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42nd Street Forever, Volume 1 (2005)

Video  |   |  14 September 2005 (USA)
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 230 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 20 critic

DVD consisting of only movie trailers (grindhouse, horror, kung-fu, etc...)

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DVD consisting of only movie trailers (grindhouse, horror, kung-fu, etc...)

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42nd Street Forever: Volume 1 is actually the second DVD in the popular series created by Ban 1 Productions. The first volume was a short run and is long out of print. Its title was 42nd Street Forever: Horror on 42nd Street. See more »

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Features Ginger (1971) See more »

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Cliff Notes for Grindhouse
21 March 2007 | by (Hell's Kitchen, NYC) – See all my reviews

I still remember 42nd street back in the day, before former Mayor Rudi Giuliani transformed the area into a Vegas-like tourist death trap. It used to be a different kind of tourist death trap. I remember the area's twilight years in the 80's and early 90's. During this time the area was still predominately full of pimps, prostitutes, drug dealers, XXX theaters and the grind houses. For an idea of what it was like during the transition, you can reference Schwarzenegger's Last Action Hero (when it goes "real") as a representation of the change. This is because by the late '80s this wasn't quite the one you remember from Midnight Cowboy. I have been living in the area for the last couple of years and there is very little remnant of what the area was. At the changeover from dawn to day, in the area west of 9th Avenue, you can still see the world's oldest professionals quiting for the night. They have become sparse enough in this area, that the professionals are almost there for the tourists and as historical re-creationists, rather than as a professionals performing a civic duty. The legitimate places of business have moved out to the outer boroughs, Hunts Point, Green Point, Queens Bridge, etc.

This first volume in the series was a stroll down memory lane for me. It reminds me of the area, the theaters and as a child, things I was not allowed to see. The area and its movies represented a taboo to me. For those that don't know, Grind House is the genre representative of the movies shown in some of the theaters on the small strip from 7th and Broadway to 10th Avenue on 42nd Street (and the surrounding side streets). They were not necessarily porn but contained graphic sex and gratuitous violence. The stories were usually geared around that graphic sex and violence. One cannot deny the silliness and camp of a majority of the movies in this genre. Some of them were homegrown, others were quite foreign. They were your non-typical kind of movies. They were not the type of movie you would bring home to show mom and dad, yet you still found a way to sneak it in.

The series collects the trailers, usually shown before and during a double feature, into a continuous reel. If you want to know and learn about grind-house movies, then this is a good place to start. Just like in modern trailers, these trailers tend to give away critical information about the movie. Having seen the full version of some of these movies in this collection, it is sometimes sufficient to have seen the trailer to get the best aspects of that movie. It was also a good vehicle for me to get into movies I had never seen or vaguely remember.

There are more movies than you can imaging, that fall within this category. For example, you can expect trailers such as : Sylvester Stallone's Italian Stallion, Matango, The Green Slime, Destroy All Monsters, The Crippled Master, They Call Her One Eye, Maid In Sweden, Shocking Asia, Chappaqua, Death Drive, The Raiders Of Atlantis, Star Crash, Superfuzz, Ironmaster and many, many more. I found volume 1 to contain a great cross-section of the genre and a good representation of the trailers for the most well known movies in the genre. I definitely enjoyed it much more than volume 2. That makes me even more excited about the prospects of volume 3. Till Rodriguez and Tarantino's homage to the genre, I will await volume 3 while secretly shooting up on volume 1 in the Papaya Dog bathroom.

-Celluloid Rehab


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