Tuesday, June 21, 2005

trash and heat

Saturday night was a double-bill of Paul Morrissey’s Trash and Heat at the Egyptian Theatre. My roommate grew up in Factory-era New York City and is a big fan of Joe Dallesandro. There was a Q&A in between the film and Mr. Dallesandro was signing copies of his book, so despite the gazillion things going on in Los Angeles on Saturday night, we had to be there. We took the metro and although we missed our train by minutes, we eased into our seats in plenty of time. I’d never seen any of the trilogy (I missed the Flesh screening the night before) but I was glad to at least see these two.

If you're not familiar with Trash, you've got some time to steel yourself for the DVD release in November. Trash, the story of a junkie made impotent by drugs, is full of pickle shots, nudity, and simulated (?) blow jobs. The best scene in the film belongs to Holly, when she beats off with a beer bottle because her sexual companion is too much of a junkie to get it up. Non-stop hilarity. Some scenes reminded me of The Brown Bunny and the lead actress, Holly Woodlawn, reminds me of Lauren Ezersky from Behind the Velvet Ropes. Speaking of The Brown Bunny, after seeing these two films, I am even more fully convinced that Vince Galliano is an obnoxious, talentless, derivative hack.

During the intermission, Little Joe answered questions and talked a little bit about what it was like during those crazy days at The Factory and what it was like to work with and be around Paul Morrissey and Andy Warhol. I wish I could say that he was just as sexy and beautiful now as he was years ago, but that would be a lie. Firstly, thirty-five years later, he doesn’t even look like the same person. When he walked out to the front of the theatre, I was still scanning the line of people streaming into the theater, looking for Little Joe. Then he stood there with the moderator at the center of the theatre and I wished that I had a camera. No wonder I didn’t recognize him, I didn't know to look for someone who looks like Rosie O’Donnell. Secondly, I wish I could say that he was a spellbinding raconteur with great stories of those wild days, but that would also be a lie. He was so quiet and seemed so guarded, it was almost like pulling teeth getting him to answer questions. After the Q&A, my roommate stood in line in the lobby so he could get a signed copy of his book, Little Joe, Superstar: The Films of Joe Dallesandro.

The second film, Heat, is a parody of Sunset Boulevard. It spoofs the casual sexual adventures of a one-time child actor in Hollywood who sleeps with his landlady to reduce his rent, a washed-up actress who can't introduce him to anyone who can help his career, and her sometime-lesbian daughter. Not enough for you? Two brothers in the film have a live sex act and one brother wears clogs, knee-high socks and a white dress while he masturbates poolside.

With all the remakes clogging the Hollywood pipeline, why isn't anyone looking to remake these films?

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