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HERSHELL GORDON LEWIS: THE GODFATHER OF GORE

Director:

106 minutes| U.S.A.| 2010| Colour


One underground cult legend pays tribute to another, as Basket Case creator Frank Henenlotter (with co-director Jimmy Maslon) offers this affectionate documentary portrait of the cinematic huckster behind such tawdry fare as Two Thousand Maniacs, Blood Feast and The Gore Gore Girls. Hershell Gordon Lewis would be the first to admit that he was never that much of a filmmaker: a natural-born showman with an eye for a quick buck, H.G. saw a lucrative gap in the market for lurid low-budget z-movies, swiftly moving from ‘nudie cutie’ movies to inventing the splatter flick with 1962’s seminal Blood Feast. Like Lewis himself, Henenlotter gives the punter exactly what them want, mixing eye-popping footage from Lewis’s ouvre with choice talking heads like John Waters, Joe-Bob Briggs and The Wizard Of Gore himself, a choice raconteur. This is a lurid tribute to one of the medium’s true pioneers, a vivid portrait of the golden age of exploitation cinema, and an absolute hoot.

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