Saturday, October 25, 2008

Weekend Roundup

First of all, my Hallowe'en plans. Already got my tickets, and this is gonna rock:

The Silent Movie Theater, 8pm, October 31:
The Tingler
and
Cinefamily Halloween Party
What better location for a Halloween throwdown than at a place with serious Hollywood Gothic history (just Google our name plus "Laurence Austin"). First, we all sit down and watch The Tingler, William Castle's weirdo masterpiece of gimmickry about a lobster-shaped creature which feeds on terror within the human body! Aside from being the first film to utilize LSD as a plot device, the original theatrical run was presented in "Percepto," whereby theater patrons were given electric shocks in their seat to simulate the monster's attack. The result, of course, was giddy insanity as Price's voice urges patrons to "scream for your lives!" Best of all, The Tingler features a major subplot based on the Silent Movie Theatre itself and its original owners, the Hamptons (Castle even used our space for exteriors). Feel a tingle up your spine as you watch this scenes from this classic set in the location you're sitting in...and maybe a tingle on your tuchas when we shock you Castle-style with real wired seats! Once the movie's over, we're gonna clear the couches, make a dance floor, and have a real monster mash! Vittles and libations! Costume prizes! Karaoke on the big screen! Halloween!
The Tingler Dir. William Castle, 1959, 35mm, 82 min.

Next, the best obituary for Rudy Ray Moore out there. There's video, mp3's of both comedy and Rythm and Blues, personal stories, and the best description of Dolemite! I've ever read:

I first watched Dolemite years ago and thought it was one of those hilarious so-bad-it-has-to-be-good films. But a few years experience and a bit more research has changed my mind. Sure, the film is a bit on the inept side, but it was made almost completely by amateurs on a shoe-string budget and, well, it's supposed to be a comedy. So if you just flow with Dolemite's own loose vibe, it is really a delight. Not only that, but it was one of the few blaxploitation films of the era to really be born, financed, and made for the community. Melvin Van Peebles' Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song was the groundbreaker, but Dolemite is like watching Jr. High school kids playing Sweetback in the back-yard - adding all the toilet humor and silly chop-socky action that was missing from the more serious film.

And this great story:

I didn't get much of a chance to show Rudy the Boston sights that day, because he was on a mission. The night before he had scoured the Boston phone book to find the best dollar store in town. "You have to find the one where everything really is a DOLLAR," he exclaimed loudly into my ear. "Everything else is just bull-shit". Why he would want to travel across country just to visit a Boston dollar store was beyond me, but I was happy to oblige. We spent an hour roaming the aisles of Family Dollar, with Rudy chatting up the customers, proclaiming soul brothers, and cooing over babies, while Napoleon grabbed some of the strangest items: twelve back scratchers, a bunch of canes, rubber toy snakes, and some horrible plastic jewelry. Afterwards, I left them back at the hotel to relax before the show.

One of the most impressive things I learned from Rudy Ray ("Just call me Dolemite, dammit") Moore was frugality. He came to Boston by flying into the cheaper Providence airport then taking the commuter train into town. He refused to order drinks at the restaurant, and instead asked for a glass of water and a plate of lemon slices, which he then mixed with a couple of sugar packets to make free homemade lemonaide. But best of all, was his merch table that night before his appearance. He not only had his new Dolemite DVDs, autographed photos, and CDs for sale - but there on the table was all the stuff from the dollar store! He had glued gems and rubber snakes to the back scratchers and canes and selling them as autographed Dolemite pimp gear for $15-$20. Genius! My Dolemite back scratcher still hangs in a place of prominence in my home.

God, that's great stuff. And there's several other stories just as good, so read the whole piece.

And this is the best paragraph I've yet read about Sarah Palin and/or Tina Fey and Amy Poehler:

Unsurprisingly, right wing pundits are taking the bait, and using Palin as a tool to bash feminism with, and frankly putting feminism up as a voting issue, as if you can just vote it out of existence by voting for McCain/Palin. I think, though, that these tactics are being deployed in a media environment where the concept of what a woman can be and what she can be motivated by has changed rapidly in just a few years. In the past, when right wingers carried on about harridan feminists who picked on sweet little right wing women who fulfill your fantasies, said feminists were also a fantasy---few had a real face or name to the public that would provide decent counter to the accusation. But now the evil feminists being accused of jealousy by Bill Bennett and others are women like Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi, who certainly can’t be accused of having such shallow motivations. And hell, those feminists are Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, who’ve made Sarah Palin a massive target of their biting satire, and they can’t be accused of being dried up harridans who are taking out their own manless and childless frustrations on our political environment. Hell, one of the pleasures of seeing a very pregnant Poehler rip into Palin on “SNL” was that her body silently rebuked the accusations being peddled out on right wing talk radio day in and day out, that feminists are these inhuman beasts who hate Palin because she’s not in the avoid-motherhood-through-frequent-abortion club that many right wingers seem to believe in, despite the utter lack of evidence for such a club.

And Joe Stumble has a lengthy look at the 80's New Jersey hardcore scene, complete with a nice, long podcast, that's well worth a read:

Back in the day, hardcore thought it was all about being “street” and “urban”. All of us hardcore kids were trying to prove how tough we were in our respective cities. Problem was, most of us were from the suburbs. Where punk was an urban phenomenon, usually centered around wealthier kids who were slumming it in the streets, hardcore was a suburban phenomenon. It was centered around middle class kids from the outlying boroughs. Take the Necros, for instance, they weren’t from Cleveland or even Toledo, they were from Maumee. Now I understand that this is a generalization and I’m sure plenty of readers can prove me wrong by pointing out that innner city scene full of working class kids and there were exceptions (Boston and NYC come to mind) but generally, hardcore was suburban.

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