expertise; as we’ve come to expect from its host. What we ended up with was a travesty. Of course, Heidecker has a history of live meltdowns. I had deep hopes that his personal issues wouldn’t fringe on another Oscar Special. Unfortunately, On Cinema has become nothing more than a kind of therapy for Heidecker. That his chaos can extend to the cool waters of Turkington’s winning criticism should be a concern for us all.… [continue reading]
Yep, I’ll admit with my hands in the air that this is hardly an original idea. Radiohead have been doing office charts for years, and I can only assume that thousands of hip blogs and magazines have adopted it. Of course, it doesn’t really matter. I just thought it would be a fun monthly thing to do. Besides, I’ve got a High Fidelity-esque predilection for making playlists anyway. Neither of the Bens have anything to do with this, in case they get ashamed by the choices. This is just my own personal “writing an article for Secret Cave” playlist. … [continue reading]
Anyone who puts their work in the public eye — whether it’s writers, actors, musicians or directors — is torn between one main motivation and one main fear:
On one side, there’s the overwhelming desire to take the risk to show your work to other people. Go to an audition, pitch an article, send out demo tapes.
At the same time, there’s the crippling fear that you’re not worth anyone’s time. The fear you’re doomed to fail, living in perpetual obscurity, always looking for the one big break.
There’s no better setting to encapsulate this duality than Hollywood — the grim stage for nightmarish, disastrous satire like Mulholland Drive, Sunset Boulevard, Maps to the Stars, and now 555.… [continue reading]
When Entertainment premiered at 2015’s Sundance Film Festival, the response it garnered was somewhat predictable. Numerous walkouts peppered its first showing, indicative of its uncomfortable confrontation. Certainly a test of patience, it’s a work that demands significant effort on the part of the audience. However, this is a recurring feature of the creatives involved: director and writer Rick Alverson, star and writer Gregg Turkington and writer Tim Heidecker. It’s easy to take against their approach, labelling it as pretentious and lazy. The sad truth is, that would be all too often accurate of others. In their hands, Entertainment is a prime example of the finest of its kind.… [continue reading]
In many ways American comedy has always lagged behind the British when it comes to pushing the medium forward. I needn’t even give examples to prove my point, considering the ubiquity of influential British comedy. Indeed, even the subversive duo of Tim and Eric (who I choose to spotlight today) have much in common with Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer – not even mentioning the clear parallels between their work on Check it Out with Dr. Steve Brule and the output of Chris Morris (particularly The Day Today and Brass Eye). The Americans however, despite the obvious lines of influence that can be drawn, tend to take different spins on our attempts. … [continue reading]