Video of the Week: “The World’s Greatest Sinner” revisited

The late, great, legendary Lux Interior of The Cramps would have been 69 years old today. He was a huge fan of Timothy and The World’s Greatest Sinner (1962). In his honor and memory, I am re-posting this video that features God Hilliard working his voodoo magic, accompanied by Frank Zappa‘s title tune.

“You won’t believe [Carey’s] performance [in The World’s Greatest Sinner],” Lux once said. “He just starts shaking and his hair falls down . . . He must have watched Jerry Lee Lewis or something. He starts rolling around on the stage, he’s just shaking all over. It’s a live performance and he’s just smashing his guitar, he’s really beating on it real loud. This is one of the greatest rockabilly movies ever made. If you get a chance to see it, it’ll just change your life. Wow!”

Quote of the Week

You won’t believe [Carey’s] performance [in The World’s Greatest Sinner]. He just starts shaking and his hair falls down . . . He must have watched Jerry Lee Lewis or something. He starts rolling around on the stage, he’s just shaking all over. It’s a live performance and he’s just smashing his guitar, he’s really beating on it real loud. This is one of the greatest rockabilly movies ever made. If you get a chance to see it, it’ll just change your life. Wow!

Lux Interior of the The Cramps

Ivy and Lux

Poison Ivy and Lux Interior

Quote of the Week

This one is full of some oft-repeated rumors and half-truths, but is still worth a look.

Imagine an actor with the wild, manic stare of a skid-row John Turturro, the gangly rebel stance of Jerry Lee Lewis and the acting presence of a secure-ward Nicolas Cage. Even then you’re still not close to the twisted screen presence of the great Tim Carey.[…]

Right from the start, Carey’s unique approach to acting – frowning and mumbling like a dope addict plotting to overthrow the world – got him into trouble. His key scene in The Wild One (1954) was his unscripted decision to shake up a can of beer and squirt it in Brando‘s face. His performance in East of Eden so incensed Elia Kazan that the director physically attacked Carey on set and then re-dubbed all of Tim’s surreal mutterings. However, Brando eventually patched it up with Carey and cast him as the oddball Howard Tetley in the portly star’s directorial debut, One-Eyed Jacks (1961). By the end of filming, Brando was so impressed by Carey’s unique performance that he ended up stabbing him with a fountain pen.

– Andrew Male, “Timothy Carey,” Bizarre magazine #27 (January 2000)

Brando and Tim on the One-Eyed Jacks set