San Diego Comic Con is full of all sorts of sights and sounds: from the event staff yelling directions to wandering attendees, to college kids handing out postcard advertisements for various companies, to pedicab drivers hounding you to take a ride. Another thing you’ll see while walking around the historic Gaslamp District in San Diego are the downtrodden people asking for spare change or sleeping on the sidewalk, as many people walk by pretending they aren’t there.
Some panhandlers find very creative ways to get the attention (and money) of pedestrians passing by them – playing music on a guitar, banjo or radio. Others will dress as various superheroes, attempting to blend in with the other people in the area: which is where we discovered Hamilton, The Dancing Captain America. Hamilton isn’t actually homeless, but rather a disabled American veteran who may be down on his luck, but isn’t down on himself.
Every year during Comic-Con, instead of merely asking for handouts, Hamilton dances for donations – and it’s a sight to behold. Draped in the colors of The First Avenger: Captain America, with enough bandannas strapped to his wrist to make Steven Tyler’s microphone stand jealous, Hamilton whirls, spins, and sashays his way in and out of traffic, giving very little concern to the gawking looks and sometimes cruel words thrown his way.
The only time he stops dancing is to change the station on his Dewalt radio (he favors rock over pop) or to say hello to a little child who doesn’t see a “crazy” man dancing in the streets, but rather, their favorite superhero having fun and entertaining crowds of people.
Most of the time, Hamilton does his performance in front of cellphones and other lower-quality cameras – but this time, talented filmmaker and Screen Rant contributor Mike Eisenberg (Creative Director at Tall Tale Productions) was there to capture everything with his high-end video camera. Mike then took his raw footage, cut it down and set it to the tune of “Star Spangled Man” – which was the song Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) sings during a World War II U.S.O. show in First Avenger.
Eisenberg has managed to make a funny and heartwarming video that uses images instead of words to remind audiences that by passing by one of these unique street performers, they could be missing out on something more entertaining than the over-funded blockbuster films that have taken over the ‘Con. At one minute and forty seconds long, it can be considered a fabulous micro-movie celebration of a Comic-Con icon.
You can see more of Mike’s work at Tall Tale Productions, including his award-winning short film Stitches.