Better safe than sorry, but Wednesday's hurricane scare was really much ado about nothing. "Ernie" turned out to be a tropical storm that brought Central Florida some wind and a bunch of much-needed rain throughout the late afternoon and evening. Let's hope the remaining storms of the season follow his lead.
On another note, Wednesday was also the day one of Orlando's finest journalists and champions of the arts left town to start a new chapter in his life. Steve Schneider, former Arts & Entertainment Editor, film critic, and columnist (the infamous "Dog Playing Poker") for the Orlando Weekly, headed north to begin a Masters in Media Studies program at NYU. For ten years Steve's writing has entertained, informed,and provoked local readers with a satirical edge that always brought a smile to my face, even when he was trashing a festival film or the current Enzian offering. Check out this excerpt from his review of THE QUIET, opening today at Regal Winter Park Village:
An orphaned deaf mute (underage "it" girl Camilla Belle) gets sent to live with an obnoxious cheeleader (Elisha Cuthbert) and her family, all of whom happen to be hiding an unspeakable secret. Believe it or not, it's a revelation more disturbing than the degree to which mama Edie Falco's short haircut makes her resemble Laugh-In's Henry Gibson.
Steve's reviews were often more witty and enjoyable than the films themselves, yet when he saw something that knocked him on his ass (like Park Chan-Wook's LADY VENGEANCE at this year's Florida Film Festival for instance), his writing could also be insightful and intelligent. No film was too small for his attention (see his coverage of events like Brouhaha and many of DMAC's offerings), and he was always a staunch supporter of both indie film and theater in the Orlando area.
Here's wishing him the best of luck in his travels and studies in NYC--this burg will miss him.