The Linguini Incident. Ideally this should happen because a proper Blu-Ray release of the film occurs. There's nothing out there at the moment (though it briefly popped up during the Austin Powers days on DVD as Shag-O-Rama). Both the 1990's Laserdisc David M. showed us the other night and the weirdly covered, now apparently OOP DVD he stumbled across in a cheapie bin at London Drugs - which features a very different Bowie on the cover from the one in the film, and steals from the box art for Barry Levinson's Diner, bizarrely enough, despite there being no diner in the film - were full-frame. There is also, apparently a UK and a US cut of the film with different runtimes (the UK version, longer, can be found on Youtube). Here's hoping someone decides to capitalize - an ugly word, but what can one do? - on the current interest in Bowie by finally doing this film justice. It's not a GOOD film, exactly, but nor is it bad (exactly); it's quirky, unique, playful, and, I suspect, will prove to be strangely memorable to anyone who sees it; it has everything a good cult movie needs, except, maybe, a cult.
an entertaining article about the time he spent in "movie jail" when the film bombed, and provides a few behind-the-scenes anecdotes about the making of the film (" "Shelley Winters showed up drunk on her first day of shooting, and I had to fire her") and the fallout when studio execs saw the film and hated it, leading to the utter humiliation and pariah status of the filmmaker (he writes of that time that at one point, he "saw Rosanna Arquette at a party and hid behind a plant.") He seems to have ultimately agreed that the film was no good, has decided (unlike Alex Cox, after the tanking of Walker; don't you just love that Criterion Easter Egg where he feeds the film's reviews into the fire?) that it was, in fact, his fault that the film failed.
I don't think I agree! Certainly The Matador - Shepard's most noted comeback vehicle - was a better made film in conventional terms than The Linguini Incident, but The Linguini Incident is much more, uh, singular, curious, piquant. If it's (maybe) a mess, at least it's a hot mess (or at least a pleasantly warm one), full of energy and originality and silly ideas (combat bras? Escape artists with stage fright?). Compared to The Matador, it's the film I'd be more interested in revisiting, though as I say, it would be nice if there were a chance to see a cleaned-up presentation of it, before I do that... Bowie is at the peak of his glass-spider stardom, handsome and charismatic (if not particularly asked to stretch his abilities or do much of anything but be cute, which he does effortlessly). Rosanna Arquette and Stranger than Paradise's Eszter Balint are both fun, and Andre Gregory's energetic comedic performance is an eye-opener, The film deserves better than it's gotten, and Bowie fans should make their voices heard!
But not me, I mean, this is all I'm going to do. Someone want to start a petition?