An Evening of Analog Excitement: The VIDEO VIOLENCE REDUX DELUXE World Premiere Recap with Horror Boobs / Blood Video Main Man Matt D!
Matt D., myself and Eric from Cinedelphia hangin' out and gearing up in anticipation for the festivities of the evening. I'd had about 13 pieces of candy at this point already. Matt looks like that all the time.“It’s just too much fun! How could we not talk about it?!” – Director Gary Cohen in reference to his films and career. That pretty much sums up how I feel about my trip to Philly for the World Premiere of Gary P. Cohen’s Video Violence Redux Deluxe. What’s that you say? Well, even if you didn't, you might as well read on cause this baby ain't gonna stop crying anytime soon. (Cue Josh: "What?")
EAT CANDY, WATCH VHS AND BE FREE.“Hi, Josh... that sure is a lot of candy,” the Cashier said with a smile. “Hi, (name concealed for legal reasons), it’s for a film screening tonight.” Josh replied. “I saw EVIL DEAD! What are you seeing?” the cashier said in an excited tone. “VIDEO VIOLENCE!” Josh proclaimed. “So, that’s like, a real screening...” she replied in a serious voice. Without knowing anything of the film, the title itself has enough power to indicate the severity of the situation and even our dollar store cashier now understood why we just checked out with what seemed to be 30 pounds of the sweetest crap we could find. “Have fun at the screening tonight!” she proclaimed as we hit the exit. Little did she know, the fun has been in full effect since the minute Josh and I decided to combine our VHS Voltron-like forces… But, yeah… to the screening! With Josh behind the wheel, that left me in charge of navigation! Ha! Thank God for GPS, but a guy like me knows nothing of such technology. Josh had to turn it on for me and plug in our destination, Viva Video in Ardmore, PA! I had the important job of holding the GPS for the ride. The store itself, in one word – AWESOME! Miguel, the shop owner, greeted us with a huge smile and immediately started to nerd out with us showing off his proudly displayed posters. And of course, THE VHS WALL! A video store that actually rents VHS in this day and age is always a nice thing to see, and there were more than a few video-only gems available (BLOOD LAKE, anyone?), a sign that we were in good hands.
Viva Video's Miguel kickin' it with VIDEO VIOLENCE Co-Writer / Actor Paul Kaye and Director Gary P. Cohen. These are COOL DUDES.The true wizard of gore behind the curtain of this event is Eric Bresler, main brain of the Cinedelphia Film Festival, which this screening was a part of. It also includes a screening of Johnny Dickie’s SLAUGHTER TALES and 37 other films being shown all over the Philadelphia area. “I specialize in screenings in weird places that no one shows up to,” Bresler said as he walked us into the dank basement of Viva Video, and then into a back room that hosted a movie screen, about 40 chairs and a dead mouse in the corner for authentic ambiance. I think that they just didn’t want to clean it up. Eric's also the main programmer for PhilaMOCA, and he's helping us host the May 25th screening of the Horror Boobs / Lunchmeat produced documentary ADJUST YOUR TRACKING: THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE VHS COLLECTOR. In short, he rules.
Eric getting ready to take in the awesomeness of VIDEO VIOLENCE REDUX DELUXE. The dead mouse was unavailable for a photograph. BUMMER.But honestly, who wouldn’t come out to a screening of VIDEO VIOLENCE in the basement of an actual video store? The house packed out! Men, women and children of all ages were hangin’, checkin’ out the racks of VHS, DVDs, and Blu-rays. “We have THE VIDEO DEAD on all three formats now!” the owner, Miguel, excitedly blurted out. Patrons snacked on sweets (it worked!), and perused the newest issues of Lunchmeat and Blood Video, as they awaited the arrival of director Gary Cohen and co-writer Paul Kaye. These home video horror Icons are probably two of the nicest guys that have ever been involved in filming pseudo-snuff footage. But in all seriousness folks, these guys are great. They greeted everyone who showed up, signed autographs, answered questions and told stories that had this fan laughing off the edge of his seat.
A look at the bodacious VHS wall in VIVA VIDEO. So many amazing titles, man. Miguel, you RULE!And now, it’s show time, everyone! Descend into the bowels of the building and grab a seat, one that's hopefully not under a leaky pipe. When it came time for Josh and me to intro the film, he did a great job expressing his love for VIDEO VIOLENCE and the VHS medium. I tried to confuse him and make people laugh. Then came the announcements: Camp Motion Pictures, in conjunction with Lunchmeat Magazine, will be releasing this new edit of Video Violence Redux Deluxe on DVD in an ultimate collectors package that will include both original films presented in their full cuts on VHS in a gigantic clamshell, an “I’m a Lifer” T-shirt, and much more! VHS Overload! The lights went out, the film played on and the crowd dug every minute. Miguel passed around a giant plate of cookies, Gary and Paul whispered back and forth to each other, and Josh and I couldn’t be happier. A total success! It was the candy, just so you know.
Director Gary P. Cohen and Co-Writer / Actor Paul Kaye entertain the crowd with their total awesomeness. Clickity-click the image or just CLICK HERE for a groovy clip from the Q&A that followed the screening.
Man, what an amazing night, indeed. VIDEO VIOLENCE is a film that just means so much to me and I'm absolutely elated that I could be a part of this fantastic night and have a hand in bringing Gary's flicks back to tape and into the hands of Videovores everywhere. Special thanks to Eric Bresler for putting this all together, Miguel for allowing us all to hang out in his beautiful rental haven, Arin Sang-urai for capturing some truly awesome images, Matt D. for being the best brother in analog there is, and of course, Gary and Paul for coming out making the night truly fantastic with their entertaining anecdotes, great humor and all-around excellence. It was a night I'll never forget. And I couldn't be more thankful for it.
Groove On and Never Stop Feeding that VCR.