2 items from 2011
Like the vast majority of you, I presume, I'll probably give W.E. a miss. I did have momentary hopes for Madonna's biopic of Wallis Simpson; by the time the house lights had risen on the Venice film festival, the vultures of Twitter were already circling. This looked like it could be special. Then came Xan Brooks's review offering tantalising promises of something "jaw-dropping" and "risible", including a scene where Wallis dances with a Masai tribesman to the strains of the Sex Pistols' Pretty Vacant. Hello, is that the ticket office?
Then came the crushing disappointment. Further exploration unearthed critics on the Telegraph, the Mail, the Independent, the Hollywood Reporter and beyond using dreaded phrases like "redeeming features"; "breath of fresh air" and "lovely frocks". The critics, alas, »
- Ally Fogg
Since the earliest days of American cinema there has been a shadowy counterpart to the commercial mainstream: exploitation movies — pictures whose appeal lies in their sensational treatment and leering promotion of often lurid and prurient material. Pre-1960, when mainstream Hollywood worked within severe restrictions on content, exploitation movies offered audiences titillating glimpses of the deliciously taboo, usually under the guise of being some sort of instructional cautionary against the very subject matter being exploited i.e. sex in “hygiene” movies like The Road to Ruin (1934), drugs in anti-drug movies like Tell Your Children (1936, re-released in the 1960s/70s as camp classic Reefer Madness), and gambling in the anti-vice Gambling with Souls (1936).
By the 1950s, as the studios entered their long post-war decline, downscale producers launched a new vein of exploitation moviemaking, churning out low-budget thrillers (mostly sci fi and horror) aimed squarely at the burgeoning youth audience. Again, the movies were cheap, »
- Bill Mesce
2 items from 2011
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