I just saw Derailroaded last night – MAN, it was good. And very, very sad, too, but that goes with the territory. Definitely worth checking out. I hope it comes out on DVD soon (ideally with a reissue of An Evening With… since that's the only Wild Man Fischer stuff I don't have, but hey…) – but I loved it.
At first I wasn't sure – for a second I was afraid it was going to be a "Hey, lookit the freak!" type thing (mainly at the beginning when they have Art Barnes saying that there's some of his songs that are just heartwrenching and beautiful and bash-cutting back to "Merry Go Round" without actually mentioning any of the songs that _are heartwrenching and beautiful, like "Oh, God, Send Me A Kid", so it kinda sounded like Art was being facetious), but immediately after that passed, I realized that the director really did seem to understand Larry and was able to correctly combine the humor and (extreme) pathos in his story.
I really liked the Interview segments, too – especially with Barnes and Barnes. (One of my friends, who's only a casual fan of B&B, said that from watching that film, he thought Art and Artie'd be really cool to know in real life. "They GET it SO much" is what he said. And I am inclined to agree.) And I'm glad Mark Mothersbaugh's puppy showed up again. I love Mark's puppy – shows up in the The Life Aquatic bonus stuff, too!
I thought the thing with the credits was kind interesting, how in the beginning of the film, they were all erratic, and at the end, they were normal – perhaps echoing Larry's mood?
Anyway, though, one of the most important things the film did was remind me just how good Larry's stuff is. It'd been a while since I'd listened to the records (well, I've just got The Fischer King), but hearing the songs in the film just unlocked them and I was silently singing along throughout the film. I got into him through B&B – I'd known that they produced Nothing Scary and Pronounced Normal, and I'd always wanted to hear those records. So when Rhino Handmade put out The Fischer King, I camped by my computer (I was actually at a friend's house, even, and told them that at noon – or whenever it was it went up, don't remember – I had to use their computer to order a limited edition record, and basically at 11.55, I camped out online), hitting refresh OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER until it came up and then I ordered it immediately. And, of course, as soon as I heard the set, it basically took up residence in my brain.
In fact, I've got B&B to thank for a lot of my obsessions. It was because of "Positive Life" that I got into DEVO – I knew that "I Desire" had the same music, so I ran out and bought a copy of Oh, No! It's DEVO! and fell in love with that instantly, and the same with Crispin Hellion Glover's work, which I got into through when I stumbled across the record, and bought it knowing it was produced by B&B, and again, fell in love with it.
So yeah – anyway, though; when Derailroaded comes to your town so check it out. I'd been waiting for it forever and when I saw that the NW FIlm Forum got the film, I'd been counting the days until it opened. But yeah – it's really, really well done, and it's a film that's both incredibly funny (but in a friendly, non-exploitative/mean-way-at-Larry's-expense) and incredibly heartbreaking. There were times I almost cried. Just an excellent film.