Cover image for Les Blank : always for pleasure
Title:
Les Blank : always for pleasure
Author:
Blank, Les, film director, cinematographer, editor, film producer.
Publication Information:
[Irvington, New York] : The Criterion Collection, [2014]

©2014
Physical Description:
5 videodiscs (563 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.
Summary:
The blues accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins: A portrait of Texas bluesman Lightin' Hopkins created via a collection of musical performances and oral histories.

God respects us when we work, but loves us when we dance: A look at hippies and flower children as they dance and create rituals during the Los Angeles "Love-In" of Easter Sunday, 1967.

Spend it all: A portrayal of the lives and music of the French-speaking Cajuns of Louisiana.

A well spent life: A tribute to Texas songster Mance Lipscomb,

Dry wood: An exploration of black Creole life in French Louisiana.

Hot pepper: A musical portrait of zydeco king Clifton Chenier.

Always for pleasure: An insider's portrait of New Orleans' street celebrations and unique cultural gumbo.

Garlic is as good as ten mothers: A paean to garlic that explores the history, consumption, cultivation, and culinary/curative powers of the "stinking rose."

Sprout wings and fly: A tribute to Appalachian culture that profiles old-time fiddler Tommy Jarrell.

In heaven there is no beer?: An exploration of the dance, food, music, friendship, and even religion of the polka.

Gap-toothed women: A valentine to women born with a space between their teeth that explores issues of self-esteem and societal attitudes toward standards of beauty.

Yum, yum, yum!: An exploration of the cooking and other enthusiasms of French-speaking Louisiana.

The Maestro: A profile of cowboy artist Gerald Gaxiola.

Sworn to the drum: A tribute to Cuban drummer Francisco Aguabella.
General Note:
Title from container.

Originally released as documentary films 1968-1995.

Special features: Disc 1: The blues accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins: "The sun's gonna shine" (lyrical recreation of a memory from Hopkin's youth when he decided to stop chopping cotton and start singing for a living, 10 min.); "Mr. Charlie, your rollin' mill is burnin' down" (7-min. outtake from the film featuring The Bluesman singing this classic song); "Lightnin' Les" (Hopkins performing a song he wrote in honor of the filmmaker's futile efforts at the card table trying to convince him to be filmed); Making "Lightnin'" (interview with Skip Gerson); An appreciation by Taylor Hackford (an interview with Hackford discussing the film) -- God respects us when we work, but loves us when we dance: Flower power (features Skip Gerson and Les Blank's son Harrod discussing the origins of Blank's production company and the Love-in of 1967) -- Spend it all: An appreciation by Werner Herzog (interview with filmmaker Herzog discussing his admiration for the film) -- Disc 2: A well spent life: No man like Mance (short documentary features interviews with Skip Gerson, Blank's sons Harrod and Beau, and Chris Strachwitz); Meeting Mance (interview with Chris Strachwitz where he tells the story of meeting Mance Lipscomb) -- Dry wood: A cultural celebration (short documentary about "Dry wood" and "Hot pepper" features interviews with Maureen Gosling, Les Blank's collaborator on the films, Blank's son Beau, and filmmaker Taylor Hackford) -- Disc 3. Always for pleasure: Lagniappe (short film features 25 min. of additional footage shot during the filming of "Always for pleasure" compiled by Les Blank and Maureen Gosling); Celebrating a city (short documentary featuring interviews with Maureen Gosling and David Silberberg) -- Garlic is as good as ten mothers: For the love of garlic (features interviews with Maureen Gosling, Les Blank's son Harrod and Alice Waters); Remembering Les (conversation between Tom Luddy and Alice Waters about Blank and his film contributions) -- Disc 4: Sprout wings and fly: "My old fiddle" (a visit with Tommy Jarrell in the Blue Ridge; 17-min. film composed of footage shot during the making of the film); "Julie" (old time tales of the Blue Ridge; 12-min. film composed of footage shot during the making of the film, focuses on Julie Lyons); An elemental approach (Maureen Gosling discusses her approach to editing the film) -- In heaven there is no beer?: Polka happiness (interview with Chris Simon who collaborated with Les Blank on numerous films) -- Gap-toothed women: Mind the gap (interviews with Susan Kell and Chris Simon, Blank collaborators, and Blank's son Harrod) -- Disc 5: Yum, yum, yum!: Marc and Les (features Chris Simon and Chris Strachwitz) -- The maestro: "The maestro rides again" (30-min. follow up-film); The maestro (interview with Gerald Gaxiola - a.k.a. The Maestro - provides his uniques perspective on the film and his time with Les Blank); Art for art's sake (features an interview with Chris Simon) -- Sworn to the drum: A master percussionist (interviews with the film's producer, Tom Luddy and Chris Simon).
Language:
English
Contents:
Blues accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins God respects us when we work but he loves us when we dance Spend it all Les Blank: a quiet revelation (10 min.) / A well spent life Dry wood Hot pepper Always for pleasure Garlic is as good as ten mothers Sprout wings and fly In heaven there is no beer? Gap-toothed women Yum, yum, yum! : a taste of the Cajun and Creole cooking in Louisiana Maestro : king of the cowboy artists Sworn to the drum : a tribute to Francisco Aguabella
ISBN:
9781604658866
UPC:
715515119511

Available:*

Library
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Material Type
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Status
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PN1998.3.B598 A25 2014V DISC 1 Adult DVD Central Library
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PN1998.3.B598 A25 2014V DISC 2 Adult DVD Central Library
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PN1998.3.B598 A25 2014V DISC 3 Adult DVD Central Library
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PN1998.3.B598 A25 2014V DISC 4 Adult DVD Central Library
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PN1998.3.B598 A25 2014V DISC 5 Adult DVD Central Library
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Summary

Summary

An uncompromisingly independent filmmaker, Les Blank (Burden of Dreams) made documentaries for nearly fifty years, elegantly disappearing with his camera into cultural spots rarely seen on-screen, mostly on the peripheries of the United States, but also occasionally abroad. Seemingly off-the-cuff yet poetically constructed, these films are humane, sometimes wry, always engaging tributes to musicians, food, and all sorts of regionally specific delights.


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Fourteen features plus six short films celebrating the estimable career of independent documentarian Blank (1935-2013) run the gamut of unseen American culture with an inquiring if unobtrusive style. Ethnic cuisines, regional music, outré art, quirky customs, and other unusual subjects are nicely captured. Digitally scrubbed but retaining their oft-grainy 16mm origins, these diverse docs-with appreciation by kindred spirit Werner Herzog-deserve (re)discovery by aficionados of nontraditional cinema. © Copyright 2015. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.