Scorpio Rising

Scorpio Rising ★★★★★

As passionate and visceral as Martin Scorsese's imagery is, the thing that really seals the deal for me is when he ironically sets scenes to popular songs. "Be My Baby" for the opening to Mean Streets, the piano exit to "Layla" when all the bodies are being found in Goodfellas and "Rang Tang Ding Dong (I Am The Japanese Sandman)" from the freak-out scene in Bringing Out the Dead leap to mind. He's so good at it that it seems almost like he was born to do it. But this is not the case.

In countless interviews Scorsese has credited Kenneth Anger's gay biker masterpiece Scorpio Rising, as being the film that opened his eyes to the endless cinematic uses of pop music. For this alone the film should be forever cherished. But wait there's more! The visuals are unforgettable. Anger really has an eye for iconic (nearly dreamlike) images that wedge themselves in your brain. Richard Linklater even nicked the opening image for School of Rock from here.

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