The move to the blog space is still pending the revival of my Macbook; it got pretty fucked and it's taking some time to find the pieces we need to bring it back to life. My whole mp3 library is imprisoned on that thing, and on my iPod - which can't be synced with a PC laptop without being formatted and losing everything. One of my main desires for the blog is to be able to upload my own mp3s, so with all the traffic coming in this weekend because of the lineup I decided to just leave A Record a Day here for the time being.
Post by Horned Gramma on Feb 8, 2011 9:10:52 GMT -8
Crispin Hellion Glover - The Big Problem =/=‚ The Solution. The Solution = Let It Be.
One of my favorite quotes is from Steve Martin, who said (and I'm paraphrasing): "I make some films because they are good films, and I make some films because I like to buy paintings." Steve Martin is an intelligent fellow, and his fans know that, so the question of 'Dear God, WHY is there another Pink Panther movie...?' can be answered with that quote. It's kind of reassuring, too, when we think about a class act like Bill Murray voicing Garfield the Cat, or we see Tim Burton superimpose the face of Crispin Glover onto a ridiculous-looking CGI body in 'Alice in Wonderland'.
Everyone, I'm sure, remembers Crispin Glover as George McFly from 'Back to the Future'. He's been in dozens of movies since then, but that's definitely his best known role. Fans of cult cinema are familiar with his weirder side, on display in classics like 'The Orkly Kid' and 'Rubin and Ed'. And fans of the truly bizarre (hi there!) may be familiar with Crispin Glover, the auteur. Crispin Glover finances his ongoing project, which he calls the 'It Trilogy', by appearing in god-awful films like Burton's 'Alice'. The 'It Trilogy' is a series of experimental films, directed and financed completely by Glover. Two of the three planned films have been completed: 'What Is It?', the cast of which consists entirely of people with down syndrome; and 'It is Fine! EVERYTHING IS FINE!', which was written by and stars a man named Steven C. Stewart, who suffered from cerebral palsy his entire life and wrongly spent the majority of his life in a mental institution. They are intense, bewildering, sometimes ugly films - graphically violent and sexual, nearly impossible to comprehend. They are incredible films. Crispin Glover will only screen these films when he is personally in attendance, and these events always include a Q & A and a performance of something he calls 'The Big Slide Show'.
Bear with me.
'The Big Slide Show' is a forty-five minute presentation which involves dramatic readings from several of the (equally bizarre) books that Crispin Glover has self-published, books with innocuous sounding titles like 'Oak Mot' and 'Concrete Inspection' and 'What It Is and How It Is Done'. Readings of two of these books, 'Oak Mot' - which is the story of how a beautiful androgynous boy in the mid-1800's inadvertently gave rise to Nazi Germany - and 'Rat Catching', which includes 'Studies in Rat Catching for the use in schools' - comprise the bulk of Mr. Glover's album, 'The Big Problem =/=‚ The Solution. The Solution = Let It Be.'
With musical accompaniment from vintage weirdos Barnes & Barnes - the people responsible for the Dr. Demento staple 'Fish Heads' - Crispin Glover shrieks and wails through abridged versions of 'Rat Catching' and 'Oak Mot'. The narratives are wildly unhinged, and the only thing that makes you realize there is anything resembling a rational progression to follow is how dementedly assured Glover is as he recites them.
This isn't just a Book on Tape From Hell, though - sweet Jesus, there are songs too. A cover of Nancy Sinatra's anthem 'These Boots Were Made for Walkin' seems like a natural enough choice; hilariously, a cover of Charles Manson's 'Never Say Never to Always' seems equally at home. Crispin Glover has a whispy tenor, not a bad voice, but laid over Barnes & Barnes terrifying calliope music it sounds like the soundtrack to one of David Lynch's nightmares.
'Auto-Maniuplator' is a beat heavy ode to masturbation, and 'Clowny Clown Clown' is... Well, it involves a clown. I don't suppose many of you will ever listen to this record, so it isn't that I don't want to spoil it for you, it's just... I don't really know how to describe Crispin Glover's relationship with that clown. The album ends with what sounds like George McFly screaming (SCREAMING) in German. It sounds like that because that is in fact exactly what happens.
To say that this side of Crispin Glover isn't for everybody is an understatement. The movie poster for 'What Is It?' is a vintage painting, one from Mr. Glover's own collection, that depicts a naked, pre-pubescent Shirley Temple wearing a Nazi hat and boots and masturbating with a riding crop. 'The Big Problem' is an oddity, absolutely among the most unusual things I've ever heard. None of this is meant to be funny or shocking; the REALLY interesting thing is that this is all coming from a very sincere place in Crispin Glover's heart. No lover of experimental music or cinema has a complete collection without this disc in it; love it now, because someday Crispin's long-awaited 'Big Love Album', produced by Marilyn Manson (and hopefully containing his Michael Jackson cover) will hit and you'll want to say you were there first.
Probably not, though. Check it out, here's the video for 'Clowny Clown Clown'!
Post by Horned Gramma on Feb 8, 2011 11:57:07 GMT -8
Crispin Glover is a very friendly, intelligent man. He has absolute confidence in what he does, and he works hard. The 'It' Trilogy is one of the most sincere labors of love I've ever seen. If he comes to your town, go see him. It'll freak your shit out, but it's just not to be missed.
I just missed one of these screenings and q+a's two weeks or so ago.
*kicks self in junk*
I was like 5 people away from getting in on the third day. I tried to convince them to just let me stand in the back for the entire night. I had my dvds of willard and back to the future all ready to be signed and errthang.
*kicks cinematheque employee in the junk, runs away. sobs*
Post by Horned Gramma on Feb 8, 2011 13:18:47 GMT -8
The cast of 'What Is It?' consists entirely of people with down syndrome, with the exception of Fairuza Balk, who played Dorothy Gale in Walter Murch's classic nightmare factory Return to Oz. In 'What Is It?', she provides the voice of a talking snail.