Tuesday, January 15, 2019
We only have one life. Some lives are long, some lives are short. Everybody is born into a widely different set of circumstances and chances. (Maybe something that would have been beneficial to a person born in Athens, Greece in 431 BCE would be horrible for a person born in Austin, TX in 1974?) Once out and about, each person's life is made up of countless difference decisions and occurrences. One of the ways that I enjoy spending my own personal life is by learning about how other people have lived their lives. To me, it's endlessly fascinating to think about. One of the lives that I recently had the pleasure of learning about (thanks to randomly coming across this documentary) is that of James Edward Baker.
James Baker's was born in 1922 and other than the fact that he had a stint in the military and was a bit of a hell-raiser, there's not a lot about his early life in the doc. THE SOURCE FAMILY mainly focuses on him as a middle-aged man in Los Angeles in the 1960's. He got into healthy eating, spirituality and drugs. His rise to fame started when he opened the Source Restaurant on the Sunset Strip. It soon became quite the money maker and a gathering place for young people. Somehow, this silver tongued, self-proclaimed guru talked a bunch of teenagers and young adults (mostly females) into selling their earthly possessions and moving into his Hollywood Hills mansion. For the next 6 years or so, The Source Family lived in various places, ate a bunch of healthy food, got high as kites being drug behind the Space Shuttle, did a lot of fucking and rocked out with some awesome jams in their own recording studio. That's about it. Nothing too crazy ever happens. There's never a murder or group suicide. They just hang out and party a bunch. Eventually the Father dies (in a goddamn hang gliding accident of all things) and the Family simply drifts apart. The End. At their height, there was around 150 people in the Source Family.
The story of the Source Family is a wild ride. Unfortunately, while the story had me laughing in disbelief over and over, the actual documentary itself was just a very straight forward presentation of facts one after the other with no real storytelling skill. Example: at the very end of the film, literally a few seconds before the closing credits, a item popped up on the scene says "There were 54 home births in the family between 1972 - 1977." Says whaaaaaat??? How the hell is something like that just tossed in at the end? There was some mention earlier on about a teenage girl having a baby at home, but I didn't realize they had 54 babies!!!
Anyway, THE SOURCE FAMILY is definitely worth checking out. Especially for anybody (like myself) that's interested in 1960's/1970's hippie communes, cults, etc. For further reading check out the book "The Source: The Untold Story of Father Yod, Ya Ho Wa 13 and The Source Family" by Isis Aquarian and Electricity Aquarian. Also, look up the music the Source Family created. Some of that shit is badass!!!
Monday, December 31, 2018
Very loosely based on Marquis de Sade's "Philosophy in the Boudoir", EUGENIE tells the story of a young lady who goes to spend the weekend on a private island with a woman and the woman's brother. Sexual hijinks ensue. That's really about it. If the sexual hijinks had actually been stimulating that would have been awesome, but unfortunately, EUGENIE is about as sexy as waking up to find a vampire bat nibbling blood-flavored fat free peanut butter off your dick.
The young girl is drugged (at least twice) and abused, but then, when she wakes up in the morning without a scratch, she's sexually curious about her "dreams". Eventually a more sinister plan arises, but it's so lame that it might as well been left out of the script.
Boring story, Christopher Lee lifelessly reading his boring lines, a fair amount of nudity by our two lead actresses, meh acting, slow as molasses pace, that one dude from MARK OF THE DEVIL, disappointing ending.
On the one hand, I admired the filmmakers for trying to adapt something by de Sade, but on the other hand, they did such a poor job of it that if de Sade was still alive, he probably would have hated it for being so tame. Skip it.
Monday, November 19, 2018
John Candy plays a unlikable slob who sucks at his job so much that they force him to take a paid summer vacation. Once in the fictional Citrus Cove, Florida, Candy does everything wrong right from the beginning. Including, on the very first day, moving into the wrong house (how does that even happen?!) and then getting into very public argument in a restaurant with one of the most powerful guys in town (Richard Crenna)...who also just happens to be the landlord of the house he's supposed to be in. The insane consequences don't stop there! Ohhh, no...Candy also sucks so bad at sailing that he accidentally punctures a hole in the side of Crenna's boat. After that, he takes sailing lessons from a local restaurant owner (Rip Torn) and then races Crenna in the annual Citrus Cove Regatta. Crenna has won the last 7 years.
SUMMER RENTAL isn't a bad film, it's just really boring and frustrating to watch. I felt zero connection with the main character and thought over and over that if I ran into him in real life, I'd most likely be irritated by him. Example: when he walks out to the beach to meet his family, he tramples and spills cold water all over dozens of innocent people that were just relaxing. Also, the jokes were totally lame. At one point, Candy sees his daughter moping around, so he asks his wife "What's with Frances Farmer?" Yeah, that's a real knee slapper!
Failed attempts at humor, boring photography, one lame topless scene, slow pace (mainly because nothing really happened for the entire film), abrupt ending, some cool old vintage movie posters in the movie theater lobby scene. I really can't think of any reason to watch SUMMER RENTAL. Skip it.