Tag Archives | Big Lebowski

Ping Pong, Taoism and The Big Lebowski

the big lebowski & the long goodbye with an almost full moon  : castro street theater, neon marquis,  san francisco (2013)Guido Mina di Sospiro considers The Big Lebowski to be the greatest movie of all time. His popular essays An Esoteric Take on The Big Lebowski and The Importance of Living: Lin Yutang Meets the Dude – An Esoteric Take on ‘The Big Lebowski,’ Part 2 were both published by disinformation. Now he has a new book out, The Metaphysics of Ping Pong; in that connection he was interviewed by Oliver Benjamin (described by CNN as “the man who founded a religion based on ‘The Big Lebowski’”) for his Dudespaper site:

You’re a big fan of The Big Lebowski and have even contributed an article to our book Lebowski 101 about how the film is influenced by Taoism. Do you feel that Taoism informs the sport of ping pong as well?

Absolutely. And in fact China consistently produces the best players in the world. East Asia, really, remains the place for sublime table tennis: China, Japan and South Korea.

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John Turturro Wants To Revisit Role Of ‘Big Lebowski”s ‘Jesus Quintana’ In New Movie

PIC: Universal (C)

PIC: Universal (C)

When you’ve got a movie as perfect as The Big Lebowski, I really don’t think you should go about mucking things up with a spin-off. Especially one based around the film’s “pederast” bowler Jesus Quintana. Don’t get me wrong: I though “The Jesus” was hilarious, but he’s not very likable or particularly deep enough to carry a movie. It’s like when Saturday Night Live’s team takes a character that works in two and a half minute skit and tries to spread their gimmick out across a two hour movie. (Pat, Stuart Smalley, etc. etc.)

Anyway…

Actor John Turturro, who played the colorful bowler named Jesus in The Big Lebowski, told a master class Saturday that — assuming he can get legal clearance — he’d like to reprise that role in a new film next year.

“If I can get the permission I need, I’d like to return to that role,” he said to loud applause.

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The Importance of Living: Lin Yutang Meets the Dude – An Esoteric Take on ‘The Big Lebowski,’ Part 2

[Readers may wish to read An Esoteric Take on The Big Lebowski prior to reading this post]
Razzle, dazzle, drazzle, drone, time for this one to come home
Razzle, dazzle, drazzle, die, time for this one to come alive
And hold my life until I’m ready to use it
Hold my life because I just might lose it
Because I just might lose it
Lin Yutang

Lin Yutang

– from Paul Westerberg’s Hold My Life

There are a few works out there, be they novels, movies or even pieces of music, that manage to make the esoteric, exoteric. Such works rarely surface, though, because the shallow machinery of the publishing, movie and music industry is mostly allergic to them. As I was re-reading Lin Yutang’s masterwork, The Importance of Living, I found so many passages that seem custom-made for the Dude, the now-legendary leading character in the Coen Brothers’ film The Big Lebowski, that I thought it might be fun to explore the points of departure and arrival of both works, in tandem.Read the rest

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An Esoteric Take on The Big Lebowski

The Big Lebowski

More than a movie The Big Lebowski is the kind of miracle that, more rarely than occasionally, slips through the cracks of the Hollywood machinery. That’s because the Coen Brothers’ previous film, Fargo, earned seven Academy Nominations and won two, for best original screenplay and best actress in a leading role, Frances McDormand, incidentally Joel Coen’s wife. So, with a lot more clout behind them, the Coen Brothers embarked on their next project, The Big Lebowski, in which the leading role of the Dude is sublimely played by Jeff Bridges. The Dude, by the way, was inspired by a real man, Jeff Dowd, a publicist who helped the Coen Brothers in launching Blood Simple, their first film.

In the Dude we find the archetype of the slacker, i.e, according to the definition in the dictionary,  an educated young person who is antimaterialistic, purposeless, apathetic, and usually works in a dead-end job.… Read the rest

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The Big Lebowski Explains the Fiscal Cliff

Kind of a stretch by Jonathan Chait writing for New York Magazine, but on the other hand has anyone else done a better job of explaining the so-called fiscal cliff?
The Big Lebowski

The tax deal completes the first piece of a multistage showdown between President Obama and congressional Republicans over the federal budget and the economic recovery. The Obama administration made concessions, but the concessions were small, and it is gloating that it won a larger strategic victory by breaking Republican anti-tax absolutism. Republicans, including anti-tax absolutists themselves, mostly believe they got through the first and most unfavorable stage as intact as could be. (Grover Norquist: “We’re in this impossible, upside-down position, where if you do nothing, taxes go up. That’s what we got saved from. That goes away now.”)

In gaming out the next, and much more dangerous, stages, the crucial question is, which side is right? I believe Republicans are.

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