Rightwing Film Geek

TCM Underground

PussycatKill

Speaking of THE HONEYMOON KILLERS, I’m looking forward to seeing it for the first time next weekend, Dec. 8, when it plays as part of a new feature on Turner Classic Movies — TCM Underground. Hosted by Rob Zombie, the weekly late-night Fridays feature, shows cult, low-budget and exploitation films. Jim Ridley might think it hopelessly passe (its first week was an Ed Wood double feature), but, as a non-grindhouse fan, I’m enjoying the opportunities it gives to expand the notion of what Quality is.

A few weeks ago, I watched a Russ Meyer double feature of MUDHONEY and FASTER PUSSYCAT KILL KILL — an experience I’ll never forget. Never have I seen such skill and (frankly) love, devoted to such obviously prurient hokum (some truly brilliant and brilliantly-directed sequences in MUDHONEY aside). But partly because Meyer has long been left behind in the explicitness sweepstakes, I found both films really worthwhile, despite being considered porn in their time, the mid-60s. I once wrote the following about Billy Wilder (who made a C-for-Condemned movie at about the same time) that I think applies to Meyer:

Wilder was the director who best straddled the Production Code era and its collapse. He had the craft and professionalism of the studio era without its oft-absurd comstockery of not showing toilets or having to have Lucy say she’s “expecting.” Here, in Wilder, is the director who handles bawdy subject matter … without collapsing into American Pie territory or pomo decadence, who shows that double entendres are most fun when they were kinda naughty—neither unspeakable nor all-too-speakable.

November 28, 2006 - Posted by | Russ Meyer

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