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Wound of Exit: ‘1334,’ the Follow Up to Nico B. & Rozz Williams’ ‘Pig’
03.19.2013
09:15 pm

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1334 is, by its very nature, a wholly unique creature. Like a black pearl born out of the twins of experimental cinema and the exorcising of personal demons, 1334 is less of a sequel and more of an obtuse follow-up to 1998’s Pig. Both were helmed by Dutch filmmaker and Cult Epics founder, Nico B. Both films also featured the late Rozz Williams, though in some unique ways. Pig was a collaboration with Rozz, who created the music, artwork, parts of the story and played the Killer. 1334 is a work created from the aftermath of his death and both the literal and dramatic imprint it left for B. Further tying the two together is the incorporation of Williams’ brilliant collage art, often in the form of the Killer’s textbook, Why God Permits Evil, as well as some of his strikingly disturbing sonic ambient work too.

It is extremely fitting that the first shot is a male hand closing Why God Permits Evil, ending what was opened in Pig. Rozz’s quote, “All truth is parallel, therefore, all truth is untrue.” appears on screen. Which is brilliant, especially in this case, since while so many fact-based films are presented so pristinely and perfectly dramatic, as if real life ever functions like that. Memories and events, for most of us, tend to become more fragmented and dreamlike over time. So to craft a film like this that is so stark yet darkly ethereal in parts, is a bold and needed move.

The tarot card for “The Hanged Man” appears, giving instant foreshadowing as we see the Rozz figure (Bill Oberst Jr.), shirtless and wearing a mask of a wretched looking old man with a gunshot wound to the temple, Kennedy-style. There is vintage footage of Rozz’s actual apartment shot before he died, seamlessly blended in with the new footage, featuring an old desk with a typewriter, a fetal-looking stuffed pig, a black bird and a large Nazi flag. He hangs himself and his body becomes slightly transparent, perhaps indicating him dying and crossing into the next plane. As the act is done, a dark-haired man (Dante White-Aliano) tries to call.

The next tarot card appears, “Le Maison Diev” or The Tower. The music grows even more high strung, as the young man showers. His lover, the first of the number of lovely raven haired women, sleeps, her pregnant belly exposed. The phone rings and the news of suicide is broken. He falls down from shock and grief, as his partner starts to weep. This whole sequence is shot in dreamy, Maya Deren-esque b&w, in contrast to the more gritty look of the scenes with Rozz. It’s only fitting that the next shot, a naked baby crying in the grass, looks more like the grittier scenes.

What exactly does the crying baby mean? Is it a metaphor for how the man feels? Is is something more literal? Especially given that after this scene, there is no mention of the baby again. But that is the beauty of the nature of 1334. If all works of art came with automatic cliff notes, then where’s the fun in that? The decision is always subjective.

The man gets into a heated argument with his lover, now no longer pregnant. Things start to get pretty physical, with the screen suddenly solarized, as a black mist starts to flood through the background. The screen goes back to normal and his girlfriend/attacker has fangs. The sound and sight of sirens start to come through and the domestic disturbance lands her behind bars.

Another tarot card appears, “La Roue de Fortune.” The Wheel of Fortune. The young man, bedecked in suit and tie, sits on a couch while a different woman speaks to him, sitting across at a table. Her voice can be heard, but not necessarily her words, as she sounds distorted. Her face, though, is kind. The film stock gets scratchy again as a faceless man drives around the countryside, invoking strong shades of Pig.

The tarot card of “Death” appears. The young man sits with a woman on a couch. As they talk, the black mist from earlier reappears every time the screen is solorized. They retire to bed, where the woman ends up being strangled by an unseen force while the man struggles like he paralyzed. When the attack lets up, there are marks around her neck.

The young man walks to the bathroom and picks up a straight razor, cutting his own neck. Bleeding, he enters a trance-like state where he meets the Rozz figure, clad head to toe in black Plague doctor garb. With his arms outstretched, he takes the young man into a living version of Flemish painter Peter Bruegel’s work, “Triumph of Death.” The moving landscape of apocalypse and death is inescapable as the Rozz figure is wide-eyed and unblinking, while the young man looks wan and burdened. The final shot ends the 17-minute long film on a powerful, grim note.

1334 is part of a very under-looked type of non-fiction film. It eschews traditional, linear storytelling for a more surreal and at its core, pure approach. Instead of breaking things down by ABC’s, we get a more emotionally honest portrait of what this filmmaker has gone through. Sometimes, the hardest but more rewarding approach is just this, yet so few have done this. Other than Klaus Kinski’s controversial and brilliant Paganini and some of the biographical works of Ken Russell, it is hard to think of such a similar cinematic creature.

One thing of note, like Pig before it, is the fantastic score, thanks to both the archives of Rozz Williams as well as some additional contributions from Dante White-Aliano. It’s appropriately creepy, full of tension and sadness. 1334 is an incredibly brave film in a much different way than its predecessor. In some ways, one can’t help but get the feeling that while Pig dealt with indulging some demons, 1334 is more about exorcising others. Death can be hardest for the living, especially since we are the ones dealing with the aftermath.

Cult Epics has done another prime job, with putting both Pig, which had been severely out of print for years, and 1334 on both Blu Ray and DVD. What this release may lack in extras, it more than makes up for with presentation, from the detailed booklet that includes photos of the script and assorted notes, to the slipcover featuring the cover of Why God Permits Evil in gorgeous color. The cover for the actual disk will definitely look familiar to any fans of Williams’ band Premature Ejaculation, since it is very similar to the art used on their posthumous release, Wound of Exit.

1334 is a beautiful, haunted work that will ruin any preconceptions you may have going into it. This is a very good thing.

Posted by Heather Drain | Leave a comment
Crime fighting charity release Scratch ‘n’ Sniff Cannabis Cards
03.19.2013
09:05 pm

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Amusing
Crime
Drugs
Idiocracy

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Crimestoppers, an organization that encourages busy-bodies [surely ‘do-gooders’? - ed.] to anonymously grass-up suspected crims (or possibly neighbors they don’t like?), has launched a Scratch ‘n’ Sniff card to help would-be drug enforcers recognize the tell-tale smell of a cannabis farm.

The card is being distributed across England and comes with a helpful check-list of ‘signs to look out for’:

1. Strong and sickly sweet smell
2. Cannabis growing equipment
3. Constantly covered or blocked-off windows
4. Visitors at unsociable hours
5. Strong and constant lighting day and night
6. High levels of heat and condensation
7. Constant buzz of ventilation
8. Lots of cables

On their website, Crimestoppers also helpfully tells users…er…informers which areas produce the most weed:

Hotspot areas targeted in this campaign include West and South Yorkshire, London, Greater Manchester and Avon & Somerset, which have all been identified in an ACPO report as areas with the highest number of cannabis farms in the UK. With nearly 1,800 cannabis farms found, West Yorkshire ranked the highest of all areas where cannabis farms were identified by ACPO across 2010/2012. South Yorkshire ranked second across the UK with over 1,600 found, London was the fourth highest with over 1,200 cannabis cultivation properties located in the same period.

Crimestoppers is “an independent charity which helps the police to solve crimes, making communities safer”, and is encouraging Scratch ‘n’ Sniffers to “spread the word on social media by using #weedthesigns.”

I think I’ll wait for the Scratch ‘n’ Sniff cocaine cards…
 
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Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Love in the Old Days: James Franco’s ‘Satanic’ music video starring Kenneth Anger
03.19.2013
08:36 pm

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Music
Occult

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People love to love James Franco and they seem to love to hate him, too. I think it must be because he does absolutely everything. The prolific multi-hyphenate’s latest project is a music video for a song titled “Love in the Old Days” by Daddy, his musical enterprise with artist/musician Tim O’Keefe.

When producer Ted James remixed one of Daddy’s songs, “Love in the Old Days,” Franco cast Kenneth Anger in the music video, presiding over a masked bacchanal based on Anton LaVey’s lycanthropic “Das Tierdrama” ritual (which was, in turn, based on The Island of Doctor Moreau by HG Wells).

Alexandria Symonds of Interview magazine asked Franco a few questions about the short film and working with the notoriously mercurial—and appropriately monikered—Ken Anger:

Alexandria Symonds: How did Kenneth Anger react when you approached him with this concept? Or was it more collaborative—did you come up with the idea together?

James Franco: This is the first time I’ve worked with Kenneth. But I’ve been very influenced by his work before this. I met one of his close collaborators, a guy named Brian Butler, and Brian and I have been talking about various projects for a while, and we just haven’t been able to do any of them yet. Brian has a movie that he wants to direct, and he wants me to be a little part in. And then when I learned that he did a lot of stuff with Kenneth, I couldn’t have been more excited.

So Brian set up the meeting, and Kenneth is a—[laughs]. He’s a nice guy, but I think he’ll admit, he’s a very strange guy. So the conversation was very weird. We met at the Chateau Marmont, Brian was there. I’d have this whole conversation with Brian, because Kenneth was really quiet, and I’d ask Kenneth something, and it was like he wasn’t even listening—but then, he’d kind of become aware. And he’s very smart, he’s been through so many different kinds of experiences, and was a part of so many different things, traveling with the Rolling Stones at the end of the ‘60s. So at times, if you can get him to talk, he’s very knowledgeable and informative. But at other times, it feels like he’s just thinking about other things.

Alexandria Symonds: What about on the set? What was it like to direct him? Did you basically just let him do his thing?

James Franco: Right. So, I read this book called Sway, that’s a fictional novel, but it uses Kenneth and the Rolling Stones, and this guy, Bobby Beausoleil, who was part of Manson’s group, as characters. I don’t know how true any of it is, but I’m sure the writer did research to make a lot of it at least based on fact. In that book, he has the character of Kenneth Anger making the films—the films that Kenneth actually made. And there were certain approaches that he had to these films, where he would shoot a lot of things kind of documentary-style, just people doing their regular routines. Or sometimes, he would stage these basic rituals, but in the editing, turn them into something much more energetic and artistic than they were when they were just filmed.

I guess I used whatever was in that book as kind of a guide about how to work with him. All I really needed was this basic ritual of, I guess you would call it, “The Marriage of Hell.” And we had imagery that was people in animal masks, that was based on certain images that Kenneth’s friend Brian had shown me. I always saw Kenneth as the Priest of Darkness; his films have strangely fused art and weird, kind of religious rituals. And I knew in one of his performances he plays that weird instrument called the theremin. So, if I just had him kind of preside over the wedding and play the theremin, I knew I could shoot it similarly to the way he shot his movies, and then edit it, and make it into something even more.

Brian Butler—who recently moved into the former Hollywood Hills home of Donald Cammell, he tells me, “for inspiration”—was the creative director for the piece. Butler will soon commence production on a feature film called King Death (this is the project Franco alludes to in the Interview interview). He’ll be appearing in Berlin on Saturday night at the Mindpirates space showing some of his short films with a musical performance.

Read the rest of the James Franco interview at Interview

Below, Daddy’s “Love In The Old Days” (Ted James 1999 Remix):
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Ultra-groovy Sixties TV show with Francoise Hardy, Sonny And Cher and more!
03.19.2013
04:25 pm

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Music
Pop Culture
Television

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Let’s Go: The Swinging Camera is a 1967 musical directed by Enzo Regusci, Gigi Grisons and Grytzko Mascioni. It was one of the first color programs created for Italian television and featured a mindblowing cast: Sonny & Cher, Fracoise Hardy, Caterina Caselli, Sandie Shaw, Dionne Warwick and Nini Rosso.

I have scoured the Internet looking for the show in its entirety. But so far, I’ve only managed to come up with this clip. Anybody out there have info on this great slice of pop culture?
 

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Salvador Dali vs. acid indigestion: Zany Alka Seltzer commercial from 1974
03.19.2013
02:55 pm

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Advertising
Art
Television

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“Plop, plop, fizz, fizz”

Salvador Dali takes an artistic approach to neutralizing stomach acid in this Alka Seltzer commercial from 1974.

Dali made himself available to do commercials for the price of $10,000 a minute. A bargain.
 

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Dying vet’s ‘fuck you’ letter to George Bush & Dick Cheney needs to be read by every American

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To: George W. Bush and Dick Cheney
From: Tomas Young

I write this letter on the 10th anniversary of the Iraq War on behalf of my fellow Iraq War veterans. I write this letter on behalf of the 4,488 soldiers and Marines who died in Iraq. I write this letter on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of veterans who have been wounded and on behalf of those whose wounds, physical and psychological, have destroyed their lives. I am one of those gravely wounded. I was paralyzed in an insurgent ambush in 2004 in Sadr City. My life is coming to an end. I am living under hospice care.

I write this letter on behalf of husbands and wives who have lost spouses, on behalf of children who have lost a parent, on behalf of the fathers and mothers who have lost sons and daughters and on behalf of those who care for the many thousands of my fellow veterans who have brain injuries. I write this letter on behalf of those veterans whose trauma and self-revulsion for what they have witnessed, endured and done in Iraq have led to suicide and on behalf of the active-duty soldiers and Marines who commit, on average, a suicide a day. I write this letter on behalf of the some 1 million Iraqi dead and on behalf of the countless Iraqi wounded. I write this letter on behalf of us all—the human detritus your war has left behind, those who will spend their lives in unending pain and grief.

I write this letter, my last letter, to you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney. I write not because I think you grasp the terrible human and moral consequences of your lies, manipulation and thirst for wealth and power. I write this letter because, before my own death, I want to make it clear that I, and hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans, along with millions of my fellow citizens, along with hundreds of millions more in Iraq and the Middle East, know fully who you are and what you have done. You may evade justice but in our eyes you are each guilty of egregious war crimes, of plunder and, finally, of murder, including the murder of thousands of young Americans—my fellow veterans—whose future you stole.

Your positions of authority, your millions of dollars of personal wealth, your public relations consultants, your privilege and your power cannot mask the hollowness of your character. You sent us to fight and die in Iraq after you, Mr. Cheney, dodged the draft in Vietnam, and you, Mr. Bush, went AWOL from your National Guard unit. Your cowardice and selfishness were established decades ago. You were not willing to risk yourselves for our nation but you sent hundreds of thousands of young men and women to be sacrificed in a senseless war with no more thought than it takes to put out the garbage.

I joined the Army two days after the 9/11 attacks. I joined the Army because our country had been attacked. I wanted to strike back at those who had killed some 3,000 of my fellow citizens. I did not join the Army to go to Iraq, a country that had no part in the September 2001 attacks and did not pose a threat to its neighbors, much less to the United States. I did not join the Army to “liberate” Iraqis or to shut down mythical weapons-of-mass-destruction facilities or to implant what you cynically called “democracy” in Baghdad and the Middle East. I did not join the Army to rebuild Iraq, which at the time you told us could be paid for by Iraq’s oil revenues. Instead, this war has cost the United States over $3 trillion. I especially did not join the Army to carry out pre-emptive war. Pre-emptive war is illegal under international law. And as a soldier in Iraq I was, I now know, abetting your idiocy and your crimes. The Iraq War is the largest strategic blunder in U.S. history. It obliterated the balance of power in the Middle East. It installed a corrupt and brutal pro-Iranian government in Baghdad, one cemented in power through the use of torture, death squads and terror. And it has left Iran as the dominant force in the region. On every level—moral, strategic, military and economic—Iraq was a failure. And it was you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney, who started this war. It is you who should pay the consequences.

I would not be writing this letter if I had been wounded fighting in Afghanistan against those forces that carried out the attacks of 9/11. Had I been wounded there I would still be miserable because of my physical deterioration and imminent death, but I would at least have the comfort of knowing that my injuries were a consequence of my own decision to defend the country I love. I would not have to lie in my bed, my body filled with painkillers, my life ebbing away, and deal with the fact that hundreds of thousands of human beings, including children, including myself, were sacrificed by you for little more than the greed of oil companies, for your alliance with the oil sheiks in Saudi Arabia, and your insane visions of empire.

I have, like many other disabled veterans, suffered from the inadequate and often inept care provided by the Veterans Administration. I have, like many other disabled veterans, come to realize that our mental and physical wounds are of no interest to you, perhaps of no interest to any politician. We were used. We were betrayed. And we have been abandoned. You, Mr. Bush, make much pretense of being a Christian. But isn’t lying a sin? Isn’t murder a sin? Aren’t theft and selfish ambition sins? I am not a Christian. But I believe in the Christian ideal. I believe that what you do to the least of your brothers you finally do to yourself, to your own soul.

My day of reckoning is upon me. Yours will come. I hope you will be put on trial. But mostly I hope, for your sakes, that you find the moral courage to face what you have done to me and to many, many others who deserved to live. I hope that before your time on earth ends, as mine is now ending, you will find the strength of character to stand before the American public and the world, and in particular the Iraqi people, and beg for forgiveness.

Tomas Young
 
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The Crucifixion of Tomas Young (TruthDig)

 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Vintage ‘Jesus’ skate park ID cards
03.19.2013
01:39 pm

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Amusing

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Yes, even Jesus needed an ID card to skate back in the day.

As a side note: They’re probably ‘shopped—maybe not—but this is still funny, nonetheless.
 
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Bonus image, below:

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Photo source: The World’s Best Ever

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘Union thug’ who punched out pathetic Fox News dickhead will not be charged with anything!

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Who wouldn’t want to punch this stupid face?

Hahahahahaha. I guess getting punched in the face by a “union thug” wasn’t quite the career break that Fox News dickweed and self-styled “comedian” Steven Crowder thought it would be. A Michigan prosecutor has declined to pursue assault charges against the man who punched him. On video.

Via Raw Story:

The Lansing State Journal reported on Tuesday that Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III decided not to pursue a case after watching unedited video of Crowder’s appearance at a protest against right-to-work legislation, which culminated in Crowder getting punched in the face.

Crowder filed a police report and claimed he was assaulted, saying in interviews that he was “beat down” and that protesters “literally would have killed me where I stood if I defended myself.” He also published an edited version of the confrontation online.

But after watching both that video and a longer, unedited account of the incident as aired on Current TV, Dunnings said, “It’s pretty clear the person that they wanted to charge was acting in self-defense.” In the longer video, the man who punched Crowder was pushed by an unseen person before striking him, giving the encounter a different context.

“I’m not holding that against him, but why would they provide the edited video?” Dunnings said. “The longer video clearly shows the guy got pushed down and came up swinging.”

Why would Steven Crowder have provided an edited video, I wonder?

Anyone care to hazard a guess?

Another fun fact about Crowder: He’s an abstinence advocate…

Roger Ailes really knows how to pick credible people for Fox News, doesn’t he?

Previously on Dangerous Minds
Fox News dickhead punched at labor protests in Michigan

Fox News chucklehead under scrutiny for creative editing of ‘union thug’ video

Fox News bastard who got cold-clocked at labor protest tells his own idiotic side of the story

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Goth King Peter Murphy arrested for hit and run, possible meth possesion, in Los Angeles
03.19.2013
11:18 am

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Crime
Drugs
Music
Pop Culture

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“Bela Lugosi’s tweaked…”

Peter Murphy, the former lead singer of Bauhaus, was arrested in Los Angeles on Saturday night after an apparent hit and run that injured the other driver.

Veronica Rocha, reporting for the Glendale Times Community News, writes:

The eyewitness followed Murphy, 55, from the crash at Central and Goode avenues in Glendale to the 3400 block of Barham Boulevard in Los Angeles because “he was afraid [Murphy] would kill someone with his driving,” according to Glendale police.

Murphy, who was in a Subaru Forester, reportedly struck a Mercedes about 11:48 a.m. at the intersection, then drove around it and got on the Ventura (134) Freeway, police said. As he fled the scene, a witness who was washing windows, snapped a photograph of Murphy’s Subaru, which sustained moderate front-end damage.

The driver of the Mercedes was also able to write down Murphy’s license plate number before Glendale fire personnel hauled her away on a gurney, police said.

Meanwhile, the driver of a pickup truck reportedly followed Murphy to Los Angeles, where he pulled in front of him, blocked his Subaru and called Glendale police to tell them he was detaining Murphy.

Good for this guy. That’s a seriously impressive act of citizenship.

According to the report, Murphy copped to the traffic collision, telling police that he was jet-lagged.

Then there’s this:

Inside the Los Angeles police patrol car where Murphy had been detained, officers reported finding a small plastic bag, possibly of methamphetamine, police said. Murphy denied the bag belonged to him, but officers said they believed he was trying to discard it in the patrol car.

Murphy was arrested on suspicion of causing injuries while driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, felony hit-and-run and possessing methamphetamine, police said.

As on Monday, Peter Murphy was still being held in police custody, remanded in lieu of a half million dollar bail. Police officers expressed concern that Murphy could be a flight risk, and they’re probably right.

What I want to know is this: What was the bloody King of Goth doing in fucking Glendale, anyway?

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Nick Cave and David Bowie hi-top All Stars sneakers
03.19.2013
11:05 am

Topics:
Fashion
Music

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Hand-painted sneakers featuring Nick Cave and Bowie as Aladdin Sane by Finland-based artist, Erika Works.

It looks like she does custom orders, too. Someone in the comments inquired about a pair of Leonard Cohen shoes, and Erika Works said it would cost them around 40€ for the art (that does not include the price of the shoes, tho). 

Via Cherrybombed

 

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
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