What's Underground About Marshmallows?

"Weak"

What's Underground About Marshmallows? Review


I didn't like it at 40 minutes, and I didn't like it at an hour, either.

What's Underground About Marshmallows is the last half of the performance previously documented in Roy Cohn/Jack Smith -- the Jack Smith part -- only thankfully it has been restored to its start-to-finish narrative format, without any jump cuts that take you out of the monologue and into nonsenseland.

Equally thankfully, the sound design on Marshmallows is improved enough to allow you to actually understand some of it. What emerges when you listen carefully is Ron Vawter performing one of Smith's paranoid ravings about an underground candy factory... where he discovers his own underground films are being bootlegged by the proprietor.

Amusing, but what should have been a 10 minute performance art piece has no business stretching into 60. Vawter even takes 10 minutes at the front of the show before he ever utters his first line, preening over his costume jewelry and Egyptian getup. His frequent "intermissions" while he plays with beads are as fun as watching an invalid sleep.

To help you make sense of it all, videographer Jill Godmilow provides eight pages of text at the end of the tape to explain the context of Vawter and Smith. Will you care? No, but at least you won't be confused.



Facts and Figures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: Jill Godmilow

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