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The Muppets in a hostage situation
03.18.2014
10:58 am

Topics:
Amusing
Art
Television

Tags:
Muppets


 
Poor Beaker being brutalized by balcony-sitting curmudgeons Statler and Waldorf on TV for all to see. I wonder what message they were trying to get out to the general public? I guess we’ll never know… 

“The Hostage Situation” also titled “The Art of Heckling - Part 2” is by Matthias Weinberger.

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Little rascal: Christopher Walken, child actor
03.18.2014
08:58 am

Topics:
Movies

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Christopher Walken

Christopher Walken
 
Christopher Walken is in a very special group of beloved actors…. really, only Bill Murray is in the same category in terms of having an almost spooky ability to touch and delight us, sometimes without doing anything at all. What those two actors share, it occurs to me, is a knack for complete and utter freedom; they don’t seem tethered at all by the normal constraints.

A couple of years ago, Stephen Collins, who acted on stage with Walken in two productions, was interviewed on Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show, and he made a fascinating comment about Walken’s utter lack of the usual actor’s vanity (quote starts at 42:30):
 

I did Three Sisters with Walken at Williamstown [in 1987]. ... He was playing Vershinin, and he got a lot of laughs. ... He would get a laugh—I mean a big, huge laugh—and the next night, I’d think, oh hey, this’ll be fun, I can’t wait for him to go for that again, because it’s fun when anybody on stage gets a laugh. And he wouldn’t do anything even remotely like what he did the night before. He would give up the laugh completely. It was like, it had never happened. And you’d think, God, how amazing. And then I swear, three seconds later, he’d do something else and get a huge laugh—that he would never go for again.

I never, ever have known an actor less possessive of his laughs. Because actors are usually really possessive. ... When you get a big laugh in a play, you kinda want to get it eight times a week. And you sort of want everybody to help you get it. ... He has none of that attachment. ...

When he was a chorus boy he worked with Beatrice Lillie, ... in a musical called High Spirits, the musical version of Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit, and he said she did that. He said, “Beatrice Lillie never got the same laugh twice. ... I always thought that was so brave, and so I guess it affected me, you know.” I guess it did! He’s like the bravest guy on stage I’ve ever, ever seen.

 
One of the secrets of Walken’s success and utterly distinctive persona may be an application of Malcolm Gladwell’s “10,000 hour rule”—in order to become a master at something, you have to put in ten thousand hours and then you have a chance to be really great.  Walken has been Walken his entire life!

I didn’t know before a couple of days ago that Walken has been acting since he was a child. Here are some amusing publicity stills from those early days, years before he would achieve such stellar results in movies like The Deer Hunter, True Romance, King of New York, The Dead Zone, Seven Psychopaths, a Fatboy Slim video and countless episodes of Saturday Night Live.
 
Christopher Walken
 
Christopher Walken
 
Christopher Walken
 
Here’s Walken’s portrait from his high school yearbook from “PCS”—Professional Children’s School in New York. (Clarification: Walken’s given name is Ronald; he adopted the name “Christopher” in 1964.) Walken was born in 1943, so I suppose this would have been about 1960. After a Shakespeare quotation, we encounter the following, which is somehow hilariously apt: “This tall blue-eyed cavalier” is “a watchful dreamer, he will speak up quite suddenly with some witticism, and then lapse back into silence.”
 
Christopher Walken
 
Here’s Walken in his first acting role, at least according to IMDb.com. It’s from 1953, and it’s called “Wonderful John Acton,” and it’s about “an Irish-American family in Ludlow, Kentucky in 1919.” It looks heavily influenced by Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, but what do I know. Only the first three minutes are here, you’ll see Walken walk across the stage around the 2:20 mark.
 

 
via Showbiz Imagery and Chicanery

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘Three Little Pigs’ read by Christopher Walken

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Medium Fool: Hilariously bad séance hoax from the Edwardian era
03.18.2014
08:11 am

Topics:
Amusing
Occult

Tags:
hoax
seance


 
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of history’s most iconic detective,Sherlock Holmes, believed the French medium seen in these photographs, Eva Carrière, was authentic. You see, unlike his famous fictional creation, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a sucker.

The Spiritualist movement of the late 19th century conned a lot of incredibly intelligent people, and probably attracted a few reasonably amused gawkers, as well. If you think there’s nothing interesting about a woman dragging out a bunch of newspaper cutouts and faking a connection with the spiritual world, please note that some of the pictures below are of nude Carrière, though her dirty pillows have been retouched. Yes, Eva C. regularly got naked and received paranormal gynecological exams from her “assistant” and rumored girlfriend, Juliette Bisson. It’s also said that she engaged in sexual activities with séance participants, so before you paint the attendants of such events with a broad and gullible brush—remember, this was before Internet porn.

The photos here are from the 1910s, when the séance craze was already winding down, thanks in no small part to “evidence” like this, I’m sure. Debunking spiritualists was quite the hobby of many a sober-minded Edwardian, and they weren’t particularly impressed with Carrière’s ectoplasm—identifiable as scraps of a French magazine. You’ll notice the faces featured in her communion with the spirits include Woodrow Wilson, King Ferdinand of Bulgaria and the French president Raymond Poincaré, none who were dead at the time…
 

 

 

 
More fake spiritualism after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Diana Rigg stars in bizarre German ‘stag films for Avengers’ fetishists’
03.18.2014
07:14 am

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Amusing
Movies
Pop Culture

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Diana Rigg
The Avengers

riggmindiaded.jpg
 
Diana Rigg was already well known as Emma Peel, the iconic kick-ass star of sixties hit TV series The Avengers, when she made these two short Super-8 films The Diadem (1966) and Mini-Killers (1969).

The Avengers was one of that decade’s most successful TV series, so why Ms. Rigg should have agreed to appear in these rather bizarre home-movies, I have no idea, but perhaps as Steven Puchalski suggests over at Shock Cinema, we should:

Think of these silent shorts as stag films for AVENGERS fetishists, who love watching Rigg beating the bejesus out of burly guys, amidst secret agent-style shenanigans.

That almost sums them both up. The Diadem is mainly an Emma-Peel-style showreel, with lots of fighting and not much plot, while Mini-Killers obviously had a bigger budget, was shot in color in exotic locations, with a bigger cast, some special effects, and a more convoluted plot involving killer dolls.

Both films were made for distribution as Super-8 home movies in Germany. The question is why did Rigg make them? Mini-Killers was filmed after she had starred in The Assassination Bureau with Oliver Reed, and appeared with the George Lazenby in the James Bond classic On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, so we can scrub lack of money off the list of possible reasons why. Who cares why, it’s just some wonderful and bizarre fun from the 1960s.
 

 
‘Mini-Killers’ plus Emma Peeler photo shoot, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Existentially depressing pr0n ending
03.18.2014
06:35 am

Topics:
Amusing
Sex

Tags:
pr0n


 
An eagle-eyed redditor spotted this not-so-happy ending…

This is about as bleak as Ernest Hemingway’s six-word short story:

“For sale: Baby shoes. Never worn.”

Except, well, there were no creampies in Hemingway’s tale.

Via The Daily Dot

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘Lady June’s Linguistic Leprosy’: Art rock obscurity featuring Brian Eno and Kevin Ayers


 
When she died of a heart attack in 1999 at the age of 68, her obituary in The Independent called “Lady” June Campbell Cramer “a great British eccentric and cosmic prankster.” That’s already a pretty good claim to fame, but the obit went on to say that her “most achieved performance was herself: she succeeded in turning her existence into living art, bristling with humour.”

“Lady” June—the honorary title given to her due to her upper-crust, aristocratic voice (she sounded like a stoned Judi Dench) and the fact that she was the de facto landlady of many a progressive musician from the Canterbury set—was a sort of free-spirited hippie bohemian poetess and multimedia performance artist who ran with the crowd that included Gong and Soft Machine, who she first met in Spain in the early 1960s.

According to Daevid Allen, who was in both groups, June’s Maida Vale flat was “London’s premier smoking salon”:

“She was ferocious in the mornings until the first joint arrived: she’d hover over you with a wet cloth demanding that you clean the stove.”

Gilli Smyth of Gong, Allen’s wife, was her best friend, and it was at a dual birthday party June threw for herself and Smyth that a drunken Robert Wyatt fell out of a window, falling four stories and leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.
 

 
In 1973, June took part in the chaotic BBC Radio 4 series If It’s Wednesday It Must Be… with Kenny Everett and former Bonzo Dog Band member Vivian Stanshall. Later that year she recorded Lady June’s Linguistic Leprosy, her surrealist poetry set to music by her longtime friend (and longtime tenant) Kevin Ayers and Brian Eno, who lived nearby. The recording was made in the front room of her apartment (along with Gong’s drummer Pip Pyle and David Vorhaus of White Noise) and is said to have cost just £400. A wary Caroline Records—a Virgin subsidiary set up to release things with little to no commercial potential in the first place—pressed up just 5000 copies, but the album sold out quickly when news of her famous collaborators got around. June performed on bills along with Gong, Hawkwind, The Pink Fairies and Hatfield and the North.

“Lady” June Campbell Cramer returned to Spain in 1975 and became an active and creatively fulfilled participant in the artists’ community of Deya in Majorca. It is primarily for the company she kept—and this one remarkable album—that we remember her today. Lady June’s Linguistic Leprosy was re-issued on CD in 2007 by Market Square.
 

“Everythingsnothing”/“Tunion”
 

“The Letter”
 

“Tourisy”/“Am I”
 

“To Whom It May Concern”
 

“Some Day Silly Twenty Three”
 

“Missing Person,” a gorgeous number from a 1984 French various artists release entitled History of Jazz.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Neil deGrasse Tyson has smoked the best pot in the Cosmos
03.17.2014
08:40 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Drugs
Science/Tech

Tags:
Neil deGrasse Tyson


 
What is this, unseen footage of Neil deGrasse Tyson as the ‘luded out astrophysicist character that was cut out of one of the Bill & Ted movies?

Pass the gravity bong, Neil!

 
Via reddit

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Blazing Away: ‘Lost’ Marianne Faithfull concert film resurfaces on YouTube
03.17.2014
02:07 pm

Topics:
Music

Tags:
Marianne Faithfull


 
In 1990 Marianne Faithfull was filmed in concert at St. Anne’s Cathedral in Brooklyn along with a crack band consisting of The Band’s Garth Hudson, Dr. John, her longtime collaborator Barry Reynolds , Marc Ribot, Fernando Saunders (Lou Reed’s longtime bass player), drummer Dougie Bowne (John Cale, Iggy Pop, Arto Lindsay and the Lounge Lizards) and Lew Soloff on trumpet and flugel horn.

The set was released as Blazing Away on CD and VHS in 1990. According to Maggie Bee (who uploaded the video with Faithfull’s expressed permission) the record label actually lost the video master.

Set List
Prisons Du Roy
Falling From Grace
Blue Millionaire
Strange Weather
Guilt
Sister Morphine
Working Class Hero
When I Find My Life
The Ballad Of Lucy Jordan
As Tears Go By
Why D’ya Do It
Boulevard Of Broken Dreams
Broken English
Times Square
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Has Courtney Love found Flight 370???
03.17.2014
01:52 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Current Events
Music

Tags:
Courtney Love


 
Courtney Love posted this to her Facebook page 11 hours ago. I’ve got nuthin’ else to add.

I’m no expert but up close this does look like a plane and an oil slick. http://www.tomnod.com/nod/challenge/malaysiaairsar2014/map/128148 … prayers go out to the families #MH370 and its like a mile away Pulau Perak, where they “last” tracked it 5°39’08.5"N 98°50’38.0"E but what do I know?

Courtney Love on Facebook

Via METRO

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘Inside Out’: Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s wildly entertaining life on parole


 
It’s safe to say that for virtually every moment from the time that Wu-Tang Clan became prominent around 1993 until his sad death in 2004, Ol’ Dirty Bastard—“Russell Jones” to the law enforcement community—was in some kind of legal trouble. He was convicted of second degree assault in 1993 and was arrested for failure to pay child support in 1997. A year later, he pleaded guilty to attempted assault on his wife and was also arrested for shoplifting. It goes on from there. In 2000 he was assigned to a court-mandated drug treatment facility but escaped—as a fugitive he met up with RZA and spent some time in the studio. In Philadelphia he was eventually captured. (DM previously reported on his endlessly interesting FBI file, released in 2012.)

After spending the next two and a half years in prison in New York, he was released on parole on May 1, 2003. Sensing an opportunity, ODB’s manager, Jarred Weisfeld, arranged for VH1 to have a crew follow ODB around for his release and the first few weeks out of jail. The end result was “Inside Out,” which can be viewed below. Actually, it’s a little unclear what this video is—IMDb.com lists the running time as 60 minutes over two episodes. This video isn’t that long, however. What I think this is is episode 1 of “Inside Out”—not sure there was an episode 2—followed by a brief remembrance section that likely doesn’t have anything to do with VH1. In any case, it’s wildly entertaining.
 
Ol' Dirty Bastard
 
The life of a mentally troubled rap star is as crazy as anything you’re likely to find. A stretch limo filled with family, friends, and business associates (of course these lines overlap) is there to meet him upon his release. He is immediately presented with a gift of 500 condoms. As the father of 13 children by multiple women, ODB sniffs out the subtext: “They don’t want me makin’ no more babies!” At his press conference the same day as his release, who shows up to take part? Of course, Mariah Carey.

Eventually ODB’s interest in the ladies alienates his sort-of ladyfriend Raquel, who promptly flees back to LA. Within days he’s photographing a silicone-enhanced Playboy model and hitting on women in the street. Meanwhile his new relationship with Roc-A-Fella records is proceeding with the usual complications. We see a few cordial encounters with RZA as well.

The special presents a glimpse of actual parole life that’s not often available on TV. We see ODB successfully pass a drug test and we’re told that, as messy as his life was, he was able to adhere to the 9pm curfew imposed on him. When he signs the paperwork before his release, he’s told that he’s agreeing that parole officers can visit his home more or less anytime, and sure enough, we get to see such a visit. All goes well, except for ODB’s lingering paranoia after the fact.

ODB never really got the psychological help he needed, but nobody could say that he lived an unfulfilled life. “Inside Out” is excellent evidence of both parts of that equation.
 

 

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Ol’ Dirty Bastard memorialized by The Clapper
Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s FBI file in its entirety

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
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