Scorpio Rising (film)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Scorpio Rising is a 1963 experimental short film by Kenneth Anger, starring Bruce Byron (whom Anger asserts was "half-crazy") as Scorpio. Themes central to the film include homosexual erotica, the occult, biker subculture, Catholicism, and Nazism; the film also explores the worship of rebel icons of the era, namely James Dean and Marlon Brando (referred to by Anger as Byron's "heroes"). As with many of Anger's films, the film does not contain any dialogue; it instead features a prominent soundtrack consisting of 60s pop, including songs by Ricky Nelson, The Angels, The Crystals, Bobby Vinton, Elvis Presley, and Ray Charles.


The film was censored for indecency, and the case went to the Supreme Court, where it was decided in Anger's favor. Anger explained in an interview: "When Scorpio Rising was — we've forgotten, in a sense, that it was a groundbreaker, legally. Because there are only a few flashes of nudity, genitalia, whatever in the film, I mean, they're very, very short and, if you blink, you won't even see them. At any rate, when it was shown, at the Cinema — it was called the Cinema on Western Avenue in Hollywood — the premiere run, someone denounced it to the Hollywood vice squad and they raided the theater and took the print. And the case had to go to the California Supreme Court to be freed and then it became, like, a landmark case of redeeming social merit. That was the phrase that was used to justify that it wasn't pornography. And, indeed, there's nothing pornographic about it. Somebody had to break the ice and have that kind of case at that time to establish the freedom, because, before then, the police could seize anything they wanted to. What I was doing on the West Coast, Jack Smith was doing on the East Coast with Flaming Creatures. The two films happened at about the same time."



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Scorpio Rising (film)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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