Monday, November 28, 2011

Ken Russell R.I.P.

Ken Russell has died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 84, which is the most un-Ken Russell thing he ever did. I wasn't always an admirer of Russell's, and sometimes even hated his films when I wasn't in the mood to be pummeled by excess. However, in the last few years I've slowly come to appreciate and even enjoy his work, particularly The Lair of the White Worm. The Austin Film Society recently screened Tommy as part of a Russell/Greenaway/Jarman baroque Brits series, and I appreciate him even more after seeing it on the big screen. He seemed like a man who almost always did exactly what he wanted to do, and that kind of selfishness is a virtue in this undignified, totalitarian, idiot world where your every move is controlled by some kind of teacher, boss, friend, parent, fear, jealousy, cowardice, degree, lack of degree, pundit, automobile, phone, ill-fitting pair of trousers, rain, lack of rain, money, lack of money, computer, or robotic overlord I like to call Stu.

(from the top)
Women in Love (1969)
Tommy (1975)
Altered States (1980)
The Lair of the White Worm (1988)

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