Rozz Williams Fan Site

Rozz Williams Fan Site
interesting Rozz Williams information

MENU

Contact

ROZZ TOP 5 SONGS + STORIES

Rozz Bios & Interviews

Rozz Williams Articles

Some Rozz Reviews

L.A. DEATH TRIP

80s MOVIES + L.A. PUNK

Deathrock News Hollywood

45 GRAVE MUSIC & DVDs

MIGHTY SPHINCTER COLLECTION

45 GRAVE/PENIS FLYTRAP INFO

INFO

Recommended Dark Music List

Recommended Horror Films

JAMES DEAN + VAMPIRA

Linnea Quigley Page

Favorite Actors List

Hollywood Haunts


 

80s MOVIES + L.A. PUNK


 

 

 

Recommended 80s Movies + L.A. Punk

 

Recommended 80s Movies
(not counting 80s-made period pieces about other decades,
 but including 80s period pieces made in other decades)

[recommended L.A. Punk Rock, famous L.A. music-scene locations, and more are at bottom of this page]

Airplane! (1980)
Adventures in Babysitting (1987)
Alligator (1980)
Altered States (1980)
American Gigolo (1980)
American Gothic (1988)
American Hardcore (2008)
American Scary (2006)
Another State of Mind (1984)
At Close Range (1986)
Back to the Future (1985)
Back to the Future Part II (1989)
Bad Boys (1983)
Beat Street (1984)
Better Off Dead (1985)
Beverly Hills Cop (1984)
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
Blue Velvet (1986)
Body Double (1984)
Body Heat (1981)
The Boogens (1981)
TheBoogeyman(1981)
The Boys Next Door (1984)
The Boy Who Drank Too Much (1980)
Breakfast Club (1984)
Breakin’ (1984)
Caddyshack (1980)
Children of the Corn (1984)
Child’s Play (1988)
C.H.U.D. (1984)
Class (1983)
Class of 1984 (1982)
Cleveland’s Screaming (2008)
Cocktail (1988)
Colors (1987)
Comfort and Joy (1984)
Crocodile Dundee (1986)
The Day After (1983)
Decline of Western Civilization (1981)
Desperate Lives (1982)
Desperately Seeking Susan (1985)
D.O.A. (1981)
Do the Right Thing (1989)
The Drug Knot (tv special 1986)
Drugstore Cowboy (1989)
Earth Girls are Easy (1989)
El Norte (1983)
Elvira, Mistress of the Dark (1988)
Evil Dead (1983)
Evil Dead 2 (1987)
Fade to Balck (1980)
Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
Fatal Attraction (1987)
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
Footloose (1984)
48 Hours (1982)
Friday the 13th (1980)
Friday the 13th  Part 2 (1981)
Friday the 13th Part 3 (1982)
Friday the 13th Part 4 (1984) my personal favorite one
Ghostbusters (1984)
Ghostbusters Part II (1989)
The Ghoulies (1984)
Goonies (1985)
Gregory’s Girl (1981)
Gremlins (1984)
Hairspray (1988)
Halloween 2 (1981)
Hardbodies (1984)
Hell Night (1981)
Hot Tub Time Machine (2010)
Jekyll & Hyde…together, again (1982)
Just One of the Guys (1985)
The Karate Kid (1984)
Ladies and Gentlemen, The Fabulous Stains (1981)
Last American Virgin (1982)
Less Than Zero (1987)
Let’s Get Lost (1989)
Liquid Sky (1983)
Losin’ It (1983)
Lost Boys (1987)
Made in Britain (1982)
Mask (1985)
Modern Girls (1986)
My Bloody Valentine (1981)
My Bodyguard (1980)
My Tutor (1982)
Near Dark (1987)
The New Kids (1984)
Night of the Demons (1987)
9 ½ Weeks (1986)
Officer and a Gentlemen (1982)
The Offspring (1986)
Out of the Blue (1980)
Pick-up Artist (1987)
Pick-up Summer (1981)
Police Academy (1984)
Poltergeist (1982)
Polyester (1981)
Pope of Greenwich Village (1984)
Population: 1 (1981)
Porky's (1982)
Pretty in Pink (1986)
Prom Night (1981)
Punpkinhead (1988)
Punk: Attitude (2005)
Punk’s Not Dead (2008)
Purple Rain (1984)
Rage: 20 Years of West Coast Punk (2000)
Rain  Man (1988)
Reckless (1984)
Reform School Girls (1986)
Repo Man (1984)
Return of the Living Dead (1985)
Revenge of the Living Zombies (1982)
Revenge of the Nerds (1984)
Risky Business (1983)
River’s Edge (1986)
RoboCop (1987)
Rumble Fish (1983)
Runaway Train (1985)
Sid & Nancy (1986)
Sixteen Candles (1985)
Skateboard Madness (1981)
Skinhead Attitude (2003)
Slog: The Movie (2000)
Spookies (1985)
Star 80 (1983)
Starman (1984)
Streetwise (1984)
Suburbia (1983)
The Sure Thing (1985)
Surf Nazis Must Die (198
Surf 2 (1984)
Tapeheads (1988)
Teachers (1984)
Terminator (1984)
Tex (1982)
This is England (2006)
Thrash (1986)
Three O'Clock High (1987)
To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)
Top Gun (1986)
Toxic Avenger (1985)
Toxic Avenger Part II (1989)
Trick or Treat (1986)
Tron (1982)
Tuff Turf (1984)
Urgh! A Music War (1981)
Valley Girl (1983)
Vampire’s Kiss (1989)
Vice Squad (1982)
Vicious Lips (1987)
WarGames (1989)
Warlock (1989)
War of the Roses (1989)
The Wedding Singer (1998)
Weird Science (1985)
The Wild Life (1984)
Zapped! (1982)

L.A. Punk Information:

70s - 80s

 

Late 70s-early 80s L.A. area Punk, New Wave, and Deathrock bands A-Z:
(bands marked with * are known to have played with Christian Death)

45 Grave *
5051 *
100 Flowers
Adolescents (Fullerton, O.C.) *
A.F.U. (Always Fucked Up) (Oxnard)
Agent Orange (Placentia, O.C.)
Rikk Agnew (O.C.)
Agression (Oxnard)
AKA
Alley Cats
America's Hardcore
Angry Samoans
Anti
Anti-Scrunti Faction (all-girl)
Artless Entanglements
Aryan Disgrace
Astrovamps *
The Autistics
Bad Religion
The Bags
Battalion of Saints (San Diego)
Beezlebub Youth *
Berlin Brats (aka The Brats)
Black Flag (Hermosa Beach)
Black Randy & The Metro Squad
Blades
Bl'ast (Oxnard)
The Blasters
Bleeding Hearts
Bling Hatred
Castration Squad *
Catch-22
Caustic Cause
Channel 3 (aka CH3) (Cerritos, O.C.)
Chiefs (aka Cheifs)
China White *
Christian Death
Circle Jerks
Circle One
Civil Disobedience
Colonial Moe *
Conservatives (O.C.)
Controllers
The Convicted
Cradle of Thorns *
The Cramps *
Creeping Ritual (pre-Gun Club w/ JL Pierce and Kid Congo)
Crewd (Long Beach)
The Crowd (Huntington Beach)
Crucial Truth *
The Crush
The Deadbeats
Dead Hippie
The Decadents *
Decry
Der Stab (Long Beach)
Descendents *
Detours (pre-Social Distortion, Agent Orange, Adolescents) (Lahabra, O.C.)
Detox (Oxnard)
D.I. * (Fullerton, O.C.)
The Dickies
Dils
Disability
Dissension (Long Beach)
Dr. Know (Oxnard)
Doggy Style
The Dull
Eddie & The Subtitles *
Even Worse
Exobiota
EXP
The Eyes
Falling Idols (Long Beach)
False Confession (Oxnard)
F-Troop
F-Word
Fear
Fishbone
Flesheaters *
Flyboys (surf punk)
Funeral * (Long Beach)
Gears *
General Hospital (pre-Social Distortion, Agent Orange, Adolescents) (Lahabra, O.C.)
Germs
Geza X
Godhead
Go-Go's
Gobscheit *
The Grim (Oxnard)
Ground Zero (Oxnard)
The Gun Club
Habeas Corpus (Oxnard)
The Hated (Long Beach)
Heltir
Human Hands
The Iconoclast
Ill Repute (Oxnard)
The Illegals (Los Illegals)
John Coathanger and the Abortions (pre-Vicious Circle/TSOL)
The Joneses (w/ pro skater Steve Olsen)
KAOS
Killer Pussy *
Killroy
Kindled Imagination
The Klan
Kommunity FK *
Large Hardware
The Last
Latin Dogs
Leaving Trains *
Legal Weapon
Levi & The Rockats (rockabilly)
Love Canal
L7
The Lewd
Lost Cause
Mad Parade
Mad Society *
Manson Youth *
Marina Swingers
Mau Maus
Mentors
Middle Class (O.C.)
Mind Over Four
Minutemen (San Pedro)
Model Citizens (pre-Wall of Voodoo)
Modern Industry *
Modern Torture *
Modern Warfare * (O.C.)
Needles & Pins
Nerves
Nervous Gender *
Nig-Heist
Nip Drivers
Nuclear Baby Food
Offspring (O.C.)
Omlits *
Overkill
Panics
Partners in Crime
Peace Corpse
Plag *
The Plugz (first L.A. punk lp, "Electrify Me")
Political Crap (w/ pro skater Duane Peters)
Premature Ejaculation
Psychotic Fungus
The Quick
Quijita *
Randoms
Raszebrae
Rat Pack (Oxnard)
Reactionaries (pre-Minutemen)
Red Beret (Long Beach)
Red Brigade *
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Red Kross (aka Red Cross)
Red Rockers
Red Scare
RF7
Rhino 39 (Long Beach)
Rich Kids on LSD (aka RKL) (Oxnard)
The Rotters (Oxnard/Ventura)
Saccharine Trust
Sacred Lies *
Saigon
The Scarecrows
Scared Straight (Oxnard)
The Scoundrels (w/ pro skater Tony Alva) (Venice Beach)
The Screamers
Screamin' Sirens (all-girl)
Secret Hate (Long Beach)
Seditionaires
Sexsick
Sharp Corners
Shattered Faith (O.C.)
Simpletones (Rosemead)
Sin 34
Sins (O.C.)
The Skrews (Huntington Beach, O.C.)
Skulls
Snickers
Social Distortion (O.C.) *
Sparks
Spazz Attack
SS Cult (pre-Vicious Circle/TSOL)
SS Nightmare
Stains (aka The Stain)
Stäläg 13 (Oxnard)
Stingers (Long Beach)
Subculture
Subhumans
Suburban Lawns (Long Beach)
Suicidal Tendencies (Venice Beach)
Superheroines
Surf Punks (Malibu)
S.V.D.B. (Oxnard, Brandon Cruz)
SWA
Symbol Six
Target of Demand (Long Beach)
Target 13
Thee Undertakers
The Tourists (pre-Redd Cross)
TSOL (Long Beach / Huntington Beach, O.C.)
Uniform Choice
Unit 3 With Venus
Unknowns
Urinals
UXA
Vandals (O.C.)
Vicious Circle (pre-TSOL) (Long Beach)
Voodoo Church *
Voodoo Idols
Wall of Voodoo
Wasted Youth *
Waxx
The Web (female-fronted L.A. deathrock)
White Flag
Wurm
Youth Brigade
Youth Gone Mad
Zippers
Zolar X (pre-punk/sci-fi glam/glitter)

***

L.A. Punk & New Wave Clubs/Venues 1975-1988:
Alexandria Hotel, 5th and Spring, Downtown L.A.
Al's Bar, 305 S. Hewitt, Downtown L.A., East of Little Tokyo
Anti-Club, 4658 Melrose, Hollywood
Atomic Cafe, 422 E. 1st St., Little Tokyo (Downtown L.A.)
Boardner's, 1652 N. Cherokee Ave., Hollywood (Rozz's favorite bar)
Bob's Place, Los Angeles
Cathay de Grande, Selma & Argyle, Hollywood (closed 1985)
Club 88, 11784 Pico Blvd., West Los Angeles (much of Decline of Western Civilization filmed here)
Club Fuck
Club Lingerie, 6507 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
Country Club (Surf Punks, many more)
Coven 13, 7070 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
Cuckoo's Nest, Huntington Beach
Elk's Lodge, MacArthur Park
  (St. Paddy's Day Massacre Swat Raid)
    bands performing were the Go-Go's,
     Plugz, Alley Cats, Zeros, X
Fender's Ballroom, Long Beach
The Fleetwood, Redondo Beach
Gazzari's, 9039 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood
Helter Skelter, 836 N. Highland, Hollywood (1989-1993)
Hollywood Palladium, 6215 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (Bowie, The Clash, DRI, many more)
Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, 7000 Hollywood Blvd. (one-time only punk show with the Germs, Go Gos, Mau Maus, and Hal Negro & the Satintones)
Hong Kong Cafe, Chinatown (Downtown L.A.)
Las Palmas Theater, 1642 Las Palmas (50s-80s concert venue, site of famous no-show by Sly Stone on November 13, 1987)
Linda's Doll Hut, 107 S. Adams, Anaheim (Social Distortion, Offspring, Laika & the Cosmonauts, Los Straitjackets, many more)
Los Angeles Arts Building
Los Angeles Land's End   
Los Angeles Lectisternium 
Madame Wong's West, 2900 Wilshire Blvd., Chinatown, Downtown L.A. (The B-52's, Fear, The Police, many more)
The Masque, alley on Cherokee, S. of Hollywood Blvd. (July 1, 1977-Oct., 1979) (Christian Death, Skulls, Bags, Weirdos, Controllers, X, Screamers, Germs, many more)
Moose Lodge, Redondo Beach  (1st Black Flag show, January 1979)
Music Machine, 12200 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica (Violent Femmes, Lords of the New Church, Jane's Addiction, X, many more)
Olympic Auditorium, 1801 S. Grand, Downtown L.A. (Dead Kennedys, Fear, PiL, X, Motorhead, many more. Also scenes from The Doors shot here in 1990)
The Other Masque (aka The New Masque) 6314 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood (Dec. 1978-late Feb. 1979) (Go-Gos, Cramps, Dead Boys, many more)
Orpheum, 642 S. Broadway, Downtown L.A. (opened February 15, 1926)
The Palace, 1735 Vine St., Hollywood (Cramps, Bangles, R.E.M., many more)
Pan Andreas Theater, 8325 Santa Monica Blvd. (West of the Starwood)
Perkins Palace, now the Raymond Theatre, Holly & Raymond Streets, Pasadena (Surf Punks, many more)
Perversion
Polliwog Park, Beach & Redondo Blvd., Manhattan Beach (Black Flag's first performance in 1978, picnickers couldn't handle it and hurled food and insults)
The Press Club, 4773 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood (now the Steve Allen Theatre)
Raji's,  6160 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood (45 Grave's live album "Only the Good Die Young", The Cramps, Dream Syndicate, many more)
The Ritz, Riverside
Rodney Bingenheimer's English Disco, (Glam/Glitter/pre-punk)
    7561 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (opened 1972)
The Roxy Theatre, 9009 W. Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Surf Punks, many more)
The Starwood, Santa Monica Blvd. & Crescent Heights, W. Hollywood (Surf Punks, Fear, many more)
The Scream (first location), the Seven Seas Nightclub
   across from the famed Chinese Theater on Hollywood Blvd. (fall 1985-summer 1986)
   This is actually the backstage area of Jimmy Kimmel Live now on ABC
The Scream (second location) basement of the Embassy Hotel,
  downtown L.A. (summer 1986-spring 1987)  Now USC dorms.
  Very cool place I remember well. The club area was impossible to describe and do justice with the
  cavernous alleys, stair, and hallways leading to different rooms
  (The footage where the Red Hot Chili Peppers play in the background in
  “Less Than Zero” was shot at the club at this time period).  Frequent bands were
  Jane's Addiction, the Chili Peppers, Kommunity FK,
    Lords of the New Church, X, TSOL, many more.
The Scream (third location), Park View Plaza Hotel, 607 S Park View St.
      (North end of MacArthru Park, Los Angeles
   (Kix, Ministry, Iggy Pop, LA Guns, Soul Asylum, Faster Pussycat,
    Death Angel, Revolting Cocks, Balaam & the Angel, TSOL, Redd Kross,
     Lords of the New Church, Soundgarden, Sugarcubes, many more)
Showcase Theatre, Corona
The Stardust (Adolescents, Black Flag, many more)
The Starwood, Santa Monica Blvd. & Crescent Heights, W. Hollywood (originally PJ's Club, then in the 70s hard rock: Van Halen, Quiet Riot,
  then in the 80s punk and new wave: Fear, Devo, Go-Gos, Black Flag, scenes from "Decline of Western Civilization" 1979-1980, closed in 1982)
Troubadour, 9081 Santa Monica Blvd, W. Hollywood
Trouper's Hall, 1625 N. LaBrea, "Radio Free Hollywood" show 1975
The Ukrainian Hall, 4315 Melrose, Hollywood  (Adolescents, Black Flag, many many more)
Variety Arts Center, Olympic & Figueroa, Downtown L.A. (Rozz Williams, Skinny Puppy, Butthole Surfers, many more)
The Veil, In 1981 Joseph Brooks, inspired from his stay in London,
  opened the first gothic nightclub in the United States. 
  The Veil opened in Hollywood and eventually became the nightclub
  "Fetish", coinciding with the opening of Vinyl Fetish records on Melrose. 
   Joseph also spent time spinning import records like Culture Club,
   Depeche Mode, and Bauhaus, on KROQ.  By the end of the 80’s,
   Joseph was ready to open "Sinamatic", which has been open for almost 10 years now.
   In 1989, Jason Lavitt became a regular at his favorite nightclub, Helter Skelter. 
   Eventually Jason became the DJ of Helter Skelter and a record clerk at Vinyl Fetish.
   In the early 90’s, Jason was spinning at Perversion and other nightclubs.
   In 1996 Jason and Joseph felt the gothic scene needed to be rejuvenated.
   Coven 13 was opened at club Moguls in Hollywood.
   Coven 13 soon outgrew its location with the club regularly filled
   to capacity and lines down the street.  The breaking point came
   when the fire marshal shut down the club during the
   Switchblade Symphony concert.  With concerts like
   Death in June, Clan of Xymox, and the Creatures, Coven 13
   found a better home at the El Rey Theatre.  Coven 13
   is everybody’s favorite gothic phantasmagoria and has
   hosted the likes of Peter Murphy and Siouxsie Sioux. 
   The Vex (aka Vex's), East L.A.
Whisky a-Go-Go, 8901 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood
The Zero (aka Zero Zero), 1957 Cahuenga Blvd, Hollywood, after hours punk club 1980-1985)
Zombie Zoo

***

Other punk hangouts:
Canterbury Apts, N. Cherokee & Hollywood Blvd
   (rent was only $150/month in 1978)
The Cramps apartment, 1206 1/2 Edgemont St., Hollywood (through most of the 80s)
Darby Crash death site, 137 N. Fuller (Rozz Williams of Christian Death also died on this street)
Danny's Oki Dog parking lot, Santa Monica Blvd & Vista, Hollywood   (post-show hangout early 1980s)
Denny's, 7373 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (The Go-Gos decided on their name here, many famous musicians have eaten here)
Disgraceland, 1553 Cassil, Hollywood (early 80s punk hangout of the Go Gos, Billy Idol, Lydia Lunch, Madness, Split Enz, Fishbone, Gun Club, Specials, Chili Peppers, many more.
    Owned by Jayne Mansfield's widower Mickey Hargitay, can be seen in the films "The Boost" and "The Running Kind")
Edison High, Huntington Beach (birth of hardcore punk,
  hardcore started here in Orange County with a gang called
  the Wayward Caines, who formed to defend themselves
  against "long-haired" or "redneck" aggression)
Exodus Clinic, Daniel Freeman Hospital, 4650 Lincoln, Marina Del Rey (Kurt Cobain walked out of the drug rehab clinic here and flew to Seattle where he killed himself on April 6, 1994)
Fairfax High School (alumni include Anthony Kiedis, Hillel Slovak, and Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, also Slash)
Frolic Room, 6245 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood (near Raji's and the Pantages Theatre, also a great scene from Chris Penn's movie "Cement" filmed here)
Hard Rock Cafe, Beverly & San Vicente, West Hollywood, more of a "brat pack"-type hangout from 1987 until it closed in 2007
Marshall High School (alumni include Keith Morris of the Circle Jerks, also Michelle Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas)
Millie's Restaurant 3524 Sunset Blvd., Silverlake (members of the Circle Jerks and Thelonious Monster have worked here)
Monroe High School (alumni include Jeffrey Lee Pierce of the Gun Club)
Mystic Records headquarters, 6277 Selma Ave., Hollywood
Oki Dog (see above Danny's Oki Dog) (the Germs hung out there, tons of other punks)
Quad Tech, 6th & Western (Germs "GI" album recording studio, took 3 weeks, $6000 in 1979)
Slash Records storefront, 7381 Beverly at Santa Monica Blvd and Fairfax (Fear, Germs, X, Gun Club, Flesheaters, many more)
Spaceland, 1717 Silverlake Blvd., Silverlake (post-punk, post-grunge and surf, Beck, Los Straitjackets, Man or Astroman, Flat Duo Jets, many more)
Taft High School (alumni include Jane Wiedlin of the Go Gos, Joan Jett, Cherrie Currie and Jackie Fox of the Runaways, Steve Bartek of Oingo Boingo)
Troy High School in Fullerton (alumni include Mike Ness and Dennis Dannell of Social Distortion, Casey Royer of D.I.)
University High (aka Uni High, High School of Darby Crash and Pat Smear  of the Germs, also Danny Elfman, John Densmore and Robby Krieger of The Doors, Bruce Johnson of the Beach Boys,
  Dean Torrence of Jan & Dean, Steve Wynn of the Dream Syndicate, Nancy Sinatra, Randy Newman, David Cassidy, Sandy Nelson, Leon Schneiderman of Oingo Boingo, Tone-Loc, many more)
Van Nuys High School (interior shots of "Rock and Roll High School" and "Fast Times at Ridgemont High")
Whig Factory, La Brea, Hollywood. Headquarters for John Macias' P.U.N.X., an organization devoted to promoting punk shows in L.A. for never more than $5 admission.

***

L.A. punk band former residences:
The Cramps: 1206 1/2 N. Edgemont St., Hollywood
Billy Zoom of X's Basement Apartment, Afton & Gower
"The Wilton Hilton", N. Wilton & Franklin (Tomata Du Plenty & Tommy Gear
 of the Screamers lived there, as well as Kid Congo Powers of the Cramps)
Holly-West, Building, Chief's Recording Studio, corner Hollywood & Western
"The Plunger Pit" and "Disgraceland" (punk apartments in Hollywood)
BYO, Youth Brigade house:
Skinhead Manor, Leland Way, West of Highland, South of Sunset Blvd
Black Flag: "The Church", Hermosa Beach, Black Flag residence circa Feb. 1979,
 shown in the punk documentary "The Decline of Western Civilization"
X House, 601 S. Van Ness (X's first show was there)
X House #2, 1118 N. Genesee, W. Hollywood (back cover of "Wild Gift" album, also scenes from "Decline of Western Civilization" were shot there
)

***

Late 70s-early 80s San Francisco/Northern California area Punk, New Wave, and Deathrock bands A-Z:
(we can't forget our brothers up in the Bay Area who had their own incredible scene,
please check out the NOT SO QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT cd available here):
Agent 86 (Arcata)
Authorities (Stockton)
Avengers
Bad Posture
Bent Nails
Jello Biafra
Black Humor
Capitol Punishment (Fresno)
Church Police
Code of Honor
Condemned to Death
Crucifix
Deadly Reign
Dead Kennedys
Demented Youth
Double Cross (Sonoma)
DRI (by way of Houston, TX)
The Faction (w/ pro skater Steve Caballero)
Fang
Fifth Column
Flipper
Free Beer
Frightwig
Fuck-Ups
Ghost Dance
Intensified Chaos
Juvenile Justice
Karnage
Lennonburger
Los Olvidados (San Jose)
M.A.D.
Maniax (Fresno)
Millions of Dead Cops (MDC) (by way of Austin, TX)
Minimal Man
Naked Lady Wrestlers
NBJ
No Alternative
Pariah
Pop-O-Pies
Rebels and Infidels
Rebel Truth (Sacramento)
Ribsy (San Jose)
Scapegoats (Santa Cruz)
Sick Pleasure
Sleeping Dogs
Sluglords
Social Unrest
Society Dog
Soldiers of Fortune
Square Cools
Tales of Terror
Tongue Avulsion
Vengeance
Verbal Abuse (by way of Houston, TX)
Warzone (not to be confused with Raybeez' NYC band)
Whipping Boy

***

And while I'm at it, I may as well go back in time
to other important addresses of Los Angeles rock,
before punk....

L.A. Clubs/Venues 1950s-1960s-1970s:
Anaheim Covention Center (Elvis concerts April 23-24, 1973 & November 30, 1976)
Aquarius Theatre, 6230 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
  (Big T.N.T. Show in 1965, Byrds, Bo Diddley, etc.)
Ash Grove, 8162 Melrose Ave. (folk/blues club of the 60s)
Association House, 65 N. Ardmore, Hollywood
  The Association, Van Dyke Parks, Donovan, etc.)
Bel Air Club, 312 Catalina, Redondo Beach
  (where Surf Music began in 1961
Flipper's Roller Disco, Santa Monica and La Cienega, West Hollywood (Prince, John Cougar, The Blasters, more)
FM Station, Lankershim & Victory Blvd., North Hollywood (The Band, Edgar Winter, Leon Russell, Nina Hagen, many more)
The Forum, Manchester Blvd & Prairie Ave., Inglewood (Lakers basketball and rock arena: Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Elvis on Nov. 14, 1970 & May 11, 1974)
Fox Venice Theater, 620 Lincoln Ave. (70s Surf films, Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo concerts, Little Feat, John Lee Hooker with Canned Heat live album, many more)
Gazzari's, 9039 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood (The Doors and The Byrds in the mid-60s, Van Halen in the 70s, much more metal in the 80s)
Greek Theatre, Griffith Park, Los Feliz (Joni Mitchell, Crosby Stills & Nash, X, many more)
Harmony Park, 1514 Broadway, Anaheim (famous club where King of the Surf Guitar Dick Dale played in the early 60s)
Haunted House, 6315 Hollywood Blvd.  (mid-60s teen club, site of filming for "It's A Bikini World" and "The Girl in the Gold Boots")
Hollywood Bowl, 2301 N. Highland, Hollywood (built in 1929 and still going strong today, Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Doors, many more... Hendrix opened for the Monkees 1967 here)
Hollywood Palladium, 6215 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (opened in 1940, Frank Sinatra, Rolling Stones, Grateful Dead, Bowie, Ramones, the 1973 Surf Revival, The Who, Clash, DRI, many more)
The Ice House, 24 North Mentor, Pasadena  (Peter Tork pre-Monkees, The Association, The Standells, many more)
The Ivar Theatre, 1605 Ivar, Hollywood (Lord Buckley live album Feb. 12, 1959, Grateful Dead Feb. 25, 1966, Tom Waits song reference "Emotional Weather Report")
Kennedy Hall, 451 S. Atlantic Blvd., East Los Angeles (famous 60s latino club where Los Lobos and others hung out)
Long Beach Arena (Elvis concert November 14-15, 1972 & April 25, 1976)
The Onion, Sepulveda Unitarian Universalist Society Church, 9550 Haskell,  Sepulveda (Grateful Dead "Acid Test" concerts in February 1966, Ray Campi rockabilly shows in the 70s)
Pan-Pacific Auditorium, Beverly & Curson, Hollywood (famous Elvis concerts October 28-29, 1956, destroyed in 1988 fire)
Pandora's Box, Sunset & Crescent Heights, Hollywood (The Beach Boys played one month straight in 1962, torn down in 1966 after the Sunset Strip riots, now a bus stop)
The Rock Corporation, 14310 Oxnard, Van Nuys (70s club where Van Halen, Black Oak Arkansas, The Knack, The Heaters, The Rotters, many more played)
Rodney Bingenheimer's E Club, 8171 Sunset Blvd. (Rodney on the Roq's first club, now La Toque Restaurant)
Rodney Bingenheimer's English Disco, 7561 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (Bowie, Queen, Suzi Quatro, Sweet, T-Rex, Led Zeppelin, many more during the pre-punk 1972-1976 Glam/Glitter period)
The Roxy, 9009 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Bowie, Springsteen, Marley, Zappa, Prince, many more)
Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, Pico Blvd. & Main St., Santa Monica (The T.A.M.I. Show in 1964 with the Beach Boys, Rolling Stones, Jan & Dean, AND Urgh! A Music War
  in 1979 with the Surf Punks, Gary Numan, The Cramps, Gang of Four, lots of others...)
Sea Witch Nightclub, La Cienega & Sunset, W. Hollywood (60s club)
Seventh & Main, Downtown L.A. (March 12, 1987 U2 video for "Where the Streets Have No Name")
Shakey's Pizza, Gayley & Weyburn, Westwood (Sparks' 1971 first paid performance...some other Shakey's in L.A. would have Surf bands like the Belairs play in the early 60s)
Shrine Auditorium, 665 W. Jefferson, Los Angeles (June 8, 1956 Elvis concert) 
The Starwood, Santa Monica Blvd. & Crescent Heights, W. Hollywood (originally PJ's Club, then in the 70s hard rock: Van Halen, Quiet Riot,
 then in the 80s punk and new wave: Fear, Devo, Go-Gos, Black Flag, many more)
Thee Experience, Sunset Blvd & Sierra Bonita, Hollywood (Hendrix, Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, many more)
The Whisky-a-Go-Go, 8901 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Doors, Kinks, Zeppelin, Who, Hendrix, Byrds, everyone really)

***

L.A. Important Addresses or Hangouts 1950s-1960s-1970s-1980s:
Alta-Cienega Motel, 1005 N. La Cienega, W. Hollywood
  (Jim Morrison slept off his binges here, across the street
  from The Doors' business office at 8512 Santa Monica Blvd.
Barney's Beanery, 8447 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hollywood
  (Janis Joplin was drinking here and at the Troubadour the night she died, also it's
   been told she broke a bottle over Jim Morrison's head here)
Beatles' Residence in August 1964, 356 St. Pierre Rd., Bel Air
Beatles' Residence in August 1965, 2850 Benedict Canyon, Bel Air
Ben Frank's, 8585 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (The Kinks, Zeppelin, Byrds, etc.)
Beverly Hills Hotel, 9641 Sunset Blvd., Beverly Hills
   (incidentally the cover of The Eagles "Hotel California")
The Body Shop, 8250 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood
  (Van Halen awarded their first gold record here in 1977)
Mars Bonfire Residence, 6383 Yucca, Hollywood
  (Steppenwolf's "Born to be Wild" written here)
Brave New World, 1644 Cherokee, Hollywood (Love/Grass Roots)
Brother Records, the Beach Boys record label, 1454 5th St., Santa Monica
  (issued only Smiley Smile and Flame's "Flame" album, but the label
   remained affixed to all BB records until 1980
Canter's, 419 N. Fairfax, Frank Zappa declared "the top freako-watering hole and social HQ in L.A."
Capitol Records, 1750 N. Vine (you can't miss it), Beach Boys, Sinatra, Duran Duran, many more's record label
Carpenter's Apartments, 8345 5th St., Downey ("Close to You" 8356 5th St., Downey)
The Castle, 4320 Cedarhurst Circle, Los Feliz, Arthur Lee/Love mansion
The Central, 8852 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood (Eric Burdon, John Belushi), later became the Viper Room (Johnny Depp's club)
Chateau Marmont, 8221 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood (Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Mick Jagger, Gram Parsons, Jefferson Airplane)
"Cherish" by the Association, 721 N. Alfred, W. Hollywood (Terry Kirkman's apt.)
Chez Jay's, 1657 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica (Beach Boy Dennis Wilson's favorite bar)
Cinnamon Cinder, 11345 Ventura Blvd., Studio City (Surf Band the Pastel Six was the house band)
Ciro's, 8433 Sunset Blvd (Sonny & Cher, Lovin' Spoonful, The Byrds)
Eddie Cochran Gravesite, Forest Lawn Cemetery, Cypress
Cocoanut Grove, Ambassador Hotel, 3400 Wilshire Blvd. (Sammy Davis Jr.,  Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Canned Heat)
Nat King Cole's home, 401 South Muirfield, Hollywood 1947 until his death there in 1965 (Hancock Park area)
Colorado Blvd., Pasadena (the little old lady from Pasadena drag-strip)
Continental-Hyatt House, now Hyatt on Sunset, 8401 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (aka "The Riot House", Led Zeppelin, Hawkwind, Morrison)
Crosby, Stills & Nash Album Cover, north of 809 Palm, W. Hollywood (1969 self-titled album cover)
Dead Man's Curve #1, Sunset, West from Groverton, across from Drake Stadium (location in mind during writing of Jan & Dean's 1964 song)
Dead Man's Curve #2, Sunset, just West of Whittier, Beverly Hills (location of Jan Berry's 1966 near-fatal car crash)
Del-Fi Records, 6277 Selma, Hollywood (Bob Keene's rock and surf music label late 50s-60s, later converted to Mystic Sound, where Led Zeppelin recorded "Whole Lotta Love")
De Neve Park, Parkwood and Beverly Glen, Beverly Hills (where Elvis' football team played Rick Nelson's)
The Derby, Los Feliz & Hillhurst, Los Feliz section of East Hollywood (where Swing music was revived in the early to mid-90s, also prominent location of the Vince Vaughn film "Swingers")
Dick Clark Productions, 3003 Olive, Burbank (headquarters of American Bandstand host)
Dionysus Records, 433 E. Tujunga, Burbank (label started in 1984: Big Sandy, Johnny Legend, Boss Martians)
The Doors' Management Office, 8512 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood (also recording studio for "L.A. Woman", it's near the corner of La Cienega)
Dresden Room, 1760 N. Vermont, Los Feliz (trendy lounge hangout, can be seen in the film "Swingers" during the "Stayin' Alive" segment)
Dunbar Hotel 4225 South Central, L.A. (WWII-era black club showcasing Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Billie Holliday, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, many more)
"Earth Angel" site, 2190 W. 30th, L.A. (recording studio for The Penguins' "Earth Angel" Doo-wop hit)
Electro-Vox Recording Studio, 5546 Melrose, Hollywood (The Shields' "You Cheated" and Sammy Masters' rockabilly classic "Pink Cadillac")
Elektra-Asylum Records, 962 W. La Cienega, West Hollywood  (The Doors, Joni Mitchell, many more)
Foster's Freeze, 11969 Hawthorne, Hawthorne (inspiration for the Beach Boys song "Fun Fun Fun", just around the corner from the Beach Boys childhood home at 3701 W. 119th St.)
Franklin Canyon, atop Coldwater Canyon (album cover of The Rolling Stones' 1966 "Big Hits: High Tide and Green Grass" album)
Fred C. Dobbs Coffee House, 8537 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood (mid-60s Sunset Strip Hangout, where Phil Spector met Bob Dylan, Frank Zappa hangout until 1966 when it "lost its cool")
Bobby Fuller Death Site, 1776 Sycamore, Hollywood, July 18, 1966
Gold Star Recording Studios, Santa Monica & Vine (where the Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" was recorded, also Ritchie Valens' "La Bamba", Sonny & Cher's "I Got You Babe",
  The Ramones' "End of the Century", Herb Alpert's "The Lonely Bull", many more, destroyed by fire in 1984)
Jim Gordon Murder Site, 6540 Havenhurst, Van Nuys (one of the top drummers in L.A., played with Traffic, Zappa, George Harrison, Derek & The Dominoes. On June 3, 1983
 he murdered his mother in a schizophrenic rage, began his prison sentence in San Luis Obispo in 1984)
Griffith Park Observatory, Griffith Park, Los Feliz (site of James Dean's 1955 classic "Rebel Without A Cause", also album cover for the Byrd's "Untitled" 1970 album, and
 the Church's "Gold Afternoon Fix" 1990 album)
The Hard Rock Cafe, 300 E. 5th St. downtown L.A. (back cover of The Doors' "Morrison Hotel" 1970 album)
Tim Hardin Death Site, 625 N. Orange, Hollywood (December 29, 1980 overdose)
Hawthorne High School (alumni include Brian, Dennis and Carl Wilson of the Beach Boys)
Hollywood-Hawaiian Hotel, Yucca & Grace, Hollywood (late 60s Pink Floyd, Kinks, many more)
Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, 7000 Hollywood Blvd. (opened in 1927, many famous residents including Marilyn Monroe & Montgomery Clift (ghosts still seen)
Hollywood Sign, Mt. Lee, Hollywood Hills (erected in 1923)
Hollywood Sunset Motel, 8300 Sunset Blvd. (residents included Bob Dylan, Al Kooper, Roky Erickson, many more)
Billy Idol Crash Site, Gordon & Fountain Intersection, Hollywood (Feb. 6, 1990 motorcycle crash)
Joan Jett residence in 1977 when she first moved to Hollywood, 1025 San Vicente, W. Hollywood (she produced the Germs first album in 1978)
Janis Joplin Death Site, Landmark Hotel (now the Highland Gardens), 7047 Franklin Ave., Room 105, Hollywood
Jumbo's Clown Room, 5153 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood (strip club where Courtney Love allegedly danced topless upon moving to L.A., the club is still going)
John Kay of Steppenwolf former residence in 1967, 7408 Fountain, Hollywood
Carole King former residence, 8815 Appian Way, Laurel Canyon (album cover of 1971's Tapestry)
Knickerbocker Hotel, 1714 Ivar, Hollywood (Elvis & the Jordanaires stayed here during recording of the "Elvis" album and filming of the movie "Love Me Tender", also Jerry Lee Lewis
Late for the Sky, Jackson Brown 1981 album cover, 215 S. Lucerne, Hollywood
Laurel Canyon Country Store, 2108 Laurel Canyon Blvd., Laurel Canyon (where the creatures meet in the Doors' "Love Street" song, Glen Frey, David Crosby shopped there, etc.)
Liberty Records, 1560 La Brea, Los Angeles (Martin Denny, Eddie Cochran, Jan and Dean, lots more)
"Louie Louie" birthplace, 142 W. 45th St., Los Angeles (place where Richard Berry wrote the classic song)
The "Lucky" Building, 8255 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (lots of luck in the recording industry was had here. It's the site where record exec Russ Regan suggested
  The Pendletones change their name to the Beach Boys, site of World Pacific Jazz Label,  site of A&M Records early on,
   recording location of the Moon Dawg's LSD-25 instrumental during which lots of weed was being smoked, first location of Casablanca Records, more)
Lucy's El Adobe Restaurant, 5536 Melrose Ave., across from Paramount Studios, Hollywood (late-70s watering hole for the whole Elektra/Asylum roster,
   The Eagles, J.D. Sothern, Linda Rostern, many more)
Macarthur Park, Alvarado & Wilshire (the Richard Harris song, some scenes from Bowie's The Man Who Fell to Earth filmed here in 1976)
Master Recorders, 535 N. Fairfax, Hollywood (The Robins "Framed", The Coasters' "Searching", lots of Little Richard songs, many more)
MCA Records, 100 Universal Plaza, Universal City (The Who, Elton John, Tom Petty, many more)
Mercedes-Benz Hollywood, Sunset and Wilcox (Elvis bought 6 for friends in the early 1970 here)
Mondrian Hotel, 8440 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Al B. Sure rape allegations occurred here, Pimp C from UGK died here, much more)
Montecito Hotel, 6650 Franklin Ave., Hollywood (Elvis, Bob Dylan, the Band, many more, now an apartment building)
Morrison Hotel, 1246 S. Hope St., Downtown L.A. (cover of the 1969 album)
Morrison last residence in L.A., 8216 1/2 Norton, W. Hollywood (in 1970 Jim and Pamela rented this apartment upstairs from Doors publicist Dianne Gardiner)
"My Sharona" birthplace, 817 N. Vine St., Hollywood (written in this rehearsal space in June 1978)
Vince Neil crash site, Sapphire & Esplanade, Redondo Beach (December 8, 1984 crash that killed Nicholas "Razzle" Dingley of the Finland band Hanoi Rocks)
Ricky Nelson childhood home, 1822 Camino Palmero, Hollywood (Nelson family lived here during the 1950s)
Sandy Nelson crash site, Mulholland 3 turns west of Dixie Canyon Road (April 22, 1963 crash of famous drummer resulting in the amputation of his leg)
9000 Sunset Building, 9000 Sunset Blvd., Beverly Hills (office building for publicist / PR man Derek Taylor who represented the Beatles, Doors, Captain Beefheart, Beach Boys, many more)
  Morrison did a dance on the building's roof for his film "Hwy"
Original Sound Recorders, 7120 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (Strawberry Alarm Clock "Incense and Peppermints", lots more)
"Our House", Lookout Mountain Road, Laurel Canyon (Joni Mitchell during Clouds and Ladies of the Canyon, Crosby Stills and Nash first practice space, Nash residence with Joni)
Paradise Cove, North of Malibu (1962 shot of the Beach Boys' album cover, also the song "Paradise Cove" by the Surfmen, covered by the Lively Ones and Martin Denny.
  The Sand Castle restaurant and adjoining parking lot was the site of James Garner's trailer in "The Rockford Files")
The Park Sunset Hotel, 8462 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Eddie Cochran wrote Summertime Blues here in 1958)
Gram Parsons death site, Joshua Tree Motel, now Copper Sand Youth Camp, Route 62, Joshua Tree (September 19, 1973 drug overdose)
Elvis Presley Beverly Hills Homes List:
  1960-1963:  565 Perugia Way
  1963: 1059 Bellagio Road
  1963-1965:  565 Perugia Way
  1965-1967:  10550 Rocco Place
  1967-1977: 144 Monovale
Radio Recorders Recording Studio, 7000 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood (Elvis recorded "Teddy Bear", "Jailhouse Rock", "All Shook Up" and many others here
RCA Records. 6363 Sunset Blvd (1960s-1994, then moved to Beverly Hills)
Rendezvous Ballroom, 600 Ocean Front St., Balboa (world center of Surf music, burned down in 1965, Dick Dale from Fullerton played there often and his
 debut album "Surfer's Choice" was recorded there)
Rhino Records, 1720 Westwood Blvd., Westwood
Jimmie Rodgers' beating site Dec. 2, 1967,  North side of Renaldi Blvd., W. of the 405 overpass, Granada Hills (severe beating ended folk musician's career)
Rollin' Rock Records, 6918 Peach, Van Nuys (world famous rockabilly label, Ray Campi, Gene Vincent, many more)
Linda Ronstadt's front porch, 122 W. Hart, Venice (1970 residence, cover of her Linda Ronstadt and the Stone Poney's Vol. 3 album)
Shangrila Recording Studio, 30065 Morning View Dr., Zuma Beach (The Band's Northern Lights-Southern Cross album, Neil Diamond, more)
Del Shannon death site, 15519 Saddleback, Canyon Country (Feb. 8, 1990 suicide of "Runaway" recording star)
Sherman Oaks Galleria, Ventura & Sepulveda, Sherman Oaks (Fast Times at Ridgemont High filmed there, also inspiration for Zappa's "Valley Girl")
Slauson Ave. (main drag in South Central)
Sony Music, 24th & Colorado, Santa Monica (Sony, Columbia, and Epic Records are all located on the corner of this huge Sony complex and park)
Sound City, 15456 Cabrito, Van Nuys (Tool recorded there, also Nirvana "Nevermind", also Charles Manson recorded his demos there in the 60s)
Sharon Tate August 8, 1969 death site, her home with Roman Polanski, 10050 Cielo Dr., Beverly Hills
Spirit "The Family That Plays Together" 1972 Album cover site,
 across from Hollywood High School, Sunset Highland Motel, 6830 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (L.A. band who recorded "I've Got A Line on You")
Stephen Stills' Ranch in 1968, 1174 Old Topanga Canyon Road, Topanga (march 13, 1968 police raid,  marijuana arrests of Eric Clapton, Neil Young, others)
Sunset Grill, 7439 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood (subject of Don Henley song, now closed)
Sunset Marquis Hotel, 1200 Alto Loma, W. Hollywood (Depeche Mode's Dave Gahan was both arrested here and survived suicide attempt here)
Viper Room, 8852 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Johnny Depp's club)

Vitello's Italian Restaurant, 4349 Tujunga Ave, Studio City (Robert Blake's wife's murder site)
Warner Bros Records, 3300 Warner Blvd., Burbank
Warner Bros Studios, Barham & Franklin (Rebel Without A Cause, album cover of Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here)
Whittier Blvd.  (main drag in East L.A.)
Brian Wilson's home and recording studio 1967-1973, 10452 Bellagio Road, Beverly Hills (north of UCLA) (Smiley Smile, Wild Honey, Friends, 20/20, Sunflower, Surf's Up)
Dennis Wilson's home, 14400 Sunset Blvd., Pacific Palisades
Dennis Wilson's death site, 13929 Bellagio Way, Basin C-1100, Marina Del Rey (December 28, 1983 drowning)
Zappa Records, 11696 Ventura Blvd., Studio City (late 70s, Sheik Yerbouti, Joe's Garage)

***


Metal venues & hangouts 70s-80s:
The Cathouse, 836 N. Highland, Hollywood
The Country Club, 18415 Sherman Way, North Hollywood (Poison, Warrant, Motley Crue)
Gazzari's, 9039 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood (The Doors and The Byrds in the mid-60s, Van Halen in the 70s, much more metal into the 80s)
Guns N' Roses Apartment, 1114 N. Clark, Hollywood (early 80s, near the Whisky, Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue and Blackie Lawless of WASP also lived near here)
Loyola High School (alumni include of Roddy Bottum and Billy Gould of Faith No More)
Muir High School (alumni include David Lee Roth)
Pasadena High School (alumni include Eddie and Alex Van Halen, also members of the Blasters)
Perkins Palace, Holly & Raymond Streets, Pasadena (Motley Crue, Ratt, Armored Saint, Megadeth, Poison, Guns n' Roses, many more)
The Rainbow, 9001 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (next to the Roxy) (Led Zeppelin, Motley Crue, many others)
Randy Rhoads grave site, Mountain View Cemetery, Highland and Waterman, San Bernardino (Blizzard of Oz and Diary of a Madman guitarist who died March 19, 1982 in Orlando, FL)
The Roxy, 9009 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood
The Whisky-a-Go-Go, 8901 Sunset Blvd., W. Hollywood (Doors, Kinks, Zeppelin, Who, Hendrix, Byrds, everyone really)

***

STEVE SOTO

ADOLESCENTS

INTERVIEW


Interview by Janelle Jones
Photos by Donofthedead

A veteran of this whole thing they call the punk rock, Mr. Steve Soto has been a part of some pretty okay (!) bands, from the beginning of it all back in the late '70s and early '80s. A founding member of such luminary outfits as Agent Orange and, of course, his primary band to this day, The Adolescents, a band that perhaps means so much to him because of their uncanny ability to resonate with practically every kid via their timeless songs dealing with, in Steve's own words, "being an outcast, an alienated teenager." It's no surprise that this idea is exactly what got this guy into the whole punk rock lifestyle in the first place. Other bands on Steve's ever-growing resumé include Manic Hispanic, 22 Jacks, Joyride, and Punk Rock Karaoke. Here, the exceedingly amicable bassist discusses his past, present, and future.

Janelle: So you still live in Orange County, I guess, by the area code?
Steve: I live in Long Beach, which is right outside O.C. It's like the bastard son of O.C. TSOL is from Long Beach and always got considered [to be] an O.C. band. But yeah, I spend a lot of time in O.C. Most of the shows I go to are there, so definitely there's still a lot of good bands.
Janelle: Has it changed much from when you grew up?
Steve: Well, the area has obviously... it just keeps getting developed more and more. But as far as the music scene goes, when we were kids it was amazing around here. Just in our neighborhood in a mile-radius or whatever, you had Agent Orange, Social Distortion, Adolescents; if you pushed that out a little further there was The Crowd and TSOL. It was an awesome place to grow up and to be able to be a part of all that. Over the years, the music scene fluctuates a bit: sometimes it seems there's not a lot going on and then certain bands'll come along and get everyone charged up and motivated again. There's a lot of good bands playing right now. It's changed in the fact that I would say it seems more fragmented than it used to be. It used to be more centralized around two or three clubs and it was just punk rock, and now there's emo clubs and rockabilly and all that, but there's still a good music scene here.
Janelle: Who were your favorite bands to play with back then?
Steve: Number one favorite band to play with was Circle Jerks. We played a lot of shows with those guys. Besides being one of my favorite punk bands of that whole era, I loved that record, Group Sex, I think is one of the best punk rock records ever and it's only like eighteen minutes long too, which is super-cool. But they were always great guys and we always had a lot of fun playing with them. TSOL were good friends of ours back then. We did a lot of stuff with them. The Crowd, those guys were a little older than us and kinda came before us so we looked up to them. It's weird now 'cause when you're a teenager and they're in their early 20s they're like old guys, cool guys. Now we're all kinda the same age and hang out, and every once and a while my wife and I'll go to dinner with the singer of The Crowd and his wife. His name's Jim Decker but he used to go by Jimmy Trash and in the back of my mind it's like, "I'm having dinner with Jimmy Trash, that's so cool!" [laughs]
Janelle: So, what led the young Steve astray back in the day? [laughter]
Steve: Sometimes I wonder how I ended up in all this because I came from a total Beaver Cleaver family: my dad worked, my mom stayed home and raised the kids; they were totally supportive of everything I did. My dad coached my little league team. It wasn't like I came from some horrible existence and had to find punk rock to save myself by any means. I just kinda stumbled into it, and in spite of all the positive things all around me growing up, I fell in with the wrong crowd. It was exciting for me; I was playing music and I like doing that. Music was really boring then [with] bands like Journey, Boston, and Steve Miller, it was all kinda sad. A guy that lived around the corner from me started playing these punk rock records and it was like, "Whoa! This is pretty cool!" It's funny; there was an article in the school newspaper about these guys that listened to The Ramones. That was the first time I heard them, and these guys were two football players but they showed a picture of them in their football uniforms and a picture of them with leather jackets on. This is like '77 and that was the first time I remember going, "I gotta hear these Ramones." So it was just kinda floating around out there and I stumbled into it and just followed it all the way into the dark side. [laughs] You got beat up at school for looking like that. I don't wanna sound like the guy that goes, "We walked two miles to school uphill in the snow," but I would come out after school to ride my bike home and it happened a couple times, people slashing my bike tires and beating me up. When I was in Agent Orange, Mike (the singer) and I went to the same high school and then our drummer went to a different high school with Mike Ness and Dennis from Social D, so the three of those guys came over to our school just to hang out with us one day. The whole varsity football team decided they were gonna come down and beat the crap out of us because we had funny-looking hair. [laughs] And as stupid as that sounds, it was pretty scary back then. Every once in a while we'd be out and a truckload of stoner guys would jump out and punch you and kick you just for liking a different kind of music and cutting off my hair. It was pretty weird, but at the same time, we all rallied around it and it made us tight as friends. That whole early Fullerton group of people (Social D, Agent Orange, and The Adolescents) all banded together because we had to and there was definitely an us-against-them mentality. In a lot of ways I think that's where Casey (Royer, drummer of The Adolescents) was going when he wrote "Amoeba": it may be small now but it can grow. That was kinda our feeling.
Janelle: That explanation makes it seem there's a little more to that song than that Casey was just on drugs in science class, right?!
Steve: [Laughs] Right.
Janelle: That's what you usually say...
Steve: Especially about "Amoeba," we've done so many interviews, a lot of times it's just a very flippant "Casey's on acid in science class." And if you ever talk to Casey, he's someone that'll give you ten different answers every time. That's just his nature. But I've had the discussion with him before where we talked about that and we were talking about punk rock and how it evolved and grew, and he's like, "That's what I was trying to say with 'Amoeba'!" But that could be his hindsight going, "That's what I'll tell everyone!"
Janelle: Yeah, "That sounds smart!"
Steve: Casey's really hard to tell. Rikk's easier to pin down, like "Kids of the Black Hole" is pretty much word-for-word a true story about Mike Ness' apartment. There's no deep or hidden meaning; it's all right there. But "Amoeba" we'll never know! [laughter]
Janelle: Shrouded in mystery... What did your parents think of your interests?
Steve: My parents are pretty conservative, so they were a little thrown off by it, but at the same time, my dad listened to jazz and all different kinds of music. So on that end, he played a lot of music for me and he'd listen to my records. I think that was his way of making sure I wasn't listening to anything too out-of-hand. And in the same sense he was playing me stuff he thought I needed to hear. But I had tons of records I'd never play him because I don't think my dad would've gotten the Dead Kennedys "Too Drunk to Fuck." [laughs]
Janelle: But some of it he was into...
Steve: Yeah, I played him the first Clash record and stuff like that. He listened. Overall, they were conservative, but they were pretty cool about letting me go out and do stuff. I snuck out too, you know! Between my craftiness and their coolness, we found a middle ground, I guess.
Janelle: So you said it wasn't too rough at home. What about most of your friends and bandmates? Like, you think of the movie Suburbia... Some people you knew came from homes like the characters depicted there?
Steve: Mike Ness came from a pretty dysfunctional family. Tony (Cadena, singer of the Adolescents) came from a really dysfunctional family. My mom told me years later that when she used to drop me off sometimes at Tony's for rehearsal she used to feel so bad for them because they lived in a whole different set-up. The Agnews' parents got divorced right when we started putting the band together. Most of my friends were from broken homes except for probably like the guys in Agent Orange weren't. But when I got into The Adolescents, like the people who hung out at the black hole, a lot of them came from broken homes and that's when I started meeting people like that. But there was a whole crew of guys from Fullerton, we all went to the same high school and everyone had both their parents and came from normal homes, we just were...
Janelle: Disillusioned?
Steve: Yeah, and bored. I think the suburban punk definitely is in it out of boredom more than anything else. And you're pushed, too, to go to college and do all that stuff. There's a different kind of pressure; it's not like your home life's horrible, but at the same time, I've had friends whose parents expected a lot out of them as far as careers and things like that, so instead they just cut loose, drank, and went to punk rock shows. Rebelled against the whole thing.
Janelle: About Agent Orange, you were an original member...
Steve: I started the band with Mike and the drummer Scott. That was our first band. I was in Agent Orange up until right after Mike started writing. I'm like, "I'm gonna start writing songs, too," but he wasn't having any of it. He was like, "I'm gonna write all the songs for this band," so I went and started The Adolescents and was like, "Look! I don't need your band! I have my own band." We had a little competitive thing going on between us for a while. In all honesty, it fueled The Adolescents because that was our whole thing, "We'll show them!" And we did, in a roundabout way. Their band did great, which is awesome, and so did ours. We did a show one time where we played over them. That was kind of our big moment, like, "See! You should've played my songs, Mike!" We love 'em now, but for a while back then before Casey was in the band, we kept trying to chase down Scott Miller and get him to join The Adolescents. He wasn't having any of it. [laughter] That was a fun band to be in. Mike's a great songwriter. I played on "Bloodstains" and four songs that are all demos that are on the first record reissue.
Janelle: You've been in a ton of bands... So now it's just Adolescents and Manic Hispanic or anything else?
Steve: I play in Punk Rock Karaoke, which is Eric Melvin (NOFX), Greg Hetson (Circle Jerks, Bad Religion) and Derek O'Brien (Social D, D.I., current Adolescents drummer). That keeps me pretty busy.
Janelle: Do you have a regular job too?
Steve: No, just livin' the punk rock lifestyle. Actually last summer I tour managed Flogging Molly for about five, six months, and that's my closest brush with a day job lately. I love that band, but tour managing is just outta control. [laughs] It's just nothing I wanna do. I'm actually looking for a bar to buy and have my own punk rock club in O.C., so that's what I'm hoping to accomplish here in the next year or so. Give the kids some place to hang out, listen to a good jukebox, and get wasted. I don't drink anymore so I'm not worried about it. [laughs] I won't get high on my own supply.
Janelle: Is that something you've been thinking about doing for a while?
Steve: I probably thought about it more in the last year. I've booked clubs before. It was actually my wife's idea. We were talking about what we wanted to do with our future, and we started talking about opening a bar because I'd had a lot of experience in it. There's a lot of punk rock bars around here, but not a lot of them are owned by punks, it seems. It's kinda people that are just cashing in or whatever. She thought that it'd be cool to have some place that was legitimately punk. Make it almost more of a clubhouse than just a club itself. I want it to be special; somewhere where people wanna just go meet their friends and hang out.
Janelle: So you've tour managed, booked clubs. You said Derek records. Did you ever think about recording other bands?
Steve: I've produced bands. I get into helping bands make records and working with them on their songs and I wanna do more of that, but the technical end of running a studio doesn't appeal to me; I'm not really a technical person.
Janelle: What bands have you produced?
Steve: There was a band called Los Infernos, I did one of their records. A lot of small bands from around here. I produced the Manic Hispanic record we're putting out. Pretty much all the records I produce, they'll say, "produced by The Adolescents," but that's just me not trying to look too power-hungry! [laughs] Tony and I did a lot of stuff on this last record (The Adolescents' OC Confidential).

Janelle: You've had vocal duties in bands, but also sang back up while playing bass. What do you find to be pros/cons between being a frontman as opposed to primarily concentrating on bass?
Steve: I like singing and playing my own songs, but I hate talking in between songs and doing all that. I don't wanna be there like, "Come on everybody! Is everybody having a good time?" Some bands never do that. I saw Husker Du a bunch of times and they'd just play their songs and let their songs speak for themselves. As much as I like singing and playing my own songs, I think Tony's a really awesome frontman, so it's fun for me to watch him work a crowd. He does that way better than I ever did. Same thing with Manic Hispanic: Gabby is such an amazing frontman. Sometimes I'll be half-playing and half-watching them. I like doing all the back-ups. On all the records I do that a lot. But I like both; sometimes I'll still go out and do shows with Joyride, which I was in a long time ago that I pretty much wrote all the songs and sang, but for the most part now I'm backing up Tony and liking it. [laughs] I guess it boils down to, if it was a singer I didn't believe in and didn't think was that great, I'd be like, "Let's get rid of him and I'll do this," but with Tony and Gabby, they're both on the money, so I have no problem taking a backseat as far as singing goes.

 


*****

And on a different Los Angeles-oriented note....

(I've hit the 20-page maximum on this site)

FAVORITE FILMS

Here I want to list my top dozen favorite movies of all-time.

These are the movies that I can watch over and over

and that I memorized many lines from, and it's no mistake

that all but two were made in California

 (the exceptions being "Class of 1984", filmed in Toronto,

and "At Close Range," filmed in Pennsylvania)...

1) Rebel Without A Cause (1955)

(the famous knife fight being filmed

just 2 miles north of where I sit now, at the

Griffith Observatory in Griffith Park)

2) Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

3) Class of 1984 (1982)

4) The Return of the Living Dead (1985)

5) Hallowen (1978)

6) Phantasm (1979)

7) American Grafitti (1973)

8) Less Than Zero (1987)

9) To Live and Die in L.A. (1984)

10) At Close Range (1986)

10) Rumble Fish (1983)

12) Colors (1988)

*****

GRINDHOUSE FILMS

Although the term "Grindhouse" only recently

became public knowledge, the Beverly Cinema

here in Los Angeles has been resurrecting

 the 60s & 70s phenomenon for years now.

Here's some info about their recent film festivals

(and those from the last few years below)

Please ask for these films from your local video store,

take it from me as a long-time video store manager,

most video store owners would never

dream of carrying these titles, these stores' owners often

are very out of touch with the real classics and

won't get them unless requested.

 

The Grindhouse Film Festival

New Beverly Cinema
7165 Beverly Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA
(323) 938-4038
Admission: $7.00


About the Grindhouse Film Festival

The monthly Grindhouse Film Festival events feature the screening of rare 35mm prints of

cult and exploitation films from the 1960’s through the 1980’s, many of which have

 not been publicly shown since the drive-in’s and inner city grindhouse theaters faded

away twenty years ago. For the low price of only $7.00, attendees get two rare films,

a reel of rare exploitation trailers, a free raffle,

and very often appearances by the directors, cast and crew of the films being shown.

We'll be partnering with some horror and cult film DVD

companies in upcoming months to bring some great new prizes to our attendees,

so it's possible you'll actually win something worth keeping!



Some of the films shown were:

Coffy

The Dragon's Vengeance

Fight for Your Life

Foxy Brown

Grave of the Vampire

Hot Summer in Barefoot County

In Hot Pursuit

Jail Bait Babysitter

poster

Kung Fu: The Punch of Death

The Muthers

Redneck Miller

Screams of a Winter Night

Slithis

 


All films were presented in 35mm prints

from Quentin Tarantino's personal collection.


All films personally selected by Quentin Tarantino.


Surprise in person appearances by

Mr. Tarantino and other surprise guests.
Every show is a double or triple bill!

Rare trailers and posters on display.

*****

Past Grindhouse Festivals

(we'll be adding to this as we go through old flyers and refresh our memory)

http://www.hollywoodbookandposter.com/grindhouse.html

September 19th, 2006:

Vampyres and The Blood Spattered Bride

 

August 15th, 2006:

Mausoleum and Demons

Special Guest:

Bobbie Bresee

 

July 18th, 2006:

Zombie and The Grim Reaper

Doctor Butcher M.D. was originally scheduled as the first feature, but was pulled due to print problems

 

July 2nd, 2006:

Grindhouse Goes to Vegas! with The Thrill Killers and The Astro-Zombies

Special Guests:

Ray Dennis Steckler, Ted V. Mikels, Liz Renay and Carolyn Brandt

 

June 20th, 2006:

Dolls and Crash!

Special Guests:

Stuart Gordon, Charles Band, Ian Patrick Williams, Carolyn Purdy-Gordon and Carrie Lorraine

 

May 23rd, 2006:

Devil Woman and Lady Terminator

 

April 25th, 2006:

Don't Go Near the Park and House on the Edge of the Park

Special Guests:

Lawrence D. Foldes and Tamara Taylor

 

March 21st, 2006:

Torso and What Have They Done To Solange?

 

February 21st, 2006:

Dolemite and Brotherhood of Death

 

January 24th, 2006:

Headless Eyes and Night of the Zombies

 

December 20th, 2005:

Silent Night, Deadly Night and Black Christmas

Special Guests:

Silent Night, Deadly Night 2nd Unit Director/Editor Michael Spence and Executive Producer Scott Schneid

Black Christmas star Olivia Hussey

 

November 22nd, 2005:

The Hollywood Hillside Strangler and Don't Go In The House

 

October 18th, 2005:

William Girdler Tribute: Combat Cops (aka The Zebra Killer) and Grizzly

Special Guests:

Austin Stoker and Andrew Prine

 

September 20th, 2005:

The Visitor and Night of the Howling Beast

Special Guest:

Joanne Nail, star of The Visitor

 

August 23rd, 2005:

The Psycho Lover and The Toolbox Murders

Special Guests:

Robert Vincent O'Neil, Frank Cuva, Pamelyn Ferdin, Marianne Walter and Gary Graver

 

July 19th, 2005:

Shock Waves and Burial Ground

Special Guest:

Shock Waves 'zombie' Gary J. Levinson

 

June 21st, 2005:

The No Mercy Man and Rolling Thunder

Special Guests:

The No Mercy Man co-star Sid Haig and Rolling Thunder director John Flynn

 

May 24th, 2005:

Maniac Cop 2 and Vigilante

Special Guests:

Director Bill Lustig, producer/screenwriter Larry Cohen and star Laurene Landon

 

April 19th, 2005:

Amityville II: The Possession and Women's Prison Massacre

 

March 22nd, 2005:

The Black Gestapo and The Legend of the Wolf Woman

 

February 22nd, 2005:

Invasion of the Blood Farmers and Scream Bloody Murder

Special Guests:

Invasion of the Blood Farmers producer/director/screenwriter/co-star Ed Adlum and Scream Bloody Murder co-star Angus Scrimm

 

January 25th, 2005:

Satan's Sadists and The Northville Cemetery Massacre

Special Guests:

Satan's Sadists cast/crew members Russ Tamblyn, Greydon Clark, John 'Bud' Cardos, Bobby Clark, Gary Graver and The Northville Cemetery Massacre director William Dear

 

December 21st, 2004:

The Child and The Children

Bloody Birthday was originally scheduled as the first feature, but was pulled due to print damage

 

November 23rd, 2004:

Pieces and Nightmare {in a Damaged Brain}

 

October 26th, 2004:

Simon, King of the Witches and The Centerfold Girls

Special Guest:

Andrew Prine, star of both films.

 

September 28th, 2004:

Night of the Bloody Apes and Blood Diner

Special Guests:

Blood Diner star Carl Crew, screenwriter Dukey Flyswatter and producer Jimmy Maslon

 

August 24th, 2004:

Blackenstein and Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde

 

July 20th, 2004:

Deathdream and Satan's Cheerleaders

Special Guest:

Satan's Cheerleaders director Greydon Clark

 

June 22nd, 2004:

The Candy Snatchers and We're Going To Eat You

 

May 25th, 2004:

Ed Gein and Ted Bundy

The Hillside Strangler was originally scheduled, but the print didn't arrive from Cannes in time

 

January 2004 through April 2004: GRINDHOUSE FESTIVAL TAKES A BREAK

 

December 23rd, 2003:

Blood Feast and She Freak

 

November 18th, 2003:

The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires and The Thrill Killers

 

October 21st, 2003:

Mantis in Lace and Mondo Teeno

 

September 23rd, 2003:

Barbed Wire Dolls and Hot Spur

Sorry! This was our worst double-feature so far. If you survived this snoozefest and still come back to our festivals, thanks!

 

August 2003:

Welcome to Arrow Beach and Re-Animator (did we really screen this?)

 

July 2003:

Cannibal Ferox and Kung Fu Cannibals (aka Raw Force)

 

June 17th, 2003:

Barn of the Naked Dead and Gates of Hell

Invasion of the Blood Farmers was the original second feature, but cancelled due to print problems.

 

May 20th, 2003:

Spider Baby and The Big Doll House

Special Guests:

Director Jack Hill and star Sid Haig

 

April 22nd, 2003:

Wizard of Gore and Vampyres, Daughters of Darkness

 

March 25th, 2003:

I Drink Your Blood and Blood Eaters (aka Toxic Zombies)

Special Guests:

I Drink Your Blood director David Durston and stars Lynn Lowry and Jack Damon

 

2000 Maniacs and Dr. Butcher, M.D. were in there somewhere.

*****

Below is a great article about Grindhouse films with Quentin Tarantino and Bob Clark,

who died just a few days later in a horrible car crash here in L.A.  

Clark was working on the remake of one of my favorite zombie flicks of all-time,

"Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things"..

who knows now if that movie will ever be completed....

I'm putting a Bob Clark tribute article first here,

and then the full Grindhouse article, thanks for reading this...

courtesy of www.laweekly.com

Remembering Bob Clark

The director's long and varied career stretched from low-budget horror to cultural touchstones,

 including A Christmas Story and Porky's

By SCOTT FOUNDAS
Thursday, April 5, 2007 - 10:48 am
I was working from home on Wednesday afternoon when a friend phoned me with the news that director Bob Clark had been killed that morning in head-on traffic collision on the Pacific Coast Highway. As is so often the case, the driver of the oncoming car was drunk, and largely uninjured. Such a loss would be a tragedy under any circumstances, but Clark's struck an especially personal chord, given that just 11 days earlier, I had found myself seated next to him at the dinner that gave rise to the "Grindhouse Gang" feature that appears in the current issue of L.A. Weekly.

Clark was in spirited form that evening, reminiscing about a long and remarkably varied career that stretched from his early days as a shoestring horror auteur in the Miami film industry to the modern-day holiday perennial A Christmas Story and the surprise hit Baby Geniuses. And yet, for all his success, Clark appeared genuinely humbled by the praise Quentin Tarantino and others present that evening lavished on his work. Upon learning of Clark's death, I did the only thing I could think of, which was to contact the other "Grindhouse Gang" participants, all of whom were similarly shocked and dismayed by the news. Remembering the enthusiasm with which Clark had talked about several upcoming projects, Brian Trenchard-Smith said "It was as though he'd gotten a new lease on his career." A lease that has now all too prematurely been revoked.
 
*****

Grindhouse Gang

Quentin Tarantino summons the masters to historic summit

By SCOTT FOUNDAS
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 - 7:00 pm
The following interviews were conducted on the evening of March 31. Sadly, as this story was going to press, it was reported that Bob Clark was killed in a head-on car crash on Pacific Coast Highway in the early-morning hours of April 4. His son Ariel, a passenger in the car, was also pronounced dead at the scene.

Tarantino on location: When he says action, he really means it. (Andrew Cooper/The Weinstein Company)
It was during a typically long and muggy Florida summer that I first wandered into the dimly lit recesses of a local video store and plucked from its dusty shelves the movies of the Australian suspense maestro Richard Franklin, including his 1978 Patrick, with its comatose yet telekinetic title character. In short order, I would similarly discover the work of the American urban-terror specialist William Lustig (of Maniac and Maniac Cop fame), and that of the Italian splatter king Lucio Fulci (New York Ripper, Don’t Torture a Duckling) — my fondness deepening, with each successive trip to the rental counter, for the golden age of grindhouse cinema. It was only later that I came to realize how thoroughly VHS and cable had cannibalized the theatrical exploitation market, so that by the time I made it to New York and Los Angeles in the 1990s, the decaying movie palaces along 42nd Street and Hollywood Boulevard that once served up exploitation movies by the pound had shuttered or been converted into more traditional places of worship (those with altars in place of screens). Low-budget horror and action quickies were now being manufactured almost exclusively for the home-video market. Per Norma Desmond’s prophetic words, the pictures really had gotten smaller.

Among contemporary filmmakers, none harbor greater affection for (or have been more influenced by) this bygone era than Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez, whose Grindhouse offers a vintage double-header (complete with ersatz trailers and print damage) of cheap thrills and gory chills, starting with Rodriguez’s eco-horror zombie movie Planet Terror and concluding with Tarantino’s edge-of-your-(car)seat thrill ride Death Proof. Yet, when I proposed to these two nostalgia junkies that, in lieu of a conventional interview, we might organize a kind of roundtable with a few favorite grindhouse veterans, little did I imagine the historic meeting — or, to quote Tarantino, summit — that was about to transpire. Only too happy to answer our call were Richard Rush, who began his career with the classic biker movies The Savage Seven and Hell’s Angels on Wheels; Bob Clark, who directed the 1970s creep-outs Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things and Black Christmas before going on to create the Porky’s franchise; and the British-born Brian Trenchard-Smith, whose résumé ranges from directing Steve Railsback in the cult classic Escape 2000 to latter-day entries in the Leprechaun and Omega Code franchises. Joining them would be three alumni of the Roger Corman dream factory: Allan Arkush (Hollywood Boulevard, Rock ’n’ Roll High School), George Armitage (Private Duty Nurses, Vigilante Force) and Lewis Teague (The Lady in Red, Alligator).

Like the great B-movie directors of the 1950s before them (and Tarantino and Rodriguez afterward), these industrious auteurs often bridged the gap — or muddied the waters — between grindhouse and art house, with Rush going on to receive an Oscar nomination for his direction of The Stunt Man, while Clark helmed the elegant Sherlock Holmes–meets–Jack the Ripper thriller Murder by Decree and that holiday classic known as A Christmas Story. Some, like Teague, graduated to studio tent-pole fare (The Jewel of the Nile), while others, like Arkush, settled into careers in network television. The elusive Armitage emerged in the 1990s from a decadelong hiatus to deliver two memorable slices of modern pulp fiction: Miami Blues and Grosse Pointe Blank. The recent work of Trenchard-Smith, perhaps the most unpredictable of the lot, includes the 9/11-themed Showtime docudrama Time of Crisis and two films (Tides of War, In Her Line of Fire) in the burgeoning subgenre (who knew?) of gay-themed action movies.

As we convened over dinner on the night following Grindhouse’s first press screening, the admiration flowed freely between the masters and their disciples, while the conversation (particularly when Tarantino himself held forth — which was often — with his exhaustive inventory of B-movie arcana) encompassed such obscure objects of cinephilic desire as the forgotten low-budget master William Witney, the Filipino action director Cirio H. Santiago and the sexploitation actress Candice Rialson. Above all, the discussion offered a reminder that, for the filmmmakers present, no matter where their careers have taken them, their hearts will always belong to the grindhouse. What follows are highlights culled from that evening, with the caveat that, per Tarantino’s own sage advice, I have elected to keep some of the magicians’ secrets just so.

(Courtesy Dalia Productions, Inc.)
QUENTIN TARANTINO: I want you to know, Lewis, that I cast Robert Forster in Jackie Brown because of his performance in Alligator.

LEWIS TEAGUE: Oh, he was great in that. Did you see him in The Lady in Red also?

TARANTINO: Of course, I saw him in The Lady in Red! I even have a story about that. Not knowing anything about them, I went to see every New World picture on opening weekend. A New World picture with Pamela Sue Martin, Robert Conrad and tommy guns? I’m there! I go to see the movie, and I’m watching it and watching it, and eventually Robert Forster shows up. Robert Forster? I thought it was Robert Conrad. Did I read it wrong? So — and I’ve never done this before — I actually got up out of my seat and walked outside of the theater to look at the poster. Nope, it’s Robert Conrad. He just hasn’t shown up yet!

TEAGUE: Forster wouldn’t take credit. Working for Roger Corman, I’d done second unit on a movie called Avalanche that he was in...

TARANTINO: Corey Allen directed that.

TEAGUE: ...and I got to direct a whole scene with him on a rifle platform. I had a great time and I said, “If I ever direct a movie, I want you to be in it,” and he said, “Fine, when you do a movie, call me.” When I finally got The Lady in Red, he was working on that big Disney science-fiction film.
TARANTINO:The Black Hole.

TEAGUE: Right. I called him and he asked me, “What part do you want me to play?” I said, “I’ll send you a script and you can do whatever you want.” He picked that part and he said, “I’ll do it for no money and no credit.”

TARANTINO: I have to say that that’s one of my favorite cameos in movies, because when he’s on, it’s really an important character at that part of the movie, and it needs a star to pull it off. And when he comes back at the end, you’re like, “Oh, yes!” Great payoff.

ALLAN ARKUSH: Jon Davison and Joe Dante were working for Roger Corman and they needed another person, so I started working with them in the trailer and marketing department. The first thing we worked on were the TV spots for Caged Heat, the Jonathan Demme picture.

TEAGUE: You guys worked on the trailer for Cockfighter too.

ARKUSH: We surely did: “He came into town with his cock in hand, and what he did with it was illegal in 49 states.”

Rodriguez unleashes the undead. (Photo by Rico Torres)
TEAGUE: That movie opened, and I had co-edited it with Monte Hellman. As I was cleaning up the editing room, I had a call from Roger saying, “We made a mistake. People in the South do not want to see cockfighting. We’re going to change the title and make a new trailer. I want you to go through the footage and find every shot of sex and violence that you can.” I said, “Roger, Monte didn’t shoot any sex and violence.” Roger said, “Hmmm, I don’t care where you get it...” Allan and Joe Dante were cutting the trailer, so Roger said, “Give them the footage.” I went through all these old nurse films and whatnot and gave Joe and Allan all this footage of nurses’ tits and police cars careening around corners. I called Roger back and I said, “Roger, I don’t think it’s right to put this footage in the trailer if it’s not in the movie.” He said, “You’re right, Lewis. Put it in the movie!” So, in that version, Warren Oates falls asleep and dreams about student nurses.

ARKUSH: We also changed the title.

TARANTINO:Born to Kill! He closes his eyes and he dreams of sex and violence, and then he wakes up. Eighty percent of the trailer was his dream! Hey, does everyone have a drink going on here?

GEORGE ARMITAGE: [Raising his glass.] Here’s to you.

TARANTINO: No, here’s to this table, this summit!

ROBERT RODRIGUEZ: You guys are the reason we’re here tonight.

ARKUSH: George, were you connected somehow to Darktown Strutters?

ARMITAGE: I wrote that.

ARKUSH: I cut the trailer for that too.

TARANTINO: That’s a great trailer, actually. You know, [Darktown Strutters director] William Witney is one of my favorite classic Hollywood directors. I wrote a big piece in The New York Times about him, and I’m actually very proud of the fact that there were all these auteur critics who didn’t have any clue who he was. Bring him up to Peter Bogdanovich and he didn’t know who he was. Andrew Sarris didn’t know who he was — if he had, he’d have written about him in The American Cinema. How I discovered him was that I always saw myself as doing a sort of graduate study of cinema for the rest of my life, and at some point, you get to that place where you think that you’ve seen all the movies that you want to see. Yeah, there’s a zillion that you haven’t seen, but you feel that, even with those, you can make an educated guess as to how you would feel about them. For example, I knew there were the Budd Boetticher–Randolph Scott Westerns out there and the André de Toth–Randolph Scott Westerns out there. So, I’d pick up a Randolph Scott movie and I’d see it was directed by, say, Sam Taylor. Oh, that must be a piece of shit, I don’t want to watch that. But at a certain point, I was like, “Wait a minute: How do I know Sam Taylor’s a piece of shit? Just because Andrew Sarris didn’t write about him? Fuck that!” So, I figured there were other guys out there who were probably terrific. Let me start looking at Fred Sears’ films. Let me start to see if there are other masters who Andrew Sarris didn’t mention in those days. And I found some very good ones, but William Witney is the one! I can champion him all the way to the French Cinematheque.

ARKUSH: I found a copy of The Golden Stallion, but it was the only one I could find. I can’t find Paratroop Command.

TARANTINO: That actually was released. They released all of those AIP [American International Pictures] World War II movies as double-feature DVDs. So, they’re out there. Paratroop Command is fantastic. That’s one of the best.

ARKUSH: I thought The Golden Stallion was really good.

TARANTINO:The Golden Stallion is great. But the first one that I saw that knocked me out was The Bonnie Parker Story.

ARKUSH: And is that available anywhere? Because I’ve been looking.

TARANTINO: It’s not, actually. I ended up getting a ’scope 16 mm print of it. And when we’re talking about ’scope for AIP, we’re talking about Superama, which is one of my favorite ’scope formats. They only did three movies in Superama: The Bonnie Parker Story, Machine Gun Kelly and I, Mobster.

RODRIGUEZ: What’s Superama?

(Courtesy of Dimension Films)
TARANTINO: It’s just a regular ’scope lens, but that’s what AIP called it. The interesting thing is that Machine Gun Kelly has always been my favorite-directed Roger Corman movie. I’ve always thought that was the best. Now, just as our Grindhouse double feature was made to play together, The Bonnie Parker Story and Machine Gun Kelly were designed to go out together. I’d seen The Bonnie Parker Story when I was a little boy, because my dad liked it, but I never saw it again, and as time went on, I figured, “Machine Gun Kelly is so great, what are the chances that The Bonnie Parker Story is also great?” Then I see The Bonnie Parker Story, and not only is it great — it’s magnificent! It’s just fantastic — a stylistic explosion! And I’m like, “People saw this with the magnificent Machine Gun Kelly? This is probably the greatest double feature in the history of cinema! I’ve got to see more of this guy’s films.” Then I spent a year seeing his movies, and I kept finding gems. I was not wrong. It was not an anomaly.
TEAGUE: Did you ever meet him?

TARANTINO: No. He knew of my enthusiasm. When I wrote that New York Times piece, he was still alive, though he had suffered a stroke and was a little out of it. But he could hear, and his family told him I’d been bringing his name up. What was great was that, after that New York Times article, different film critics said to me, “You got us. You beat us at our own game. We didn’t know who William Witney was, and you made us look at his shit.” About two years later, he died, and in The New York Times, there was a three-quarter-page obituary of him, including a picture of him directing on the set, with a script rolled up and stuck in his back pocket. And I don’t think there would have been as big of an obituary if my article hadn’t come out first. That made me feel really great.

BOB CLARK: I’m shrinking here, because I don’t know those films. Gone With the Wind, I know that one. Victor Fleming was one hell of a director!

BRIAN TRENCHARD-SMITH: How do you rate Gordon Douglas?

TARANTINO: Oh gosh! Gordon Douglas was probably one of the first directors I knew by name, by the simple fact that he’d done two movies that I loved so much. I loved Them! And I loved Rio Conchos — two such different movies that so delivered in every way, shape and form.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: He was very multigeneric, and I don’t think he’s been given enough credit for having had that range.

TARANTINO: I completely agree with you. I also always loved the idea of those old classic Hollywood directors who ended their careers with blaxploitation movies, and one of his last movies was Slaughter’s Big Ripoff.

ARKUSH: Nobody does that anymore. Nobody jumps from genre to genre.

CLARK: Do you know who K. Gordon Murray was?

TARANTINO: Oh, yeah! He took all those Mexican horror films and Mexican children’s movies and redubbed them. I actually have a 35 mm print of Vampire’s Coffin, which was a K. Gordon Murray release.

CLARK: Starting out in the Miami film industry, I was an assistant director for K. Gordon Murray.

TARANTINO: You worked for K. Gordon Murray!

CLARK: I did. I could write a book about that.

TARANTINO: I have to tell you that, of course, everyone talks about the George Romero movies when they talk about the zombie genre. But hands down, on my own list of great zombie movies — or even the great shoestring classics of ’70s horror — Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things is right up there in the tip, tip top. The thing I loved about that movie so goddamned much is that the whole movie is humorous — it’s humorous from beginning to almost end. If the movie is 90 minutes long, for 79 of those 90 minutes it’s a comedy. And then, when the zombies show up in the last 11 minutes, there ain’t a goddamn thing funny about it. They just wipe out everybody. I have never seen a movie that for 79 minutes is a comedy and the last 11 minutes is balls-out horror!

''Hey, baby, does my hot rod make you hot?'' (Andrew Cooper/ The Weinstein Company)
CLARK: Well, you know what? I’ve always said I would never allow any of my movies to be remade. I betrayed that by allowing Black Christmas last year. But now I have written a new script for a remake of Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things, and I’m going to direct it myself. It’s going to be like Monty Python meets Night of the Living Dead.

RODRIGUEZ: I just remembered a shot I tried to steal from Murder by Decree for this movie. It’s something that’s stuck with me since I was a kid — a flashback shot of one of Jack the Ripper’s victims being pushed out of a carriage. It’s in slow motion and a little out of focus. In Planet Terror, when the mother opens up the door of the car, I wanted the body of the little boy to fall out like that. It didn’t quite work, because a car isn’t a carriage.

CLARK: Thank you, sir. You’re so kind. [To Tarantino] Now, you’ve got to tell me, how long was the incredible tracking shot around the ladies in the diner? Seven minutes? Eight minutes?

TARANTINO: I don’t know. I’m sure it was probably around that.

CLARK: Given the complexity of whose energy and whose face you really needed to be seeing in the shot at any given moment, the more it went on, the more I said, “Oh my god!” I make these little 8-by-10 cards for the design of every one of my shots. And I thought, “Now, what the hell would my card look like for that shot?” I did a four-minute shot in a movie I did based on Arthur Miller, and it nearly killed me. And it wasn’t anywhere near as good as that one.
RODRIGUEZ: He was his own director of photography too, and his main cameraman was out sick that day.

TARANTINO: What’s interesting is that I’d shot one whole day of coverage already for that scene, and I was shooting it kind of like I’d shot the opening of Reservoir Dogs, so there were a lot of 180-degree dolly shots, with the backs of the heads and all that stuff. I got home that night and I didn’t feel good about it. I thought, “I’m ripping myself off. Now, if anyone can rip me off, it’s me, but I don’t feel good about it. I just feel like I’m doing it because I know it will work, and that’s not the same thing as doing it because it’s right.”

Then I go, “Wait a minute! Could I do it all as one shot? Would it work that way?” So, in my hotel room, I’m working it out in my mind, because I know the scene by heart. Can I do it this way? Is there any trouble spot where I’m in exactly the wrong moment at the wrong time? And I realized, “Yes, I can do this.”

So, I showed up the next day, the actors are all ready to do the second half of the coverage. “Fuck that. We’re going to do it all in one shot.” Now, the actors are so terrific in the scene because they had just done it all day long the day before. If I’d come up with my brilliant idea at the start of the next day, it wouldn’t have worked, because they wouldn’t have had the scene in their bones anymore.

TEAGUE: I did second unit on a whole bunch of car-chase movies for Roger before I started directing — Thunder and Lightning and Death Race 2000 — and the thing I learned was that if you don’t care about the characters, you don’t care about the car chase, no matter how spectacular it is. The great thing about that scene is that you really get to know the characters and begin to like them. The camerawork is terrific, but what really interested me was how you got the performances. The girls are amazing.

TARANTINO: You just nailed it, Lewis, because you can work a scene out forever, and if the actors aren’t pulling it off, then you’re just jerking off. If there’s even a line stumble, or a breath at the wrong place, then the whole thing is for naught. Now, the take that you see in the movie is the one where they all pulled it off. There are four other takes that are just short of that, but that was the one. When we watched it in dailies, we were applauding and cheering like it was a football game.

CLARK: Was it all scripted, or did you give them any freedom?

TARANTINO: I give them freedom, but with my stuff, especially the dialogue scenes like that, it’s musical, so it’s about them doing the lines. But I can honestly say that if they hadn’t had a whole day in front of them doing the scene piecemeal in coverage, 15 or 16 times, they wouldn’t have been as prepared.

ARKUSH: I’ve started doing the crane shot last or the wide shot last, because everyone’s dialed-in and they know it. Then you start getting all of these ideas.

TARANTINO: There’s really something to the idea of getting the scene down pat before you start doing that camera stuff that has to work in time with the performance, or else the whole thing is a jerkoff. For the actors, it’s like, “Oh, now this is an exciting stage I’m acting on instead of just coverage, coverage, coverage.”

Hell on wheels: Death Proof knockes 'em dead. (Andrew Cooper/The Weinstein Company)
ARKUSH: Sometimes, I’ll just yell, “Freedom take. Do anything you want as long as you hit the same marks.” Of course, they do it kind of the same, but they feel that the pressure’s off and they give it that little extra something.

TARANTINO: That’s it!

CLARK: The amazing thing for me was that it didn’t feel like a contrived master shot. It felt organic and real. If you hadn’t told me that they had the day before to prepare and you’d just come in that morning and done it, I would know that you were a god and not just a good filmmaker.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: It was an extraordinarily risky thing to do, because it’s the presentation scene for [Death Proof star] Zoe Bell, and she really has to have her personality on and be absolutely letter-perfect. If there was a flaw in her performance, it would have affected everything.

TARANTINO: That’s when all of a sudden the good idea isn’t such a good idea anymore.

CLARK: Was Zoe the one actually on the front of the car.

TARANTINO: That’s her the entire time. There’s no stuntwoman. She was the stuntwoman. If you see a shot of just her hand, it’s her hand. She made a point of saying, “Look, I’m hired as a stunt person, so if you cut to just a foot on the fender, I want it to be my foot. I’m doing the entire performance. I’m doing what I always do, except I’m doing acting too.”

TRENCHARD-SMITH: I assume you had some kind of mount hidden under her stomach for some of those shots where she’s facing forward on the hood of the car?

TARANTINO: What we had was a single wire connected to her that ran through the hood, through the engine and into the back seat, where a stuntman was crouched low on the floor with a blanket over him, holding on to her. It had to be a human doing it, because he had to give her some slack and then hold her when it came time to hold her. It was a whole human experience. There were no mechanics involved other than a wire that a man was holding on to.
CLARK: The tone and the style was completely different from Robert’s movie. And the three trailers... I want to make one of those movies. They were outrageously funny.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: What were the shots that the MPAA cut out of those?

TARANTINO: There’s been a rumor that we had a problem with the MPAA. We actually didn’t. That rumor happened before we’d even shown them the movie. It’s interesting, because I’ve never had a big problem with the MPAA. There’s some negotiation that goes on every once in a while, but they respect me and my stuff, and it’s pretty cool. What’s actually really funny is that when it came to Robert’s film, they said one thing to him. It was about the one zombie attack that didn’t have a humorous edge, that was a little bit more violent and rough. That was the one where they said, “Maybe we could lose a little bit from that.” But everything else they understood. Here’s the deal: We had no test screenings on this movie, because we didn’t have time. We had an April 6 release date, and we finished cutting our negative last week. So, when we were talking to the MPAA, they were actually the first people to see the goddamned fucking movie, and they were so down with everything that we were like, “I guess the humor works!”

RODRIGUEZ: They were our test audience.

TARANTINO: Look, I am not against the MPAA. I’m a big supporter of theirs, because without them, we’d have every jerkwater county in America coming up with obscenity laws, and that’s a dangerous road. That’s the road where Lenny Bruce gets put in jail and people are thinking about prosecuting Jack Nicholson for starring in Carnal Knowledge. So, they’ve got a hard job to do, and I’ve always appreciated them. But in this instance, they just kind of got it. Even when we did From Dusk Till Dawn, the one decision we made early on was to give the vampires green blood, because it’s not blood that the MPAA dislikes — they dislike the color red. We threw green everywhere, and they didn’t give a damn. Same thing with Kill Bill: You go to black and white, and suddenly the blood turns from crimson red to black oil. Intellectually, you know it’s blood, but if it’s not red, no worries.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: I’ve found that if you give them a couple of shots to cut out, then they’re happy. With the beheading scene in Night of the Demons 2, it needed exactly the number of shots that it had in the final cut, but I put in a few extra shots of squirting torso and head rolling, and they said, “Trim this scene down.” So, I took those shots out, and it was just the way I wanted it.

ARKUSH: At New World, we used to have to run the trailers for the MPAA and sit there and take notes. Roger used to only allow black-and-white dailies, so then you’d dupe the dailies and cut the trailer from those, by which point you couldn’t tell what was going on. Later, the MPAA would get all these complaints, because there was blood everywhere. So, then they said that we had to show the trailers in color.

TARANTINO: Here’s something I want to talk about, and, Allan, you’re the guy to talk about it because you did trailers: If movies have entered a less sensationalistic time than what existed in the late ’60s and throughout the 1970s, trailers have changed completely! The trailers I have from the ’70s, you couldn’t get that stuff in a feature today, let alone the fucking trailer!

ARKUSH: The Grindhouse trailer is so much like the old New World trailers, I ran it five times the other day. When the narrator says “two” over the shot of her breasts, that’s like when we used to say “Pam Grier’s two biggest hits!”

RODRIGUEZ: We referenced those trailers all the time. Originally, we were going to do more fake trailers ourselves, and we were going to keep cutting to a shot of a helicopter blowing up.

TARANTINO: You guys put that helicopter shot in every trailer, including Jackson County Jail, which is the one I remember best. Tommy Lee Jones shoots a shotgun out of a window, cut to a helicopter exploding. Then I see the movie: Where’s the fucking helicopter?

ARKUSH: On Crazy Mama, Jonathan Demme, who’s a brilliant director, never got a shot of Cloris Leachman, who played Crazy Mama, firing a gun, which to Roger was like sacrilege. At one point, she waves the gun around and sticks it out the window of the car. So, when we were cutting the trailer, as soon as the gun cleared frame, we added the sound of a gunshot and cut to a helicopter blowing up, which we lifted from a Cirio Santiago movie.

TARANTINO: Cirio Santiago happened to be in town recently, and I became the first person to do an in-depth interview with him about his entire filmography. We did a 90-minute interview at my house, and it’s going to be on the Grindhouse Web site.

ARKUSH: George, didn’t you produce one of Cirio’s films?

ARMITAGE: I didn’t produce any of those. Demme and Joe Viola produced that one they shot in the Philippines [The Hot Box]. Cirio was around, though. We would hang with him.

ARKUSH: Cirio was so cheap that when he would send us the movies, they were only spliced on one side.

TARANTINO: I heard stories of Scotch-tape splices! Is that true?

ARKUSH: Exactly. We would get the prints in order to cut the trailer, and we’d go through and resplice them on both sides. There was one called TNT Jackson and Dynamite Wong. Roger said, “I don’t like Dynamite Wong — he’s gone.” So, it became just TNT Jackson. And the ad line was “TNT Jackson. She’ll Put You in Traction.” But to this day, Roger tells me with great affection that his favorite ad line was the one I came up with for Eat My Dust: “Ron Howard Pops the Clutch and Tells the World to Eat My Dust.”
TARANTINO: By the way, that’s poetry. I can recite that in my sleep.

ARKUSH: It came to me in the shower, and I ran to the editing room.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: I liked his line for Shogun Assassin. “Shogun Assassin: He’ll Kick Your Ass In.”

ARKUSH:Cover Girl Models: They Don’t Need Clothes to Strike a Pose.”

TARANTINO: Yes! I loved Cover Girl Models. Of Roger Corman’s three-girl movies, that would be my third favorite after Night Call Nurses and Private Duty Nurses. I’m also a fan of Hollywood Boulevard, though I almost don’t consider it in the same vein, because it is a wink at those. It’s not a three-girls movie proper; it exists outside of them.

ARKUSH: I still have a Xerox of my paycheck: I was paid $85, and we shot it in 10 days.

TARANTINO: And can I just say that of all the sexploitation actresses — and there were some goddamn good ones, in particular the brunette in Night Call Nurses — Candice Rialson had a star quality.

ARKUSH: A toast to Candice Rialson, who passed away last year.

[Clinking of glasses.]

TARANTINO: Candice Rialson had a wonderful quality about her, and not only was she sexy as all get-out — the quintessential stripper girl in every way, shape and form, with an Amazonian body — but she had a genuine sense of humor and, like Zoe Bell, was just immensely likable.

ARKUSH: She was bubbly and funny in real life. The day we went out and shot all the stuff that starts the movie was just one of the most fun days, running up and down Hollywood Boulevard, shooting shots of her.

TARANTINO: In Summer School Teachers and in Candy Stripe Nurses, she’s really good. But Hollywood Boulevard was the first official comedy she acted in, so she could actually lead with her strength in that. And you realized how incredibly good she was. To tell you the truth, I never understood why you and Joe Dante didn’t bring her along with you when you moved on.

ARKUSH: She went and did that movie about the singing vagina.

TARANTINO: Which she pulled off. Few could have pulled that off as well as she did.

ARKUSH: Then she had little tiny parts in a bunch of stuff her boyfriends were working on, but I think the singing-vagina movie kind of killed her.

TARANTINO: Allan, in that documentary Roger Corman: Hollywood’s Wild Angel, it was great seeing you on the set of Grand Theft Auto directing Don Steele’s car crashing into that pool. When I was working at Video Archives, I bought the old MPI Home Video VHS tape of Roger Corman: Hollywood’s Wild Angel, and I still have it in its original case. It’s like a prized jewel.

ARKUSH: That’s how I met my wife. I was at a screening of the documentary, and in that exact part you’re talking about, where I’m wearing those wild sunglasses, the woman behind me says, “That guy’s cute.” When the lights went up, I turned around and said, “I’m that guy.” We’ve been together for 25 years.

TARANTINO: Here’s the thing about car chases: Once you’ve made a couple of movies, you can see how they’re done. For this movie, I watched so many car chases, I was finally like, “Now I don’t like any of the car chases I thought I liked, and I don’t even know if I like car chases anymore at all.” Because I could see how they were done, and I never wanted to know how the magician did his tricks.

ARKUSH: I thought the Bourne movies raised the level of car chases, especially the second one, The Bourne Supremacy. That car chase was a whole step up.

TARANTINO: It’s weird — I could still feel CGI in that. The last real, old-school car chase was in Terminator 2. To me, there’s nothing worse than CGI when it comes to a car chase. And this whole idea of having 16 cameras shooting from every conceivable angle every time a stunt happens — that’s not directing, that’s selecting. In the ’60s and the ’70s, it was about the one shot; it was about the good driving abilities of these people, and the way the cars held together. Back then, you couldn’t do a 14-year-old-girl coming-of-age movie without having a car chase in it. Now, everything is all cut up and it doesn’t matter who’s driving the fucking car. The geography is lost. The momentum is lost. Being inside of the chase is lost.

ARKUSH: I’ve got two daughters, and I spend a lot of time showing them old movies. We had a movie night recently where we were watching Howard Hawks’ Hatari!, and there’s a scene where this rhino comes right up to the side of the Land Rover and starts kicking the shit out of it. I said to my daughters, “That’s a real rhino, not a CGI rhino.” Two weeks later, they’ve got some girlfriends over and they put the DVD on to that scene and I hear them telling their friends, “That’s a real rhino, not a CGI rhino.”

TEAGUE: Before CGI, you had to find a practical way of doing something that nobody had ever seen before. On Thunder and Lightning, we finished the movie and Roger said, “The car chase isn’t exciting enough — shoot something else.” So, I thought about those foot chases where you see the people jumping from rooftop to rooftop, and I figured we could do the same thing with a car. On the first take, the stuntman miscalculated and missed the other building entirely. We had a pancaked car about a block down the road. The stuntman wasn’t injured at all. He had a backup car. So, we shot it a second time and it was perfect.
L.A. WEEKLY:So, where have all the cheap thrills gone?

TARANTINO: The exploitation market died when ticket prices went as high as they did. To this day, and I know I’m way out of touch, I don’t think a movie ticket should cost more than $5. Back in the day, you could spend $5 to see a low-budget exploitation movie or you could spend $5 to see A Star Is Born or whatever — it was all the same. Now, I’d feel ripped off if I spent $12 at a movie theater to see Eat My Dust, though oddly, I don’t feel ripped off spending $24 for the DVD. That’s my own prejudice. Having said that, today there’s a huge market of straight-to-video exploitation movies.


L.A. WEEKLY:But whenever I see one of those movies, I almost always feel they lack the expressive grandeur of the big-screen exploitation movies of yesteryear.

TARANTINO: You are absolutely right. Whatever else you want to say about Roger Corman, he was a soothsayer. He knew everything that was going to happen years before it happened. When, all of a sudden, his movies started having these one-week engagements in two theaters just to meet a contractual obligation, and then they came out in video two days later, that was the end of exploitation movies theatrically.

ARKUSH: The second he moved into that studio in Venice, everything had to fit within four walls and you lost all the freedom of location shooting.

TARANTINO: The loss of the theatrical experience was like a loss of heart for the directors, because even though you guys didn’t expect critical respect, there was a chance that Kevin Thomas, or Linda Gross, would see what you had done and give you a good review in the Los Angeles Times.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: [Former Los Angeles Times film critic] Michael Wilmington found The Siege of Firebase Gloria playing on the lower half of a drive-in double bill with Red Scorpion and said, “Why isn’t it playing the top half?”

TARANTINO: Here’s a wonderful thing: The Siege of Firebase Gloria played for a week in Los Angeles. Cut to 15 years later, and it is now, among war-film fans, considered in the top five of all Vietnam movies ever made!

TRENCHARD-SMITH: And yet, I can’t get Sony Home Entertainment to put out a DVD, even though they have a high-def master.

TARANTINO: They just don’t know, and won’t take the two seconds it takes to find out. But I’ve been on the Internet. I’ve gone to these Web sites. Cirio Santiago, for example, directed nine Vietnam movies back-to-back in the 1980s and ’90s, and you know what? They’re the best movies of his entire career. Nobody has ever done as many Vietnam movies as good as that. They’re like the great, low-budget WWII movies of the ’50s. They’re like great Combat! episodes, except set in Vietnam. One of them, Eye of the Eagle 3 — also known as Last Stand at Lang Mei — is just terrific. When you look up the reviews, they’re within a breath of The Siege of Firebase Gloria. There’s another one, called Firehawk, that almost plays like Reservoir Dogs set in Vietnam. They’re not about explosions; they’re all about the human drama.

TEAGUE: We haven’t talked about a producer of independent films who was my original inspiration, and that’s Robert Lippert.

TARANTINO: He produced those B Westerns.

TEAGUE: And Sam Fuller movies. That’s what really got me interested in making movies. Jack Nicholson was writing and producing for Robert Lippert. Fred Roos was producing for him. And Fuller directed three or four movies for him.

TARANTINO: Robert Lippert did Monte Hellman’s Back Door to Hell and Flight to Fury.

TEAGUE: In the Philippines.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: Have you seen those movies that George Montgomery made in the Philippines?

TARANTINO: No, I know of them, but I’ve never seen them.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: They’re quite good. There’s The Steel Claw and Samar and Warkill. They all have great jungle combat. Some of them were period.

TARANTINO: Well, I’m a huge fan of Filipino cinema. I can defend Eddie Romero and Gerry DeLeon and Cirio Santiago till the cows come home. I have tonight, actually.

TRENCHARD-SMITH: When I first came to America in 1968, Warkill was the first exploding-blood-bag movie that I remember seeing. I thought, “This is great stuff. I want to do that.” It took a while for the rest of the world to catch up, but when The Wild Bunch came out in 1969, all bets were off. When I came to Los Angeles in 1970, the first movie I saw on Hollywood Boulevard was Slaughter, and they didn’t care that you could see the wires coming out of the actors’ trousers. The hell with the wires — everyone’s looking at the blood!

TARANTINO: Jack Starrett!

TRENCHARD-SMITH: Jack Starrett!

TARANTINO: If Jack Starrett were alive, he’d be sitting at this table. [To Richard Rush] You know, if you’re the king of the biker movies, he was the crown prince.

RICHARD RUSH: Thank you.

TARANTINO: One of the things I always loved about your stuff was that you started out Max Julien — the great Max Julien. Probably the single-most iconic performance in the history of blaxploitation movies was Max Julien as Goldie in The Mack. Not Superfly. Not Shaft. Not Pam Grier. Max Julien in The Mack is the Paul-Muni-in-Scarface performance of blaxploitation cinema, and he started in your movies.

RUSH: And after he did those blaxploitation pictures, he played in my first studio picture, Getting Straight.

TARANTINO: By the way, if you didn’t know this, Getting Straight was Ingmar Bergman’s favorite American movie of all time. He always cited Getting Straight.

RUSH: That script contains one of the proudest lines of my writing career, which is when Elliott Gould says, “You’re not a woman. You’re just a guy with a hole in the middle!”

TARANTINO: My love-of-my-life girlfriend, when I was in my early 20s, was a literature major going for her professorship, just like the Elliott Gould character. And Getting Straight was her personal favorite of all the movies we watched together. She loved the constant literary talk of that movie. There were two movies, out of three years of showing her movies, she loved the most: Getting Straight and — check this out — Paul Mazursky’s Blume in Love. So, on top of all your cinematic genius, thank you for giving me that moment with a woman I loved so much.

RUSH: My pleasure.

TARANTINO: Gentlemen, I’m going to leave because I’ve got to start my press junket early tomorrow. Otherwise, I’d keep this thing going until 2 o’clock in the morning.
 
GRINDHOUSE FILMS "GUILTY PLEASURES" LIST:
as printed in Entertainment Weely Issue #927, March 30, 2007:
1) Escape from New York (1981)
2) Vanishing Point (!971)
3) Mad Max (1979)
4) A Fistful of Dollars (1964)
5) Dawn of the Dead (1978)
6) The Warriors (1979)
7) The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970)
8) The Street Fighter (1974)
9) Piranha (1978)
10) Zombie (1979)
11) El Topo (1970)
12) Maniac (1980)
13) Dolemite (1975)
14) Raw Meat (1972) aks "Death Line"
15) Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974)
16) Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (1965)
17) My Bloody Valentine (1981)
18) Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde (1971)
19) The Big Bird Cage (1972)
20) The Clones of Bruce Lee (1977)
 
These are cult films listed in Danny Peary's 1981 definitive hardcover,
"CULT MOVIES", listed in alphabetical order:
Aguirre, the Wrath of God
All About Eve
Andy Warhol's Bad
Badlands
Beauty and the Beast
Bedtime for Bonzo
Behind the Green Door
Beyond the Valley of the Dolls
Billy Jack
Black Sunday
The Brood
Burn!
Caged Heat
Casablanca
Citizen Kane
The Conqueror Worm
Dance, Girl, Dance
Deep End
Detour
Duck Soup
El Topo
Emmanuelle
Enter the Dragon
Eraserhead
Fantasia
Forbidden Planet
Force of Evil
42nd Street
Freaks
The Girl Can't Help It
Greetings
Gun Crazy
Halloween
A Hard Day's Night
The Harder They Come
Harold and Maude
The Honeymoon Killers
House of Wax
I Married a Monster from Outer Space
I Walked with a Zombie
Invasion of the Body Snatchers
It's A Gift
It's A Wonderful Life
Jason and the Argonauts
Johnny Guitar
The Killing
King Kong
King of Hearts
Kiss Me, Deadly
La Cage aux Folles
Land of the Pharaohs
Laura
The Little Shop of Horrors
Lola Montes
The Long Goodbye
Mad Max
The Maltese Falcon
Man of the West
Night of the Living Dead
The Nutty Professor
Once Upon A Time in the West
Out of the Past
Outrageous!
Pandora's Box
Peeping Tom
Performance
Petulia
Pink Flamingos
Plan 9 From Outer Space
Pretty Poison
The Producers
The Rain People
Rebel Without A Cause
The Red Shoes
Reefer Madness
Rio Bravo
Rock 'n' Roll High School
The Rocky Horror Picture Show
The Scarlet Empress
The Searchers
Shock Corridor
The Shooting
Singin' in the Rain
Sunset Boulevard
Sylvia Scarlett
The Tall T
Targets
Tarzan and His Mate
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Top Hat
Trash
Two for the Road
Two-Lane Blacktop
2001: A Space Oddysey
Up in Smoke
Vertigo
The Warriors
Where's Poppa?
The Wild Bunch
The Wizard of Oz
 
 
 

;

  

|  ©2006
  |


Create a Free Website