DVD Review by Kam Williams
Headline: DVD Chronicles Golden Age of Australian Cinema
For decades, the Australian movie industry was subject to one of the most repressive set of censorship rules around. Consequently, nobody wanted to see the terribly-tame productions shot in the country, not even the Aussies themselves. But after shifting social mores led to a liberalizing of the laws in the Seventies, virtually overnight the land Down Under became more associated with sexually-explicit romps and gratuitous violence than with cuddly koalas and kangaroos.
That stunning transformation is the subject of Not Quite Hollywood: The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation, a dizzying documentary simultaneously combining running commentaries with shocking snippets of footage culled from representative samples of the sensational genre. Foremost among the experts weighing-in on the subject is Quentin Tarantino who is never identified as a director but merely as a “fan” every time he appears onscreen. And that appellation proves appropriate as the legendary Oscar-winner generally just gushes about this or that over-the-top technique employed byhis Aussie colleagues whose gutsy approach to filmmaking he obviously admires.
Unfolding at a rapid machine gun pace which never pauses to take a breath, Not Quite Hollywood starts with titillating sequences of topless actresses to show how bawdy Aussie cinema became once freed of governmental restraints. Next, splatter flicks featuring everything from severed limbs to decapitated corpses get the same frenetic treatment, followed by horror fare in which the monster hunting for humans was frequently a souped-up automobile.
A bodacious effort which successfully elevates a bevy of god-awful B-movies to an art form worthy not only of study but appreciation to boot.
Excellent (4 stars)
Rated R for sexuality, violence, gore, drug use, profanity and graphic nudity.
Running time: 93 minutes
Studio: Magnolia Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: Deleted and extended scenes, commentary, interviews and more.