Monday, March 23, 2009

New York Doll

So in the 1970s, Arthur Kane was a glam rocker from the hugely influential band New York Dolls. In his tamer moments, he looked like this:

Fast forward to 2004, and now our Arthur looks like this:

Check out the tag. Yep, he's a Mo taking the bus to work his shift at the Family History Library. His years as a punk and the ensuing years as a bitter wash-up certainly took their toll and the man is a few short of a six-pack. But New York Doll, the documentary about him is strangely, grippingly compelling. Mark and I saw both Slumdog Millionaire and New York Doll this weekend, but it's the Doll who has been on our minds ever since.


~ Not one but two instances of Morrissey discussing death, with all the affection and wistfulness you would imagine.

~ Scenes of Arthur's home teachers, bishop, and the little ladies at the Family History Library discussing his former career. Hilarious!

~ Arthur talking about his new religion with his old bandmates--and not wavering for a moment, even when attacked by the sultry president of the French Fan Club.

~ Arthur's Mormon friends trying to describe what it feels like to receive a witness from the Holy Ghost and concluding, "It's hard to explain," followed by Arthur stating definitively, "It's like an LSD trip from God." I don't know--maybe he's exactly right.

~ And I don't want to give away the ending, but you'll be alternating sitting on the edge of your seat, laughing, and tearing up. By the end you'll have seen the understated peace and firmness the gospel can give to anyone--yes, indeed, anyone!--who lets it into their heart.


  1. I played scenes from New York Doll for the EQ when I was EQP in Sacramento. I thought it really emphasized what church service and home teaching were all about.

  2. I loved New York Doll. I totally would have told you not to watch both in one weekend. So what did you think of Slumdog?

  3. What Steve said. I didn't think it was church material but Steve pushes the envelope like that.

    It is an inspiring story though and my favorite part was when they interviewed the family history workers--so cute and so real.

  4. Wow, what a freak. I gotta see it! I guess he already knew how to be "a peculiar people" before he converted.

  5. I watched parts of that with my in-laws. It was so great!