Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Steve Carlson reviews movies like Steven Seagal dispatches henchmen. That is: with alarming frequency and noted consistency. At The Ongoing Cinematic Education of Steve Carlson, the title author has been firing out reviews in short, clever and effective bursts since 2002. While some of us in the movie blog-o-sphere waste our time with idiotic lists and ramblings, Steve sticks to the goods (reviews), and the man delivers. With a review index roughly ten feet high, Steve has spanned the gamut, from The House With Laughing Windows to House of the Dead, and Laugh, Clown Laugh to Killer Klowns From Outer Space. Steve is also nice enough to solicit opinions on what he should review, but please don't torment the man by telling him to review The Jar -- or if you do, at least have the courtesy to tell him you're only half serious.

TALKING IN YOUR SLEEP: 'I fell asleep during a classroom screening of Solaris, and I'd wager I might have been snoring a bit. Otherwise, not in any way I can think of. I did embarass someone else because of my inability to stop vocally mocking Underworld during a screening on its opening weekend -- does that count?'

SO MUCH TO LOVE: 'John Goodman bellowing, "I WILL SHOW YOU THE LIFE OF THE MIND!" in Barton Fink, Adam Sandler freaking out at the phone booth in Punch-Drunk Love, William H. Macy finally solving his problems with his wife in Boogie Nights, the big reveal in Fight Club, Dennis Hopper telling Kyle MacLachlan, "You're just like me," in Blue Velvet, the closing credits of Night of the Living Dead, the kid getting the hypo in the heart in In a Glass Cage, the freeze-frame at the end of if...., the last shot of Rejected, the eyeball and the razor blade in Un Chien Andalou, "Freebird" in The Devil's Rejects... the list never ends, man.'

TALK LIKE A STEVE CARLSON TODAY!: 'I use, "Well, they can't all be winners, kid, now can they?" from Bad Santa like it was tattooed on my tongue. I'm also quite fond of "Are you ready for the fun part? 'Cause here comes the fun part," from Super Troopers. Nothing profound, alas, but they get me through the day...'

TIS THE SEASON TO BE ...: 'Other than my habit of watching anti-romantic films on Valentine's Day (i.e. Multiple Maniacs, Blue Velvet, etc.), not really. I do try to watch something -- anything -- on Christmas in a theater, just because. Wasn't able to do it this year, alas...'

NOW PLAYING AT CINEMA CARLSONO: 'I'd do a whole month of Midnight Kink -- midnight showings of movies with oddball sexuality. I'd try not to leave anything out, either. From S&M (Maitresse and Sick) to transvestiteism (Glen or Glenda?) to transexualism (Let Me Die a Woman) all the way to necrophilia (Nekromantik) and bestiality (The Wedding Trough), plus a few catch-alls (Visitor Q, The Telephone Book, a '70s porno roughie or two)... I'd try and represent all I could. Just seeing the crowds that showed up would be entertaining enough.'

HEY MAN, THAT'S WEIRD: 'As a devotee of Something Weird, Shock Cinema and '70s cult madness, I've seen more than my share of bizarre, incompetent junk. I'm particularly fond of Herschell Gordon Lewis's crazed The Wizard of Gore, Jackie Kong's hysterical Blood Diner, the crass and goofy Mexi-madness Night of the Bloody Apes and the mind-melting Nude for Satan.'

DAMN IT ALL: 'Used to be one [movie] a day, if not more. Lately, though, work and other commitments have cut me down to about five a week. Not so bad, I suppose.'

PLEASE STAY: 'I almost never walk out on films. It's not that I don't believe in it -- it's just if I waste my money, I'm at least going to tough out the whole thing. This fortitude has only been sorely tested twice that I can recall right now -- I left the Sri Lankan feature Mansion by the Lake near its end because it was awful and my companions couldn't take any more, and I breezed out of Scary Movie 2 for about fifteen minutes because I desperately needed to keep my head from collapsing in on itself. Giving up on a film when it's on video, however... that's another matter.'

SICKO: 'My favorite year in recent memory was 1999 -- not just because there were more memorable films than any other year I've been alive, but also because it was the first year I was really able to cruise the New York City arthouse and indie-film scene. I moved to the East in mid-'98, and the first film I ever made a specific journey to see was Affliction in December of that year. 1999 was when I realized that I could make those journeys all the bloody time if I so wished. As a result, my obsessions mushroomed. It's a sickness from which I have yet to recover. If all goes well, I never will!'

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Steve C. said...

Hee hee... I actually OWN The Jar! Thanks for letting me participate, man.

Adam Ross said...

I'm sure you've reviewed worse, but that was the most painful movie I could think of at the time. I love how we never actually "see" the jar, because it would have been too expensive of a prop to make.

Malcom said...

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