School's back in session -- bad news for the young, great news for parents -- and fall is almost here. The end of summer is always a little heartbreaking, but even as the weather cools, the geek scene is just heating up. September is full of great geeky things for Denverites to do, from classic geek films to the region's premier anime convention; here are ten of the best.
See also: A Noob Nerd in Doctor Who's Domain10) Films on Tap: The Expendables
As far as premises go, "Stuff every '80s action movie star we can dig up into an homage to '80s action movies" is pretty lowbrow. That doesn't mean it isn'tfun
, though, and for all of its inherent stupidity,The Expendables
is about as much fun as you'd expect the realization of that premise to be. The only thing that could make it more fun is copious amounts of beer, and you're in luck -- Films on Tap is all about turning movies into drinking games. Watch explosions, drink beer, have fun and don't worry too much about the nonexistent story and cardboard characters. Get there early, since the first fifty patrons get a free drink, courtesy of Breckenridge Brewery.
See it and drink at 9:45 p.m. Friday, September 12 at the Sie FilmCenter. Tickets are $10, or $7 for Denver Film Society members. For tickets and more info, visit the film's event page at the Denver Film Society website.
9) Magic: The Gathering Khans of Tarkir prerelease The newest expansion for Magic: The Gathering, the world's most popular trading-card game, is hitting shelves this month, and that means it's pre-release time. The latest set, Khans of Tarkir focuses on an Asian-influenced world where dragons once ruled and only the fiercest warriors can survive. Magic's pre-release tournaments are among its most casual events, meaning they're a great way to dip your toe into the water of competitive play, even if you're a total noob. Heck, especially if you're a total noob, since the fall set marks the start of a new cycle, making this a great place to jump in. If you've been playing the digital Duels of the Planeswalkers on your computer or console and wondering if it's time to make the jump to the actual card game, this is the way to do it.
September 20-21, various locations. Price may vary, but expect to spend about $30, which nets you six packs of cards plus a special promo card. For more information, check out the official Magic: The Gathering website, and find a location near you with Wizards of the Coast's store locator.
8) Hall of Justice featuring Matt Busch and Landon Meier Wade through the sea of art lovers on Santa Fe Drive for some geeky delights at Zac Conley's Hall of Justice comic and entertainment art gallery. Featured artist Matt Busch is a Lucas artist who's worked on everything from Star Wars to Indiana Jones. Landon Meier is best known for Hyperflesh, creepily realistic masks portraying everything from giant babies to celebrities -- most famously his Heisenberg mask worn by Bryan Cranston at San Diego Comic Con a few years ago. A handful of similar artists' work will also be on display, and the show is a fundraiser for Art of War, a charity that benefits veterans suffering from PTSD. Throw in the gallery's usual collection of nearly a quarter million dollars' worth of comic and entertainment art, and you've got a perfectly geeky First Friday destination.
The show starts at 6 p.m. Friday, September 5 at the Hall of Justice comic and entertainment art gallery. Admission is free. For more information, visit the Hall of Justice Facebook page.
7) John Scalzi: Lock In The works of Hugo-award winning author John Scalzi range from galaxy-spanning military space opera (Old Man's War, recently optioned for a film adaptation) to near-future techno thrillers like his latest, Lock In. Lock In sets a murder mystery that ties into a much larger crime against a backdrop of a near-future world where victims of a disease called Hayden's Syndrome find themselves conscious but unable to move or respond to outside stimuli.
At last someone has combined the age-old tradition of a pub crawl with the rotting corpses of the undead. Strap on a flag belt to represent your life, avoid zombies as you stagger between bars and do your best to get so droolingly drunk that you become indistinguishable from the foul ghouls that stalk you between bars. Beer. Zombies. More beer. Commemorative T-shirts, beer koozies and prizes. What else do you need to know?
Forget the recent remake -- the original 1987 modelRoboCop
is still the only cyborg law-enforcement officer anyone needs. The dystopian classic about a future Detroit plagued by drugs, gangs and corporate malfeasance looks positively prophetic today, plus it's still one hell of a great action film. Director Paul Verhoeven is at his absolute best here, and the social satire of the film, which tackles everything from rampant consumerism to the militarization of the police, has never been more relevant. I'd buy that for a dollar!
See RoboCop at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 18 at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas. Tickets are $10.75. For tickets and more info, visit the RoboCop event page on the Alamo website.
French New Wave, film noir and science fiction collide in this classic film from director Jean-Luc Godard. A secret agent seeks to topple a computer-run society where emotion is illegal and execution is the punishment for showing feelings. Shot on location in Paris, without special effects or specialized sets,Alphaville
is not your average science fiction film, but that only makes it all the more fascinating. Plus, it's one of a small handful of science fiction movies you can impress your "serious" film fan friends with.
See Alphaville at 9:30 p.m. Friday, September 19 at the Sie FilmCenter the Sie FilmCenter. Tickets are $10, or $7 for Denver Film Society members. For tickets and more info, visit the Alphaville event page at the Denver Film Society website.3) Color Commentary: Looper with Rian Johnson Live
Do you want to miss a chance to see one of the finest science fiction films of the past decade with live commentary by its director, who happens to be one of the hottest up-and-coming directors in Hollywood? No, you do not. So when Rian Johnson comes to town to talk aboutLooper
, his time-travel magnum opus starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, make sure you're there, okay?
Director Rian Johnson will provide live, in-person commentary over Looper at 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 23 at the Alamo Drafthouse. Tickets are $15. For tickets and more info, visit the Color Commentary: Looper event page of the Alamo website.2) The Denver Animated Pixelshow
Catch up on what Denver's diverse animation community is up to at the second Denver Animated Pixelshow. From digital work to classic stop motion, every flavor of animation will be represented in short films ranging from the sublime to the silly. Hosts Patrick Sheridan (Emerging Filmmakers Project), Gio Toninelo (G.I. Joe Stop Motion Film Festival) and Dylan Otto Krider (The Ones and Zeroes Pixelshow) have a passion for animation in all its forms, and the Pixelshow is a hulking, Voltron-esque beast combining their talents and knowledge for the benefit of animated film fans citywide.
Nan Desu Kan 2013
1) Nan Desu Kan Get your fix of anime, manga and all things Japanese at Nan Desu Kan, the Rocky Mountain region's biggest and best anime con. Twenty guests, including academics, voice artists, animators, studio reps and musicians, are just the start of the fun. You also get a massive dealer's room, gaming, cosplay, panels, dances, art shows and more -- everything an otaku could ever want, all in one place. If you're a fan of Japanese pop culture in any form, or even just curious about what it has to offer, you won't want to miss this.
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