2. That Scene in American History X… You Know The One…
Oof. It’s one of those moments that never leaves you. It’s the reason nobody watches this film more than once despite it being amazing. Just reading this, you can no doubt hear the sounds and feel that deep sorrow in the pit of your stomach. The worst part about it is that, prior to this scene, the act shown probably never snuck into your imagination. It’s like learning about the holocaust for the first time – a new horror that you were happy not to know and now can’t stop thinking about.
So let’s see if we can’t make this all a little easier. Meet Antonio David Lyons, the man who played the victim of curb stomping. In an interview with The Enthusiast he talked about how the whole thing went down. They had a rubber stand in dummy for the actual kick, as well as a rubber curb to him to bite down on. One of his primary concerns at first was having to put his mouth on a public curb in the middle of Santa Monica, which when you think about it is pretty gruesome in itself.
Another fun fact is that writer David McKenna actually mistook Lyons’s dummy for the real actor, and engaged the rubber facsimile in conversation while it was next to Edward Norton. The two men apparently found the moment quite funny. So that right there is something to keep with you, pass on to others, and use to make the moment a bit more bearable. Maybe you’ll even bring yourself to watch this movie a second time.
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