Curt McDowell – Thundercrack! (1975)


from imdb
A true underground satire, 11 October 1999
Author: Dave Godin (Dave G) from Sheffield, England

THUNDERCRACK! is, in a strange way, a scurrilous precursor of DEAD MEN DON’T WEAR PLAID, and with wicked wit and precision, subverts not only the entire `grammar’ of film, but an endless succession of Hollywood images, situations and clichés in the process. It even manages to satirise pornography; no mean feat when such images still retain their power to shock and unsettle some people! Using the familiar “lonely-house on a storm-swept night acting as a safe haven for lost and confused travellers” scenario, (some chance!!), it explores the manners and mores of `normal’ society with such wicked wit that only the most puritanical would not be capable of responding. Thankfully made in black-and-white, the entire cast and, it appears, crew, throw themselves into the venture without inhibition or qualm, and the result is Hollywood turned on it’s head, and all those previously `hidden’ and subliminal subplots exposed for what they really are. For broad-minded adults, a most amusing and entertaining tonic, showing perhaps, that even sex should not be taken TOO seriously. Continue reading

Dennis Hopper – Easy Rider (1969)


Nobody went to see Easy Rider (1969) only once. It became one of the rallying-points of the late ’60s, a road picture and a buddy picture, celebrating sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll, and the freedom of the open road. It did a lot of repeat business while the sweet smell of pot drifted through theaters. Seeing the movie years later is like opening a time capsule. It provides little shocks of recognition, as when you realize they aren’t playing “Don’t Bogart That Joint” for laughs.

Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper play Captain America and Billy, journeying cross-country on their motorcycles, using a drug deal in Los Angeles to finance a trip to Mardi Gras. The drug is cocaine (sold to a dealer played by rock producer Phil Spector), but their drug of choice is marijuana. Billy gets the giggles around the campfire at night. Captain America, who could handle it better, is cool, quiet, remote, a Christ figure who flies the American flag on his gas tank, his helmet and the back of his leather jacket.” Continue reading

Henri Xhonneux – Marquis (1989)

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From IMDB:
‘Marquis’ is the only film I’ve ever seen by the oddly-named Henri Xhonneux, but it’s so imaginative and entertaining that I’m eager to see more of his work. ‘Marquis’ alleges to be based on incidents in the life and novels of the Marquis de Sade. If you’re seeking a “Cliff Notes” crib-sheet about de Sade or his works, look elsewhere. On its own merits, though, this film is highly enjoyable for those with a taste for the bizarre. Some of the activities of the real-life Marquis de Sade were downright contemptible, but I intensely admire the tremendous efforts he took to write down his prose in prison (where he was forbidden to possess paper or writing implements) and to smuggle his text out of prison for publication. I was intrigued to learn that the Marquis was a prisoner in the Bastille until only a few days before it was captured by the revolutionaries in 1789; it now appears that de Sade actively fomented the riot of Bastille Day, shouting to the people outside that there were weapons and allies within the prison. Continue reading

Naoto Yamakawa – Birî za kiddo no atarashii yoake AKA The New Morning of Billy the Kid (1986)


Billy the Kid waits tables in the Schlächtenhaus Saloon, last refuge of humanity from marauding, nihilistic gangs; co-workers include a samurai, Marx-Engels, an artist and the Tokyo telephone enquiries number made flesh. This bastion of global history and culture is duly invaded, clearing the decks for our spiritual and cultural rebirth…
Continue reading

John Waters – Pink Flamingos (1972)


Review from DVDVerdict :

The Charge
“Life affirming characters, that’s my specialty.”—John Waters

Opening Statement
An attack on the American family. An attack on taste. John Waters, always amused by audience reactions to the spectacle, calls it “an exploitation film for art theaters.” Roger Ebert, apparently nervous about a film that crosses so many lines, says it “should be considered not as a film but as a fact, or perhaps as an object.” But does it live up to its legend? Continue reading

Serge Gainsbourg – Charlotte for Ever (1986)


By Vladislav Mikhailov:
Serge Gainsbourg is the same person in cinema as in music – a gambler, a cynic, a blackmailer, an unshaven bozo with raspy voice. This film is not a melodrama, it’s a story of a father and daughter playing a melodrama with elements of grotesque and parody (there is an aging gay friend of Stan’s, elements of comical self-pity – oh, poor me, even my doggy died, I’ve nobody else left). But this is still a film built on the solid frame of Serge and Charlotte. And Charlotte is – yes – forever! A striking performance of two loving children – a teenage girl and an aging man. A must see and not only for Gainsbourg fans. Continue reading