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by Matt Mazur

19 Aug 2011


Oscar Nominees:

Susan Hayward ... I Want to Live!
Deborah Kerr ... Separate Tables
Shirley MacLaine ... Some Came Running
Rosalind Russell ... Auntie Mame
Elizabeth Taylor ... Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Mazur Nominees:

Susan Hayward ... I Want to Live!

by Enio Chiola

18 Aug 2011


Ok, I admit it! I’m a Tori Amos fan. Not just a casual Tori fan though, a die-hard old-timer Tori Amos fan who thinks her first three albums are shining examples of the best music ever put to tape. Every element of Little Earthquakes, Under the Pink and Boys For Pele adds to the overall beauty and genius of the music produced. The visual is magnificently shocking, thanks to the sheer brilliance of Tori’s collaborator Cindy Palmano. As striking and shocking as those visuals were on her first three albums, the same shock registers with how quickly and completely her visual contribution to her music has deteriorated over the years.  Instead of getting a demure and beautiful Tori atop glassy ice (as on Under the Pink), we now have to endure a ridiculously photoshopped Tori with the worst wigs I have ever seen, and holding a chicken (as in the god-awful American Doll Posse.

These visual flubs are also apparent in her music videos—the few that she does release. The last great video was probably “Strange Little Girl” from her 2000 record Strange Little Girls. The video was captivating, engaging, told a story and wasn’t just random meaningless shots of Tori in her new designer dress with 10-second pauses on her Prada shoes. Watching every single video and (god help me) “visualette” since then, it’s become apparent that Tori has little to no conception of what makes for compelling visual artistry. She is all about the audio… and that’s a totally different discussion.

On the heels of her 12th studio album Night of Hunters Tori has released the official video for the track “Carry”. The song itself is quite stunning, and definitely builds hope that her fans won’t have to endure years of music similar to “Cars and Guitars” or “My Posse Can Do”. The video on the other hand is a smorgasbord of stock footage nature shots, Tori in a designer dress with desinger shoes at the piano, and some imagery of some wiccan-esque ceremony. It doesn’t fit together, and Tori looks ridiculous as she tries to fegin real emotion.  It’s not surprising that this video is as bad as it is considering her shotty track record as of late, but it’s still disappointing.

Bring back CINDY PALMANO!!

by Matt Mazur

18 Aug 2011


Natalie Wood … Splendor in the Grass

Oscar Nominees:

Audrey Hepburn ... Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Piper Laurie ... The Hustler
Sophia Loren ... Two Women
Geraldine Page ... Summer and Smoke
Natalie Wood ... Splendor in the Grass

Mazur Nominees:

Harriet Andersson … Through a Glass Darkly

by Sean Murphy

17 Aug 2011


Poor Elvis.

The one-time king is now more often the (big) butt of jokes (See?).

But his musical and cultural imprint remains huge and will forever be impossible to escape from. This is, for the most part, a good thing. Just consider the number of musicians who have covered, copied and imitated the Great White Hype, I mean Hips. In part because hype and purloined material aside, the man was, well, kind of a big deal.

In honor of the day he absconded his throne (while on the throne… see? One can’t help oneself), here are ten artistic invocations of Elvis, ranging from the good to the bad to the very ugly. In all seriousness, the range of genres, cultures and eras represented just in this small sample should put the King’s enduring influence in appropriate perspective (perhaps too much perspective; see #1).

by Cynthia Fuchs

17 Aug 2011


In the mid 1970s, Glenn Burke came out. A Major League Baseball player, he had not kept his identity secret from his colleagues or friends. But his decision to come out was something else, apart from best guesses or ugly rumors or even confidences. And that decision was costly, as recounted in Out. The Glenn Burke Story, re-airing 17 August on Versus. As his teammates struggled with their own feelings, management was less ambivalent. The Dodgers dealt him to the As in 1977, where manager Billy Martin notoriously called him a “faggot” in front of his teammates. That same year, the As sent him down to the minors. Burke retired then, at age 27, despite good stats and an unfinished career. The documentary, produced by Doug Harris and Sean Madison, tells a story that is remarkable for a number of reasons, not least being Burke’s courage and determination: to this day, he remains the only Major League Baseball player to come out during his professional career. The only one.

See PopMattersreview.

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