This week the film and music world lost Ken Russell, the director of the film adaptation of The Who's Tommy, Altered States, Women In Love, and The Music Lovers. He also did some weird, soft-core stuff you would see on late-night cable.
Our first taste of Russell was Tommy , which warped our little minds, making what was already a creep double-album about family, drugs, violence, and religion into a bizarro cinematic curiosity shop with a cast of rockers and actors for the ages.
Some of the more esoteric scenes in Tommy weren't too far off from Russell's later work Altered States with William Hurt, like the religious hallucinations. Russell also had a great visual style that would prove to be very influential in the second generation of music videos.
Besides having some great performances, like Roger Daltrey's wide-eyed and lithe title character, the film featured plenty of WTF moments, like ace MILF Ann-Margret writhing in beans and chocolate, Oliver Reed being Oliver Reed - drunk and surly - and of course, Tina Turner as Gypsy, The Acid Queen.
Check some of these scenes out for yourself. Our favorite is of course Ann-Margret's stuff. For further research on this fiery redhead, check out this blog from her 70th birthday we worked up. Yow. Za.
Ann-Margret & Beans & Chocolate & Foam & Boners
Tommy's Stepdad Hires An Acid-Dealing Hooker To Party With His Deaf/Dumb/Blind Stepson
The Best Christmas Ever With A Drunk Oliver Reed
Why Jack Nicholson Should Never Sing Ever
Hire Cousin Kevin To Beat The Shit Out Of Your Disabled Teen So You Can Go Out On The Town
Let Uncle Ernie Molest Your Disabled Kid Too
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the mission of the Houston Press. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Houston’s stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Eric Clapton Is The Priest At The Most Awesome Kick-Ass Church Ever With Pills And Scotch
A Completely Normal Elton John Show