Thursday, October 14, 2010


(David Acomba, 1973)
Good fucking lord. Released within months of "Paperback Hero", it makes a striking contrast - it's as though Kier Dullea's deluded cowboy had taken up the director's chair. Luke Askew's DJ is a literal loner, perched in his prairie farmhouse and broadcasting his 'iconoclastic' selections - such as Van Morrison and "Layla" - in defiance of the station which wants him to play commercial crap a/k/a 'funk'. He does however find time to strike up a romance with part-time hippie Patti Oatman, in between run-ins with a hyperbolically villainous radio exec and a conniving newspaper columnist. When Oatman upbraids the guy for doing his job instead of making out again it looks like we're dealing with some kind of manhandled anti-capitalist statement, except after she leaves him she gets a job filing mail at the post office! No, the critique here is strictly limited to the media establishment, who get their jollies holding down this virile he-man individualist. You keep waiting for the artist-versus-straights rhetoric to show some sense of irony or proportion or realism, but all hope is lost after they symbolically ride their horse naked across the open plains - so overripe and self-aggrandizing it made me want to get a job.

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