By Jon Dieringer
Presented as part of The GATEWY DRUGS Series
The Nightingale Cinema, 1084 N. Milwaukee
January 4th, 2013
This is Mean Streets, otherwise untouched, with the pop songs ripped out replaced by amateur cover versions from YouTube-25 in all directly corresponding to the original. The result is a wholesale dismantling of authorship, cinematic space, expectation, and the intellectual property of The Rolling Stones, Ltd., whose songs-and music of other genres including early rock, soul, doo wop, rhythm and blues, Cazone Napoletana, opera and salsa-are now performed variously by wayward narcoleptics, fried teenagers, amateur tenors, Polish pre-teen beauty pageant contestants, hip dads and people testing out new keyboards. A penetrating analysis of vicarious cultural production as effected by Martin Scorsese, YouTube performers, and the artist, Tough Guys is also a joyous paean to egalitarianism and the enduring, irrepressible folk underpinnings of tight-assed corporate culture.
The Scorsesean ‘needle drop’ style of scoring with pop music inspired a whole new branch of the film industry-a mammoth bureaucracy of rights, licensing, music supervisors, clearance coordinators and entertainment lawyers with attendant opportunities for marketing and brand synergy between corporate film and music; Tough Guys imagines an alternative space.
TOUGH GUYS by Jon Dieringer (2012, HD Video. 111 min. )
Jon Dieringer is an artist, archivist, and curator. He edits and publishes Screen Slate, a comprehensive daily listing resource for New York City independent, repertory, microcinema and gallery shows and screenings, and is also one of the head programmers at Spectacle, a Brooklyn screening space established and staffed entirely by volunteers open seven days a week. Dieringer’s work has screened at Anthology Film Archives and Flux Factory, and his writing has appeared in TIME Magazine’s LightBox and the upcoming INCITE Journal of Experimental Media. An Ohio native and former Logan Square resident, he currently lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.
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