Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Women Who Ruled SXSW 2019

Japanese Breakfast and the Women Who Rock

Over 2,000 musical behaves descended on Austin, Texas, for SXSW, with some performing up to a dozen gig over a week-long span at different brand-sponsored musical showcases. There’s a rich record of behaves breaking out at the fest–particularly female ones, from M.I.A. and Amy Winehouse to Katy Perry and Billie Eilish. And while I didn’t come close to taking in all that South-By had to offer musically, of the many showcases I did attend, the overarching theme was: 2019 am talking about the madams. Japanese Breakfast , a Philly-based indie rock outfit, induces dreamy, effervescent pop music, and wowed the crowd at the Dr. Martens stage with their cover of The Cranberries’ “Dreams” — and frontwoman Michelle Zauner’s infectious exhilaration.

Likewise, Clementine Creevy and her noise rock-and-roll trio Cherry Glazerr utterly shredded things up; New Zealand’s The Beths , led by Elizabeth Stokes, allured with their collecting of sunny, harmonize, hook-heavy tunes; and Detroit’s Stef Chura had confirmed that the wave of positive buzz is no mistake with a fixed of rockin ‘, oft-distorted songs that recalled The Breeders bridged with Liz Phair. On the hip-hop back of things, Brooklyn-born Rico Nasty blew the eyelid off the Fader Fort and Mohawk stages, sauntering about in a pink cowboy hat, cradling a huge seam, and flogging the crowds into a frenzy–replete with mosh cavities, stage-diving, twerking daughters, and a pair of jeans that somehow made their space onstage( the pants-less culprit was never encountered ). — Marlow Stern

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

It takes balls to come to SXSW–a festival of sponsored content, tech world meetups, and branded activations, buzzing with billionaires and big money–and publicly decry capitalism. But that’s exactly what congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez did, to a standing ovation. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez drew zero punches during her jam-packed occurrence, saying that the the priorities of profit over people” is not sustainable and cannot be redeemed…There’s all this fear-mongering that government is going to take over every corporation and government is going to take over every business or all other forms of product. We should be scared right now because corporations have taken over our government .”

Her wide-ranging dialogue with The Intercept ‘ s Briahna Gray covered cries to abolish ICE and criticisms of her own party. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, who has often been accused of being too radical or unrealistic, reserved the largest proportion of her ire for cowardice and incrementalism.” A years ago CNN had reports of ICE agents pinning down children and forcibly inserting them with antipsychotic medicines ,” she told a rapt crowd.” And the thing that establishes me furious is this idea of like, let’s just enclosure a few less. Let’s just inject a few less.’ It’s too politically complicated .’ And for me, what is just so upsetting and heartbreaking about this moment is like, since when did it become the moderate outlook in America to continue caging offsprings ?” The enthusiastic response that the congresswoman received was rivaled merely by the crowd’s reaction to Bill Nye, who made a surprise appearing to close out the Q& A. — Amy Zimmerman

The Cast of Booksmart

There’s a line reading that Beanie Feldstein does of the word “butthole” in Booksmart that had me roaring. Kaitlyn Dever’s ability to cycle through about 40 different nervousness in the span of four seconds simply through her facial expressions rattled me. Noah Galvin performs a karaoke number to Alanis Morissette that I may never stop thinking about. Billie Lourd haunts the movie like this weirdo, unsettling jack-in-the-box that I can’t wait to go to theaters in May and wind the crank of again. What I’m saying is the cast of Booksmart , Olivia Wilde’s glorious coming-of-age cinema, is across-the-board stunning. Each, along with the rest of their castmates, delivering a tenderness to the high school suffer and complications of friendship that is rarely seen in a movie this down-and-out funny. They’ve all been remarkable in programmes before, but Booksmart heightens them to another level. — Kevin Fallon

Sam Jay

I visualized a lot of stand-up slapstick at SXSW this year. Fresh off the plane from Australia, The Daily Show ‘ s Ronny Chieng delivered a funny fixed that shaped the lawsuit for the purposes of an Asian-American president. Jena Friedman , who hosts Adult Swim’s Soft Focus , gleefully shaped tech bros uncomfortable with her no-holds-barred jokes. Six months after becoming a father, Ricky Velez is concerned that he might be dreadful at it. But no one I saw this week killed harder than Saturday Night Live writer Sam Jay . Strolling on stage with a confidence that out-paces her mere handful of years in the stand-up game, the Atlanta-born, Boston-raised Jay absolutely slayed SXSW crowds on two consecutive nights with chips that included an extended riff on why females should start to pee standing up if they want equal salary. Hard to dream a male comic getting away with a joke like that, but this future hotshot had the audience roar. — Matt Wilstein

Lupita Nyong’o in Us

Us isn’t exactly the social-horror masterpiece that Jordan Peele’s Get Out was. But his follow-up is still reasonably damn good, and we’d venture that a lion’s share of that damn goodness is owed to the film’s star, Lupita Nyong’o. The Oscar-winner steers a role that should be impossible. She’s a modern-day Ellen Ripley, working so hard to kick ass and retain their own families alive that there’s not a bead of perspire to spare, a survivalist performance that stands up to the cinema greats. But then there’s her task as her “Untethered,” the doppelganger who arrives at her vacation house to terrorize her. She contorts their own bodies and her voice in ways that make her almost recognizable, so scaring she practically implants on your nightmares. It’s the showcase the phenomenal actress deserves. — Kevin Fallon

Her Smell

Her Smell is just as grade and foul as it sets out to be. Taking region over the course of five extended scenes, Alex Ross Perry’s latest offering is all about unpleasant sensory overload. The camera loops through labyrinthine backstage setups, following Becky Something( Elisabeth Moss) and her bandmates deeper and deeper into their own dysfunction. Their Riot Grrrl-style band, Something She, is being blown up from the inside by its unhinged front lady. The party’s gone on for direction too long, but Becky refuses to cut the crap, coercing everyone around her until there’s no one left. For over two hours, she teeters on the edge of total calamity, screaming, vomiting, bleed, and shaking. When Becky grows convinced that she won’t live the next display, the audience is of the opinion that there. Up until the final kills, viewers won’t know if they’re bearing witness to a comeback narrative or watching a woman kill himself on stage. A charismatic narcissist who can’t stop hurting the people she desires “the worlds largest”, Elisabeth Moss’s Becky Something is one of the real female monsters who’s ever been caught on film, daring you not to look away. — Amy Zimmerman

The Austin Potluck

We have Uber Eats to thank for get celebrated cook and Ugly Delicious host David Chang, who welcomed his first baby into the world nearly two weeks ago, down to SXSW to curate The Austin Potluck, a 10 -course meal cooked by five different female chefs from all over the country. Deb Keetch, the executive sous chef at Chang’s first L.A. restaurant Majordomo, may have won the non-competition in my thinker with her crispy butterball potatoes and short rib ssam lettuce wrappings. But other highlightings came from Jessica Koslow, who delivered a version of Sqirl’s refreshing crispy rice salad and North Carolina-based chef Ashley Christensen, who had the most talked-about dish of the nighttime in her Macaroni au Gratin Frittatine–essentially a yummy fried projectile of macaroni and cheese sitting on top of a bright roasted tomato relish. Who could ask for better fuel before manager back out into the SXSW night? — Matt Wilstein

Kathy Griffin

Kathy Griffin was in Austin with the concert film she financed herself, documenting her Laugh Your Head Off world tour, in which she discusses the fallout–and attacks on her life, liberty, and Constitutional privileges–following her notorious Trump decapitated-head photo shoot. One major takeaway is that Hollywood has still blacklisted Griffin. No one would fund the cinema, or greenlight a pitch for a docuseries about its own experience, or hire her for a TV guest smudge. It’s surprising. No content how you feel about what she did or what your politics are, there is something important and fascinating about what really happened to her, and so much drama in her story that it was necessary ratings catnip to Hollywood execs. Griffin’s Hell of a Story admirably proves that she will tell her own narrative, if no one else will. — Kevin Fallon

Sword of Trust

There’s a scene about midway through Lynn Shelton’s brand-new movie Sword of Trust in which the four main attributes find themselves locked in the back of a carpeted van for an extended period of time as the objective is driven through the backwoods of rural Alabama. Marc Maron, who plays an aging pawnshop owner, continues to deliver a monologue about adoration and craving and letting proceed that utterly floored me. The WTF podcast host and stand-up comic has shown that he was able to act on Netflix’s GLOW . But this concert is on another level. The plot of the movie, involving an antique sword that supposedly proves the South won the Civil War, seems pretty silly at first. But Maron, together with co-stars Jillian Bell, Michaela Watkins and Jon Bass, helps heighten it into something not only quite funny but surprisingly deep. — Matt Wilstein

Combo Chimbita

Playing to a jam-packed inner room during The Onion& A.V. Club ‘ s” Just Another Manic Monday” at Austin’s Mohawk, Combo Chimbita accessed a higher plane. The quartet, fronted by lead singer Carolina Oliveros, sets on a transcendent, improbably merriment present. Oliveros, energetic and unstoppable, alternately belts and chants, displaying a full range from priestess to hype woman. Combo Chimbita are self-described” tropical futurists “; for Oliveros’ allure and vocal power alone, they deserve to be listened to live, in a sweaty back room of believers. — Amy Zimmerman

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