The Gun is Loaded is a 36 minute spoken word manifesto from musician, poet, writer, actress, provocateur etc… Lydia Lunch. Until recently the footage was long out of VHS print and thanks to MVD Visual you can now enjoy Lydia’s in-your-face rants on DVD.
Set amongst various staged sets such as a podium, a white picket fence, a restaurant and also inter-cut with cinema verité footage, Lydia works her way through her violent and anarchistic rants set to a score by J.G Thirwell. Text such as “why kill time when you can kill yourself” and “kill your neighbour” also flash throughout.
It’s basically 36 minutes of nihilistic social commentary in which she spews out anger and hatred at complacent Americans, politicians and white corporate males etc. She also talks about her less than perfect childhood and is just unrelenting in her abuse towards her parents.
Although I really admire and love her work –Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, 8 Eyed Spy, Honeymoon in Red in particular – all worth checking out by the way), I have never really been able to get into her spoken word albums. I’ve owned a few and I just find them too abrasive, she rants and raves and it’s just hard to get into when you’re lounging on the couch being barked at. I would be much more inclined to buy spoken word DVDs as the visuals of her purging just add so much more to what she has to say. Her body is so much a part of her charm, she writhes and contorts all over the place, using both her voice and body as a weapon, sucking you in with her seductiveness and then dealing you a verbal beat down – this element is completely lost on cd.
Although I have seen this footage before and it is of pretty bad quality, I was always keen to acquire it on DVD if it ever got released. The footage is grainy and I had to have the sound on full and even then it was still quite quiet. There are no extras on the DVD which is a bit of a shame as it is quite short but Lunch lovers will be wanting to add this to their collection, especially if you haven’t seen it yet.
DIRECTOR(S): Merrill Aldighieri, Joe Tripician | COUNTRY: USA | YEAR 1989 | DISTRIBUTOR(S): MVD Visual | RUNNING TIME: 36 minutes | ASPECT RATIO: 1.33:1 | REGION: 0 / NTSC | DISCS: 1