Book Review – The FrightFest Guide to Exploitation Movies by Alan Jones

The Frightfest Guide to Exploitation Movies
By Alan Jones
Publisher: FAB Press
Release Date: October 15, 2016

If you’re a diehard horror fan like me, then you probably have a place in your heart for exploitation films as well. After all, many of the horror classics we love are dually labeled as both. As such, the exploitation genre covers a broad range of topics, from sexploitation to Nazisploitation to Blaxploitation, and more.

THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO EXPLOITATION MOVIES offers an in-depth look into some of the more popular and bizarre titles in this beloved genre of film. Chocked full of informative pieces and high-caliber visuals, this manual entertains just as much as it informs. I’m proud to own this book, and I believe every horror lover and film buff should have a copy of this handy at all times.

If you are not familiar with THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO EXPLOITATION MOVIES, here is the book’s synopsis courtesy of FAB Press:

From the moment motion pictures were invented, fearless entrepreneurs, poverty row profiteers and money-grabbing grifters gave cinemagoers what they truly craved…. the sex, horror and cheap thrills that were too hot for Hollywood to handle. And so the exploitation industry was born. Nothing was taboo and selling sin, shock and sensation became an art form.

Soon, what were once the dirty little secrets of the film world became the most sought-after must-sees in every grindhouse and drive-in, as an ever-growing legion of fans travelled miles to witness the most unbelievable sights ever put on celluloid.

From MANIAC to ANATOMY OF A PSYCHO, DERANGED to ZOMBIE, I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE to THE SEXUALIST, THE JESUS TRIP to NAKED FIST and ILSA, SHE WOLF OF THE SS to AFRICA EROTICA – just 10 of the 200 hand-picked outrages covered in this comprehensive and representative history – critically acclaimed film critic, author and broadcaster Alan Jones takes you on a startling tour through the astounding exploitation movie extremes of its 1935 to 1985 Golden Era.

Tinsel town trash and global grunge like you’ve never seen it before, complete with an all-embracing, richly-textured A-Z guide to everything you ever wanted to know about the inglorious exploitation movie genre but were afraid to ask. With a blistering introduction by 42nd Street habitué, aficionado and COMBAT SHOCK writer/director, Buddy Giovinazzo, The Frightfest Guide to Exploitation Movies fully captures the range and breadth of the entire exploitation spectrum.

Enter, if you dare, into the sordid, sleazy underworld of Z-studio slime and punishment, where orgies of the dead, cesspools of vice and shameless desires featured tantalizing titles, lurid artwork, daring advertising campaigns and overblown hype.

Exploitation movies have never gone away. Inside you’ll discover the unbelievable reasons why.

With this book, author Alan Jones offers an exhaustive look at 200 of the more obscure and popular films in the exploitation genre. A trove of information is given about each title, including year of release, where it came from, who directed it, the cast, and so on. The result is a wildly entertaining volume that will present hours of informational entertainment.

THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO EXPLOITATION MOVIES is easy to follow and offers its content in an easy-to-understand manner. The guide lists the movies in order of release year, which in turn gives a chronological timeline of the genre. This is fascinating to see, as definitive trends can be distinguished, indicating which type of sleaze was popular and prominent at the time.

I love the visuals in this book, as they add monumentally to the information. They also add a new dimension of depth to each film, giving a glimpse into the promotional side of the business. Many of these exploitation titles boasted intriguing taglines and entertaining quotes. This is a big reason many collector’s now relish the actual box office posters and images that are represented within the book.

THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO EXPLOITATION MOVIES is a major win for me, and I highly recommend it. Whether you’re an avid fan of the genre or you just have a minor interest, this book will offer something for everyone. It is available now, so snag your copy soon.

MSB

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