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Courtesy of 'Images of America Santa Cruz California,' Sheila O'Hare and Irene Berry

Shabby House: Before, 1936. This building used to be on Front Street, but the Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce hauled it down to Pacific and Front streets (where Jamba Juice is now). Under the Housing Act it was remodeled on this site and sold. Next week I'll show you how it ended up looking, and ask the bigger question ... where in Santa Cruz is it now?

Bruce Bratton

ABOUT IRAQ. Noted U.S. foreign policy expert, author, lecturer, broadcaster Saul Landau just returned from a visit to Iraq. He was invited to go by former U.S. Sen. James Abourek with a congressional delegation in mid-September. Saul filmed the visit and produced a documentary titled Iraq: Voices From the Street. It is a brilliant film that gives a genuine perspective from the people and the Iraqi authorities on "what seems like an impending war." Saul has produced many films on the U.S. role in Cuba and in Central American politics. His films cut sharply to the point and focus on the human lives that are threatened by ruthless governments such as the United States. The Iraq film is a great way to inform yourself and your friends and to start discussions in any group. Get details on this film or any of Saul's films by calling the Cinema Guild in New York City at 800.723.5522.

KINGDOM OF SHADOWS. There are some really fine films out there right now. First of all, I agree with the majority of U.S. critics who put Personal Velocity right up at the near top of the good list. Some small flaws but it's three stories well-told and excellently acted by Fairuza Balk, Parker Posey and Kyra Sedgwick. It may leave soon, so hurry. Then go see Adaptation starring Nicolas Cage, it's crazy and loony, gimmicky fun. If you liked Being John Malkovich, you'll like Adaptation. Matter of fact, go rent Malkovich before seeing Adaptation, you'll enjoy it even more. Ray Liotta was never better than he is in Narc. It's another bad cop film, but it's better than most of them. Go if you like a lot of violence. Both Antwone Fisher and The Pianist are based on the real lives of men who suffered. Antwone is a Hollywood film directed by Denzel Washington and The Pianist is directed by Roman Polanski. That should be enough description and comment for any film fan.

EARLY MUSIC. The Santa Cruz Chamber Players are doing a one-time-only performance of some baroque music you rarely hear nowadays, in a concert titled Tafelmusik: A Musical Banquet. It'll be Saturday at 8pm at the First United Methodist Church, 250 California St. There'll be an oboe sonata, a trio and a quartet, all by Telemann. Plus some little ditties by C.P.E. Bach and the indubitable J.J. Quantz. Call 425.3149 for tickets.

CALIFORNIA QUARTERS. Rachel McKay of our MAH emailed to say that we can all comment, vote and view the 20 finalist designs of the backs of the new California quarters that will be issued next year. Go to http://134.186.46.107/; that's the official California State site. Look at the 20 designs, enlarge them, then enter your vote. You'll then be shown the percentage of votes from other Californians. Some of them are not bad, but I think the governor and his cronies have the final say.

VIDEO VAULTS. I've mentioned before that Westside Video on Mission behind Sabieng Thai Cuisine has some great hidden video treasures. Go rent Bernard Tavernier's The Passion of Beatrice. It stars Julie Delpy and is about incest and the Hundred Years' War, probably. Go watch Masahiro Shinoda's Double Suicide, especially if you like Bunraku puppetry and 18th-century Japan drama. I missed Ingmar Bergman's 1954 film A Lesson in Love, probably because I was in the army, but this is as great a comedy as any Spencer Tracy-Katherine Hepburn-Cary Grant film ever made. Director Bertrand Blier's 1996 French film Mon Homme is one bizarre film. It's an amoral film about a "nymphomaniac prostitute" that will really surprise you, no matter who you are. And don't complain to me if you don't like these videos, there're more fun to watch than sitting around in the rain worrying about what Bush is going to do next.

CATHCART AND PACIFIC BUILDING. In case you've forgotten about that building going up at Cathcart and Pacific, I asked Geoff Dunn about it a while ago. Geoff's the coordinator and consultant on the project. He said it's going to be six stories with one level of underground parking. There'll be retail businesses on the ground level. No franchises, and they'll all be locally owned, and no commitments yet. But as I said, it was a while ago I spoke with Geoff on this. There'll be approximately 110 apartments--some two bedrooms, some 1 bedroom. Twenty-one of the rooms will be for very low income (less than $28,000), 21 will be moderate income and 80 rooms will be market rate. The owners are Pacific Union Apartments, which Geoff says is an investment group made up of "regional people."

NIGHT OF LIVING COMPOSERS. The New Music Works presents their annual NOLC concert Saturday, Jan. 25, at 8pm in UCSC's Music Center Recital Hall. They'll perform three works by Lou Harrison, one of which is the world premiere of Solo for Robert Hughes. Phil Collins' new composition Airs is also a world premiere. William Wynant, William Trimble, Michael McGushin, Bruce Foster and Yueh Chou will play. Linda Bouchard will guest conduct and there'll be a preconcert discussion with all composers present. Call 459.2159 for tickets and information.

ZORN AGAIN. This is an advance warning to get tickets to the evening of music by John Zorn titled "All Zorn Out." An all-star cast of musicians will perform Zorn's very wide-ranging works. Zorn's music could be labeled jazz-classical-rock-ethnic and he's one of the most talked about composers in the world today. New Music Works is presenting this evening on Sunday, Feb. 16, at the Rio Theatre. More on this later, but if you know and like Zorn's music, get tickets now. Call New Music Works at 459.2159.

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From the January 15-21, 2003 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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