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Welcome to the Media Corner, one and all.

Yes, I know...those of you who have visited our website during the past few months have noticed that this page has not been updated for quite some time.

How very perceptive of you. It's true: the Turtles have been "on the road" since April, and your humble servant's time has been occupied waiting in airport lounges, listening to Tommy James onstage and binge junk food consumption. Nonetheless, now is as good a time as any to scribble down my random thoughts concerning the current crop of mind-numbing entertainment being thrown your way.

"What", I hear you asking, "is Howard Kaylan watching, reading and listening to these days?" ...and a damned important question that is.


Fresh out of the box and in theatres near you is

  • JAY AND SILENT BOB STRIKE BACK from Dimension Pictures

being the fifth film of Kevin Smith's New Jersey Trilogy. Yes, I know. A trilogy is three. but not in the View Askew world of Mr. Smith (Silent Bob) and Jason Mewes (Jay), otherwise known to their fans as Bluntman and Chronic.

The Smith cult grows every day and those of you out of the loop need to catch up. To do this, you need only watch the following four films, all available on DVD.

  • CLERKS miramax films. the one that started it all. Made for $27,000, this just might be the best indie comedy ever produced. It's rude and crude and speaks for the frustrated retail salesperson inside of us all. Jay and Silent Bob's first screen appearance. Bob speaks once.
  • MALLRATS How to overuse a gigantic budget trying hard to make an indie-looking film with the Weinstein brothers' money. The film is not Smith's greatest. Still, it's better than 99% of the crap out there. Jay and Bob are all over this one.
  • CHASING AMY Ben Affleck stars. Once again, Bob speaks only one time, but what he says is the heart and truth of the film.
  • DOGMA columbia tri-star The hit that propelled Smith's career into the stratosphere. This one's got it all. A wonderful script, a brilliant cast, budget, special effects, Chris Rock, both Matt and Ben, and of course, Jay and Silent Bob.

The special edition of this one just came out and it's amazing. 100 minutes of deleted scenes, outtakes, commentaries and links to the View Askew website make up the two disc package. A definite "must own." By now you have figured out that

a) I have more free time than I earlier indicated, and

b) that I am seriously into Kevin Smith's world.

Correctamundo. Do yourselves a favor and catch up with me and 40 million others who make up this now, rather mainstream cult.

Speaking of cults, let's talk about the greatest rock movie ever made.

No, not "Almost Famous"...

I'm talking Spinal Tap here.

I've waxed and waned on and on here at this site about the glory that is their movie debut.

But I come today to talk about two other Spinal Tap offerings.

  • THE RETURN OF SPINAL TAP mpi video This is great! Ten years after THIS IS SPINAL TAP was released, the boys went on the road to promote their album, BREAK LIKE THE WIND.

On stage, these guys are incredible. And why not, eh?

Michael McKean, Harry Shearer and the brilliant Lord Christopher Guest have always written and performed all of their own material and they truly shine in front of an audience. Hits like "Big Bottom" and "Sex Farm Mama" have the thousands of fans in attendance singing along like it was a Stones concert. And liberally peppered throughout the film are interviews with Martin Di Bergi, Artie Fufkin, Jeff Beck, Martin Short and a cast of thousands as well as observations from the lads and a tour of their Squatny neighborhood.

  • BREAK LIKE THE WIND mca home video This one is just a quick blast. Three music videos and two of those are "Bitch School", with the second version featuring a blue dot to cover the naughty bits. "The Majesty of Rock" is the second gem.

Sadly for us DVD aficionados , both of these titles are available only on VHS.

and of course, when you think of Tap, you think of Guffman. Yes, at last, after years of waiting, our patience has paid off and finally here is,

  • WAITING FOR GUFFMAN

Check out the box set of DVD's from A&E titled,

  •  

HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR

Also from A&E.

  •  

THE STANLEY KUBRICK COLLECTION - EYES WIDE SHUT, FULL METAL JACKET, THE SHINING, BARRY LYNDON (ok, can't all be winners), CLOCKWORK ORANGE, 2001, DR. STRANGELOVE, LOLITA and a special disc entitled A LIFE IN PICTURES.


Check out the new MGM MIDNIGHT MOVIES releases too. Great horror classics from the fifties and sixties, all restored and most in wide screen.

Read any good books lately?

I have.

Among them, you would all be wise to do yourselves a favor and read:

  • SICK PUPPY by Carl Hiaasen Warners I'm a huge Elmore Leonard fan, and evidently so is Hiaasen. His stuff, also set in Florida, is just as hard-boiled as "Get Shorty" but even funnier. Look out, Dutch. Here comes a dude! By the way, this guy also wrote "Striptease". It reads better than the movie, trust me.
  • ALL THE RAGE by F. Paul Wilson Anything Paul writes is amazing, and this one, a follow-up to his hugely successful THE TOMB, finds Repairman Jack and his cohorts busting a cartel of galoots who are trying to peddle the latest of designer drugs to our kids. Damned right, we're not going to take it! So, who you gonna call? Why, Repairman Jack, of course.
  • CONFESSIONS OF AN UGLY STEPSISTER by Gregory Maguire An amazing spin on the old Cinderella story, this book is rich and beautifully written. Scary too. Good thing I never heard this version while growing up. Hey, I take that back. A little terror is good thing.
  • ANGEL OF DARKNESS by Caleb Carr The sequel to the brilliant novel, THE ALIENIST, finds Dr. Lazlo Kreizler and his band of Scoobies once again on the gas-lit streets of New York City at the turn of the last century. This guy writes like Sinatra sings. It's madness, mayhem, historical research and some revolutionary ideas. Don't let the length of this volume dissuade you. You'll be turning those pages as quickly as you can. Both this and it's predecessor come highly recommended.

As always,

  • LEXX this season finds the crew stranded on Earth...or at least Paul Donavan's uniquely Canadian view of Earth.
  • FARSCAPE the best Sci Fi show on tv anywhere. Maybe ever.
  • THE CHRONICLE a new one. I can only hope that it lasts and doesn't go the way of The Prey, VR-5 and Brimstone. Those shows never got a dinner.
  • PRIMETIME GLICK The above-mentioned Martin Short's latest personality. I love this guy. Of course, I also love Brock Lineahan, Lawrence Guber and Ed Grimley. The man is comedy god.
  • reruns of SIX FEET UNDER on HBO and WITCHBLADE, syndicated.
  • A brand new season of Larry David's amazingly funny CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM also on Home Box.
  • Just say no to STRANGE FREQUENCIES and DEAD LAST...two real losers. And here's something that I thought I'd never say, Do ya like your "stories?" I mean, your soap operas? Cause iffen you do, check out PORT CHARLES--TAINTED LOVE on abc. Yeah, it's lame on many levels, but this season it's distinguished by the presence of Michael Easton (of VR-5 and TOTAL RECAL 2070

Finally,

  • AMNESIAC by Radiohead The British trendsetters are back with yet another brilliant exercise in psychedelia on the heels of KID A and OK COMPUTER. Proving that you don't need guitars to be cutting-edge. I worship at their throne.
  • OH BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU? Soundtrack of the year. Allison Krause and Union Station shoot to stardom as quickly as the Soggy Bottom Boys did in the Cohen Brothers' hilarious film.
  • WEEZER After an absence of several years from the charts, these boys are back bigger and better than ever with this Ric Ocasek produced pop marvel. And if you only listen to one single song this year, it might as well be HASH PIPE.
  • We're also listening to STAIND, TOOL and MOBY.
  • Ryko has re-released wonderful tripped out music from the late great band MORPHENE. Buy both GOOD and CURE FOR PAIN. If you missed them in the nineties, you can close your eyes and listen to these cds: It will just like going back in a time machine.

All the way to the Year 2000.

Whew!


Oh yeah, and thanks for being here.

Your next update?

Right, like I know...


Howard Kaylan

the artist formerly known as Eddie


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