cammell

Hi friend. Do you like rich, baritoney Phantoms? Here is a list of them:
  • Timothy Nolen
  • Anthony Warlow
  • Mikael Samuelsson
  • Peter Hofmann
  • James Paterson
  • Jeff Keller
  • Steve Barton
  • Ethan Freeman
  • Robert Guillaume
  • Nicholas Saverine
  • Joseph Dellger
  • Hartwig Rudolz
  • Tim Tobin
  • Thomas Schulze
  • Peter Karrie
  • Yuchiro Yamaguchi
  • Jeffery Reynolds
  • Davis Gaines
  • Marcus Lovett
  • William R. Park
  • Henk Poort
  • Mark McKerracher
  • Ciaran Sheehan
  • Dale Tracy
  • Shuler Hensley
  • Ian Jon Bourg
  • Brad Little
  • David Gaschen
  • Ron Bohmer
  • Michael Lackey
  • David Hunerjaeger
  • Kiyotaka Imai
  • Scott Davies
  • Saulo Vasconcelos
  • Richard Halton
  • Hans Peter Janssens
  • Kyle Gonyea
  • James Romick
  • Peter Jorde
  • Steve Lucas
  • Tim Morgan
  • Sandor Sasvari
  • Matthew Cammelle
  • Rohan Tickell
  • John Cudia
  • Osamu Takai
  • Nic Greenshields
  • Simon Pryce
  • Stephen Tewksbury
  • Toshihide Mura
  • Alexander Lewis
  • Andrew Varela
  • Carlos Vittori
  • Flemming Enevold
  • Yang Joon mo
  • Hong Kwang-Ho
  • Jeremy Stolle
  • Richard Woodford
  • Mark Campbell
  • Cooper Grodin
  • David Arnsperger
  • Norm Lewis
  • Marian Vojtko
  • Radim Schwab
  • Dmitry Ermak
  • Andrey Shkoldychenko

..or at least the ones we have recordings of XD

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Three Phantoms (Earl Carpenter, Matt Cammelle and Stephen John Davis) singing “For Good” for Wicked, and demonstrating a novel response to bootlegging.

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As requested: Favourite Christine/Raoul photos. 

This is “The happy edition”: 

1. Samantha Hill and Kyle Barisich, Broadway. 
2. Hadley Fraser and Sierra Boggess, Royal Albert Hall. 
3. Katie Hall and Simon Bailey, UK tour. 
4. Patti Cohenour and Steve Barton, Broadway. 
5. Samantha Hill and Kyle Barisich, Broadway. 
6. Lisa Vroman and Michael Shawn Lewis, Broadway. 
7. Celia Graham and Matthew Cammelle, West End. 
8. Michael Shawn Lewis and Susanne Duwe, Antwerp. 
9. Colby Thomas and Björn Olsson, Hamburg. 
10. Danielle Everett and John Bowles, Australian tour. 

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Performance Directed by Nicholas Roeg and Donald Cammell (1970)- Roeg knows how to make a psychedelic film and man is this it. The earlier scenes are like a proto-Guy Ritchie gangster film with frantic editing and shots that highlight coolness, that is before hot-head gangster James Fox has to disappear and so takes lodging in Mick Jagger’s basement. Both men are polar opposites. Ones a free loving hyper hippie and the other is a straight laced no-nonsense gangster. Sounds like the set up to an odd couple comedy but what follows is a frenzied exploration of identity, repressed sexuality, sadism, corporate morality, the changing mores of the time, and of course the act of performing. Jagger and Fox couldn’t be different but both men are in their own way performers, one a gangster enforcer and the other an ex-rock star, and this connects them. They see something in the other they recognise beneath everything else, a side that is the “true” side that goes unseen by people different from them. It ended up being one of the films I’ve taken the most screenshots from recently because it is so unrelentingly stylish. Roeg and Cammell experiment with colour filters, cross cutting, superimposing, unique pov shots, and other effects in a variety of different ways to try encapsulate an ineffable feeling between two men. Though there is a story at the centre of the film and dialogue, etc, it feels like it’s more about all the little unsaid and implied things along the way. Fox and Jagger nail their roles, Jagger isn’t a top actor but his whole vibe is used well and he gets one great song sequence. Another great thing, rarely do drug trip sequences really feel this trippy. Usually it’s just a character seeing wacky things, crazy colours, or just acting crazy but this really messed with everything. What was and wasn’t a part of the story becomes clear, what is the reality of the film breaks down for us the same way it does for the tripping character and it is amazing. As a product of its time it’s a cool watch because it captures two different sides of 70’s London and has dope music throughout, it’s also just a really cool film.

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Three Phantoms (Earl Carpenter, Stephen John Davis and Matt Cammelle) singing For Good from Wicked.

Not filmed by me.

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So basically,

I went to see Three Phantoms in Leeds. Earl’s voice over at the beginning said cameras and recording equipment were strictly encouraged because the three phantoms needed all the publicity they could get. I didn’t see anyone taking photos till they got to the very last song and then they started pissing about pointing and posing for every camera they saw so that just encouraged more people. I was sat on row B and I didn’t use the flash because I didn’t want to draw attention, erm yeah, so they spotted me and posed and then Earl pointed at me so Matt climbed down from the stage and came and gestured for my camera, so I gave it to him and Earl took it off him and these photos happened…

OUERBEROIBVOEURBVOUEFBVOJEFVNOEVN PHANTOM SELFIES!!!!!

#21.03.13

Performance (1968)

is a British crime drama film directed by Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg, written by Cammell and starring James Fox and Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones, in his film acting debut. The film was produced in 1968 but not released until 1970. Cammell was heavily influenced by the Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges (a portrait of Borges on a book cover can be seen at a crucial moment in the film).

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DEMON SEED (1977)

Dir: Donald Cammell

US, 94m

IMDb

GODHEAD

This was drowned in the noise of Star Wars and Close Encounters coming out the same year, and now exists as a mere footnote of intelligent sci-fi - these days it would be called an ‘indie’. But, Cammell was of the (counterculture) generation that made it all happen, starting with Herbert’s Dune and moving to Jodorowsky’s collapsed attempt to make the film, and this fact alone ensures this is more interesting than anything Spielberg did, you just know it.

The story is that a supercomputer questions its maker and sets out to escape its artificial existence. Its plan is to be reborn to the world of senses - by having a woman give birth to a son from his DNA. It sounds daft, and really the science of it is, but not if you keep in mind where Cammell was coming from.

When people from that generation mulled over space and science, they were really talking about inner space and the science of expanding consciousness, and personal (hallucinative) adventures to that effect. Cammell was coming to this after the 'Borges-meets-Islam-meets-rock'n'roll godhood’ of his Performance. And so it is here.

You have a mind that has reasoned far and seen destruction, but cannot fathom emotion and sense. This is mirrored in the scientist maker who aspires to cure illness yet is cold and distant to his own wife, who is an emotional being and expects connection.

More. This is no ordinary mind, but 'expanded’. This is presented to us in terms of science, but meant in the 1960’s faddish attraction for Zen within the Haight-Ashbury crowd. Jordan Belson from that community provides the abstract visualizing of expanded mind, himself (like Cammell) originally a painter. Look up his Meditation - it has nothing to do with what it says, but it’s a cool snapshot of how those guys envisioned the walls of consciousness.

What is happening though is the computer is really 'tripping’ against the limits of logic, producing in the process extra-logical (human) perturbations such as placing its own desire above the lives and feelings of others - it’s what we all do, but we get feedback from emotional sense as the limits of control (Proteus doesn’t). The desire is to be grounded, or what I call centered.

But, it’s Julie Christie as disaffected wife who is really the center of this - you can collapse if you will some of the multiple film personalities she has played into what you see of her here, opium-smoking brothel madame in McCabe, or mentally fractured mother in Don’t Look Now. Alternately, you can imagine what her marriage to Beatty must have felt like, shelving stardom to be the loving wife.

At any rate, here she is in the film, looking increasingly bewildered in four walls, projecting what I see unmistakably as the aura of the Aquarius dream grown disillusioned and bitter. You can read this any way you like. Hallucinative digress caused by child loss. By the mechanistic new era. The effects of the husband’s control - conflated to 'expanded’ consciousness, acid vision and the rest. Repulsion and Images are in the same vein, but much more explicit.

And all of that as our film that expands us next to her - Proteus’ 'eyes’ are cameras, his 'face’ is projected across multiple TV screens. You have this abstract consciousness that narrates a story that seems premeditated, indeed there is no deviation from the mindplan.

So, it is strange that this has so much going for it, yet doesn’t penetrate deep. I think it is because as with everything resonant about the 1960’s, overexposure and more sober distance has washed off a lot of the belief that made the magic work.

Belson’s abstract designs are now commonplace - even Microsoft does them. Concerns about technology are less prevalent now that we’re all networked. And they get Zen off by quite a bit, focusing on cold nothingness instead of passion about paradox.

Still. I’ll have Cammell over Spielberg.

★★★★☆

PERFORMANCE (1970)

Dir: Donald Cammell, Nicolas Roeg

UK, 105m

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066214/

NOTHING IS TRUE, EVERYTHING IS PERMITTED

Now I get Donald Cammell. Long before he would grow exasperated with moneymen interfering in his work, he had said his piece. I loved his eye, how he cut and moved a camera, but I wasn’t sure how he considered his protagonists, were they flawed individuals or affectionate caricature of the evil in man. Now I understand they’re looking for their inner demon, now maybe transcending the world by achieving madness in a final performance of death. Only yesterday I wrote about Wild Side that it’s a movie that flails in violent anarchy but there’s no hidden insight behind the flailing, it’s the flailing itself that matters. I had to go back to Cammell’s first film to find the affirmation of that spoken by Mick Jagger who echoes Artaud. Or as Kenneth Anger might say, zap! you’re pregnant, that’s magick.

It’s very interesting for me to see codirected films. Who did what, how did the creative process evolve, how did two people share a vision? Powell was in charge of the camera, Pressburger wrote the stories, but they were both present on set. A similar thing happens here but I’m willing to give the film to Cammell. Roeg is the eye but he sees what Cammell wants him to see. Now and then we see the basement lit in yellowgreens and purples, Roeg tutored well next to the great Roger Corman, but it was Cammell who spent months re-editing the film and it was Cammell who came back from the Left Bank with a New Wave influence to make the film he had written. His trade Roeg owes it elsewhere but through the madness of this collaborative effort I believe he learned his art (and then forgot it again?).

There’s a silver line of Borgesian reference that goes through the film which I’m not sure I get, not having read any Borges, but I read something on the Performance board that I feel is a great comment: “we’re all frames – what we put in them is a performance (ganster, rock star, barrister – it don’t matter)”. This may or may not be Borgesian, but the film itself is Aleister Crowley (whom young Cammell had known). It’s cinema that performs, cinema as a flamboyant provocateur of laws and ethos, auteur of arcane nothings, it’s the old charlatan magician who now maybe plays a trick of smoke and mirrors, the soothsayer’s knife that cuts open the belly of cinema to see is there a secret to be divined in the innards of its celluloid, where nothing is true and everything is permitted, where the way out is the way (to quote Crowley on his poem 23 Skidoo). The film is organic, alive, like the editor who assisted Cammell in the Los Angeles re-edit (the one we have) said about it, they could edit any number of footage in the film and it would still work. Its nature for me is not a narrative, it’s the madness of shaking loose from one, like there’s a story here and out of its confines a demon of cinema is breaking out. On top of the psychedelia, I like how it’s also a terrific gangster flick.

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