Swiftpicks

10 Things Not To Miss From A&e Editor Tim Swift

August 16, 2009|By Tim Swift

TV

'Top Chef':

This season may be set in Las Vegas, but that doesn't mean we aren't represented. Three chefs from Maryland (Baltimore's Jesse Sandlin, above, and Frederick brothers Bryan and Michael Voltaggio) are in the running for the cooking crown. And they're not wallflowers. All three get ample screen time in the opener. Airs 10 p.m. Wednesday on Bravo.

FESTIVAL

64 Bit Gen Gamer Fest:

The Ottobar's homage to retro games gets a 32-bit upgrade this year with a celebration of hits from the mid-'90s. It features a heavy helping of art and music inspired by Mario, Zelda and others. Acts include The Protomen and The Megas. No word though on whether anyone is gonna rock out on the Ocarina of Time. Show starts 5 p.m. Saturday.

Web: theottobar.com

FILM

'Inglourious Basterds':

Quentin Tarantino's long-awaited WWII blood-bath is finally here, but it may be a movie only a true Tarantino devotee will love. "Kill Adolf, Vol. 1" it's not. Brad Pitt and Eli Roth (above) star as brutal Nazi hunters, working deep behind enemy lines. It's a hefty (over two hours) and talkative flick, but it is splattered with some novel action. In theaters Friday.

ART

'In a Material World' :

by Melissa Webb :

With creations like The Topiary Woman, the Death Dance Bird and the Swamp Nymph, Baltimore fiber artist Melissa Webb is giving Gallery Imperato a mystical makeover this month. Gallery goers can expect to see - and touch - plenty of imaginative costumes. On display Saturdays through Sept. 12.

Web: galleryimperato.com

CONCERT

Keith Urban :

Mr. Nicole Kidman brings his pop/rock-infused brand of country music to Washington this week. An Australian county singer sounds like an oxymoron, but then again, his latest album is titled "Defying Gravity." Show starts 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Verizon Center.

Web: ticketmaster.com

TV

'Project Runway':

TV's best reality show is back after a long absence, but will it be the great fashion face-off we remember? The show has changed cable channels and has a new set of producers. Thankfully, show regulars like Tim Gunn (below), Heidi Klum and Michael Kors are staying to "make it work." Airs 10 p.m. Thursday on Lifetime.

ART

'Shrunken Treasures':

The Walters Art Museum is putting the focus on the tiniest of its holdings this month. And we mean small, like smaller-than-your-401(K) small. More than a dozen mini-manuscripts, including a thumb-size Quran and diminutive books of poetry, are on display. Runs through Nov. 8.

Web: thewalters.org

DVD

'Tyson':

Director James Toback powerfully tells the story of the troubled boxer, using Mike Tyson's own words. Instead of the caricature of a mindless brute, we get a more complete picture of a man who was once one of the world's top athletes but is also a convicted rapist. The documentary is unflinching but also humanizing. In stores Tuesday.

GAMES

'Wolfenstein':

Before "Halo" or even "Doom," there was "Wolfenstein" - the fascist granddaddy of the first-person shooter genre. Activision has given the beloved game a 2009 upgrade with new graphics and features, but the plot remains the same. The Nazis have been dabbling in the occult (always a bad idea), and you have to stop them. In stores Tuesday.

CONCERT

Caleb Stine :

Long seen as a frontman, this acclaimed Baltimore Americana singer/songwriter steps into his own with his first solo album, "Eyes So Strong and Clean." The territory might be new, but Stine's raw sincerity - both on tape and on stage - persists. Show starts 8 p.m. Saturday at Rams Head Live.

Web: ramsheadlive.com

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