August 18, 2004

Fame and Isolation

Last night Bloodless Coup watched Mayor of the Sunset Strip, a documentary by George Hickenlooper. The opinion was unanimous: how depressing. Rodney Bingenheimer - the Mayor in question - has had a great deal of success as well as an historic role in the LA rock scene. If you explore the website from the movie or the voluminous mentions he gets in various media, you'll find a bio that lists every aspiring rock journalist's dream of a career spanning books, movies, TV, promotions, and DJing. Ultimately, however, the image left of him is of a small, sad person, who in many ways has depended on the "kindness of strangers." Maybe it was his sad face. Maybe it was that his mom essentially abandoned him outside a movie star's house. Or maybe the fact that his family - despite having a shelf full of family photos - had none of him on display, and only one (hidden, unframed) from when he was a child. The kicker was the woman, to whom he clearly appeared devoted and in love, talking about how Rodney was just a friend. Clearly this man is a music fan, and has given his life to supporting the acts and the scene. Yet the course of the movie reveals a shift from the edge of the center, to the periphery of the fringe. For all who fear aging into irrelevance, this is definitely a film that will confirm your worst fears. There is no Aging Hipsters' Home, and the ultimate fate of the once cool can be just as sad and lonely as for anyone else. Posted by binky at August 18, 2004 04:05 PM | TrackBack | Posted to Movies


Uh, you use words prettier than I do. All I know is I don't want to be Rodney. Ever.

Posted by: Baltar at August 19, 2004 10:41 AM | PERMALINK
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