Philomene Long’s The Beats – An Exisitential Comedy

We continue our spotlighting of video now available via the digitalization of Allen’s Stanford University archives.

Today – Philomene Long & (Jay D Kugelman)’s LA-based documentary from 1980,  The Beats: An Existential Comedy

The video is available – here

[Stuart Z Perkoff appearing on Groucho Marx’s tv show, You Bet Your Life – from The Beats – An Existential Comedy]

Initially conceived as a tribute to the poet Stuart Z Perkoff (1930-1974), it developed into, significantly, more – much more.

As one reviewer had it, “The film is not so much a historical documentary of the period as a recreation … Read More

April 1st – April Fool – Holy Goof

[Allen Ginsberg, 1976. Photo: Robert Turney]

“Then there’s something I like to call Crazy Seriousness. Kerouac used the word “goof” a lot in a very positive way, as when he was describing the Three Stooges in Visions of Cody. He was talking about Neal Cassady, actually, saying how the free imagination he felt in himself was justified in the world outside and he had nothing therefore to reproach himself for…”

[Clark Coolidge on Jack Kerouac]  – in Disembodied Poetics – Annals of the Jack Kerouac School – edited by Anne Waldman and Andrew Schelling … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 109 (Beauty, Humor (and no belly-laughter from television)

[A performing chimpanzee, “Zippy”, watches tv in 1955]

Student:  Why do you find beauty in it (Benjamin Peret’s poem, “Hymn of The Patriotic Old Soldier”) if it’s so crude ?

benjamin péret

[Benjamin Peret]

AG: If it’s crude? Well, there’s a certain delicacy. In this sense, he’s parodying an old soldier. He’s like a tough, funny, French, old soldier who’s very frank, who doesn’t give a shit for the army and doesn’t give a shit for patriotism but is an old soldier and won his Legion of Honor and he’s actually exhibiting a certain humanity – “To remember my ribbon … Read More