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The Elvis-athon: Elvis: That’s The Way It Is

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Sars: D | Grade It Now!
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Before The Fall

MZS: We're almost black-and-white here. Very odd.

Sars: These close-ups are depressing. The lights are on, but nobody's home. He's just on autopilot. ...Nice puffy shirt, Jerry.

Steven Boone: The puffy shirt!

MZS: Elvis telling the technician, "Kill that blower, or blow that killer, whatever" is funny.

Sars: Are they going to send a bull onstage? "Ecce Matador!"

MZS: He's getting into it now, though. The interpretive dance hand gestures. I like seeing bandleaders communicate nonverbally with their musicians while they're in the act of performing. It's artistic multitasking.

Steven Boone: I would love to see a doc made in this exact style documenting James Brown and crew around this time.

MZS: Wow, a James Brown doc made exactly the same way would have about ten times the entertainment value. And ten times the sweat.

Steven Boone: True and true.

MZS: Plus you could get behind-the-scenes footage of James Brown caning his players for not hitting every ridiculously complicated mark. I bet that man was a terror to work for.

Sars: ...You'd think Elvis of all people could carry a tune.

Steven Boone: He's not concerned.

Sars: That's kind of the problem...the fact that he doesn't really care was his problem.

Steven Boone: Ah, yes.

MZS: With Elvis it was more the emotion than the technique. He could belt when he wanted to, but he has pitch issues even on some of his greatest hits. ...Jesus, what's up with this restaurant scene and all the freaky, Mexicans-in-a-Sam-Peckinpah-movie cackling?

Steven Boone: Every concert film should have one.

Sars: If he'd still given more of a shit it might have saved his life.

MZS: Yeah. He was surrounded by yes-men from a fairly early age. They exploited him, and he let them exploit him. He fed on adulation. That's always where the trouble starts for the top-tier entertainers.

Steven Boone: A classic story.

MZS: There should be a federal law requiring entertainers to have one person in their entourage whose job is to tell them how full of shit they are.

Sars: ...The famous white jumpsuit. ...Sammy Davis!

MZS: Wow. The icon appears at last! He looks...well...kind of beautiful, actually. Like a musical superhero.

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Mondo Extra
The Elvis-athon: Elvis: That’s The Way It Is

Episode Report Card
Grade It Now!
YOU GRADE IT
Before The Fall

Sars: These close-ups are depressing. The lights are on, but nobody's home. He's just on autopilot. ...Nice puffy shirt, Jerry.

Steven Boone: The puffy shirt!

MZS: Elvis telling the technician, "Kill that blower, or blow that killer, whatever" is funny.

Sars: Are they going to send a bull onstage? "Ecce Matador!"

MZS: He's getting into it now, though. The interpretive dance hand gestures. I like seeing bandleaders communicate nonverbally with their musicians while they're in the act of performing. It's artistic multitasking.

Steven Boone: I would love to see a doc made in this exact style documenting James Brown and crew around this time.

MZS: Wow, a James Brown doc made exactly the same way would have about ten times the entertainment value. And ten times the sweat.

Steven Boone: True and true.

MZS: Plus you could get behind-the-scenes footage of James Brown caning his players for not hitting every ridiculously complicated mark. I bet that man was a terror to work for.

Sars: ...You'd think Elvis of all people could carry a tune.

Steven Boone: He's not concerned.

Sars: That's kind of the problem...the fact that he doesn't really care was his problem.

Steven Boone: Ah, yes.

MZS: With Elvis it was more the emotion than the technique. He could belt when he wanted to, but he has pitch issues even on some of his greatest hits. ...Jesus, what's up with this restaurant scene and all the freaky, Mexicans-in-a-Sam-Peckinpah-movie cackling?

Steven Boone: Every concert film should have one.

Sars: If he'd still given more of a shit it might have saved his life.

MZS: Yeah. He was surrounded by yes-men from a fairly early age. They exploited him, and he let them exploit him. He fed on adulation. That's always where the trouble starts for the top-tier entertainers.

Steven Boone: A classic story.

MZS: There should be a federal law requiring entertainers to have one person in their entourage whose job is to tell them how full of shit they are.

Sars: ...The famous white jumpsuit. ...Sammy Davis!

MZS: Wow. The icon appears at last! He looks...well...kind of beautiful, actually. Like a musical superhero.

Steven Boone: I would trade the beauty and voluptuousness of this film for a Maysles or Pennebaker style x-ray.

Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12Next

Mondo Extra

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