Sing Like the King! The Professional's Guide to Impersonating Elvis is either just what the title implies or a clever satire, as parch-dry as The Newsroom, The Larry Sanders Show and Curb Your Enthusiasm. Whatever it is, it's not to be missed. Doug "The Voice of Elvis" Church, resplendent in his black sequined jump suit and cape, opens by standing before a "class" of gents who'd be anonymous in their street clothes were it not for their identical black hairdos with muttonchop sideburns. That is, except for a lone boy with no redeeming Presley features sitting inexplicably in the second row. It's as if Church plopped his kid there to plumpen the crowd like you-know-who's waistline after a fried peanut butter and banana sandwich. Or perhaps it's an unmade-up young Elvis impersonator. Or it's part of the joke—the part that makes no sense. Makes no matter, because Church commands the center of visual impact as he explains every nuance—and I mean every mind-numbing nuance—of what it takes to look, sound, pose, dress and just be Elvis. Speaking of which, the first time Church referred to "ETAs," I thought I'd misheard him. The second time it happened, I lunged for the DVD case to learn that ETAs are "Elvis Tribute Artists." Upon further investigation elsewhere, I discovered that an ETA is a professional Elvis impersonator who dislikes the term "Elvis impersonator," with all its cheesy implications. An ETA takes his craft very seriously, the legend goes, and such pros honor, rather than mock, the King's memory. Good for them, and good of Doug Church to give ETAs—for a price; hey, black sequined jump suits and capes don't grow on trees—this impressive educational tool, and some hilariously funny shit to shove into the DVD player while getting baked with friends. ($24.95. BlueSuedeFilms.com or DougChurch.com.)
Also recommended this week: Battlestar Galactica 2.5; Boris Karloff Collection; The Chris Rock Show: Seasons 1 & 2; Hard Candy; Jigoku (Criterion); My Name Is Earl: Season One.
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