GRINDHOUSE TRAILER CLASSICS: A Party Disc For Cinematic Deviates

Trailer collections bring a lot of history and eye-popping visuals into the home of a cult movie collector but they often have two problems: selections and sequencing.  The people who put such sets together often try to include as much unique and/or rare material as possible… but just because something is rare doesn’t mean it makes for compelling viewing.  Thus, the rhythm of sequencing in such trailer sets often has an up/down rhythm that makes for bumpy viewing.

Thankfully, this is not a problem for Grindhouse Trailer Classics.  Any veteran fan of exploitation film trailers can look at the title list for this set and see a ton of trailers that have attained as much cult status as the films they advertise: for example, there is the splattery hard-sell approach of I Drink Your Blood, the hilarious rhyming jive-talk narration of Dr. Black And Mr. Hyde and the smartly-edited barrage of swordplay mayhem that drives Shogun Assassin.  Other classic spots featured here include Switchblade Sisters, Fight GriTrClas-dvdFor Your Life and Dr. Butcher M.D. (one of the all-time gross-out classics amongst 80’s horror trailers and highly quotable, to boot).

The compilers of Grindhouse Trailer Classics also threw in a few lesser-known spots that are memorable enough to hold their own with the acknowledged trailer classics that drive this set.  For example, the trailer for Caged Virgins boasts an interesting tension between Jean Rollin’s artsy French visuals and the straightforward sleaze of the American distributor’s narration while the spot for The Single Girls intrigues by starting as a sexploitation film and ending like a slasher flick.  Another rare gem here is the trailer for Ilsa: Harem Keeper Of The Oil Sheiks.  It’s not as well known as the trailer for Ilsa: She-Wolf Of The S.S. (also included on this set) but delivers just as much sleaze and ends with a literal bang.

In short, Grindhouse Trailer Classics is a must for exploitation trailer collectors because it boasts a collection of titles to die for and lays out the trailers in a way that keeps the viewer going through its entire 130 minute running time.  It’s also the perfect party disc if you have the proper group of sleaze-loving friends.

DVD Notes: InterVision, a sublabel of Severin Films, picked up this title for U.S. release and it faithfully carries over everything from the original U.K. release except for a Nucleus Films promo reel (which wouldn’t apply to this American release anyways).  Picture quality is quite good overall, with a few spots looking better than they have on past trailer comps: for example, Truck Turner looks great and doesn’t have the bleeped-out profanity that some versions of this trailer have.

A few neat extras are also included.  There’s a 18 and a half-minute featurette that features U.K. genre personality giving the viewer a crash course in the rise, demise and posthumous influence of grindhouse cinema.  The facts and dialogue are spot-on, thanks to a script penned by Stephen Thrower, and Booth acts it all out with gusto like it was a one-woman show (plentiful film clips are also included to pace it).  The other extra is a gallery of eye-popping posters for all the titles covered by this set.

In short, this disc is a must for exploitation buffs and a cheap way to catch up on your grindhouse history.


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