Page 635 - Gay San Francisco_Eyewitness Drummer
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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                 615
                Pasolini dared demonstrate this by literally tying up Salo’s victims,
             by literally gouging the eye (to symbolize you may not see what you wish),
             by cutting out the tongue (to symbolize you are not free to speak your
             opinion), by scalping the head (to symbolize you may not use your head
             according to the fashion of your own thoughts), by forcing one couple
             to make love on command (to symbolize you may not fuck except as
             ordered), by shooting an interracial pair of lovers (to symbolize you must
             not only procreate with your own kind, but you must also have passion
             for nothing but the Movement). And always, Fascism makes you eat its
                Americanist/Fascist “morality” will not allow gay people to see with
             the perspective of gay vision, nor stand up to speak out with opinion for
             gay human rights. Anita wants your eyes, your tongue, and like Cuckoo’s
             Nest Nurse Ratched, she wants your balls. Dade County, remember, has
             “tied-up” gay housing. Add insult to injury: TV gouges your eyes, your
             ears, and your wallet with Anita’s plastic face shilling the Orange Shit
             Juice Americanists/Fascists automatically swallow.

             Salo offers strong images to strengthen the viewer in his sequences “Circle
             of Obsessions” and “Circle of Shit.” Pasolini was so aware of the horrors
             of his third section titled “Circle of Blood” that he softened the images
             by distancing the audience from the bloody action with a telephoto lens
             that gauzed out the edges. Sometimes assault is the only way to raise
                Throughout  Salo, which is not salacious, Pasolini artfully staged his
             cautionary political warning at a gut-level. Salo’s images are contrived to
             get your attention. Salo’s message is to hold your interest. Salo is a politi-
             cal film in the anti-Fascist tradition of Gillo Pontecorvo’s Battle of Algiers
             (1965) and Costa-Gavras’ Z (1969) and State of Siege (1973).
                Despite his serious message, Pasolini has the sense of humor to add
             the comic relief of a bunch of silly women dragged up in his film like
             Glinda the Good Witch, coming down the Hello-Dolly staircases tell-
             ing their naughty, campy tales. But, he vehemently warns, behind their
             fashion lurks Fascism.


             Lots of gay men don’t like real things. They hide in fantasy and ritual.
             They prefer life in a gay ghetto. They need nobody to cover their eyes and
             ears. On their own, they ostrich-like refuse to look or listen farther than

           ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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