Gore, whether we like it or not, marked in its own way a before and after in the history of cinema, especially with regard to this subgenre of terror. the recent Film Festival What + Forbidden in Madrid he made it clear.
As reported by our friends from the newspaper The countrythis edition of the festival took the liberty of paying a peculiar tribute to the film that originated a new stage of a style that has been circulating for decades: The Gore Gore Girls.
Herschell Gordon Lewis was the central figure and the object of tribute at the festival is ultimately the man behind this disturbing film, which made quite a bit of noise particularly for its time.
Under such perspective and inspired by the diary piece, it is worth taking a brief tour of the history of this subject that marked a before and after.
Horror movies are born with The Gore Gore Girls half a century ago
Herschell Gordon Lewis was curiously a professor of English Literature at the University of Mississippi and might never have made an impact on the film industry if he hadn’t met producer David Friedman.
Derived from that meeting arose the first jobs series B, full of nudity, violence and murders with a certain modesty. It was in this period that Hitchcock’s Psycho emerged in 1960 and Lewis decided to go in the opposite direction, experimenting with what would become the central elements of gore cinema: knives, guts, buckets of blood and dismembered bodies.
“Hitchcock was showing the results, but not the action, because he couldn’t risk being rejected by theaters. We didn’t care.”
This is how Lewis defines and describes the essence of his style that he was refining? over the years. In 1963 they released Blood Feast, which is considered by many to be the first gore movie in history.
It was shot in just over a week and its ridiculous budget of USD $25,000 forced the entire production team to get creative with blood and violence, which would mark a trend that would be refined over the years.
They found their main forum in drive-ins and there Lewis and Friedman had the idea of handing out vomit bags at the entrance before each show. Better marketing could not conceive for the time.
This is how, after a long road traveled, The Gore Gore Girls was released in 1972. The irony is that this film was also the one with which the filmmaker retired, abandoning the director’s chair.
There is a less romantic epilogue when in 2002 he decided to return to the cinema with Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat and the result was not so memorable.
But it is better to remember the original arc of his path.