Monday, March 17, 2014

She Freak (1967)

Director: Byron Mabe

Writer: David Friedman

Composer: William Allen Castleman

Starring: Claire Brennen, Lee Raymond, Lynn Courtney, Bill McKinney, Claude Earl Jones, Ben Moore, Vanteeen, Madame Lee, Marsha Drake, Felix Silla, William Bagdad, Sandra Holcomb

More info: IMDb

Tagline: A Barbarous Experience!

Plot: A sexy waitress decides to join up with a traveling carnival.  It doesn't take her long to adjust to carny life but there's one thing she can't abide by and that's freaks.  That all comes to bite her on the ass at the end of the film.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again? Yes.


OK, so the other day I watch FREAKS (1932) twice in a week (because it's that damn good) and I learn that SHE FREAK is a 60s remake AND I've got the disc sitting on my shelf, unwatched (I've got tons of those Something Weird Video DVDs.  I LOVE those guys).  Um, sold!  It opens with lots of shots of a traveling carnival and it looks great with the wonderful colors just popping off the screen.  It makes me want to be there and it's all behind a great, groovy surf rock score.  NICE!!!

Then we spend some time in a greasy diner getting to know Jade (Brennen) and Greasy (Jones).  She's ready for Splitsville to join the carnival.

Look!  Go-go dancing!!!

Easy, Tiger.  She doesn't take her clothes off.  And that's a damn shame, too, 'cause nobody does, not once.  This picture could have stood for at least a couple of scenes to spice things up.  I kind of dig the picture, whereas a lot of folks are going to find it boring as hell.  I really dig carnivals so getting to hang around that scene, 60s style, is really neat.  As a movie, it's reasonably entertaining with some not to shabby acting.  OK, the acting is at least better than what you'd expect, anyway.  My biggest beef with the picture is the ending.  We don't see a single freak (unless you count the little guy) until the very end of the picture when they come out to get revenge on Jade and even then, they don't look like freaks.  Seriously.

Say, isn't that last guy on SONS OF ANARCHY?  The ending is a huge disappointment although the makeup effects on Jade after the 'freaks' fuck her shit up is pretty damn good.

Another disappointment is that this is just loosely based on the 1932 film but there's enough in it to recognize and have fun with...well, sort of.  The SWV DVD comes with commentary, a trailer, some exploitation art (always fun) and one 8.5 minute vintage 30s carnival freak show short which is great fun.

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