Documentaries that look at various aspects of cinema around the world -- the themes and genres, the eras and evolution,…
Machete Maidens Unleashed!
The Filipino revolution that even Marcos couldn't crush!
In the final decades of the 20th century, the Philippines was a country where low-budget exploitation-film producers were free to make nearly any kind of movie they wanted, any way they pleased. It was a country with extremely lax labor regulations and a very permissive attitude towards cultural expression. As a result, it became a hotbed for the production of cheapie movies. Their history and the genre itself are detailed in this breezy, nostalgic documentary.
Somewhat unsatisfying documentary on the history of adventurous genre filmmaking in the Philippines wastes time explaining the history of exploitation distribution, the perils of the Apocalypse Now shoot, and the importance of Roger Corman to the careers of several well known directors. Could have used more depth on things like, oh, I don't know, the totalitarian regime under which these movies were produced and the resulting cheapness of life and labor. These things are mentioned, to be sure, but flying by them to get to Joe Dante telling another story about trying to polish a turd by cutting a misleading trailer for a Cirio Santiago movie makes for an entertaining but somewhat rushed feeling narrative. This movie itself feels like…
From director Mark Hartley and the team behind the essential Ozploitation documentary Not Quite Hollywood, comes this equally enthusiastic and eye-opening expose of the golden era of Filipino exploitation cinema between the 1960s and the 1980s. This was an age where opportunist, renegade producers such as Roger Corman and Eddie Romero churned out a staggering array of crazed grindhouse B-movie epics, fully exploiting overseas loopholes when it came to the censorship-free, anything goes content (sex, horror, depravity) and the favourable financial incentives – locations and costs were cheap and crews were not overly concerned with petty matters like making it through the shoot with all their limbs still attached!
Set against the fraught political backdrop of the Marcos regime which…
Estoy seguro de que fueron mas interesantes los rodajes en la Filipinas del matrimonio Marcos que las películas resultantes. Aprovecho para pedir un sonoro viva! para true celluoid heroes como Joe Dante, Pam Grier, Sid Haig... etc
A really interesting talk heads docu with great footage! It touches both on the great and the not so great of filming over in the Philippines. It seems like a completely manic way of filming that will never ever happen again!
A frank, funny and fast paced documentary that breezes through the exploitation cinema that was shot in the Philippines in the 60s and 70s. It's great to see the likes of Roger Corman, Joe Dante and John Landis alongside Pam Grier, Eddie Romero and other legends of drive-in cinema.
The interviews are candid, nostalgic and in good humour while the structure of the documentary itself is fluid. We get touches of political history both in the Philippines and internationally but the topic never dwells on one particular feature, production, movement or timeframe long enough. The audience is merely the spectator here.
This is an audio visual feast. A theme park trip down memory lane of retro exploitation genre flicks. I know very little about the movies featured here but this has certainly whet my appetite.
I really didn't like the stupid sound effects they inserted into every film clip. Also why did they choose to display taglines in boring-as-fuck white text on a black background when they clearly had the trailers available that contained the taglines and were actually what I think pretty much everyone watching this documentary wanted to see? There was something weird about the structure of this. It felt kind of superficial even though they had a lot of interviews and footage. I don't know. I'm tired.
Director Mark Hartley has followed up his fantastic documentary, Not Quite Hollywood, about the history of Australian exploitation cinema with a great new doc about the golden age of exploitation film making in the Philippines. Since WWII the Philippines have had a prolific film industry, but until the late 60's few of the films made there were seen outside of the country. Once American production houses discovered the potential exotic location and amazingly cheap labor however the Philippines would become the go-to location to shoot grind house and drive-in fodder until the mid to late 80's.
As he did with Not Quite Hollywood, Hartley does a fantastic job of telling the story as seen through the eyes of the people…
Wow, I never knew that the Philippines was a hotbed for exploitation cinema. That's really the big take away for me with "Machete Maidens Unleashed!” I knew about these kinds of films but I'd always thought they were made in America for the most part. Unfortunately, the "Machete Maidens..." never went all that deep on the topic. Most of it is just clips from a lot of the films which don't look all that interesting. This gets a 5 outta 10.
It is too bad that more of these films are not available. I`ve seen the movie with Weng Weng and it is very entertaining, well worth tracking down.
Fun under the filipino sun! Diese Doku fügt der eigenen Watchlist mindest ein Dutzend Einträge hinzu!
"The Three B's--Blood, Breasts, and Beasts."
'Machete Maidens' is a great doc that showcases Filipino films from the late 1960s to the 1970s which were made popular by producers such as Roger Corman. Combining political commentary on the contemporary revolution in the Philippines and pushing the ratings board in America, these filmmakers were able to enjoy an environment with little supervision, cheap labor, and unlimited potential. Being among the first films to really advertise female action heroes such as Pam Grier, these drive-in exploitation films ranged from action to horror, yet all had limited budget. In this doc, it features many interviews such as Roger Corman, John Landis, R. Lee Ermey, and many machete maidens talking about the glory days in SE Asia.
As with Not Quite Hollywood, the filmmaker covers a cultural bubble that most likely we'll never see replicated. Covering the political and social aspects that led to bare breasted women firing sub-machine guns in the jungle, midgets with rocket packs, shockingly diabolical monsters and more bare breasted women, Machete Maidens Unleashed entertains with its interviews from the likes of Pam Grier, Joe Dante and John Landis.
Having introduced my wife to both this and Not Quite Hollywood, I'm going to have to sit us down to a showing of Electric Boogaloo to round off the trilogy.
An excellent and fun look at the Filipeno exploitation films that I know and love. Every one of the movies featured is a must-see. Dig the late John Ashley's line, "I used to think I'd let you pee in my face, just so I could see where its coming from."
Otro grandísimo documental de Mark Hartley. Es otro prodigio de ritmo y montaje, también bastante informativo, aunque no llega a las virtudes del Not Quite Hollywood. Con todo, es una muestra imprescindible del cine de explotación filipino en coproducción con USA. Hubiera estado bien un poco más de background del cine de género del país en el prólogo.
Incredibly fun for fans of Filipino exploitation pictures of the 70's especially. For lively interviews and general breezy tone this is easily a 4/5. But there's a nagging sense that the regime behind this boom is being glossed over in favour of so-bad-it's-good nostalgia, so I've shaved off a half point. Still very entertaining.
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Documentaries about movies or anything to do with movies. And yes, some of these stretch the definition of "documentary" quite…