Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Lynn Garrett, who's a loyal supporter of this website, has been exploring the outer reaches of the internet and has returned from her travels with some real gems.

Foremost among them is the Disability Films website. Yikes -- it's the "D" word again. I'm not saying anything because I'll surely get flamed again. Anyway, the site's a must if you're trying to track down those hard to find classics about AIDS, polio and dwarfism.

Sure enough there's a section on amputees on film, helpfully grouped into Major Films -- or "those which generally focus on amputees" and Minor Films -- or "those in which amputees play only a minor role or are used for comedy, thriller, horror purposes" (anyone else remember the appalling Boxing Helena?)

Even Luke Skywalker's prosthetic hand in "The Empire Strikes Back" gets a mention.....and I betcha didn't know (or care) that one of the first cinematic depictions of an amputee was by Lon Chaney in the 1927 silent movie The Unknown, in which Chaney played Alonzo the Armless Wonder. I didn't (know or care.)

I'm intrigued and appalled in equal measure by the little-known amputee kung-fu flick The Crippled Masters, which I must get on DVD. The Bad Movies website has a fine selection of pictures and sounds from this ampu-tastic classic.

Lynn also has details of a touching amputee lost and found story from Florida, the moral of which appears to be "Be Careful Your Prosthetic Leg Doesn't Fall Off While Jet Skiing."

Wise advice.

Discuss "Beyond Northern Iraq"


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