RARA-AVIS: The Unloved

From: Rene Ribic ( rribic@optusnet.com.au)
Date: 27 Apr 2002

I wrote:
> << Can anybody put me on to any other "uninteresting" bad people to
> read about or watch on the big or little screen? >>

And several kindly rare birds (no offence intended) (not that there's anything wrong with birds) offered the following :
> BAD LIEUTENANT starring Harvey Keitel, written and directed by Abel
Ferrara >

Seen it and liked it a lot. (Then I saw the next Ferrara flick, which starred Keitel again and Madonna & that was one of the worst films I've ever seen. It made me wonder if BAD LIEUTENANT and the other Ferrara films I saw & liked were just happy accidents. It was so bad I seem to have permanently blocked it's title from my memory.)

Eddie Coyle - The Friends of Eddie Coyle Great book, great movie. (I think I voted for Coyle in the best character list)

<How about your own Wyatt?.>

I've read 1 or 2. They weren't bad but I have a comparatively minor issue with them that really spoils them for me. For example, in one novel I read, Wyatt (very much a Parker clone), who is a professional crook who's seen it all, knowingly comments on one of his accomplices that his eyes are "pinned" which means he's "obviously" on coke or angel dust. Aside from the fact that pinned pupils is such a well-know symptom of heroin/opiate intoxication that the most common Australian slang term for being stoned on heroin at the time of the book's publication was (& probably still is) "pinned" (which the most basic research would have discovered), in over 30 years I have never heard of anyone in Australia having even caught sight of angel dust let alone being habitually stoned on it. I think if you were to randomly pick any ten Australians off the street you'd be lucky to find one who'd even heard of it and if they had it would have been someone like myself (or Disher, Wyatt's creator) who'd know of it from US TV & movies. In other words, all Disher seems to know about the Australian criminal milieu is what he's picked up from US media - i.e, nothing. It might seem a small point but it bothers me, like some of the Australian cop shows we have where characters use phrases straight out of US TV rather than they way real Aussie cops, for example, talk. (I don't know if US cops ever have "hunches" in real life but I have no doubt that an Aussie cop who talked of having "hunches" and used other Americanisms would get laughed off the job - unlike some of their TV counterparts). It shouldn't bother me as much as it does, it's just a pet peeve. Otherwise, I liked the Wyatt books I read & I'll no doubt get to reading the others eventually.

<At the same time, I would say (listen up, Rene) that Scar Lover is not worth reading (not just weaker Crews, but not worth the time)>

Good thing I didn't pay $20 for it.

Rene (PS - Wyatt's cowboy friend would most likely be a heroin or speed user statistically & if his pupils are pinned, definitely the former.Crack is unknown here except through US media & coke is prohibitively expensive even for full-time junky/crim's & that class of user in Australia is most likely to inject coke - which would be a shot every few min's till the stuff runs out. Not very practical in the case of a professional burglar.)

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 27 Apr 2002 EDT