Now Playing: The Casionauts--"Southern Man"
Interesting week, interesting weekend (the ones before, anyway--I was sick half the week and most of this weekend).
Bury Me An Angel (1971): I almost wasn't going to see this Projectorhead-sponsored flick, an action that--it emerged--would have been profoundly silly. The February Current featured this description: "Dixie Peabody, armed with a shotgun, her Harley, and two friends, seeks to find the ones responsible for her btorhter's death." There's quite a lot of prima facie glory in that sentence alone, one that barely begins to hint at Bury Me An Angel's greatness. Peabody plays "Dag," a biker girl who splits a hilariously-filmed garage party (complete with coke sniffed off buckknives) with her brother only to watch him gunned down at the door by a transcendently goofy-looking assassin, the hilarity of whose recurrent appearances in flashbacks and dream sequences is almost sacriligeous to convey. It's actually pretty impossible to describe any of this little New World gem... it's like describing a soup (to be pretentious)--you can't really communicate the flavor through words, but you can describe the ingredients. In this case, those consist of bikes, guns, drugs, foolin' around, coffee, television apathy, witchcraft, Dan Haggerty, skinny-dipping, sex, fever dreams, revenge, barfights, alcohol, school administration, mountain scenery, and donuts, all crammed into an unbelievably rewarding eighty-five minutes. Peabody's performance is both insanely overwrought (in answer to someone's accurate assertion that she has "negative energy"--"What the hell is that supposed to mean?")and defiantly listless (whoa) but bizarrely convincing due to her imposing physical presence (when she arrives at a bar with her two friends, you gets the sense that she could literally eat you alive, or at least club you senseless and drag you to the Sadie Hawkins dance (or anywhere, for that matter). The actual showing was fittingly shrouded in weirdness; the last reel went missing and so, as the organizer searched frantically for his VHS copy, one of the other organizwers showed us five minutes of a fight scene between Lucille Ball and Maureen O'Hara from Dorothy Arzner's Dance, Girl, Dance (1940), an earlier Projectorhead film, redundantly and insultingly pointing out obvious plot points as if we were in kindergarten. The doors of the building were festooned with someone's posters: "Sarah Cook, I love you. Take me back." I wound up in a fetal position from laughing at dream sequences (and everything else), and haven't been with an actual theater audience that had such a good time watching a movie in eons. Bury Me An Angel... from the bottom of my heart, I thank you.
Last Friday night, I went to see a show at the Blind Pig which was something of an all-star Ann Arbor lineup: Chris Bathgate, Starling Electric, and Saturday Looks Good To Me. I was mainly there for Starling Electric, partially there for Bathgate, and only a little for Saturday Looks Good To Me, who used to be my favorite band in Ann Arbor. It was a curiously mellow evening, in which I had a weird feeling of peace and serenity, not really what I think of in terms of the Blind Pig. Bathgate was good, Starling ELectric were once more impeccable, with a lot of the new songs starting to take root in the mass consciousness (I assume) and the band all the tighter for the result (they started the set with a lovely cover of Wings' "Who's That Knocking At My Door?", and will hopefully do "Junior's Farm" or "Jet" at some point in the future). The most interesting set was the last, probably because I wandered around and about, missing a few songs. I hadn't heard SLGTM in over a year, and though I was pleased to hear old favorites like "Alcohol" making an appearance, there wasn't really the same sense of ball-busting joy I used to get at their live performances. Still, it was a fun night, and we had an unusual amount of roaming time after the end of the show and before close, at which latter time the staff charges around the floor like buffalo-herders with Asperger's, hustling everyone into the freezing night with abusive zeal, despite the fact that some of them seem to enjoy coming in five minutes before close at certain area restaurants. I know what it's like to help close a bar/music venue after a hard night of partying, but do let's keep some perspective. Afterward, Margot, Adam, and I toddled over to the White Lodge for the now traditional Starling Electric afterparty, at which, for perhaps the first time, I avoided making an ass of myself (I think). By the time we left, it was about five in the morning, at which time all the cab companies in Ann Arbor apparently cease operation. Margot and Adam invited me to crash at their truly Cyclopean apartment, which I thankfully did, waking two hours later (and again three hours after that) on a sinfully comfortable couch to find their cat, the sable Iago, trying to make friends. Iago and I farted around for a while, after which Margot fixed breakfast and the two began to initiate me into the ways of people leading century-appropriate technological lives. By the time we got through quasi-virtual tennis and bowling to YouTube, it had turned into a lovably weird weekend, especially since it was still Saturday (all too often, as with the previous weekend, all the good stuff starts Saturday night, leaving only a few dregs of day until the workweek begins anew). Thanks again, guys!
And, yes, the blog changed. Dying clowns don't appeal to me anymore, and who wouldn't prefer the "Borderland" template to "Plain Jane"? Or even "Tangerine Nip"??? I mean, really...