Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Religious Fiction Double Feature

I just emerged from the Film Forum, which was packed with men in their (to be generous) late thirties, with retreating hair lines and expanding waist lines (it was nice to stand out from the crowd for once), where I saw a double feature - Abel Ferrara's Bad Lieutenant (1992) and William Friedkin's Cruising (1980) - that was supposed to be showing there on September 11, 2001. I considered the arbitrary significance of that fact, and it was a touching thing to replay those films (indeed, they're replaying the series that was showing then, NYPD). It's another New York and the same New York; both films are from a different era, somehow more in contact with each other than with us now, although that might be true of any two points in the relatively recent past; but it would be hard to imagine either film being made today, and I'm not sure that's a sign of progress.


I was going to dwell on these facts, which I'm sure a few of my readers would have loved, because I really don't know much about anything; but in the middle of Bad Lieutenant, in a sort of proxy crack-induced squealing, revolving-naked-and-flapping-my-hands high, I started imagining the film as part of my B-movie youth in much the same way as Richard O'Brien relished the B-movies of his youth, and it wasn't hard to think of the title Religious Fiction Double Feature, and then what follows sort of wrote itself in the intermission between the two films. Because it wrote itself, I don't take any responsibility for it. Blame it. Not me.

Religious Fiction Double Feature, to the tune of [click on it] Science Fiction Double Feature.

Harvey Keitel was ill and couldn't get his fill
But he gave perps a helping hand
And the nun was there without her underwear
It went to shit when Strawberry fanned. [1]
There was hope in Hong Kong, Tony Wai [2] met Faye Wong
Then at a deadly pace, De Niro went face to face
And asked: are you lookin' at me?

Pacino's Cruising
Dr Freud
Can't give an answer
Was he the killer
Or undercover
Karen Allen stars as
his straight romancer

Wa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh At the late night, double feature picture show

I knew Christopher Walken wasn't doin' much talkin'
When the Viet Cong gave him a gun
And I really got hot at how cool Uma fought
O-Renn Ishi and Vernita and Bill
Choosing pills, Neo said red, it went to his head
And fighting Smith used lots of skills,
When his world's a drought, Bowie doesn't have a doubt
Water'll give him the terrible thrills, like when:

Pacino's Cruising
Three years later
he's Tony Montana
He once was Michael
Calm, collected
Now during mass
No-one's protected

Wa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh at the late night double feature picture show (I wanna go)
to the late night double feature picture show (with de Niro)
to the late night double feature picture show (in the back row)


[1] It's clearly a turning point in the film when Daryl Strawberry struck out (fanned out) at the bottom of the 9th in Game . . . 4? or was it 5?
[2] Tony Leung Chui Wei. Probably the film that least belongs here? But my favourite film ever?

2 comments:

Daniel F said...

I'm very pleased that song wrote itself.

I wonder if you, like me, can hear the melody of Science Fiction Double Feature speeded up and butched out in the chorus of Judas by Lady Gaga?

sw said...

Ah yes! Yes indeed!