In 2009, as part of Night Visions Film Festival in Helsinki, I went to see what was titled as The Crispin Glover Experience. It consisted of
– Crispin Hellion Glover’s Big Slide Show
It was essentially a very intense hour of Crispin Glover discussing his art and life. I have very litte memory of what was said, but it was intense.
– A screening of What is it?
I think he was originally supposed to show It is fine! EVERYTHING IS FINE. but it was changed for some reason that I can’t recall. I remember watching the trailers for both films before the show and thinking “Well, I’ve seen avant-garde films and pretty weird stuff before, at least it’ll be interesting.” I was not prepared for what ensued.
– A Q&A session
I think this went on for an hour or maybe two. It certainly felt like forever. Glover is very good at directing the conversation to where he wants it to go, so people asked their questions and Glover steamrolled to what ever aspect of his life or art he felt like discussing further. In a very polite manner, of course.
– Book signing/ meet & greet
I did not stay for this, I wanted to, but I was physically and mentally spent at this point. The line was insane and four hours of the experience was enough for me.
The details of the event escape me, but I will never forget it nor will I ever forget what Crispin Glover was like in person. I’m really glad that I went, it was a unique experience. It was also one the most exhausting things that I’ve ever experienced in my life and I would never do it again. That being said, if you have a chance to see one his shows, go & see it. It is, after all, your density.
In the meanwhile, I suggest you watch episode #15 of No Small Parts featuring Crispin Glover. It is as entertaining as it is educational, another fine episode in the series.
No Small Parts is a documentary web-series about character actors in the entertainment industry. It is the labour of love of Brandon Hardesty, a self-proclaimed character actor himself. Each episode serves as a comprehensive biography for one particular actor. In addition to the longer biographical episodes, there are also short episodes focusing on more specific topics, like cop roles played by Dean Norris.
The second episode in the series features one of my favourite character actors, Vincent Schiavelli. For over 40 years Vincent pretty much acted on every television series ever and numerous films. He is the archetypal ‘that guy’ or character actor – an actor who everyone recognises but hardly anyone remembers by name. His real passion in life, however, was the town of Polizzi and his Italian heritage. The documentary mentioned within the documentary, “Once upon a time in Polizzi“, is every bit as good as Brandon says it is and well worth a watch.
You can support Brandon and his amazing series here.