Imagining a Better Future by Re-imagining the Past

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Professor Marston and the Wonder Women

Not too long ago the Dieselpunk smash hit Wonder Woman was released to Blu Ray/ DVD worldwide. With perfect timing comes the release of the movie Professor Marston and the Wonder Women.

According to the official movie website,
In a superhero origin tale unlike any other, PROFESSOR MARSTON & THE WONDER WOMEN is the incredible true story of what inspired Harvard psychologist Dr. William Moulton Marston to create the iconic Wonder Woman character in the 1940’s. While Marston’s feminist superhero was criticized by censors for her ‘sexual perversity’, he was keeping a secret that could have destroyed him. Marston’s muses for the Wonder Woman character were his wife Elizabeth Marston and their lover Olive Byrne, two empowered women who defied convention: working with Marston on human behavior research — while building a hidden life with him that rivaled the greatest of superhero disguises.


The film is scheduled to be released on October 13, 2017. It had its world premiere at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival in September.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Dieselpunks - Facebook Group

For better or worse, all roads of the Internet universe appear to run to Facebook. And the Dieselpunk genre has a firm footing this. One of the great Facebook groups for Dieselpunk is the group by the same name founded by Eric Fisk and John Pyka.


This site is kept continually fresh by it’s founders and active membership base. Even if you’re not a Facebook fanatic, this site makes social media worth it.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

VintageGoths

When most people think of Goth they usually envision a dark Victorian esthetic. However, there is a Dieselpunk varient of Goth called VintageGoths.

Goth Flappers

According to Raven Digitalis in his book Goth Craft, VintageGoths acquire the, “majority of their wardrobe … from thrift stores, and they are always on the lookout for creepily fabulous old clothing.” In addition, “VintageGoths also fancy vintage furniture, accessories, and decor, having a special fondness for phonographs, concertinas, fancy lamps, and classic telephones.”

VintageGoths also seem to share the much of the same tastes in movies as Dieselpunks. Digitalis writes, “They adore the work of long-deceased artists, and collect art from their favorite age. They are fans of music both Goth and otherwise, and favor dark noir films like Nosferatu, Metropolis, The Golem, and the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari - and, of course, old Bela Lugosi flicks! Some VintageGoths adore burlesque fashion, vaudeville, and cabaret.”

Goth Man

The musical tastes of VintageGoths are quite interesting although many of the bands on the list provided by Digitalis don't seem very Dieselpunk to me. The list includes: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits, Johnny Cash, Amy Winehouse, Warren Jackson Hearne and the Merrie Murdre of Gloomadeers, Reverend Glasseye & His Wooden Legs, The Dresden Dolls, Audra, Jill Tracy, Creature Feature, and classical music.

I think it's safe to say that VintageGoths are Dieselpunk.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

All This and World War II

Good evening, Mr. and Mrs. America from border to border and coast to coast and all the ships at sea. I'm back from my sabbatical and ready to again dive into the warm waters of Dieselpunk.

One can find hours and hours of documentaries about WorldWar II. Yet, possibly the most bizarre documentary about the Second World War ever made was released in 1975 titled "All This and World War II.
All This And World War II Movie Poster

All This and World War II combines Beatles songs, performed by a number of musicians, with World War II newsreel footage and 20th Century Fox films from the 1940s. Produced with a budget of $1.3 million, the film featured clips the Army of the Third Reich, Edgar Bergen & Charlie McCarthy, Milton Berle, Humphrey Bogart, Richard Burton, Neville Chamberlain, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Clark Gable, Adolf Hitler, Bob Hope, Joseph P. Kennedy, Laurel and Hardy, James Mason, Benito Mussolini, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Joseph Stalin and James Stewart, among others.

The original intention of the filmmakers was to use actual Beatles music in the film. The decision to use other artists covering Beatles music was made by the film's producers after they realised additional money could be made through a soundtrack album. Many of the musicians in the soundtrack were pop music power houses. Sir Elton John, Bee Gees, Rod Stewart, The Four Seasons, Leo Sayer, Tina Turner, and Frankie Valli all recorded cover songs for the movie.

Critics ripped the movie. The reviewer in the New York Daily News wrote that the film's PG rating had to have stood for "Positively Ghastly", All This and World War II was a box office flop. The dismal ratings and bad reviews resulted in 20th Century Fox pulling the film after just two weeks from its release.

The movie’s music director, Lou Reizner, also produced the soundtrack album, which was quite successful. The album reached number 23 on the UK album charts, with a total of seven weeks on the chart and number 48 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. Sir. Elton John’s rendition of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", when previously released as a single in 1974, had been a number one hit. Rod Stewart’s version of "Get Back" was subsequently released and became a UK hit single. Ambrosia’s cover version of "Magical Mystery Tour" was released and became a US hit single reaching #39 on the Billboard Charts.

All This and World War II has never been officially released on home video or DVD. However, because of the kindness of someone it's available to be seen on You Tube.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Going on Sabbatical

Sabbatical: Any extended period of leave from one's customary work, especially for rest, to acquire new skills or training, etc. – Dictionary.com

Sometimes one just has to get away. Some disappear to a monastery. Others go away to a foreign land. Some just stop doing what they were doing.


Dieselpunk Vacation Poster
I’ve decided to take a two month sabbatical from writing this blog. My plans are to return sometime in September, no hard date set, and pick it back up again.

Until then, take good care of each other. Because that’s what’s life is all about.
Boss Larry

Monday, June 12, 2017

American Epic

I recently watched a series that every Dieselpunk should see, American Epic.

American Epic comprises a three-part historical music documentary, a feature-length performance film, and a set of companion album releases. The project is executive-produced by Jack White, T Bone Burnett, and Robert Redford directed by Bernard MacMahon and written by Bernard MacMahon, Allison McGourty, and Duke Erikson of Lo-Max Films..

Featuring newly discovered film footage and photographs, American Epic is the result of "some eight years of research" by MacMahon. It examines the period from the 1920s when US record labels explored rural America to find new audiences for music, and recorded "a huge variety of folk, blues, country and ethnic songs", representing "the DNA of America, its raw expression". The films feature "exclusive interviews with some of the last living witnesses to that era, when the musical strands of a diverse nation first emerged".

In addition to the three-part historical documentary there is a recording session with contemporary musicians released as a DVD and CD.


The official American Epic web site
The official American Epic PBS site
The official American Epic BBC Four Arena site

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

New Beginings At Dieselpunks.Org

In my last post I hinted that something big was going to occur with Dieselpunks.org. A few weeks ago I posted the following at the site: I’m proud to announce that Dieselpunks member Eric Fisk has stepped up to the plate and will take over ownership of Dieselpunks.org. Ericis an avid dieselpunk, blogger, webmaster and a podcaster. 

There will be more information. Stay tuned.