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A closer look at exploitation films


An article series by Peter Roberts.

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Excellent examination of the subject, Pete!  You did a very good overview of the history of exploitation cinema, as well as highlighting Italian gore and giallo films.

To make this even more on-topic, were you aware that Tarantino wants to do a remake of Lucio Fulci’s “The Psychic” (1977) aka “Murder to the Tune of Seven Black Notes” with Bridget Fonda in the role originally portrayed by Jennifer O’Neill?

I haven’t seen this Fulci movie yet, but I definitely want to, especially as research for a giallo genre movie I’ve been writing.

Anyone seen it and can they comment?

My story was supposed to be set in the local music scene in a city on Vancouver Island where I live.  A couple of burn-out bar band musicians become amateur detectives who dig up and uncover the remains of several women victims and begin investigating the mystery of their disappearance and murder.  I put this idea on hold after news reports of real life discoveries of the remains of women being dug up at a pig farm near Vancouver.  Truth is starnger than fiction.  A little too close to home, so I’ve put the idea on ice for a while.


Great stuff Pete! I never knew anything about grindhouse movies and exploitation and such and now thanks to you i understand it better.

I got a question:

Is Texas Chainsaw Massacre a grindhouse movie?

There was this one film very gory where there’s a scene when two doctors of the opposite sex are looking at each other and the guy sais to her ‘What do you want?’ and she doesnt reply.

After a while he looks at her and with a smile says ‘I know what you want’ and comes to her and kisses her. While he is kissing her she bites of his tounge and there’s gallons of blood.

Apparently she is part of some group who kill people i have no idea for what. There’s a scene where they disect a dead body with a woodchipper. There’s a scene where the girl i mentioned before falls into the sewers and the rats eat her alive.

Does this sound like a gory groundhouse movie???


Thanks guys for reading my articles. I appreciate the encouragement :slight_smile:

Jeff, I havent seen The Psychic yet, but I really want to. Yeah, I did hear QT wants to remake it with Bridget Fonda in the lead. That would be great.

Jules, yes, I consider Texas Chainsaw Massacre a grindhouse film. It actually played in the grindhouses back when it was released. At Drive-Ins too.

The great thing about TCM is, it has this reputation as a bloody, gory film. But its surprising of the lack of blood and gore in it. I think most of the films scary elements come from the directing, atmospherics and the creepy characters of  the film alone. I really love the film. Watching it today, it almost plays more like a very dark indie horror/comedy than your standard slasher film.

Theres only a few scenes in the film where blood is shown:

  • The Crazy Hitchhiker cuts his hand with the knife. Then he cuts Sallys brother on his arm.

    -They cut Sallys finger to feed her blood to the old Grandfather.

    -Leatherface cuts his leg with the chainsaw when the trucker pegs him off the head with a tool.

    I think thats it as far as showing cutting things right on screen. There are some other violent scenes but they are edited a certain way so you cant really see anything gory. The film is called Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but its funny that there is hardly any actual cutting of people with a chainsaw on screen.

    Watch TCM again and tell me if you dont agree with me.

    I dont know what movie that is Jules (the chick that bites the tongue off). But it sounds like a good gore film. ÂÂ

The Tongue biting film is Cannibal Apocalypse,a great Italian horror movie starring John Saxon and John Morghen.

Back at QT’s 4th Annual Film Fest he screened “The Psychic” aka 7 notes of Death.

During his intro for the movie he mentioned it as being one of his favorite giallo movies… and that he screened the movie recently for Bridget Fonda (whose favorite type of movie is a giallo)… telling her he wanted to remake the movie with her as the lead. QT really seemed to like the visual style of the movie and the way it was edited… and just how cinematically the story twists and turns as it unfolds right to the very end.

I thought the movie was good… I dug it… but I didn’t get just blown away by it… but it is a very cool giallo. Definitely worth checking out (a must see for movie fans). It has all the usual twists and turns of a giallo… but the Fulci touches to the movie are what make it special… Also the ending of the movie was very well done… though it seems to confuse and throw some people off that see the movie… but I thought its ending was perfect.

At the QT fest last year he screened the giallo movie “What have they done to Solange?” (note the movie is under many different names/titles). QT in the intro of it said he screened the movie for Michael Madsen and his wife… and that Michael Madsen’s wife was trully disgusted by the way the murder weapon in the movie is used and shown… whereas Michael thought it was pretty cool.

What have they done to Solange?.. is a great giallo. The way the murder weapon is shown and used in the movie is probably going to be way too much for some to handle… but if you can stick with the movie to the end its very damn good.

So if you want to see two QT approved giallo’s then The Psychic and What have they done to Solange? are ones to seek out and buy/rent.

At his next fest QT said he is gonna screen the giallo “WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO YOUR DAUGHTERS?”… which is sequel of some sorts to “What have they done to Solange?”

Is QT gonna be doing the festival this year? I know he usually has it in August, but I figured since hes shooting Kill Bill, he wont have any time.

Heard anything about it badass?

At this point it looks unlikely. Keep in mind you’ll here people say well it’s not on the Drafthouse calendar of events (Drafthouse being the theater that always hosts it)… but most QT fests come together almost last minute it seems… so its not gonna pop up on the calendar until very close to when it might happen. Your not going to see it listed months in advance.

The best info I heard was overhead info at his past fest… here is a basic rundown of what happened…:

A really cute super hot short half French/Japanese chick sent by her boyfriend went up and asked QT at the past fest “So… when are you doing another fest”… and QT was like… "well I gotta shoot Kill Bill… but who knows I might need a break and come back down here and have like a mini-QT fest (Blake’s note: which I guess would put it if at all remotely possible in September to December 2002 timeframe)… or it might just be in early 2003 after I’ve gotten the movie edited and all the press stuff outta the way… I’ve bought several prints I can’t wait to show off at my next fest… so it will happen… just dunno when it will be as I also have a WWII movie that I want to make right after Kill Bill… so I may come down inbetween movies"

So that is the best and most detailed I heard QT say… keep in mind that QT speaks lightning witty fast… so said conversation was like 5 seconds… I personally thanked the guy for sending his girlfriend over to ask QT the question… since it was the most detailed response I had heard…

I dunno how many of you have spoken with QT before… but no lie… you can have like 5-10 conversations with him in the span it would normally take to have just one with most people. QT is one of the most personable and easy to talk to celebrities of anykind that I’ve ever met and talked to. So when QT6 comes around… it will be any of you QT fans chance to meet the man and movie geek out about anything one on one… let alone see some damn cool movies you might have never heard of before.

As a side note I’m trying to get as big a group down for QT6 as possible… basically to maximize the expense for all out of towners… and so in the daytime non-fest hours to be having our own movie fest going on. So far I think I’ve got about a group 10-20 people strong (and growing).

Who does have some of those Rolling Thunder releases? Send in your reviews!

just updated the Rolling Thunder page a little. A few links and reviews and stuff. I will buy a bunch of RTP DVDs next week, I think.

Pretty cool stuff, keep sending in what you know about these movies!

From the films you have on the archives I’ve only seen ‘‘The beyond’’ which is as 2001 is for science-fiction as apocalypse now is for war movies, the beyond is the 2001 and apocalypse now of gore -and sick and discusting and with no plot and with the only purpose to make you sick or make you laugh- movies. the 75% of the runtime of the movie is showing something gory thing like eyeballs going out of the scull, or oxyde eating a man’s face or spiders(lots of them!) eating a face and all those with CLOSE UPS! I personnally cannot forget the first gore scene with a man being torturred by others by hitting him with a big chain and the blood coming out of him like sampaigne and the camera following the chain to the skin and the blood! fucking shit!

That link comes up as “File Not Found” now.

yeah coz this topic is 2 years old, sorry. those articles have been taken down :frowning:

[quote=“The Seb”]
yeah coz this topic is 2 years old, sorry. those articles have been taken down :frowning:

Doesn’t Pete have a revised edition now? It should bring new life to this thread :slight_smile: