A Terrific Double Feature
Richard L. Erhardt | Spokane, WA | 05/26/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've been a big fan of Something Weird's Drive-in Double Feature series and this disc is no exception. Both main films are of the Juvenile Delinquent genre which at its best features over-the-top performances and non-stop action. The first feature "The Violent Years" was written by Ed Wood Jr. (Plan 9 From Outer Space). Even though he didn't direct this film, the dialog is convoluted, clunky and hysterical.The second feature is the real find though. "Girl Gang" never lets up. It opens with a pot/heroin party, features robberies, violence, a gang bang initiation, sneering dope pushers looking to get the kids "hooked", a drunken doctor who performs operations on the kitchen table, and ends just as suddenly as it starts. The tone is manic, it never lets up for a second, and it goes beyond "Reefer Madness" from 20 years earlier which is it's obvious influence. Despite both films' "shocking" subject matter they are very tame in that 50's sort of way and probably wouldn't go beyond a G rating today.The extras on the disc are a blast. There are two shorts, one "Goof Balls and Tea" which is a police training film from the fifties tells us that kids begin with goof balls and then graduate to marijuana. The second of the shorts "What About Juvenile Delinquency?" is a centron production. Most likely directed by Herk Harvey, the director of the seminal cult horror film "Carnival of Souls", it's worth looking at to see how he made his bread and butter.There are 5 listed trailers for other JD flicks and a hidden one for "Teenage Mother", which is the best of the bunch. (Just click around, you'll find it.) There is also a second easter egg which shows a brief scene from "The Violent Years". Wrap this all up with Something Weird's Drive-in feature which gives you the option to watch it all, drive-in intermissions, shorts, trailers, features, and you have a great little package. Overall this is a lot of fun and I'm very happy to have it in my collection.If I have any real critique it would be that I'd like to see even more trailers packed onto the disc as they have with others in this series.I highly recommend any of Something Weird Video's Drive-in Double Feature sets."
The Violent, Girl-Gang Years
Mike King | Taunton, MA United States | 10/30/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Something Weird Video has paired the Ed Wood classic flick "The Violent Years" with the similarly-themed movie "Girl Gang." Both films include Timothy Farrell, who also appeared in the Ed Wood classics "Glen or Glenda?" and "Jail Bait." In "The Violent Years" he co-stars as a police lieutenant, but in "Girl Gang" he stars as the head dope pusher - talk about a versatile actor!My favorite scene in "The Violent Years" is when the women attack a couple parked in lover's lane. One of the gang asks the woman for her angora sweater, thus proving that the screenplay was indeed written by Ed Wood! Then, the 4 femme fatales take the hapless man into the woods to have their way with him. Just as the ringleader starts removing her clothes, the camera cuts away. Next, the newspaper headline proclaims, "Young Man Robbed, Criminally Attacked By Four Girls!" In a later incident, the police arrive as the women are vandalizing their school. The gang starts shooting at the cops, and the police return fire. A gang member exclaims in disbelief, "They're shooting back at us!" The ringleader retorts, "What did you expect them to do, throw powder puffs?" Great Ed Wood dialogue! "Girl Gang" is even more graphic, mostly dealing with drug addiction and its crime-related consequences. The drunken doctor who tends to that gang provides much needed comic relief. "I'm a respectable doctor, even if I haven't got a license!" Add in theatrical trailers, short subjects, etc., and you have another great Drive-In Double Feature from Something Weird Video."
Not nearly bad enough
Byron Kolln | 06/01/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I expect less from Ed Wood jr. The movie details the exploits of a gang of bad girls gone really, comically wrong. Robbing gasoline seems a bit unnecessary in the days of 25 cent premium, but we get the point. And how could the cops mistake bandanna masked women for male juvenile delinquents? I don't recall men wearing that much make-up in the 1950's but this movie does come to us from the creator of "Glen or Glennda". Better is the "ravaging" scene set on lover's lane. However, the movie ends up with some lengthy gratuitous moralizing that we just don't need. Where's the rubber octapus? Oh, wait. Maybe that's the scene we didn't see out on Lover's Lane."