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08/19/2011

The Magic Trip

Magic Trip

Back in early May (2011), I went out to Eugene, Oregon for the (post-Sundance) premiere of the Alex Gibney/Allison Ellwood film THE MAGIC TRIP: KEN KESEY'S SEARCH FOR A KOOL PLACE, about the travels and adventures of my late friend Ken and his "Merry Band of Pranksters" in their fabled psychedelic, peripatetic bus Further (or Furthur if, like me, you're a purist) in the summer of 1964.

The screening took place in Eugene's McDonald Theatre, where Kesey himself had performed as a high school magician more than fifty years ago, and where his funeral was held in 2001.  I wasn't there for the magician act, but the movie — like the funeral — packed the house. It was a great evening.

The movie--which mostly consists of footage shot by the Pranksters themselves as they made their epic journey from Oregon to the New York World's Fair and back--is a stunning demonstration of the restorative powers of modern film technology. Having endured many, many hours of that ancient, raw, fidgety, headache-inducing footage, I'm truly grateful for this beautiful, digitally re-mastered edition. At last, I can take unalloyed pleasure in the madcap antics of my old friends.

To see a trailer for the film, click here.


Other Entries from Ed:

01/25/2012 I Just Hitched in From the Coast
9/24/2011 Eschew Higgledy-Piggledy
08/22/2011 Ode to Bubbleheads
08/19/2011 The Magic Trip
08/16/2011 The Congress of Wonders on DVD - Update!
06/01/2010 The Essentials of Western Civilization
05/31/2010 Free-Wiki-You
04/05/2010 McClanahands!
03/23/2010 My Nervous Breakdown
02/16/2010 Congress of Wonders - The Musical!

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