Pervert! cover

STUDIO: TLA Releasing
MSRP: $19.99
RUNNING TIME: 81 minutes
• Two feature commentaries
• Behind-the-scenes featurette
• Deleted scenes
• Extended girl/girl scene
• Music video
• Trailers

The Pitch

like a Russ Meyer film, but feeding off geek traditions instead of social

The Shut
Up, Ian version: "It’s Love Potion No. 9 meets Idle

The Humans

Carey, Sean Andrews, Juliette Clark, Darrell Sandeen, Sally Jean.

The Nutshell

college student James (Andrews) is on his way to spend the summer on his
estranged father’s ranch, way out in the forgotten desert. When he gets there,
he finds his dad has taken up with a cute little filly (Carey) who seems to
take an interest in James. But when the girl is found murdered, James begins to
suspect that something strange is going on. He’s a quick one.

I miss my childhood.

The Lowdown

On this
week preceding the wide release of Grindhouse it seems appropriate to
consider the exploitation genre. At its origin, the films had to exploit those
things which couldn’t be faked on a non-existent budget in order to get butts
into seats, such as sex and corn syrup. Nowadays, such bald-faced exploitation
isn’t as necessary, thanks to changes in the theatrical run landscape and costs
associated with filming, but the aesthetics of the exploitation flick still
delight, and can be demonstrably effective for attracting audiences. The modern
difference is that these materials are exploited by choice, rather than by
necessity. Filmmakers exploit because they care.

Pervert! isn’t exactly an exploitation
film by either categorization, but the shared genetic material is enough to
warrant the foundation of some sort of theory, which will be banned in
Kansas. Director Jonathan Yudis shoots
for the exploitation of the viewer’s fond memories of cinematic counterculture,
such as Russ Meyer’s pre-gothic stuff or breast adventures like Barbarella;
if those memories don’t exist, then Pervert! contains the qualities that
made those films enjoyable in the first place, making it more homage than exploitation.

Welcome to Salvation, Texas.

That’s a
lot of talking up for a film about tits and blood, so allow me a moment to
return to Earth from the dizzying heights of gratuitous nudity. Yudis and company
have a good sense of how to keep their strengths at the forefront of the
audience’s attention, with recurring ironies, easy characterization, and pretty
women who look as though they’re having a good time. With this kind of flick —
which is to say, something that can’t be called pornography, but also can’t be
taken very seriously — the giggle-quotient is a good rubric to score by, which
returned a pretty high value for me. The following is a (paraphrased) test to
see if you’re of a comparable mental retardation level as me:

Old bloke in overalls bending nubile young female over bed and having relations
with her, strenuously. He starts hooting and hollering.

What’s my name?
What’s my birthday?
January fourteenth, nineteen-twenty-three!
MAN: What’s
the capital of
Baltimore, baby!

the good thing about unassuming little screw[ball/off] comedies like Pervert!
You can pretty easily determine whether or not it’s going to appeal to you by
quick segments. Still images may even work. For example:

danger with any low-budget film that wears its influences on its sleeve is that
the audience will be distanced, turned off by all the winking.
Jack-of-all-Trades Yudis has avoided that trap, investing more time in the
finding the sweet spot between low expectations and high ambitions than do most
homage-ineers. There’s nothing to Pervert!
but good fun, but of that there is plenty.

The Package

off the bonuses are three different trailers, each highlighting one of the
ballyhooed themes of the film: Sex, Death, and Freedom. I guess God was busy,
and comes with too many implicit morals, anyway.

included are a Meyer-referencing behind-the-scenes featurette "Into the
Chasm of the Hyper Vixens," which suggests that the cast and crew had even
more fun making the movie than the audience could possibly have watching it.
There are also deleted scenes, a blooper reel that’s more than just throwaway,
a music video, and an extended panty-clad pillowfight (and more!) between Mary
Carey and Juliette Clarke.

Mine only has one eye.

The main
attraction on the disc, though, are the two commentary tracks. The first is
with Yudis and his writer/co-producer Mike Davis. The two have an amiable chat,
name-checking and highlighting their individual contributions to the film. The
second commentary features Yudis again, along with some cast and crew types.
This second track is, oddly, more technical than the first, but both contain a
string of anecdotes that, while not up to Crispin Glover’s manic pace, leave no
room for boredom.

7 out of 10