Andy Warhol   / Paul Morrissey  



For detailed information on this famous New York artist, his Pop art, musical stints with the Velvet Underground, attempted assassination and philosophies, see any of a hundred biographies in films, books, galleries and the internet. As a film-maker, Warhol started by simply pointing his camera at objects or people for hours on end in an ultimate statement of passive, vacant-stare, cinematic voyeurism. A man sleeping was the subject of a six-hour movie, an ultimately dull and long stare at the Empire State Building was another, and in one of his most infamous shorts, a man's face while getting a blow-job was stared at. He also used this anti-technique in his most popular film 'Chelsea Girls' where audiences-cum-voyeurs were invited to stare at his drug-addict, naked friends as they do absolutely nothing for 4 hours in two separate rooms, both shown in an 'avant-garde' split-screen. Unknowns, groupies, exhibitionists and drag queens flocked to the 'Warhol factory' to help with his 'art' or be filmed doing various improvisational acts.

After producing dozens of these hard-to-find films, he slowly handed over the reigns to the more audience friendly Morrissey who was searching for ways to make money off the films they were making, and plots and commercialism creeped into the factory which first explored trashy and homosexual pornographical subjects, then went on to relatively mainstream flicks. His influence was wide, the approach of improvisational naturalism blended with trash, inspiring film-makers like Richard Kern, Nick Zedd, John Waters, etc.

Of Some Interest

Bad  
Blackly humorous trash, like a lighter John Waters movie, about a woman who runs a hair removal electrolysis service in her home while providing her clientele with hit-women who commit vandalism, beat up men, kill dogs and children for money to satisfy sick little emotional needs for revenge over some insignificant detail. When a man joins the ranks of slutty, trashy hit-women and one woman turns pyromaniac, business get bumpy. Features a few nasty scenes of baby-killing and brutal violence but this is mostly trashy dialog and indifferent, horrible characters interacting with each other.

Blood for Dracula  
Not as over-the-top as its companion piece Flesh for Frankenstein, but still twisted campy entertainment. Dracula is a sick weakling who can only drink blood of virgins. He takes a road trip with his trusty servant to find a good family with virgin daughters whom he will pretend to woo. Unfortunately for the Count, the first two daughters are anything but virgins (causing him to vomit), and by the time he gets his act together, the resident stud finds out his secret and chases him while chopping off all his limbs with an axe. Rape and incest are thrown in for good measure.

Worthless

Flesh for Frankenstein  
Humorless spoof and early splatter movie about a Baron Frankenstein that collects body parts to create the perfect obedient couple that will then mate and create an obedient army. Obedience is gotten via handling their guts while in the throes of necrophilia passion. His nymphomaniac sister (who also seems to be his wife) isn't turned off by a few scars, the Baron thinks regular sex is filthy, and the kids are following in the father's footsteps. This whole setup obviously doesn't end up well.

Trash  
The missing link between Warhol/Morrisey's grimy, improvisational voyeurism on the dregs of society and Waters's trashy soap melodramas. The camera follows Joe, who spends most of his time naked, injecting drugs that kill his libido, while various annoying, ugly people try to have sex with him. He breaks into a home only to have a woman try to convince him to rape her then have a threesome with her husband, his transexual landlord has to use a beer bottle as a backup since Joe can't perform, etc. The title says it all.




2000- by Zev Toledano Table of Contents