So Exploitation April comes to an end. Over the course of the month we have talked about some really sleazy parts of exploitation. We talked about the exploitation of a real tragedy with Guyana: Cult of the Damned, exploitation of sex with Schoolgirl Hitchhikers, and gore exploitation with Cannibal Ferox. But today we are going to talk about a new kind of exploitation, a strange new genre that has wormed its way into main stream culture, CGI Exploitation.
For anyone among us who grew up in the past decade, the SciFi channel original movie and movies from the production company The Asylum are fresh in all of our minds. Oh the days when I was a young teenager, sitting in my room eating Lucky Charms, and watching Python 2 or Megaladon vs. Giant Octopus. They were fun, campy, and silly complete with a cast of nobody actors and a cookie cutter plot, 8-10 people show up to location x, monster x shows up, eats the majority of them, and rinse and repeat. But of all the features of these movies, none was more prevalent than the fact that each and every single one of the gigantic fuck off monsters was made of some of the most horrendous CGI to ever grace the tiny screen. I mean, I’ve seen some bad CGI, but this… This looks like it was created straight out of some teenagers photoshop project gone horribly wrong. I watched them all the time and I absolutely loved them. I didn’t care they were the same plot with the same premise, they were goofy, and it was a way to kill time on a Sunday afternoon.
Needless to say that as the years would go on these movies would start to become a little… Self aware. They realized their flaws and realized what they were, cheesy creature feature B Movies. So they started playing into what people like about these movies and the culmination of that is The Asylum’s Sharknado. One part CGI exploitation, 2 parts insanity, and a big ole dosage of self awareness equals out to what is by all accounts the most popular film in the sub genre. Sharknado’s popularity has won it over in the eyes of people, but as we know in movies, popularity DEFINITELY doesn’t equate to value. So let’s take a look at this movie to wrap up Exploitation April. Continue reading “Exploitation April: Sharknado”
So now that I’m rested and ready to carry on, let’s pick up where we left off with Exploitation April. So far we have covered real life exploitation in Guyana: Cult of the Damned and sexual exploitation in Schoolgirl Hitchhikers. Now it is time to look at another staple of the exploitation genre, horror and gore exploitation. If there are two things that exploitation is known for it is nudity and excessive violence and nothing exploits these two areas more than the Amazon Cannibal Movies of the Italian Horror Scene during the 1970’s and 1980’s.
This isn’t the first time I have looked at the Amazon Cannibal Movies. For those who have followed me for the past couple of years, I took a look at Cannibal Holocaust. You will also remember that I judged it rather fairly, considering it a decent movie. So what if Ruggero Deodato had to prove in front of a grand jury that he didn’t kill his actors? The movie was still good. But today we are going to look at the cheap knock off of Cannibal Holocaust, Cannibal Ferox. Directed by Umberto Lenzi, who is often credited as starting the Amazon Cannibal movies, Cannibal Ferox has the feeling of Cannibal Holocaust just with a fraction of the talent and a lot more sleaze.
Continue reading “Exploitation April: Cannibal Ferox”
Happy Easter everyone! I for one cannot think of a better way to start this day then beginning Exploitation April… Actually I could think of a lot of better things that I could be doing then watching exploitation cinema. I could go for a walk in the park, finish my papers that are due at the end of the month, or just sit here and watch a good movie instead of the garbage that is Guyana: Cult of the Damned. I sure know how to pick them. My first step into the realms of exploitation cinema is a movie that means to exploit the tragedies of hundreds of people being killed by a sadistic tyrant combined with cyanide laced Kool-Aid and the victims of a mass shooting at an airfield. Granted this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Exploitation movies, but you will be hard pressed to find something in the genre as sleazy as exploiting the deaths of real people.
For those of you who are not aware, The People’s Temple was a religious cult centered around a fanatical leader named Jim Jones. During the late 70’s Jones lead his congregation to a religious compound in Guyana that he named Jonestown. Once there, Jones became a sadistic tyrant and forbid anyone from leaving Guyana. When Congressman Leo Ryan made a trip to Jonestown to inspect the compound and rescue some of the people in Jonestown, there was a mass shooting at the airfield, killing Ryan and various others while at the compound, Jones instructed his followers to commit suicide via cyanide laced “Flavor Aid” (a Kool Aid offbrand). Hundreds of thousands of people died in the process. It was one of the worst tragedies to befall the American people and one of the worst mass suicides in the history of the Earth.
In comes Rene Cardona Jr. who only a mere year and some change after the tragedies, penned, produced, and directed Guyana: Cult of the Damned (or Crime of the Century) a movie that gave us a shot for shot retelling of the Jonestown massacre in the sleaziest way that one can imagine. Thus this real life tragedy exploitation movie came lurching out into the public’s eye. So let’s get Exploitation April started with a bang and look at this… interesting movie. Continue reading “Exploitation April: Guyana: Cult of the Damned”