Thursday, March 23, 2006

Durwood's Video Pick of the Week

Durwood Wilkes is a professional bingo caller from Henshitt, Texas currently making his home base in Chicago. He recently celebrated his 25th year of criss-crossing the country spreading the gospel of bingory. The video pick of the week is taken from The Weekly Hopper, a newsletter for fans of Honky Tonk Bingo, a Sunday night tradition at the Pontiac Cafe' in Chicago. To subscribe to the Hopper, drop him a line at

This week's pick:

Strait Jacket, 1962 Dir. William Castle
All right,so Joan Crawford plays a loonie just released from the
loonie bin after twenty years for choppin' up her husband and his
mistress- in front of her daughter no less. Now Joan Crawford playing
a psycho is about as much of a stretch as me playing a one-eyed bingo
caller from Henshitt, TX, but damned if those eyebrows of hers don't
just bring the crazy by the bushel. I'm not gonna sit here and tell
you it's a good movie or even worth watching, but if you have it on
during your glaucoma treatment and say, you're writing a weekly
column, it's not half bad. I won't go into to the daughter's dark
secret, but we'll just say it was made two years after Psycho and it
shows. Lots of good cheezy music, kooky superimpositions, and
Crawford had one of the best maniacal screams in the business. We'll
also call this the unofficial beginning to the Character Actor Series.
George Kennedy plays the poor dumb farmhand who still knows a little
too much. The scene where Crawford freaks out as he attempts to
butcher a chicken is pretty priceless. Strait Jacket is all right I
reckon, I'd take SamFuller's Shock Corridor over it any day. Perhaps
this is a movie you can put on mute at your next party and impress
your hipster friends with your knowledge of campy axe murderer flicks.
Hipsters sometimes go in for shit like that.

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