Movie Reviews That'll Put Yer Eye Out, Kid!

42nd Street Forever

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Long gone are the halcyon days of stumbling into a dingy, rundown movie theater and being treated to a diverse selection of equally unwholesome films, ranging from trashy sleaze-fests with titles like "The Three Dimensions of Greta" to bizarre hybrids like the biker film / monster movie oddity "Werewolves on Wheels." Sure, afterward you might have to disinfect your clothing and take a long hot shower in an attempt to wash away all the foreign bacteria and guilt - but of course, no matter how vigorously or liberally you applied that bar of Ivory, there was just no chance of washing those damn coming attractions out of your head! So sooner, rather than later, you would find yourself once again seated in the same soiled seat, ogling that cinematic sleaze with a big grin smeared across your face.

Unfortunately, as usual I have no idea what I'm talking about, but this is how I imagine it might have been going to see movies in one of those theaters for which 42nd Street in New York City was so well known. However, the clever lads over at Synapse films have seen fit to give us a tempting little taste of this bygone era by releasing their first volume of exploitation trailers entitled, 42nd Street Forever.

This nifty compilation DVD really runs the gamut and gives the viewer a good idea of the eclectic mix of exploitation films that graced the screens of many a seedy theater. Sexploitation, science fiction, mondo cinema, crime films, horror, martial arts, blaxploitation, Japanese monster movies, thrillers, and even a sword and sandal epic are all present and accounted for. As anyone who has watched some of these films knows, more often than not, the film's trailer usually far surpasses the film itself - so it's good fun to be able to just kick back and watch a bunch of these sleazy cinematic snapshots one after another. And what's more, that pesky post screening shower is now purely optional.

Synapse films has compiled nearly 50 trailers for your viewing pleasure, and thankfully they are presented in all their scratched up, gritty glory, thus retaining their nostalgic value. There are no extras (perhaps a documentary on the 42nd Street theater scene, or something along these lines would have been welcome) however, with 128 minutes worth of trailers, there is enough to keep most exploitation junkies happy until Synapse releases Volume 2.

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