An Explosive Documentary
Driven by grit and greed, adrenaline and hunger, crystal meth and scripture, a defiant group of desert survivalists risk their lives scavenging the lethal but lucrative wastes of war in the kill zones of a US military bombing range near the Mexican border.
Screenings at the SF DocFest
The San Francisco DocFest takes place October 14 through 26 and Scrapper will have three screenings: the first two will be at the historic Roxy Theater, Friday Oct. 14 at 7.15pm and Monday Oct 17 at 9.30 pm. The third screening will be Wednesday Oct 19 at 2.45pm in Berkeley at the Shattuck cinemas, adjacent to the campus.
I wrote about this excellent documentary a while back, but since then there has been great momentum building for filmmaker Stephan Wassmann’s amazing documentary. This unique movie has been making the rounds at various film festivals around the world, garnering much praise and being invited as an Official Selection at the 2011 Durango Film Festival and the 2011 Slamdance Film Festival, and winning the Spirit Award at the 2011 Brooklyn Film Festival, winner of the Royal Reel Award at the 2011 Canada International Film Festival, and the Winner of the 2011 Seattle True Independent Film Festival.
Watch the All New “Scrapper” Trailer on YouTube
“Scrapper” Screening Schedule:
- Friday October 14 at the Historic Roxy Theatre @ 7:15pm
- Monday October 17 at the historic Roxy Theatre @ 9:30pm
- Wednesday October 19 at the Shattuck Cinemas @ 2:45pm in Berkeley (adjacent to the campus)
Check the link to the SFDocFest page where you can get screening and location information and even purchase tickets online if you’d like.
Please Support Struggling Filmmakers
If you happen to be in San Francisco during these dates in October, please consider supporting filmmaker Stephan Wassmann and treat yourself to a really great documentary experience while helping support a talented filmmaker to achieve his goals and dreams.
Rolling Stones Remastered Exile on Main Street
Rolling in L.A. with the Stones
On May 18, the Rolling Stones’ 1972 classic Rolling Stones Exile on Main Street will be re-released in three editions: the remastered album, a version with bonus tracks and a superdeluxe set with vinyl, DVD and booklet (rumors of a super-duper-deluxe set complete with hypodermic and burnt spoon remain unconfirmed). The DVD is a super-cool behind-the-scenes during the making of “Exile on Main Street” in the early 1970’s. A must see for rock music fans and Rolling Stones fans.
Time has justified The Rolling Stones’ Exile on Main Street mythological standing as a masterpiece of murk, an uber-bluesy collection of spooky grooves. Fans know of (and have mythologized) the band’s infamous sessions at Nellcote in the south of France . And while it’s true that most of the album’s basic tracks were recorded there, where the Stones had been taxed into self-exile, Exile was actually wrapped and mixed right here in Los Angeles .
The sunlight, the drive to work, the way the girls look. L.A. ‘s got a very strong set.
president of Rolling Stones Records
After the French heat got hip to Nellcote’s pharmaceutical follies, the Rolling Stones fled and arrived in L.A. on November 29, 1971. ” L.A. added a whole dimension to Exile’s mixing and assembly,” recalls Marshall Chess, who, as president of Rolling Stones Records, was privy to the inside. “The sunlight, the drive to work, the way the girls look. L.A.’s got a very strong set.”
Chess says Mick Jagger was in charge of sessions at Sunset Sound Recorders, still open for business today at the same spot: 6650 Sunset Boulevard, at Cherokee. “We utilized Dr. John and Billy Preston for help. Dr. John got us backup singers. Billy brought that gospel sound to the vocals. They were crucial to the overall sound of the tracks. In some ways they might’ve been called part-writers. A lot of times it’d be stagnant and Billy Preston would put his shit on it and it would change the riff and texture.” Chess remembers “Happy,” “Casino Boogie,” “Ventilator Blues,” “Torn and Frayed” and “Loving Cup” getting extensive overhauls at Sunset Sound.
Former Beatles employee Chris O’Dell was personal assistant to the Stones at the time: “Keith [Richards] was going through his usual Keith stuff. They weren’t organized in the studio. I remember many nights being there for hours. It felt like it didn’t ever click. Maybe that’s the way they recorded. I was used to the Beatles and how refined their sessions were.”
O’Dell leased homes for Jagger, Richards and Mick Taylor in Bel Air, while Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts usually stayed at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. “They were the toast of the town. They got invited to everything that happened,” O’Dell recalls. “Mick’s a very social person. Always has been.” The boys partied with Papa John Phillips and Natalie Wood and visited Ike and Tina Turner’s studio in Inglewood.
O’Dell’s then-boyfriend, former Band road manager and Mean Streets producer Jonathan Taplin, recommended photographer Robert Frank for the album cover and sent Jagger a copy of Frank’s heralded photo collection The Americans. Frank was flown in from New York and they all went down to L.A. ‘s Skid Row on pre-gentrified Main Street to shoot, hence the album’s title.
“I just remember how easygoing it was, just walking down the street and people following us and everybody getting high,” says O’Dell. “The street people came out and went, ‘Heeeyyy, are you Mick fucking Jagger?’ He’d laugh and they’d follow us.” Frank used a Super-8 movie camera and the Stones stills on Exile’s cover are frames from that film.
Chess says 1 a.m. business meetings with lawyers were not uncommon, and fondly recounts regular jaunts with Keith to Canter’s on Fairfax for strawberry shortcake with real whipped cream. Both he and Keith bought Ferrari Dinos at Hollywood Sports Cars, a legendary dealership that’s no longer in business. But there was a dark side too.
“After Altamont there were death threats from the Hell’s Angels,” says Chess. “When we got to L.A. , Mick and I bought pistols. I had a .38 hammerless Smith & Wesson. Mick was paranoid about the Angels.” But overall, Chess says, L.A. was a positive experience that put the icing on one of the great rock & roll albums of all time. “They were drawn to all things American. The Stones love American music and fit really well in L.A. ”
Bringing it all back to 2010, it’s the jones for new music on the bonus tracks that has Rolling Stones freaks scratching. Don Was, the Stones’ producer since 1993, was brought in last year to mix and oversee overdubs for unfinished outtakes. He recounts his marching orders: “Keith sent me a fax sayin’, ‘You don’t have to make it sound like Exile. It is Exile.'”
Was explains what he believes to be the key to Exile’s off-kilter sound: “It reminded me of what Miles [ Davis ] was doin’. There’s this apparent looseness to it, but it’s holdin’ together. The thing that makes [the Stones] great is that they all feel the beat in a little different place. If you listen to the tracks individually, you go, ‘This is a mess.’ When you put it all together, it creates this looseness, but it still grooves. There’s a centrifugal force that holds the band together. With Exile, they pushed the centrifugal force as far out as you can and still have the center hold.”
By Michael Simmons Thursday, May 13 2010
CINESPIA HOLLYWOOD CEMETERY SCREENINGS, SEASON 10
If you’ve never been to the Hollywood Forever Cemetery Movie Screenings, you don’t know what you’re missing. Check out the movie screening schedule and come on down with a group of your nearest and dearest. Really fun and they show some awesome movies.
Check the Hollywood Forever movie screening schedule here:
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
6000 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
(Santa Monica Blvd. @ Gower)
Filmmaker Kevin Booth’s New Documentary:
How Weed Won the West
I always support Kevin Booth’s efforts to raise awareness and exposing the ridiculous and dangerous draconian drug laws in the USA. I first learned about Kevin Booth many years ago, by being a huge fan of the late great comedian/satirist Bill Hicks. Kevin and Bill had been childhood friends. I feel that part of Bill’s long-silenced voice is still heard through he works of his friends such as Kevin Booth.
Free Preview Screening
Venice Beach, Feb. 13
On Saturday February 13th at 8:00PM, the new feature length documentary from Sacred Cow Productions, ???How Weed Won the West??? will be screened at the Organica dispensary in Venice Beach (13456 Washington Blvd.), the site of the LAPD raid from last year as shown in the film.
“How Weed Won the West??? is the story of the people who probably would not die if you took their weed away. People who feel it is their right to smoke a dried flower instead of ingesting dangerous pharmaceuticals for medicine, or alcohol and cigarettes to simply catch a buzz.
Intense New Documentary – Scrapper
by L.A. Filmmaker Stephan Wassmann
A Mini-history of Twan and Stephan Wassmann
Stephan Wassmann is a good friend of mine. He and I met when we were both working on our very first feature film together when we were in our early 20’s. It was an ultra-low budget piece of crap called “Warlords From Hell”, produced by B-movie mogul Roger Corman, co-starring Robert Patrick in his first movie role (best known as the evil liquid robot man in Director James Cameron’s Terminator 2). Stephan and I have remained friends over the years and have kept tabs on each other’s endeavors. Stephan was one of the director/cameramen for a project that is still on the shelf, waiting for ME (Twan) to get off my ass and make happen: the 1999 Burning Man Voodoo Opera – Le Mystere de Papa Loko. Absolutely amazing footage.
Get a glimpse of our explosive new documentary “SCRAPPER”, which takes you inside a uniquely American outlaw realm… right where you least expect it.
There’s a 3 minute and a 1 minute trailer. We’d love it if you posted a comment if you don’t mind taking the time. We’re trying to generate as much buzz as we can, so feel free to forward the link to friends.
Please check it out
Director/Filmmaker of “Scrapper”
Or you can simply go to YouTube and type in SCRAPPER DOCUMENTARY.
You can also view the trailer on the “Scrapper” website at:
Delicious Sights & Sounds at Electric Apricot
Click the image above to visit the Electric Apricot website. Very nicely done. Citizens of Burning Man at Black Rock City will find a special place in their hearts for Electric Apricot.
When the site loads, let is sit for a while. Make sure your speakers on. Some very cool tunes start playing. Enjoy!
Buy Electric Apricot: The Quest for Festeroo
Rent Electric Apricot through Netflix.com
Many thanx to the always fascinating, magickal, fun-loving Courtney Clark, (aka: Gypsy) for turning me on to this. Thank you for keeping life colorful and interesting.
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