King of the Celluloid Gypsies

“Step right-up, hear-ye hear-ye. . . . . .”

Here is a video about a renegade/exploitation filmmaker of the old school, a mixture of circus barker and fly-by-night operations as carnival folk weren’t necessarily “nice folk” and salacious thrills are met with scientific seriousness masking the true face of prurience and what brings in the crowds.

It’s funny how the juicy stuff brings in whatever manner of high-minded excuse as it’s really about gratification of low-down interests, true as a formula– say, in those 1980’s action films when they show the hero as a nice guy, and set-up-the-scene for predictable “moral outrage” which now means– the star has to go in “and kick some ass”.

So gaudy, brutish, and lurid– as it’s the same old stuff put to screen when the audience willfully pays for a ticket, and calls itself satisfied. These movies tended to be shown on the side of barn-houses, or a sheet held-up as a makeshift projection-screen as they were frequently just one-step ahead of the police and J. Edgar Hoover’s men.

I think Beetlejuice– as an archetype– would best be a barker at a medicine show with the way of “ballying-the-tip” or tying in salesmanship with participatory self-interest where every man is a fine, strapping example– not full of those hidden ailments like ill-health, or alcoholism, or impotence as the crowd is flattered “to feel like a good specimen”.

It was all “off-the-books” and unregulated as you could easily be getting a soot of alcohol from those patent medicines, or a dose of opium as the carnival would leave town before you found yourself, all-huddled up and retching the next day.

Such is life in the nether-world and there Beetlejuice leans against the tombstone in a garish red suit, his fist rolled-up over a pair of dice with a stormy, malingering expression of sheer trouble. Either move along, join the army, or go to jail. The local judge doesn’t care, which– as long as you keep riding, right-out-of-town away from the good citizenry.

Reminds me of an independent film-producer. . . . . dressed for success and oily as two eels screwing in a bucket of snot. I wonder if that applied to screenwriter’s, also– embraced in the devil’s bargain as I welcome you to guerrilla underground promotions.

You have been warned. . . . . . thank you and “good night”.

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King of the Celluloid Gypsies

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