For our second month of Spinning Platters’ Midnight Music Movies we are presenting the fabulous Hedwig and the Angry Inch at The New Parkway in Oakland. When compiling our list of music movies Hedwig flew to the top of my list. Not only is it full of amazing music but the humor, camp and punk-ness was just made to play at midnight. Hopefully you already want to buy your tickets, but if you aren’t sure give me five minutes to convince you.
“How did some slip of a girly-boy from communist East Berlin become the internationally ignored song stylist barely standing before you? That’s what I want to talk about tonight ladies and gentlemen.” -Hedwig
Hedwig and the Angry Inch is the best rock musical and so much more. When the film opens to a live performance of “Tear me Down” it frames the mood perfectly showing you all the levels of Hedwig’s struggle for acceptance. The largely disapproving audience is alternatingly hilarious and heartbreaking yet all the while Hedwig is gorgeous and enthralling. The best part is the music just gets better and better and after watching it, just like you should with any great musical, you will be singing the songs to yourself all the time.
As great as the songs are, what really keeps you coming back to the movie though is the story. It is the poignent story of an outsider just trying to find love and acceptance in a cruel world. It is sharp, well crafted and masterfully displays Hedwig’s quick wit (and John Cameron Mitchell’s writing). The story of unrequited love and obsession is the part that strangely enough keeps this otherwise outlandish story grounded in a feeling that we all can understand. All the feelings in the songs and story are something you can imagine or remember feeling yourself and it makes Hedwig human, and just that much more beautiful.
To follow with what Gordon started, here are some personal notes on my love of this movie:
1. The first time I saw this movie it was a Netflix DVD in 2003 and I loved it so much I watched it again that same day. I kept the DVD for over a month before I decided I should just buy it for myself and send Netflix their copy back.
2. “Origin of Love” is one of the best songs ever written. Period.
3. Michael Pitt. Holy Crap. (sorry if you don’t like boys, not so much eye candy for you in this film.) It’s his unbelievable hotness that makes me really understand Hedwig’s obsession with Tommy Gnosis.
4. All the weird little touches: singing in an oven, gummy bears, stepping over a baby, the “car wash” and many more.
Hedwig and the Angry Inch screens once this coming Saturday at The New Parkway in Oakland, March 9th at 11:55 PM.