Friday, April 24, 2015

Little Sisters and Powder Burns (Vinegar Syndrome DVD) - deRenzy Gone Fable-Porn

As Alex deRenzy started off his career as a filmmaker, he dabbled in documentaries. It wasn't long before he began to focus on another kind of film: adult film. That first entry into this nearly 200 film plus career was Powder Burns shortly followed by Little Sisters, the two movies we bring to you tonight courtesy of Vinegar Syndrome and their indulgent Peekarama series (2 big ol' units for you libido to feast upon). We aren't saying that DeRenzy would always make a quality porn flick. His later work is littered with generic smut that features the word "anal" in the title, but early on, Alex was one creative fella. This is never more evident than these two pictures. I have been seeing social network mini-reviews say the exact same thing over and over again about this disc. It's just plain weird. That's absolutely true, but it's also foundational. From the font of deRenzy and other mad, experimental dirty peddlers we see true narrative pornography evolve. Folks had been making dirty movies for decades, but it's movies like these two features that bring a sort of cohesive bond to the boners.

First off, you can pick up Little Sisters and Powder Burns on DVD from DiabolikDVD. These are adult features. Porn. Make no mistake.


+ DVD-9 | Region Free | 1.33:1 OAR
+ Scanned and restored in 2k from 16mm vault elements
+ Completely uncut versions of both films
Little Sisters

From Vinegar Syndrome:

Alex deRenzy’s hippy themed fairy tale tells the story of Mom and her two young daughters who live in a trailer in the woods. Although warned to stay out of the dark and dangerous forest, the sisters do not heed their mother’s advice and are kidnapped by a gang of pirates who live in an abandoned swimming pool. When she discovers that her daughters are gone, Mom goes on a journey to find them, meeting singing cross-dressers, a lesbian gang, gay monks and an elf named Derek. Will she save the day and bring her daughters home safely? Find out in what may be the weirdest film deRenzy ever made.
Director: Alex deRenzy / 65m / 1972 / Color / 1.33:1

The year is 1972. Free love isn't quite as free as it once was but it is in abundance and beginning a truly grand tenor on the legit big screen (or at least as legit as it could be hiding in plane sight).  The themes of Little Sister is cautionary. It's almost fable. Go out into the woods and shirk your responsibilities, and you'll be raped by strange forest pirates in bad costumes... even if you state that you're only 12 years old. Obviously the actress in question is older than 12 and complies with all legal statutes concerning adult film star age which probably were not in place at the time of filming, but to even suggest a thing in the modern era would create a vomitorium of parents groups. You have to ask yourself who made this picture. A young Charlie Manson? Groups of orgiastic hippies looking to film their fuckfests? 

The whole gosh darn thing seems like a great big political statement by deRenzy fresh out of his documentary filmmaking (that seem to focus purely on legitimizing adult film even in the early 70's). For his early years, deRenzy seemed obsessed with creating "real movies" that happen to have adult content. To this effect he is quite successful. 

The movie features The Who likes guitar riff and keyboard scores that stand out, but mostly you just get an hour of strange orgies. It's a damn weird one with plenty of deRenzy genital closeups and hot steaming young hairy folk to fuck your way to a moral conclusion. The damn thing starts of with a reading of Caroll's Jaberwocky! This is truly the gypsy cautionary tale the post-McCarthy era parents were warning their children at over breakfast and cartoons each morning. 

Ending a porn with God Bless America... isn't that what Larry Flynt would do? Innovation!

Powder Burns

From Vinegar Syndrome:

In Alex deRenzy’s meta western, a trio of outlaws, The McNasty Brothers, wreak havoc on a frontier town in the desert. With the help of the former sheriff, will a buxom go-go dancer be able to save the day?
Director: Alex deRenzy / 72m / 1971 / Color / 1.33:1

I suppose we can look at Powder Burns the way we look at John Carpenter's Assault on Precinct 13. It's a bit of a siege movie, but wrapped in the cloak of modern times (even if it is set in the wild west). Of course in Carpenter's vision a group is trapped in a left-for-dead police station in the midst of a white hot night of hate. Powder Burns is more lighthearted. Go-go dancers left to fend for themselves among the McNasty Brothers in the middle of nowhere. Precinct 13 goes for a violent battle while Powder Burns take a more seductive and naughty approach. 

For an early 70's piece of smut this is an innovative film. Unfortunately it is not executed well and ends up being a long, drawn out 72 minutes as we wait for some naughty bits to excite us over some underwhelming banter. No hardcore until 45 minutes in. Even then the action lasts for a short time. It's funny, but not funny enough to go without skin for 45 minutes. The trippy music throughout makes the whole watch palatable. 

The ending is ridiculous... if you didn't already know it would be from the costuming.

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