Suppressed Soundtracks: Tracking Camp Trajectory in American Queer Cinema’s Music, from Kubrick to Tarantino

“For now, it was lovely music that came to my aid. There was a window open with the stereo on, and I viddied right at once what to do.” ~ Alex DeLarge, A Clockwork Orange In Stanley Kubrick’s dystopian, totalitarian 1971 picture A Clockwork Orange, a musical motif is enough to incite violence – one movement of Beethoven’s “Symphony No.9 in D Major” enough to … Continue reading Suppressed Soundtracks: Tracking Camp Trajectory in American Queer Cinema’s Music, from Kubrick to Tarantino

Hollow Men, Hollower Women: Madness and Gender in T.S. Eliot’s “The Wasteland”

“We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men Leaning together Headpiece filled with straw. Alas! Our dried voices, when We whisper together Are quiet and meaningless As wind in dry grass” ~ Colonel Kurtz in Apocalypse Now (1979), quoting T.S. Eliot. The opening epigraph of T.S. Eliot’s monumental modernist musing “The Hollow Men”, cites the composer’s venerable contemporary – modernist Joseph Conrad and … Continue reading Hollow Men, Hollower Women: Madness and Gender in T.S. Eliot’s “The Wasteland”

Grim, Gyroscopic Apocalypse: Explicating W.B. Yeats’ “The Second Coming”

“And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea…”                                                                                                             ~ Revelation, 13:1 In Poetry Magazine’s May 1914 issue, Ezra Pound unpacks William Butler Yeats’ late-career progression – particularly the Irishman’s shift into what Pound deems a “gaunter” voice – his work “seeking greater harshness of outline.” At the time, Yeats had not … Continue reading Grim, Gyroscopic Apocalypse: Explicating W.B. Yeats’ “The Second Coming”

“A Roman Wilderness of Pain”: The Doors, Wagner, The Rolling Stones and Western Escapism in the Postmodern, Warring World of Apocalypse Now

“We’ll have ourselves a hellavuh airstrike tonight. A lightshow. How do you like The Doors’: ‘C’mon Baby Light My Fire’?” ‘…I like it.’ “I love it.” ‘You’re crazy.’     ~ Col. Walter Kurtz and Capt. Benjamin Willard, Apocalypse Now, Screenplay (1979) It begins in a hellish firestorm. Vietnamese tree-lines fill with fluorescent yellow smoke; their foreign soil engulfed by American napalm. Accompanying the inferno: the … Continue reading “A Roman Wilderness of Pain”: The Doors, Wagner, The Rolling Stones and Western Escapism in the Postmodern, Warring World of Apocalypse Now

A White-Het Savior, Risen from the Mean, Masculine Streets of Philadelphia: Bruce Springsteen’s Queer Empathy and Its Cinematically Allusive, Filmic Form

“This guy, call him Bruce – no he’s not a queer, thank God, sir – will be a national hero.”                                                                             ~ Jefferson Morely, Rolling Stone, Oct. 1985. “…My … Continue reading A White-Het Savior, Risen from the Mean, Masculine Streets of Philadelphia: Bruce Springsteen’s Queer Empathy and Its Cinematically Allusive, Filmic Form

Gays and Gardenias: Hollywood’s Queer Representation Regression

“What’s a faggot?” ‘A faggot is…a word used to make gay people feel bad.’ A beat. “Am I a faggot?”                                                                                          ~ Little and Juan, in Moonlight (2016) A gasp? Sure. A tear? Probably. A yawn? Maybe. A laugh? You wouldn’t think so – but, apparently, the above sequence from Barry Jenkins’ heartrending film Moonlight, despite its emotional tension, can elicit reactionary laughter … Continue reading Gays and Gardenias: Hollywood’s Queer Representation Regression