Sunday, September 7, 2014


If you're tired of traipsing through the same Hollywood redundancies that promise transcendence,  yet  deliver predictable scripts,  images,  and characters,  here is the place to start your re-education. DEATHTRIPPING  by Jack Sargent was originally subtitled "The Cinema of Transgression",  which is certainly a more apt description of the films presented here. While the Lower East Side is surely the  inspirational locale for this celluloid scum,  its ancestors include films like Bunuel's UN CHIEN ANDALOU,  Genet's UN CHANT D'AMOUR,  Jack Smith's FLAMING CREATURES,  Andy Warhol's BLOW JOB,  Paul Morrissey's  FLESH/HEAT/TRASH triptych, John Water's PINK FLAMINGOS,  and even a bit of the more extreme Italian gialli. This genre's "stars" such as as Nick Zedd,  Richard Kern,  Tommy Turner,  and Beth B are give ample coverage. Essentially the films made by these folks are art films without the art,  porn without the release,  and psychological studies with little or no insight into the characters.  They merely "are", without the benefit of proper "actors",  sound,  camerawork, or editing.  Like the No Wave (late Seventies and early Eighties) music that was an integral part of this scene (and soundtracked so much of this stuff),  films such as FINGERED, THE RIGHT SIDE OF MY BRAIN, WAR IS MENSTRUAL ENVY, BLACK BOX,  and THE SEWING CIRCLE are strangled cries for attention that are impossible to ignore.  As Richard Kern has stated in interviews The Ramones were not punk,  they were Doo Wop. This is the nihilism and aggression  of the punk ethos given flesh,  or as inspiration and expediency go:  I've got drugs and a  Super 8 camera,  let's have sex,  do something extreme,  and film it. 

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