Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Garrison Keillor The Man on the Radio in the Red Shoes|
Actors: Garrison Keillor, Tim Russell, Sue Scott
Director: Peter Rosen
America's foremost humorist and commentator, Garrison Keillor — takes his skits and jokes, music and monologues across the country in his traveling radio show, spinning his stories into American gold. This freeform, intimat... more »
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A DVD for all PHC addicts - white, brown, Carnatic, Country
Saty Satya Murti | NorthEast Kansas | 07/16/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"My vintage is close to Garrison Keillor's, but I grew up some 8,500 miles away in Madras, not Minnesota. It was under very different economic, political and social circumstances. Yet there is much that I share in my values, experiences and joy of my less-than-consequential life. There are many things that I have enjoyed, regretted, emulated and aspired for but lacked the voice and eloquence to pronounce. They find expression in Keillor's tales, jokes and songs. Prairie Home Companion's ability to bridge transcultural spreads, week after week, through radio is the magic of it all. Visual input is unnecessary for this; in fact it is an impediment. It heightens my awareness that I am not a white Christian with a rural childhood; it even dilutes the commonality of virtues and values.
I have always enjoyed Keillor and his creations. Since the '70s when I used to volunteer at WAMC (Albany, NY), and till now, I have admired, drawn inspiration from and laughed, often en famille, by listening to Keillor. This DVD is an extension of this enjoyment. Cheap as I am, I have never brought myself to attend his shows in person. The closest I got to was to watch it on live cam in the past and on PBS specials, and his movie "A Prairie Home Companion."
This DVD is a soft, slightly disassembled, peek into Keillor explaining Keillor. It refers to his roots, his folks and his community. It ambles over to his New York days, returns to his St Paul living room and moves over to clippings from his shows. Back and forth -- disturbing continuity at times. There are jokes and songs aplenty. Sue Scott, Tom Keith, Tim Russel and Fred Newman feature prominently. Others such as Robert Altman, Jearlyn Steele and Meryl Streep walk in and out. They talk about failed predictions ("end of radio"), mutant fish-dogs, how to "be yourself," and about kindness. They dilate on such "un"contemporary virtues as "who your are is important," and an ordinary life is good enough. It is fun to hear and philosophize about these timeless anti-platitudes from Keillor et al. They seem to be so much at ease than those who preach these qualities. Nostalgic signature tunes play at various junctures. Rhubarb pies and red shoes, accents and attitudes sprinkle this American Masters Independent Television Service visual excursion. By the way, are Dusty and Lefty, our endearing cowboys, missing from this DVD?
I notice that most of the cast, crew and audience are not brown like me. They share little with my childhood of Nehru's socialist India. In the 1950s joy was not a priority, more rationed and in short supply than food, foot wear and clothing. Little brown legs, instead of yellow buses, walked us to a Hindu school that imparted a liberal education emphasizing English, regional languages and Sanskrit. Our music was Carnatic and not Country, and our seasons were hot, wet and hotter. Our worship was in Temples, individualized and not structured, not organized and congregational as in Churches. They told us to be always respectful, kind, but wary, of all minorities (Muslims, Sikhs, Chinese and Anglo-Indians) in the post-partition, post-independence milieu. We looked with admiration and reverence to Britain, Soviet Union and the US., in that order at times, for acquiring "foreign" influence. Our family, tolerant Hindu liberals, taught us to admire the hard working Protestants, the ever smiling nuns and the never tiring Jesuit educators. Little surprise that I can readily see the universal appeal to tolerance, kindness and acceptance. This is the radio spell that Keillor casts every week on us. And then, of course, joy of life, something this transplant struggles to recognize.
Keillor's main message is in his radio shows, but this DVD is an adjuvant that will make the message tastier. If you have seen Altman's 2006 "A Prairie Home Companion" movie you may consider this DVD an optional item."
A worthwhile DVD as seen by a non-follower
Steve Kuehl | Ben Lomond, CA | 07/09/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have a small volume of customers that love this guy's show, have rented the DVD (A Prairie Home Companion) and follow his work similar to the Paul Harvey crowd. I never listened to their show or even saw APHC, but I did follow Paul Harvey for years and can understand the draw this kind of entertainment has.
This latest documentary covers the span of time before and after that live show in the Minnesota rain a couple years ago. After hearing and seeing his artistic process, I feel compelled to write very little after visualizing a great writer like him. This is a must see for his fan base and I feel they will get a worthwhile product containing plenty of snippets about Minnesota, about how things used to be in the radio industry, Keillor's random thoughts, unscripted interviews and above all - rhubarb.
The supplements contain some redone footage from the Prairie Home Companion release, outtakes of a sort and a few other items that make this a solid purchase, even for someone that knew little of him prior to this viewing. The overall title has a slight introspective feel to it, that I think maybe caters to the crowd looking for something in themselves, over finding it in some random semi-fictional tripe. Hope you get something out of it."
Cornelius S. Cowles | Murrieta, CA | 09/10/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As a twenty year fan of everything Keillor, this behind-the-microphone tour of a year in the life of America's most original humorist was sheer delight. He is as he seems: a congenial, humble, self-deprecating artist whose genius lies, in part, in his incredible powers of observation. One gets the feeling that every experience he has and every person he meets is grist for his hillarious skits and one-of-a-kind Lake Wobegon monologues. Like Billy Graham in the religious realm, Keiller put together a basic team early in his Prairie Home Companion career that has stayed and worked together and sustained each other for decades. He seems preeminently comfortable in his `red shoes.' Like his Lake Wobegon tapes and CD's, this is a DVD that we will watch with enjoyment over and over again."
He Really Is Just a Regular Guy
Moongink | Thornhurst, PA United States | 10/24/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have listened to A Prairie Home Comapanion for years and have many of the CDs and Mr. Keillor's books. This DVD is a behind the scenes look at who he is and you truly discover that he's just a regular guy."