The sheer irony of the movie “Bitch Slap” is in the fact that it truly does exemplify what an exploitation film is. It’s a shitty movie with a terrible script and overplays so many social “taboos” that you’re left with no other option but to roll your eyes. Exploitation film, right? Wrong. Bitch Slap is exploitation in that G4 Network/Spike TV/pandering to stupidity form of exploitation. No real exploitative activity goes on, other than the exploitation of my rage. You’ll see message boards where kids suck this movie off, calling it “awesome” or “hilarious”-those message boards would be wrong. Well, The Blood Sprayer is not Ain’t It Cool News…we specialize and respect real filth. We pay attention to it. We love it. We want the world to love it. So, as we often do here, I’ve decided to give you some real alternatives to that sopping wet bag of assholes passing itself off as an “exploitation” film. This is what it really looks like, and this is what YOU want to seek out…
They Call Her One Eye: If you’ve ever encountered exploitation fans, then you’ve heard of this revenge flick in spades. Starring Swedish cult goddess Christina Lindberg as a former victim of sexual assault, forced prostitution & drug use, and living as a deaf mute (!), the film revolves around this woman having her share of abuse and not taking it anymore. She is trained to be a killing machine. Strapped with a sawed-off shotgun in tow, she exacts her revenge on those who have done her wrong and wrongdoers in general. No one who crosses her path is safe.
One Eye has and always will live up to its hype. Whether it’s the graphic penetration sex scenes, or perhaps the urban legend that an actual corpse was used to shoot the “eye removal” scene, nothing in this film is done without being cranked to full blast. The violence is brutal, the story is heavy, and the taboos are shattered. You’ll be hard pressed to find another flick that embodies the sheer idea of exploitation films like TCHOE does. Hell, if it didn’t do you really Quentin Tarantino would give copies of this film to his friends as gifts?! I think not, kids…
Ilsa She-Wolf of the SS: After hearing the name Ilsa, do I really need to say much more? Dyanne Thorne plays Ilsa, a sadistic and evil Nazi prison warden who’s lust is often engorged by committing hideous acts of torture on her prisoners. Her prison is used to practice horrid medical/scientific experiments that were, apparently, concocted by some of the sickest fucking people who’ve ever walked the earth. Watch as she tears her victims limb from limb in the name of the Fuhrer…but will her tyranny withstand the resistance?
Allegedly shot in a week’s time on a set left over from “Hogan’s Heroes” (the irony so thick, you could pour it like syrup), Ilsa goes to all new extremes in order to kick it’s audience in the mouth. It’s almost a text book on what exploitation is about: Nazi propaganda, lots of inexplicable lesbian trysts, boiling people alive, exploding sex toys, and even gangrenous infections being poked and prodded at. While Ilsa did spawn 3 sequels (2 official, 1 not), none of them hold a candle to the original monster. Miss Thorne’s sex appeal and ferocity is undeniable and anyone attracted to strong women (as I myself, am) will find it hard to keep your eyes off of her insanity, no matter how evil. It’s truly a movie that goes beyond the point of decency and burns whatever bridge it has crossed. The She-Wolf has a special place in my wife and I’s hearts as it’s a favorite sleaze film agreed on by both of us (and I tell you this as look at the wall directly across from me adorned by an Italian print poster of Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS, signed by the Wicked Warden herself) and is always viewed with a sick grin on our faces. You want to gasp in shock? Get your hands on this nastiness.
The Pink Angels: In the post-“Easy Rider” film world, bikers became too cool for school. But this wasn’t sleaze film’s first rodeo. They’d been showing bikers off before that, and continued to do so afterwards. One of those gems was a film featuring a gang of queens on their way to San Francisco for a drag pageant disguised as the butchest of biker gangs. Along the way, they confuse a couple state troopers who search them and find everything BUT drugs and weapons, piss off a gang of hookers who can’t figure out why these boys have warded off their charm, and a real gang of Hell’s Angels who learn that these boys are nothing like they seem.
I’ve often referred to The Pink Angels as the “best exploitation film you’ve never seen”. If you consider the era in which the movie was released, it’s kind of revolutionary that a film was pushing the boundaries on sexuality and what was wrong or right. The actors do play a very extreme version of “gay”, complete with obnoxious lisps and very fey body language, but beyond that, give an unashamed portrayal of homosexuality. Director Larry E. Brown was to cross over a very sensitive subject without so much as a flinch. We weren’t quite evolved as a society yet (and to a certain degree, still aren’t when it comes to homosexuality) and still treated “gay” as a choice, rather than a reality. These boys were as bad ass as “Satan’s Sadists” but wrote poetry and loved evening gowns. It’s a hilarious road trip that will make you laugh out loud at some of the antics that go on. You can view it as a snapshot of the times, when progressive people were actually trying to challenge the status quo, rather than letting MTV sponsor it. And if this doesn’t lure you in, hold on to the ending, because you’re going to shit a solid gold egg before those credits roll. The Pink Angels is a forgotten film that would win over anyone who comes across it.
House on the Edge of the Park: In one sleazy evening, we follow Ricky and his “slow” friend, Alex to the party of a customer of theirs. Once their, they realize they’re the butt of the joke, but the joke is on the party-goers: Ricky is a sociopath with an idiot friend who will do his bidding. What ensues is a vicious evening of rape, assault, mutilation, and eventually murder. It’s an intense ride and you’re left trying to decide who was worse-the attacker or the victim?
This film is an all star roster of exploitation vets. Ruggero Deodato (as in “Cannibal Holocaust”, Ruggero Deodato) helms a film featuring the incomparable David Hess, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, and Annie Belle in what is clearly the Italian answer to “Last House on the Left”, even featuring that film’s star in a very similar role. The brilliance of this film is the use of only 2 set pieces and truckloads of sadistic tension. A class war is ignited by the wealthy mocking the under-privileged. Any of us familiar with Italian film (and all of us are here!) are going to see a lot of familiar faces, including Italy’s whipping boy, himself. Where Last House fails to deliver in some of the reality fields, HOTEOTP never lets up and you genuinely feel like you shouldn’t be watching this. And while the idea of the “rape scene” is par for the course in exploitation flicks, a particular one from this film gives a very over-the-top presentation that has an almost-black humor to it. This same sex scene has been made more notorious by the rumor that it wasn’t just “acting” going on under those sheets. Who am I to doubt Mr. Hess? If you hate Ruggero Deodato, this film won’t help that cause but if you loved Cannibal Holocaust and want to know what else that guy was responsible for, look no further than this sleazefest.
Let Me Die a Woman: This film is made horrifying by the fact that it’s real. The Queen of Exploitation, Miss Doris Wishman gives the world a documentary that delves into the world of transsexuals. Often times hilarious, and more often times shocking, we get the crude look at real sex changes in progress and learn about the “ins & outs” of trans-gendered surgery.
I’m sad that not enough female filmmakers site Doris Wishman as an influence, and that could be due to the fact that they’re unfamiliar with her work. She was the toughest woman in the industry during the grindhouse days and left an unflinching legacy on sleaze film that assures her name will go down in history alongside H.G. Lewis and Andy Milligan. Wishman (who also made her mark directing porn) gave fans the full monty when she shot this one. You had to guess that she was laughing her ass off during this. Maybe it’s the slime that’s practically dripping off the screen, or maybe it’s just the seedy folks that she’s made her subjects but the surgery looks less like an education film and more like a scene out of “Make Them Die Slowly”. This flick is crude, and unmovable. Doris Wishman wasn’t afraid of anyone and LMDAW is high point in a very sleazy career. Long Live the Queen!!!
Pink Flamingos: It’s a battle for supremacy in the war of filth. Which clan of filth mongers will reign as the filthiest people alive? As our fight rages on, we see our two teams exceeding all levels of decency and in a finale that only John Waters could conceive, the world is made filthier having seen this story told.
I don’t think it’s any sort of news that this movie is a insane apocalypse of crassness. John Waters first well known feature full length is not only fucked up, it’s also hilarious and shocking still to this day. Waters has said that it’s the film he’d never live up to and the film that his star, Divine, would never live down. To a certain degree, that statement is slightly true. We’re all familiar with the shit eating scene that still ranks up there with the best of them on the gross-out meter but it’s some of the other elements that make this movie a bonafide, exploitation classic. The beheading/chicken fucking scene, artificial insemination junkie style, Divine blowing her “son”, and let us not forget the infamous party scene featuring the song “Surfin’ Bird”. Trust me Family Guy fans-Seth Mcfarlane and co. don’t have shit on making that song stick in your head for all the wrong reasons. That always has and always will belong to Mr. Waters. Pink Flamingos ran a very hard course, but earned it’s place in film history by paying it’s dues. It certainly cemented John Waters legacy as a purveyor of filth and was a torchbearer of trash as art. Considered one of the most influential of all the midnight movies, Pink Flamingos looks like H.G. Lewis doing an unsolicited biopic on the Manson Family while tapping into Kenneth Anger’s ironic (and often creepy, in this case) use of pop music. It’s the most well known of all the exploitation films on this list, but that for a reason. John Waters doesn’t give a damn about what’s proper and decided that ugly was the new beautiful. It’s no different for him nowadays, as he’s still churning out silly and dirty films that will keep the cholesterol and nicotine-driven heart of exploitation beating. Still, Pink Flamingos is a cornerstone of exploitation assaulting the massing and being effective while doing so.
Alright kids, that’s all for this post. But fear not: my obsession with sleaze is endless and if I can continue to immortalize these piggish, obnoxious films and make you want to see them, then I will. So, I guess I should really thank Bitch Slap for inspiring me. It’s such a phony, shitty, pathetic piece of artificial exploitation garbage, it left me no other choice but to point that out. That, and talk about what IS good in exploitation. The list won’t end here and I intend to prove that.
Tags: Andy Milligan, B, Bitch Slap, Cannibal Holocaust, Christina Lindberg, David Hess, Divine, Doris Wishman, Dyanne Thorne, Easy Rider, exploitation, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Grindhouse, H.G. Lewis, Hogan's Heroes, Horror Art, House on the Edge of the Park, Ilsa She-Wolf of the SS, John Waters, Kenneth Anger, Larry E. Brown, Last House on the Left, Make Them Die Slowly, Pink Flamingos, Quentin Tarantino, Ruggero Deodato, Satan's Sadists, The Pink Angels, They Call Her One Eye, Trash