Sunday, January 20, 2008

New Stamford Restaurant Republic Grill, Movies at the Mall, Police Trust Us

On Saturday night, Stamford showed its true, non-cohesive self: a mish-mosh of food styles, social groups, unpredictable alliances, and small-town police antics.

On Bedford Street, the Avon marquee glowed, the white tree lights sparkled, the wholesome crowd at Lucky's smiled…. but Tigin was dead, Egane Korean BBQ patronless, and Bradford’s dart machines deserted. The trendy UMPs* were probably down near Market, Black Bear and the Summer St. Theatre, but I got coerced into seeing Cloverfield at the mall. I don’t LOVE seeing movies with hordes of scruffy teenagers, but I choose to view it as an adventure.

The Stamford Downtown Events Blog** tipped me off to new restaurant Republic Grill. Republic was almost empty, but it had tasty food for good prices, so I’m sure it will get busy soon. Finally, I have found a salad with quality green leaves…. for FOUR bucks!!! YES!!! Republic is five days old, and I liked it, which means Patricia Brooks will be sure to review it next week. Actually, she probably won’t, because it’s a sibling of the Tengdas in Greenwich, Darien, and Westport, and she already gave them the rare rating of excellent. If you go to Republic, ask for the white fish special roll with spicy sauce and tempura outside. Also, if you don't mind, try the watermelon mojito and let me know how it is.

On the way home from the movie, I saw a cop car illegally (!) parked outside McDonald’s with its lights flashing… and NO ONE IN IT. I rubbernecked the sidewalk: Ooh, was he cracking down on some loiterers, investigating an incident? Nope, he was inside, STANDING IN LINE. To some people, that looks like slacking. To me, that shows someone who’s in charge; he knows his audience, and he knows they won’t steal his cop car. If he trusts us enough to leave his car unattended, that shows us something about ourselves. He thinks we’re the kind of people who don’t steal cars, and that makes me proud of this city.

Even Stamford’s youths were mellow, behaving amiably and orderly from previews to credits. Thank you, high schoolers. Cloverfield kept you quiet with all of its pointless noise, and my fondness of you increased when you booed it at the end. I TOTALLY agreed***.

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*Upwardly Mobile Professional, term designed to replace outdated “Yuppies,” since these days, you don’t have to be young to be moving up in the world, at least in the FC.

**The blog rarely gets updated, so don't bother checking it. I'll let you know if anything interested gets posted.

*** Cloverfield was a predictable combo of all the action/horror/sci-fi movies I’ve ever seen: 28 Days Later, Blair Witch Project, Transformers, Spider-Man, etc. It echoed every other movie in which a city gets attacked by a scary creature and/or covered in ice (Day After Tomorrow with Jake Gyllenhall). If you think Cloverfield offered something new, please comment. Oh, and the creature looks exactly like Voldemort mixed with a dragon-ish character from some other film that blends in with all the others. Save your money, and Tivo the old episodes of Battlestar Galactica on the Sci-Fi Channel. How ‘bout those Cylons?


Leadhyena Inrandomtan said...

Just because a movie was predictable doesn't mean it was bad. I personally LOVED the film, especially the ending. Several people were dizzy from it near the end, but the group I went with on opening night really dug it. I personally got a kick out of the fact that many of the details about the monster and its minions were not explained, but left shrouded in quick shots, which is more reminiscent of the first Alien movie. Granted the movie wasn't perfect (the monster seems to change in size throughout the movie, some of the shots were too shaky [it's called a steady-cam, please get one] and some liberties seem to be taken with Manhattan geography and stamina), but there was no happy ending, no clean resolution, no gaping plot holes. It felt gritty and real to me, almost unnervingly so, which is more than I can say for 28 Days Later, Spiderman, Transformers, and even Blair Witch Project. My point is that it didn't have to be new and predictable, it just had to be honestly creepy, and on that note IMHO it succeeded.

Zobot said...

I like Tengda, will have to try Republic. Personally, I wish we had restaurants there were unique and not also available in both Greenwich and Darien, but maybe that's just me...

That stretch of Bedford St is pretty desolate. There are several empty storefronts near Schakolad, I'm sure the restaurants would love to see some actual retail stores arrive and bring some foot traffic down that way.

I hear Capriccio Cafe, next to Lucky's, is excellent, but haven't been yet.

Looking forward to your Dunn's Loft review...

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, Zobot. You have got to hit Capriccio. Fab real italian food.