Young Goodman Brown: The Puritan with His Eyes Wide Shut?

Self-portrait of Stanley Kubrick with a Leica ...

Self-portrait of Stanley Kubrick with a Leica III camera. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Well, having one’s ideas corroborated is always a nice thing.

Today I was grateful to discover that I am apparently not the only one to have noticed striking parallels between Stanley Kubrick‘s film Eyes Wide Shut and Nathaniel Hawthorne‘s short story “Young Goodman Brown,” in their treatments of a relatively naive main character on a journey toward discovery that things, once you have an opportunity to look below the surface, might not be what they seem.

See, for example, a review by film critic Jack Cashill, entitled “Young Goodman Cruise.”


Sammy, We Never Knew Ye…

Wow. So this weekend I was listening to an audio from a couple years back, in which Vyzygoth interviewed William Ramsey, producer of the documentary film Occult Hollywood and author of books about Aleister Crowley and related subjects. Ramsey definitely comes across as a smart, extremely credible source and a careful researcher.

Richard Nixon meeting with Sammy Davis, Jr.

Richard Nixon meeting with Sammy Davis, Jr. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

That’s why it was so jarring to hear, during the interview, Ramsey make a reference to Sammy Davis Jr. having been a member of the Church of Satan.

“No, not Sammy!” was my first thought. How could the velvet-voiced man who could sing a song of such apparent purity as “The Candyman” have been associated with something so dark?

So I set out to find a credible source to corroborate this information. It didn’t take long. If you’re interested, here’s an article in All About Jazz that documents this dimension of Mr. Davis not only with a recount of the circumstances of his joining said “religious organization,” but even a review of an album he released that was centered on, um, a closely related theme. I’ll spare the details… read it for yourself. You can’t make this stuff up!

Needless to say, I’ll never be able to think of “The Candyman” the same way. “He adds a lot of love and makes the world taste good.” Wow indeed.