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The Films of Paul Morrissey (Cambridge Film Classics) by Maurice Yacowar
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As the projectionist at the Andy Warhol Museum, I've probably projected every Morrissey film there is. & I've watched them indepedent of that. When Morrissey came & talked at the Warhol, someone asked him why he doesn't make movies anymore. He replied "Because I don't like making them." Weird. That sortof sums him up for me. He made some great films w/ some great alternative culture characters - esp drag queens. He seems to appreciate that their personalities are what make the movies. & yet he seems to think of his stars as TRASH. I mean, Holly Woodlawn? Fantastic. What did he pay Woodlawn? $25 a day, no royalties. Something like that. Certainly he cd've given them more. The actors were desperate, Morrissey contemptuously exploited them.

if you think of Morrissey as some sort of champion of the blatantly perverse, forget it. This bk, at least, portrays him as a sortof ultra-right-wing republican whose filmic morals are somewhat less than enlightened. Take "Spike of Bensonhurst" - one might think that the depiction of the Mafia's destroying other neighborhoods w/ their addicitive drug dealing (while keeping their own neighborhood drug-free) might be criticized here as an indication of the Mafia's total racism. But, NO, not according to this bk - Yacowar claims that Morrissey ADMIRES the Mafia as a keeper of law & order & as an example to be followed. As for the drug-users? Apparently they're scum who get what they deserve for being so 'liberal'.

Can Morrissey really be this big of an asshole?! I like his films, even though I think he's a ruthless exploiter, & even I find Yacowar's take on "Spike" a bit hard to swallow. STILL, the arguments are convincing enuf & Morrissey WAS a close associate of Warhol's - who exploited people as much as his greedy little hands cd manage. So, dunno. Morrissey's complex - or maybe he's not - maybe he's just a right-wing airhead gay guy (like Roy Cohn) who just happened to be in the right place at the right time to rip people off & run w/ the money.
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Finished Reading
February 26, 2008 – Shelved
February 26, 2008 – Shelved as: film

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