There are people who write. And then there are Writers. The Outlaw Vern understands the distinction between these two very different things. This is a man who has suffered like a true underclass American, yet somehow managed to rise above the drink and the drugs and the crime and the penitentiary to deliver an ocean of film criticism so warm, so exhilarating, so inviting, that I cannot help but surf its soothing waves every single day.
Like the best Writers, Vern's words mean more than just the sum of their multi-fractured parts. With reviews that shift between intricate plot breakdowns (see: "The Order: From Cremaster Part 3"), place films in a historical context (see: "Walking Tall (2004)"), and incorporate personal tales from Vern's daily life (see: "Ken Park"), this body of work is more than just "film criticism." It is a window into the soul of a truly complicated man. I wish the deadbeat barflies at the dumps I frequent had a grain of Vern's mental prowess.
But that's what's so great about Vern. He doesn't appear to be aware of his superior intellect. He simply tells it like he sees it. These reviews, poems, and political rants reflect a man who is reconciling his past, coming to terms with his present, and looking ahead to a sober, crime-free future. Who was it that said, "The destination is of no consequence, it is the journey itself that matters?" Wait, did I just make that up? Because if I did, that's fucking brilliant. Anyway, my point is that we are drawn to Vern most unconsciously because it is like watching a teenager have (hopefully consensual) sex for the first time, or being at the beach and 'shrooming for the first time, or watching your firstborn riding his/her bike around the block for the very first time. It's like that scene in "Stanley Fucking Kubrick's Two Thousand And Fucking One," when