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Vinyl (1965)

 -  Sci-Fi  -  4 June 1965 (USA)
5.2
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 530 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 8 critic

Warhol's strange interpretation of "A Clockwork Orange." Includes Gerard dancing to the Martha and the Vandellas classic "Nowhere to Run" and being tortured by professional sadists.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Tosh Carillo ...
Larry Latrae
Gerard Malanga ...
J.D. McDermott ...
Cop
Ondine ...
Jacques Potin ...
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Edie Sedgwick
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Storyline

Loosely based on Anthony Burgess's A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, VINYL tells the story of Victor (Gerard Malanga), a "JD", who is betrayed to the police by his sidekick, Scum Baby (Bob Olivo, aka Ondine), and after being tortured by The Doctor (Tosh Carillo), becomes a useful member of society. Written by Wheeler Winston Dixon

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4 June 1965 (USA)  »

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Connections

Featured in Warhol's Cinema 1963-1968: Mirror for the Sixties (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Tired of Waiting For You
Written by Ray Davies
Performed by The Kinks
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User Reviews

 
"Nowhere to run 'Scum' baby!"
6 August 2012 | by (São Paulo, Brazil) – See all my reviews

"Vinyl" is so bad that for a moment I almost enjoyed it when I realized what's his creator was intending to do. I almost feel bad in writing a negative review about it because I understood what Andy Warhol made here. The problem is the experience's result on me, how I felt until I reach a positive enlightenment about what this is all about. Seeing the whole picture as a whole it didn't satisfied me to look at it in a good way.

Slowing down this confused thoughts, let me go from the beginning now. "Vinyl" is a free adaptation of Anthony Burgess revolutionary work "A Clockwork Orange". You read right. Kubrick wasn't the first to play with this material. Forget about Alex DeLarge, his rebellion, his mates and the violence and all. All we see here is the part of his "treatment" to become a good person and get nauseated with the things at once he used to love. In its one hour and so, "Vinyl" goes to show a young man being tortured by an eccentric group of people through some strange methods such as forced to hear loud music (among the songs there's "Nowhere to Run" - Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, OK, this is not really torture, that is such an uplifting and great song. Might work to the youngsters of today who can only listen to noise they call music), spanking, suffocation and other things. For the most part this young man will suffer physical and verbal abuse to finally reach his "cure". Yes, the characters speak but you can barely understand what they're saying.

My enlightenment came after a long while and so many thoughts trying to figure out what's the movie's point. Warhol wanted that we feel all the pain, the misery, the annoyance his main character gets from those people. He succeed in that! We feel bored, hurt to a certain extent horrified by all the punishment the man gets (even if the camera is still and we don't have close ups to see what's happening to him in the background but there's his scream to be heard), we feel anguished, tormented, wanting for all that (the movie, the music and the beatings) to stop. The whole situation is like a damaged vinyl, it keeps going on and on repeating the same part until someone turns the player off, or change the record. Brilliant, isn't it? I got it!

Here comes the problem in enduring such thing. It sounded pretentious and it didn't work. Warhol is cheating on us here. David Lynch can disturb us, present his shocking show, make it difficult to us but in the end we feel that we've got something there even if we didn't solve the whole charade. It's easier to enjoy and obtain something from his works. Can't say the same about the pop art master with this particular film that is too long with its allegedly message, it's exhausting and often you'll be closing your eyes, falling asleep but amazingly hearing all what's going on. It's funny that I made the comparison between Lynch and Warhol because it reminds of an overreacting criticism of a reviewer who said that Lynch treated badly his actors in "Blue Velvet", he tortured them by making them perform strange things. I don't see it that way in that movie, but here I do. There's no stunt doubles here, everything looks and sounds quite real (it might have been some technique, I don't know) every time the young actor gets spanked, bound to a chair, screaming and moaning. He was mistreated in so many ways to one can wonder how much money did he got for all of this (you can't get much of an indie project).

Like I said before, I feel a little bad for disliking this. It's a bad movie for what it tries to make to us but it's not so lame like many disastrous Hollywood flicks that might had a good intention that got perverted on the way. Highpoint of this is listening to "Nowhere to Run" twice with the actors performing some crazy dance movements. Gladly, such scene appears when I thought this could have been a great movie, right in the first minutes. An experience for the courageous at heart and mind who can spare an hour of his life without getting anything in trade. I watched the whole thing, didn't like it but don't regret nothing. 2/10


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