Seeing as how you’ve be heard quite a bit from John, we thought we thought we would get to know him a little bit and see how deep his filmthusiasm runs!
Q: What is your most treasured movie memory?
A: Once, at a party in high school, a movie was playing in the background, the volume was turned up, but everyone around downed out any perception of what was going on the screen. I mentioned to someone in passing that I hadn’t seen the movie before. He gave me a horrified look, paused the movie, and turned to the rest of the party shouting, “HEY! EVERYBODY! SHUT THE HELL UP! John, you of all people I’ve ever met, need to watch this scene,” and hit play. John Turturro’s Jesus bowled on screen as the Gipsy Kings sang ‘Hotel California’ and the party watched in silent solidarity, with me discovering a deep and pervasive love for The Big Lebowski.
Other good moments include every single Rocky Horror I’ve ever seen ever, going out to watch Where the Wild Things Are with a group of people and finding out who else had divorced parents by the look in our eyes walking out, and while biking home from Mad Max: Fury Road I saw a dude peel out of a McDonald’s parking lot across a couple lanes of traffic and could not stifle myself from roaring ‘WITNESS!’ and chasing him down the road because I was so jacked by that movie.
Q: What is one movie you love that everyone else doesn’t? What’s one movie you hate that everyone else loves?
A: I can’t watch FernGully due to childhood trauma. Still can’t. Won’t do it. Too Scary.
My most controversial favorite movie? Pootie Tang. Sa Da Tay, do I unapologetically, unironically love Pootie Tang. I know even the people who made Pootie Tang don’t even like Pootie Tang, but they’re wrong. Pootie Tang is just great. For an angry, whiskey soaked cynic like myself, Pootie won me over with his beautiful, if unintelligible, optimism. It’s Louis CK at his least depressed, which in and of itself is something special.
Q: Your life is a movie. What is the genre? The title? Your role?
A: An uptempo, soul-crushing, Butterworth/Bukowski/Bret Easton Ellis type script, loosely plotted around Hamlet, taking place almost entirely in bars shown from my own Nick Carraway perspective, featuring several incidents of surreal, and underscored with live bar bands / heavily curated bar playlists as much as possible. Blood & Malort (or Disdain for Neutral Spirits). The biggest name in the movie would be in only one scene and would have also been in The Big Lebowski (in order of my preference Elliott, Goodman, Buscemi, Moore, Bridges, Reid, and Turturro).
Q: Aliens come to this world, knock on your door, and demand that you show them one movie that will either prevent or guarantee the Earth’s destruction… What would that movie be?
A: Signs, duh. Don’t try anything funny, NerfHerders! God gave us all the tools we need to fight you off! Joaquin Phoenix and a cup of water!
But seriously, I don’t think any race intelligent enough for interstellar travel could ethically destroy a planet that created Hedwig and the Angry Inch. If there’s a more quintessentially human movie, I sure as heck haven’t seen it.
Q: You can live in one pre-existing cinematic universe. Which one do you choose?
A: Middle Earth, specifically the Shire. Everything looks like New Zealand plus all the castles, forests, cities, magic, and giant elephants. If any of that got a little too dangerous, you could return home to your hobbit hole where you eat like a dozen times a day, brew ale, don’t wear shows, and smoke leaf that’d put Jay and Silent Bob to shame.
Q: What is your favorite music moment in a movie?
A: Top 5 best song uses movies in ascending order:
5) Vitamin C and the parade doing “Love Will Keep Us Together” as Berke is walking away from getting dumped in Get Over It
4) Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” head banging in Wayne’s World
3) The surreal sing along of Aimee Mann’s ‘Wise Up” in Magnolia
2) The Stealers Wheel “Stuck in the Middle with You” torture scene from Reservoir Dogs
1) The play montage featuring Hamlet saving Ophelia, Gertrude, and Laertes with his time machine and Jesus forgiving his father as the Ralph Sall Experience (as the Gay Men’s Chorus of Tucson) sings Elton John’s “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” in Hamlet 2…gets me choked up every damn time.
That’s a wrap on our interview with Mr. John Gleason Teske! Thanks for reading!