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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Filmmaking > Biography > Exploitation > Sexploitation > Japan > Cormanís World: Exploits Of A Hollywood Rebel (2011/Anchor Bay Blu-ray)/Debauchery (1983)/True Story Of A Woman In Jail: Sex Hell (1975/Nikkatsu/Impulse DVDs)

Cormanís World: Exploits Of A Hollywood Rebel (2011/Anchor Bay Blu-ray)/Debauchery (1983)/True Story Of A Woman In Jail: Sex Hell (1975/Nikkatsu/Impulse DVDs)

 

Picture: B-/C+/C+†††† Sound: B-/C+/C+†††† Extras: C+/C-/C-†††† Main Programs: B/C/C+

 

 

Exploitation films used to be fun and now there is a major glut of them.Home video is one of the culprits and people who make them are becoming increasingly predicable and formulaic for something that was that way to begin with.In this field, there are a few name producers and many independents worldwide, and then there is Roger Corman.

 

Cormanís World: Exploits Of A Hollywood Rebel (2011) is a recent look at the history, legacy and influence on a filmmaker who was frowned upon and made hundreds of forgettable works, yet he also made memorable ones and also landed up giving some of the now-biggest names ion the business their first work.Many know the names (Nicholson, Scorsese, Hopper, etc.) and this nearly 90-minutes-long special does a fine-if-too short job of showing just what he accomplished as he moved from drive-ins to grindhouses to home video and is still making features to this day.

 

The massive number of interview subjects are like a whoís who of the business and this is as well made as it is well edited.Those not in the know will be surprised how prolific Corman really was and may have even produced hits you were not aware he was connected to.The more films of his you have seen, the more entertaining this is.It will also make you want to seek out some of these titles and is a must-see for all serious film fans.Extras include trailers, Extended Scenes and Special Messages To Roger.

 

Though there were endless numbers of semi-nude and even topless women in Corman films, he did draw the line (for the most part) at sex films, which is where many of his competitors thrived and/or operated worldwide.Nikkatsu in Japan was one such studio that indulged in such fare and two of their films are now on DVD from Impulse.

 

Debauchery (1983) is a weak, average tale of a housewife (Ryoko Watanabe) who throws herself into the world of sex at night by working for a Madame to save her marriage and of course, it backfires.The locales might be different, but the story too predictable no matter how sexy she might be, but this is not always so.True Story Of A Woman In Jail: Sex Hell (1975) is older, a little better and is essentially a woman-in-jail film that is on the graphic side and very much of its era.It also owes something to Roger Corman.

Both come with text liner note booklets inside their DVD cases written by Jasper Sharp and Debauchery add an original theatrical trailer.

 

 

The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on World is the best here as expected, but it also mixes many different types of film and low def video with its new HD footage, so it plays as you would expect from a documentary.The anamorphically enhanced 1.85 x 1 image on Debauchery and 2.35 X 1 image on Hell are good for the format with decent prints (if not perfect) and show their age, but both prints show their age.

 

The Dolby TrueHD 5.1 on World is also the best sonically, but we get all kinds of monophonic and simple stereo audio, so the surrounds are often filled with music and Corman was not about good sonics to begin with.The lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono sound on both DVDs is fine for the low budget films they are, so you get what you pay for.

 

 

-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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