Timothy, Where On Earth Did You Go?
Now Playing: ROLLING THUNDER
Whew, it's been a long week. Too much social interaction is cutting into my Crappy Movie time. More apologies to those of you awaiting email messages from me, but the jagoffs at SBC Yahoo still haven't gotten their shit together and fixed their registration server. I have no idea how a multi-million dollar corporation could be dragging their heels on something that seems like it would be relatively easy and quick to repair if need be, but what do I know from computer technology?
Began the week with a trip north to New Lenox to say goodbye to an old friend who passed away unexpectedly. It was a very long, very crowded visitation; it's amazing how many people she touched in her short life. One thing that's good about death--it's a great reuniter. This visitation gave me a chance to catch up with some important people in my life, good friends I haven't spent quality time with in ages. In some cases, it had been more than a decade since I had any contact with them. Of course, while it was wonderful to see and chat with these people, it was awful to be doing it on that day for the reason we were together. The occasion certainly was another eye-opener for me, a conviction that one must live life as best one can day by day, since there's no way to tell how many days each of us has left.
It was also Cheeseburger's final week at Horizon. I still remember one of her first days when she was assigned a really crapola chair to sit in. I had a spare one in my cubicle...a pretty nice one...it was new when I first got it...so I offered it to her. Not long after that, we invited her for lunch at Carmon's, and soon we were friends. As chaotic as she often made my life--punching me in the back, stealing things off my desk, picking objects off my desk and throwing them at me, wedging my baseball into my coffee mug--I reckon I'll miss her anyway. Come to think of it, now that I've written that sentence, maybe I'll enjoy the peace!
I know I have just earned another punch in the arm for that.
At least I'll be able to keep up with her life via her blog...and so can you. Click the "Katie Cohen" link over on the right. And read the awful things I know she's going to write about me!
Cheeseburger and husband Shark Hunter managed to be present for one final Crappy Movie Night, a blaxploitation extravaganza of BLACK SHAMPOO and FRIDAY FOSTER. BLACK SHAMPOO is pretty ragged, but amazing in spots, beginning with the ultra-tight pants on star John Daniels, who plays a stud hairdresser who provides his foxy clients with special service, if you know what I mean and I'm sure you do. There are a lot of boobs during the first half, as Daniels sexes up several chicks, followed by some tasty violence down the backstretch, including death by front bumper, death by chainsaw, death by hatchet and death by pool cue. FRIDAY FOSTER is tamer and not terribly exciting, but it does star sexy Pam Grier at her loveliest. I don't believe she has ever been more beautiful than as photojournalist Friday investigating an assassination plot. It's R-rated and features some violence and nudity, but nothing mean-spirited, and director Arthur Marks' tone is full of mirth and good humor. Pam has nifty chemistry with Yaphet Kotto as a suave private detective, and you'll get to see sitcom mainstays Jim Backus and Ted Lange.
Yesterday was Panno's wedding, so many of us took the day off from Horizon and ventured up to St. Charles for the nuptuals. I'm still a bit jet-lagged from the drive, since the wedding was in St. Charles, the reception in Glen Ellyn, and I spent the night in nearby Downers Grove. Originally I was planning to just jet back to Champaign after the reception, but then I was inundated with invitations to bed down with folks. Unfortunately, none of them were single females, so I chose to conk out on the pull-out sofa bed in Ralph and Jenny's hotel suite. Good idea, since I was fast asleep less than an hour after leaving the reception.
It was a fun night as these things go. I got to hang out with my friends, watch Chicken drunkenly make passes at some stacked jailbait chick, mesmerize everyone on the dance floor with my totally bitchin' moves during "Love Shack", and guzzle free Cokes all night. Of course, as is the case with all the weddings I attend, there wasn't a young, attractive, single woman in the place. Where are all the dateless hotties that allegedly attend these functions?
I thought I was through with weddings for awhile, until I returned home to find another wedding invitation in my mailbox. Timing, huh? Even more surprising was the phone call I got a couple of hours later asking me to be the best man. That'll be my first time as a best man...is there an instruction manual I can download that will guide me through the proper duties? I suppose all I have to do is find strippers and hold the ring, right? I should be able to handle that.
I don't know how interesting this post is. I wrote it in direct response to an occasional Crane Shot reader who stated that she'd like to read more personal stuff and less about ninjas, robots and karate bearfighting. I don't know why...I guarandamntee that even GEMINI MAN is more interesting than anything happening in my life. And after reading this, she may agree.
I'll close with a note about ROLLING THUNDER, a terrific little potboiler I watched tonight. Originally released by AIP in 1977, this movie that was co-written by Paul Schrader (TAXI DRIVER) influenced Quentin Tarantino to the point that he named his short-lived releasing company Rolling Thunder Films. It stars William Devane, most recently seen as the Secretary of Defense on 24, as a former 'Nam POW who returns to San Antonio after seven years in a prison camp and finds he's not easily able to readjust to life at home. Particularly since his son doesn't know him at all and his wife has fallen in love with another man. There are some nice performances and dialogue in these early scenes, and I appreciate that Schrader and co-writer Heywood Gould didn't make the wife's new lover, a local deputy, a villain. He's a decent man who honestly loves Devane's wife and has the courtesy to feel embarrassed about it.
The movie really starts to kick in about a half-hour in (Schrader and Gould use a classic three-act structure) when some mean dudes, including ol' Sheriff Rosco himself, actor James Best, bust in on Devane and torture him for the 2000 silver dollars given to him as a gift upon his return. He doesn't tell them, even after losing his hand in the garbage disposal, but they find the money anyway and then murder his wife and son.
Recovering in the hospital with a new hook for a hand, Devane hooks up with a white-trash barmaid (Linda Haynes) and a fellow POW (Tommy Lee Jones), and heads to Mexico looking for bloody revenge. I'm not sure you can accurately call ROLLING THUNDER an action picture, since there's precious little action, but the finale does have a kick to it, and the nice work turned in by Devane and director John Flynn (OUT FOR JUSTICE) really elevate this film above the B-level usually associated with AIP movies.
One more thing. I grabbed a handful of cassettes to listen to on the road trip to St. Charles, and one of them was a party tape I had compiled years ago. On it is a song I had to crank when it came on, three minutes of the juiciest black comedy pop music has to offer. "Timothy" was a 1971 hit for a Pennsylvania band called The Buoys. It was written by a young Rupert Holmes ("Escape (The Pina Colada Song)"), who intended it to be a throwaway that might garner a bit of controversy and publicity for the band. It's about three guys, one named Timothy, who become trapped in a cave-in with water but no food. When they're rescued, there are only two men left. Where on Earth did Timothy go? Can you guess? It's got a very catchy hook, and it's fun to sing. I wonder if the Buoys actually played on it.
In case the suspense is eating away at you (heh), here are the lyrics by Rupert Holmes:
Trapped in a mine that had caved in
And everyone knows the only ones left
Were Joe and me and Tim
When they broke through to pull us free
The only ones left to tell the tale
Were Joe and me
Timothy, Timothy, where on earth did you go?
Timothy, Timothy, God, why don't I know?
Hungry as hell, no food to eat
And Joe said that he would sell his soul
For just a piece of meat
Water enough to drink for two
And Joe said to me, "I'll have a swig
And then there's some for you."
Timothy, Timothy, Joe was looking at you
Timothy, Timothy, God, what did we do?
I must have blacked out just around then
'Cause the very next thing that I could see
Was the light of the day again
My stomach was full as it could be
And nobody ever got around
To finding Timothy
Timothy, Timothy, where on earth did you go?
Timothy, Timothy, God why don't I know?
Posted by Marty
at 1:08 AM CDT