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Things To Do In Dallas Tonight: April 18

citizen-twain__twain
Val Kilmer as the kinda egotistical guy who once referred to himself as “the American,” rather than “an American.”

Not a great day to hang out on the Bar Belmont patio, but we’re all going to do it anyway because we’re troopers and because Sam Weller is worth it.

Weller is, of course, the journalist who chronicled the life of author Ray Bradbury, who wrote our Big Read book Fahrenheit 451. If this weather helps us out a little and lets his plane leave, Weller will join a panel of other local literary folk—including Jeri Williams, Library Director of Montgomery County Library system; Walton Muyumba, a UNT English professor; and moderator Michael Merschel, the books editor at The Dallas Morning News—to discuss the issue of censorship, past and present. Normally I go for Belmont’s mint juleps, but maybe I can just get a hot chocolate or something. Either way, you can’t go wrong ordering a bite off the bar’s limited food menu. It all comes over from Smoke.

Also this evening, the Arts District says hello to Val Kilmer, impersonating Mark Twain for his one-man show. Citizen Twain chronicles the life of the legendary writer and humorist through Twain’s own words, with a spotlight on his feud with religious writer Mary Baker Eddy. You can still get tickets to tonight’s performance at the Wyly, but the show will run through the weekend.

For more to do tonight, go here.

  • BOB7452689

    The Slaughtering of an Icon

    The longer I am away from last night’s show the more I realize how much I disliked it. The show portrays an American icon as a drunken, depressed, tragic figure, not the humorist/satirist/author of American legend. Perhaps Mr. Clemmons had some ugly turns, but the Twain character should not be slaughtered at his feet. Kilmer turns the story of Twain into a Shakespearian type tragedy. There was sporadic feigned laughter at the unoriginal requisite effort at humor. But the tone of the show was morbid and sad. I had hoped for an uplifting, entertaining experience, but it was hardly that. One expects a degree of seriousness given the subject matter the author chose to work with. However, this show casts Twain and his legacy as an American apologist, replete with verbal images of skinning human flesh to bath tub drownings. There was little sign of the edgy American commentary that Twain as “the Mark Twain” is known for, just periodic pandering, unauthentic tries. The true tragedy will be if Kilmer can raise the money to take his dismal Twain to the movie screen and ruin the image for the rest of the country.

    On the upside, Kilmer is a wonderful actor and could do great work with more pleasant material. You could truly see his gift and abilities, despite forgetting his lines four times.

    The sychopants will scream in dismay at my take, but unless you enjoy the unnecessary tearing down of otherwise pleasant-folkloric heroes,you would be better served seeing something happy…like Wicked maybe?