Monday, January 12, 2015

The Sausage is in the Details: Taylor Negron in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"

I was sad to read over the weekend that Taylor Negron died. Not a household name, but a talented actor and writer nevertheless.

One of his first roles was as a pizza delivery guy in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982), a film of fine details and rich characterizations. He delivers the double cheese and sausage to Spicoli in Mr. Hand’s History class. It’s not much of a role but Negron did a good job with it. The audience is aware that this pizza guy has something going on internally, beyond service to the plot, something we don’t know about in a world beyond the frame.

He seems kind of put out at having to be there standing before the class. Food service jobs are perilous business in the movie. Stacy and Brad can both attest to the types of characters you go up against in that line of work.

Mr. Hand takes the pizza from Spicoli and invites Stacy, Desmond (that weasel!), and others to eat it. Incidentally, I don’t see any sausage on the pizza. You can interpret its absence as representative of a raw deal, or as an oversight by the script supervisor. Or, maybe the sausage is under the cheese. That’s probably it.

And what is Desmond’s problem? He clearly has some unspecified grudge against Spicoli. On the first day of school, he poisons the well by telling Stacy that Spicoli’s been stoned since the third grade when he shows up late to class. Later, he pikes out Spicoli when he is tardy again. And then, he gets to eat some of Spicoli’s pizza. Spicoli, for his part, seems unbothered by Desmond.

How much of Negron’s performance as the attitudinal pizza guy can be attributed to Amy Heckerling’s direction and how much of it is Negron’s own acting choices? Maybe there's no way to tell. It’s probably some combination. It can’t just have been magic. There’s no such thing. But, there are some things that can’t be known by studying and looking, not even closely, not even with love.

For more Fast Times insight check out:
"Christmas Time at Ridgemont High" via BXTXKV

Monday, November 10, 2014

New K V blog:

If you have ever seen Three’s Company and paid any attention at all to the set that is Jack, Janet, and Chrissy’s (and then Cindy’s, and then Terri’s) apartment, that gives you some idea of the type of apartment complex in which I live. In fact, it was built in 1978, right when Three's Company, which is set in Santa Monica, was hitting its ratings peak. Lamentably my apartment is not in Santa Monica and just as lamentably, there is a sad lack of shag carpeting and macrame. However, there are enough perverts, sociopaths, and elderly hysterics to keep things interesting. A sense of humor is essential for keeping the tragedies of complex-living in perspective. You absolutely would not believe what these people think is recyclable.

One afternoon, a visiting friend remarked that if he fell asleep somewhere and woke up right where he was standing he would swear he was in Santa Monica. I told him about how the complex made me think of Three’s Company and that was why I wanted to move in. My friend was looking up at a palm tree and didn't say anything. Later, he mentioned Santa Monica again, but I didn’t say anything else about Three’s Company. That kind of talk isn’t for everybody. I get that.

I started a new blog over here>> BXTXKV.COM

image from the internet

Monday, October 6, 2014

3 new Keith Vaughn paintings

KEITH VAUGHN, CTRL+ Z, oil and acrylic on canvas, 12 x 10" 2014

see more on the new BXT blog >> BXTXKV.COM

Guy Overfelt at Ever Gold Gallery

Guy Overfelt at the Ever Gold Gallery

The show is over, but read the thing I wrote about it on the new BXT blog>> BXTXKV.COM

Monday, September 22, 2014