Not Quite Hollywood/Review

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< Not Quite Hollywood

Not Quite Hollywood is the funny, wild and insightful story of Australian exploitation cinema during the fruitful 1970s. The film begins with an explosive title sequence and doesn’t let up from there. What follows is a documentary as fast and wild as any of the films it features. Time flies by and it’s certainly a film that needs to be seen more than once to be fully appreciated.

Alvin Purple Wake in Fright

It’s divided into three main sections. The first section, titled Ockers, Knockers, Pubes & Tubes, deals with sexploitation films. After the introduction of the R rating, filmmakers were keen to take full advantage of a loosening of censorship and the film pays attention to films such as Alvin Purple, Pacific Banana and Fantasm, as well as dealing with The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, who came to typify the average working class Australian. The second section, Comatose Killers & Outback Chillers, deals with horror. It goes into depth about Patrick, Snapshot & Thirst among other films. It focuses on Tony Ginnane, one of the most prolific producers of the time, and the string of films he made after his breaking through with Fantasm and Patrick. Significant time is allocated to Turkey Shoot, perhaps the most infamous of Australian exploitation films, shocking critics of the time with its violence and treatment of women. The filmmakers tell stories of firing live ammunition at extras in action sequences among other things that would almost certainly never be allowed under today’s conditions. The third section, Car Crash Disasters and Kung Fu Masters, is on action and, in particular, the masterwork that is The Man From Hong Kong. Brian Trenchard-Smith, the famous director, tells the audience of the pains of working with Jimmy Wang Yu, an egomaniac.

The Man From Hong Kong Mad Max

All in all, beyond being the only documentary of its kind on a long-forgotten and overlooked part of Australia’s cinematic history, this documentary is a fitting film to document these stories. Director Mark Hartley moves from film to film with great ease and always with high energy. Interview subjects include Quentin Tarantino, John Lamond (the sleazy director of Felicity and Pacific Banana interviewed whilst a woman pole-dances behind him), Brian Trenchard-Smith (The Man from Hong Kong, Turkey Shoot), producer Tony Ginnane (Turkey Shoot, Patrick), Terry Bourke (director of the bizarre Inn of the Damned), Russell Mulcahy (Razorback), Dennis Hopper (complete with stories of his mad behaviour on the set of Mad Dog Morgan) and accomplished cinematographers Russell Boyd, John Seale & Don McAlpine who cut their teeth on these films. It charts the whole story from the rise to the fall of the era. A perfect introduction for people not familiar with Australian exploitation and a source of great pleasure for those who are familiar with these films.

Reviewed By Angel

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