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LGM Film Club, Part 69: Maidstone

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I’ve expressed my contempt for Norman Mailer before. But I realized I’ve never watched one of his “movies” that he made in the late 60s and early 70s. So I decided to hate watch Maidstone. This is….a real piece of shit from a real piece of shit. The plot is this–Mailer plays a brilliant director that is compared to Godard and Bunuel. He’s making a film about a brothel. He is also deciding to run for president because he’s what the people want. Yes, this is basically Mailer projecting his own ego onto an absurd story. None of this is ever properly explained. But Mailer’s first scene is, typically, him berating a woman who is auditioning for the film to make sure she will take her clothes off whenever he wants her to. Mailer gets a bad boxing scene in. And he takes his shirt off a lot to show his manly paunchy greying chest. There’s also a British reporter who ends up showing her breasts too. Oh yeah, there’s also an assassination plot to take out Mailer’s character because he’s too much of a threat to the system. The last two scenes are Mailer talking to the cast about how visionary he is in the film and then Rip Torn legitimately trying to kill him with a hammer. Go Rip Torn. Lucky for you, it is available in its entirety on YouTube! Depending on your definition of luck I suppose.

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