pseudopodium
. . . Naked Lunch

. . .

Ba-lue Mun-deii Ba-lues-Are: Answer Song

Art is short; regret is long. More than a decade afterwards, when I hear the Bobbettes, I relive all (well, four) of the regrets I felt while watching David Cronenberg's Naked Lunch.

  1. That Cronenberg didn't have Burroughs dub all the characters' voices. Better yet, do it George Pal Puppetoon style, like the best of 1991's overabundant crop of hallucinating-writer movies did. Or at least cast Dr. Benway with someone capable of conveying the exuberance! the whimsy!

  2. That Cronenberg didn't use a more honest title, like "The Introduction to Queer."
    (Not that it would necessarily have guaranteed a better experience. Some years later, I was an appalled witness to Queer! The Opera, which set the novel's text [slightly edited: insults to "transvestite lizzies" and "Californian brandy" were deemed too shocking for Bay Area sensibilities] to de-tuned Andrew Lloyd Webber with summer-stock-Fosse choreography. All through the first act, I kept telling myself, "At least they aren't going to shoot Judy Davis, at least they aren't going to shoot Judy Davis...." Just before intermission, the characters fell silent, the lighting turned grim, and a previously unseen woman made up as Judy Davis walked out and got shot. I missed the second act.)

  3. That Judy Davis wasn't allowed to interpolate a lip-synched music video of "I Shot Mr. Lee".

    Cronenberg must be the only reader to open Naked Lunch and find a novel about wife-killing and writer's block (although it would certainly explain Norman Mailer's enthusiasm). The Bobbettes could've supplied a little balance:

    One - Two - Three
    Hey!
    I shot Mr. Lee.
    Uh oh!
    Three - Four - Five
    Hey!
    I got tired of his jive.
    Uh oh!
    Woh oh oh, he should've never
    Uh oh!
    Woh oh oh, he should've never

  4. That I've never been able to find an appropriate "I Buried Paul" song for Judy Davis to lip-synch in the movie's other great imaginary music video opportunity.
Well, regret is long, but art is reproducible. All together now:

Shot him in the head boom boom.
Uh oh!
Shot him in the head boom boom.

 

Copyright to contributed work and quoted correspondence remains with the original authors.
Public domain work remains in the public domain.
All other material: Copyright 2015 Ray Davis.