Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Wednesday, 04 December 2013 13:02

Trash talk dominates 'Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Show' + Video

Trash talk dominates 'Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Show' indyweek.com
Written by Diane Carson
Rate this item
(0 votes)

Related Video

Video by YouTube.com

About this Media...

  • Director: Seth Kramer, Daniel A. Miller, Jeremy Newberger
  • Dates: December 15 & 16, 2013

Producers and directors Seth Kramer, Daniel A. Miller and Jeremy Newberger bring a welcome restraint to their documentary "Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Show." Anyone familiar with Downey's nationally syndicated show from early 1988 to July 1989 remembers the loud, confrontational, trash-talking host who blew smoke in guests' faces while screaming at them.

"Évocateur" chronicles his rise and fall, interweaving several animated sequences while relying primarily on multiple clips from his show, including Ron Paul, Henry Cain, Al Sharpton, and Curtis Sliwa. Also revealing are present-day interviews with writers, producers, and several noted guests, among them Mort's daughter Kelli, Alan Dershowitz, MTV founder Robert Pittman, and feminist Gloria Allred. Briefly "Évocateur" also summarizes Downey's background with brief clips: his father a noted singer, his mother a dancer who lost custody of Mort and died of alcoholism. A chain smoker, Morton Downey Jr. died of lung cancer in March 2001, after advocating strongly anti-smoking in his last months.

The film satisfactorily documents Mort's life, especially his groundbreaking, venomous style. It also questions the reasons audiences gravitate to such hatred, anger and pettiness, such verbal abuse. It charts, but fails to fathom, the psychology of Downey's increasingly uncontrollable anger and his refusal to listen to reason, or just about anyone, as his self-destructive, and what many called totally inappropriate, behavior spun out of control. Eventually, it became impossible to book serious guests, and Downey faked a skinhead attack, exploiting his notoriety while trying to gain sympathy.

Though I found it unpleasant to revisit Downey's antics and venom, because of today's hate mongers, Downey's example remains unfortunately relevant. The St. Louis premiere of "Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Show" is at Webster University's Winifred Moore auditorium at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 15th and Monday, December 16th. For more information, you may call 314-968-7487 or on the web at: Webster.edu/filmseries.
 

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

Local Artist Spotlight


The Driftaways

Mon July 28
The Driftaways are a seven man reggae band hailing from St. Louis. Their E.P. Don't Hide is full of high energy jams and groovey improves that gives them a good time vibe. Download their song "Don't Hide"…

Dad Jr: Get Down. Hard.

Sun June 29

KDHX Recommends

July
Thursday
31

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys KDHX presents Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys at The Stage, July 31 at 8pm. Tickets available online.   Born in Louisiana and raised in Missouri, Folk remembers watching his Dad pick the country blues on a...


August
Saturday
02

The Aching Hearts at Harvest Sessions 2014

The Aching Hearts at Harvest Sessions 2014 The Aching Hearts are the husband and wife duo of Ryan Spearman and Kelly Wells (host of Steam-Powered Radio on 88.1 KDHX), who recently released the CD "Just a Habit." Join them and KDHX for a morning of classic, old-time...


August
Wednesday
06

Discovery Series: Mandolin Orange

Discovery Series: Mandolin Orange KDHX presents Mandolin Orange as part of the Discovery Series on Wednesday August 6 at 7:30 p.m. The North Carolina-based duo combines bluegrass, rock and country, providing a modern take on age-old styles. Tickets available...


Online Users

6 users and 7805 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook