Thursday, August 10, 2017

movie notes : Crumb (1994)

from the commentary track of the documentary movie Crumb (1994) (around the 24 minute mark)

Terry Zwigoff, director :  This guy Skutch he's talking about [a high school bully from the Crumb childhood] is another guy I tried to track down and interview in the film and I actually found him. He was living outside Milford, Delaware; close to where he'd gone to high school. I got him on the phone and I said to him I'd doing a documentary about this guy Robert Crumb and his brother Charles and Max and do you remember him from high school. He said "yeah vaguely" I said what do you do for a living? I may come out there and interview you if; we're trying to raise more money at the time... He said he ran some sort of salvage operation; I couldn't tell from that whether it was some sort of like a  progressive recycling situation or just a city dump. I couldn't tell. We were so short on money I just sort of let that go. It could have been good, I don't know.

it is an interesting distinction to draw into importance. Now, I may be being uncharitable but it seems like he sees a "progressive recycling situation" as something wonderful while a city dump/scrap yard/salvage operation is simply and distinctly déclassé. But is there a difference?

There is to some. Not a practical difference; both are recycling. Both are about reuse. Both are about not being wasteful. The difference is an arbitrary one of social standing.

This is much like those who are fascinated by "tiny houses," even those with wheels so they are mobile but somehow the phrases "mobile home" or "trailer home" are studiously omitted.  The difference between a tiny house and a mobile home is often defined as being able to afford minimalism vs not being able to afford something other than a mobile home.

Again,  I may be being uncharitable (and a little unfair as I am not a mind reader) but he did feel it necessary to interrupt his fellow commentarian to put this little bit of information out there (and the above transcript is the full statement he made about the man).  I sense he was thinking of the meme of the bully in high school who peaks in those years and then declines into obscurity while the victims of the bully have a documentary film made about them.

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