"His wife was [having sex with] her son’s friend. I normally would not talk about this. … But for some reason, [they] put that … on the internet.... She hurt him way more than he hurt me..."
"What is real to me is a painting to you. The artist was depicting history, but it’s not his history to depict."
What's on the Disney Channel?
"At its worst her Leslie is a one-note cliché and a clunky Frankenstein’s monster of Jane Fonda in The Morning After, Faye Dunaway in Barfly, and Tilda Swinton in Julia, with just a dash of Nicolas Cage in Leaving Las Vegas."
From "Andrea Riseborough doesn’t deserve Oscar nod — Danielle Deadwyler was robbed/The British actress’s performance in To Leslie is a one-note cliché, says the Times film critic Kevin Maher" (London Times).
Cut me a big slice of that ham acting.Bigger can be better. (Via Throwing Things.) Think Jack Nicholson in "The Shining" and Klaus Kinski in "Aguirre the Wrath of God" and George C. Scott in "Dr. Strangelove." Those are all named in the linked article, and I love them all. What can I add? Jeff Goldblum in "The Fly"! But I hate a lot of ham acting too. I'm still mad at myself for sitting through Nicolas Cage in "Leaving Las Vegas." Just remembering that performance makes me feel a little ill.
"Some fans tried to mount a 'Save Splash Mountain' campaign, even urging opponents of the switch to enlist the help of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R)."
From "Splash Mountain has closed.... The controversial flume ride at Magic Kingdom in Florida took its last plunge Sunday" (WaPo).
["Song of the South"] was one of the first Hollywood portrayals of a black actor as a non-comic character in a leading role in a film meant for general audiences.
Baskett was prohibited from attending the film's premiere in Atlanta, Georgia, because Atlanta was racially segregated by law.
Although Baskett was occasionally criticized for accepting such a "demeaning" role (most of his acting credits were that of African-American stereotypes), his acting was almost universally praised, and columnist Hedda Hopper, along with Walt Disney, was one of the many journalists and personalities who declared that he should receive an Academy Award for his work.
On March 20, 1948, Baskett received an Academy Honorary Award for his performance as Uncle Remus. He was the first African-American male actor to win an Academy Award.
I don't think hiding the film is the best solution. Straightforward confrontation with the bad should go along with honoring the good and understanding the past. Disney protects its own interests and deserves little credit for acting in accordance with the prevailing elite opinion.
What is the good? I don't know! I haven't seen the film. But obviously Baskett himself was good, the song was good, and the animation was good.
And, my God, Baskett was only 42 years old in that clip. He died 2 years later, less than 4 months after they gave him that Oscar. Why should his work be buried? Maybe there's a great answer, but it's hard to discuss when we can't see the movie. Disney lets us see "Dumbo," despite the crow characters, one of whom, Fats Crow, was voiced by Baskett.
Anyway, Splash Mountain finally embarrassed Disney enough that it's turning the flume ride into "Tiana’s Bayou Adventure," based on "The Princess and the Frog," which had a black princess character.
Quentin Tarantino's alternative reading of the Body Snatchers movies.
From his new book, "Cinema Speculation" (boldface added):
[T]he Pod People transformation is closer to a rebirth than a murder. You’re reborn as straight intellect, with a complete possession of your past and your abilities, but unburdened by messy human emotions. You also possess a complete fidelity to your fellow beings and a total commitment to the survival of your species. Are they inhuman? Of course, they’re vegetables. But the movies try to present their lack of humanity (they don’t have a sense of humor, they’re unmoved when a dog is hit by a car) as evidence of some deep-seated sinisterness. That’s a rather species-centric point of view. As human beings it may be our emotions that make us human, but it’s a stretch to say it’s what makes us great. Along with those positive emotions—love, joy, happiness, amusement—come negative emotions—hate, selfishness, racism, depression, violence, and rage....
Imagine in the fifties, when the [first "Body Snatchers"] film was made, that instead of some little town in Northern California (Santa Mira) that the aliens took root in, it was a horribly racist, segregated Ku Klux Klan stronghold in the heart of Mississippi.
Within weeks the color lines would disappear. Blacks and whites would be working together (in genuine brotherhood) towards a common goal. And humanity would be represented by one of the racist Kluxers whose investigative gaze notices formerly like-minded white folks seemingly enter into a conspiracy with some members of the county’s black community. Now picture his hysterical reaction to it (“Those people are coming after me! They’re not human! You’re next! You’re next!”).
When Quentin Tarantino was 8 and his mother's black boyfriend took him to see 2 movies about black people in a theater with an all-black audience.
Great storytelling from Tarantino here:
"The first movie is sort of a message-y movie... and the crowd hated it" — Bill Maher prompts.
Listen to the whole story, and you may be curious about this movie the audience jeered at, "The Bus Is Coming" (1971).
I went looking for something about it and easily stumbled into the entire movie:
I've only watched the first 3 minutes, and I won't presume to know what the crowd back then found worth shouting down for the entire length of the movie. Maybe it's just that it's slow-moving and un-slick, or maybe it's that it was just much more fun to talk back to the movie. Tarantino makes it sound very fun.
I take it the mother's boyfriend — who, we're told, was an L.A. Rams football player — thought the "message-y" movie would be good for the boy, but Tarantino, like the rest of the audience, greatly preferred the second movie, a slickly entertaining film starring Jim Brown. Or maybe the football-player boyfriend wanted the Hollywood movie featuring a man like him to win young Tarantino's admiration.
The anecdote comes from Tarantino's new book "Cinema Speculation." The link goes to Amazon, and I think I'll buy it. I'd like to hear the rest of the story. I'm guessing the "speculation" is about why the commercial Jim Brown movie is superior to the the earnestly arty "The Bus Is Coming."
"I don’t know what planet we’re on, where you think people don’t need laughter, and that people need to be censored and canceled. If a joke is gonna get me canceled, thank you..."
"... for doing me that favor. It’s sad that society is in this place where we can’t laugh anymore. I ain’t listening to this damn generation. I ain’t listening to these folks. These scared-ass people, these scared executives.... I know my audience. My audience comes to my shows every weekend and they leave feeling great and laughing. One thing about the Wayans, we’ve always told the worst joke the best way.... I think ‘White Chicks 2’ is necessary.... I think we’ve tightened up so much that we need to loosen our ties a bit and laugh a little bit."
Said Marlon Wayans, quoted in "Marlon Wayans slams cancel culture: ‘I don’t know what planet we’re on’" (NY Post).
"Laboe is credited with helping end segregation in Southern California by organizing live DJ shows at drive-in eateries that attracted whites, Blacks and Latinos who danced to rock-n-roll..."
"... and shocked an older generation still listening to Frank Sinatra and Big Band music. Laboe is also credited with coining the 'oldies, but goodies' phrase.... His radio shows gave the families of incarcerated loved ones, in particular, a platform to speak to their relatives by dedicating songs and sending heartfelt messages and updates.... He often told a story about a woman who came by the studio so her toddler could tell her father, who was serving time for a violent crime, 'Daddy, I love you.' 'It was the first time he had heard his baby's voice,' Laboe said. 'And this tough, hard-nosed guy burst into tears.' Anthony Macias, a University of California, Riverside ethnic studies professor, said the music Laboe played went with the dedications enhancing the messages. For example, songs like Little Anthony & the Imperials' 'I'm on the Outside (Looking In)'... spoke of perseverance and desire to be accepted...."
From "Pioneering DJ Art Laboe, who coined 'oldies but goodies,' dies at 97" (NPR).