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Equinox
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Posts:16519

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#41029 3 years ago
Don't forget Kesey's own book on the subject, The Further Inquiry. It's far more metaphorical, written as a trippy film script with many, many stills from the footage they shot on that journey. The important thing is it's Ken's own take on the whole Prankster thing, which IMHO means a whole lot more than Tom Wolf's. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test is certainly worth reading for the basic facts, but Kesey's book conveys some of the actual spirit.

Incidentally I don't think Ken cared much for Wolf's account. One of the times I saw him speak he divided things into the categories SHIT FLOATS and CREAM RISES to show how easy it is to be fooled in life. One of the examples had Wolf floating and Hunter Thompson rising. It got a big laugh but I do think Hunter's portrait of the Pranksters, in Hell's Angels, beats Wolf's by a mile.
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Last Edit: 3 years ago by Equinox.
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bokb
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Posts:347
Be, okay? Be.

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#41217 3 years ago
Equinox wrote:
Incidentally I don't think Ken cared much for Wolf's account. One of the times I saw him speak he divided things into the categories SHIT FLOATS and CREAM RISES to show how easy it is to be fooled in life. One of the examples had Wolf floating and Hunter Thompson rising. It got a big laugh but I do think Hunter's portrait of the Pranksters, in Hell's Angels, beats Wolf's by a mile.


Yeah, it's my understanding, too, that none of the pranksters were particularly pleased w/ Wolfe's recounting. Mostly it was because he was such a "square," and was so obviously out to exploit the pranksters', er, exploits. I've always compared it to Paul Simon and Graceland, if ya catch my drift.

And Thompson..... god love 'im, amazing writer, amazing experiences of his own... But the pranksters' scene was just out of his realm; psychedelics were futile to Thompson.
If unable to dance, I'll crawl.
Last Edit: 3 years ago by bokb.
Equinox
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Posts:16519

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#41325 3 years ago
Yeah, Wolf apparently only tried psychedelics once and he equated the experience with something like "tying yourself to a track to learn about trains." Hell, the Pranksters didn't think much of Tim Leary so you can only imagine their response to that.

With all due respect, I don't think Hunter found psychedelics futile. I think early on, they were quite an inspiration. It seems to me that only an acid head could have come up with the perspective that produced Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and On the Campaign Trail. It's just that Hunter had a more jaundiced outlook -- it's what made him a great reporter -- and that couldn't help but come into play.
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mountainjam28
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Enjoying the ride...

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#41406 3 years ago
Anybody know if this is headed to DVD? or just in theaters?
Terrapin Sedation
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Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#47379 2 years, 11 months ago
Article about film in today's Guardian.......Explains a little about how the film was found and restored.

www.guardian.co.uk/film/2011/aug/06/lsd-...esey-pranksters-film

While the bus trip succeeded in becoming a legend, the film record of it languished at Kesey's ranch, rotting and disordered, until Ellwood and Gibney discovered it existed from a New Yorker article about Kesey by former prankster Robert Stone in 2004. The film-makers contacted Kesey's widow and son Zane and struck a deal.

After restoration at the University of California, funded in part by Martin Scorsese's Film Foundation, Ellwood and Gibney set to work. "Considering none of those guys knew how to use cameras, it was pretty amazing when it started to come together," Ellwood says. Unlike most historical documentaries, Magic Trip does not cut away to the reminiscences of ageing participants. Instead, it uses interviews Kesey made a decade after the trip. "It was a way to get on the bus and stay on the bus," says Ellwood.
Equinox
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Posts:16519

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#47469 2 years, 11 months ago
mountainjam28 wrote:
Anybody know if this is headed to DVD? or just in theaters?


Amazon has a preorder link but no release date. "Sign up to be notified when this item becomes available." As for theaters, the official site only lists about two dozen. One theater in NY, nothing in the Philly area.
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ablebaker
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Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#47501 2 years, 11 months ago
I rented it on iTunes from a special ADVANCE SCREENING section that I never knew existed.
It was very good.
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Equinox
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Posts:16519

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#52208 2 years, 11 months ago
Finally saw this. Was holding out, hoping it might play a theater here in Philly that shows more thoughtful films and sure enough..

My verdict: Fantastic! It really does put you onboard The Bus and the scenes with Neal really gave me a few chills. As for the use of stock film from the time period, Magic Trip apparently was put together with some involvement from the History Channel. That's their logo at the beginning of the film. So it's totally natural, IMO, that they'd want to establish plenty of context.

Will certainly be picking this up on DVD.
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scar1et_f1re
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R U Kind?

Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#97395 2 years, 7 months ago
I finally saw the film this weekend. It's streaming on Netflix if you are a member. Very good film. Lots of cowboy Neil +++ (I didn't realize how spaced out the dude really was, or should I say how speeded out he was).

Amazing stuff with Jerry and the band too.

Most enlightening part for me was when they showed the acid tests and how the dead were the house band. Jerry said the pranksters were the best audience they (the warlocks or GD already) ever had. It looks like the dead learned a lot of their skills by playing to the spaced out pranksters. Made me wonder if the GD would have become such a success if it was not for the acid tests (where they learned it was not the music, but the ability to be loose enough with the music to satisfy the participants)

They also showed a particular tripping session with IT 290. They raved how it was a much cleaner high than LSD, none of the speed. I never heard of IT 290 before.

Zane was a producer of the film. Nice job Zane and co, and thank you, for a real good time.
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Strider1
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Re: The Pranksters Film is Finally Here!

#97411 2 years, 7 months ago
bokb wrote:
I seem to recall that Kesey was undergoing the gov't "research" around the same time as Robert Hunter in the same facility. That may just be legend, though.



Yes, they both were a part of the MK-Ultra program ran by the CIA at Stanford.

# Merry Prankster Ken Kesey, author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, volunteered for MKULTRA experiments involving LSD and other psychedelic drugs at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Menlo Park while he was a student at nearby Stanford University. Kesey's experiences while under the influence of LSD inspired him to promote the drug outside the context of the MKULTRA experiments, which influenced the early development of hippie culture.[55][56]
# Robert Hunter is an American lyricist, singer-songwriter, translator, and poet, best known for his association with Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead. Along with Ken Kesey, Hunter was an early volunteer MKULTRA test subject at Stanford University. Stanford test subjects were paid to take LSD, psilocybin, and mescaline, then report on their experiences. These experiences were creatively formative for Hunter:

Sit back picture yourself swooping up a shell of purple with foam crests of crystal drops soft nigh they fall unto the sea of morning creep-very-softly mist...and then sort of cascade tinkley-bell like (must I take you by the hand, every so slowly type) and then conglomerate suddenly into a peal of silver vibrant uncomprehendingly, blood singingly, joyously resounding bells....By my faith if this be insanity, then for the love of God permit me to remain insane.[57]
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