(aka "The Hygiene Story" )

 

directed by Jerry Gross
USA 1967

 

TEENAGE GRAFFITI focuses on farmboy Josh (Michael Driscoll) who has just graduated from high school and is planning to leave for college. His foster parents show him more affection than they do their own sons who resent Josh even more when he is gifted with a sports car as a graduation present. Josh also becomes friendly with the afluent Carters who are at the other end of the social scale to his family. When his foster father offers Josh the farm to prevent him from leaving (after a misunderstanding with the Carters anyone else could see coming a mile away), his psychotic foster brothers try to kill him. Believed dead, Josh is rescued by a philosophic hermit and must decide whether to go back or run away.

The arrival of a Swedish teacher Erika Peterson (Julie Ange) at a New York high school to teach "anatomical biology" sets the stage for trouble involving teenage girls, drug dealers, and repressed parents in TEENAGE MOTHER. Tired of her parents pestering her and jealous of the time her stock car racing/future medical student boyfriend Tony (Howard Le May) spends with the new sex ed teacher, wild girl Arlene (Arlene Sue Farber) fakes a pregnancy to force him to marry her. Fearful that Miss Peterson's teachings will turn the kids away from "his literature", a drug dealer enlists psychotic troublemaker Duke (Frederick Riccio) and the school janitor to set up Miss Peterson. Arlene's announcement, however, is far more successful in rallying the parents and the school board against the new teacher.

The directorial debut of producer/distributor Jerry Gross (in his pre-Cinemation days), TEENAGE MOTHER is undeniably an exploitation film but it also kind of feels like an educational scare film marked as a piece of juvenile schlock cinema. From the over-the-top portrayals of repressive adults, angry parents, noirish drug dealers, psychotic thugs, troubled young lovers, and well-meaning idealistic teachers (including an early appearance by Fred Willard as the squeaky clean coach) to the too perfectly wrapped up "lesson learned" ending fade-out, TEENAGE MOTHER comes across as a loopy dramatization rather than a fictional film. It's an odd duck in that it actually seems to have a serious message beneath the juvenile schlock cinema plot. The film's exploitation trump card is the uninterrupted screening of a "birth reel" (in spite of the teacher and a title card emphasizing its non-prurient function). While it's not exactly a good film, it isn't really a bad film either and perhaps best works as a guilty pleasure (birth scene aside).

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: 22 November 1967

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Code Red - Region 0 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

 

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Code Red

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:08:54
Video

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.9 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono)
Subtitles none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Code Red

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary on TEENAGE MOTHER by Jeff Dolniak, David Hayes, and Kevin Moyer
• TEENAGE GRAFFITI trailer (16:9; 1:42)
• TEENAGE MOTHER trailer (16:9; 5:04)
• CHEERLEADERS' WILD WEEKEND trailer (16:9; 2:17)
• CHEERING SECTION trailer (4:3; 2:33)
• KING FRAT trailer (16:9; 3:08)
• I'M GOING TO GET YOU... ELLIOT BOY trailer (16:9; 1:27)
• FAMILY HONOR tv spot (16:9; 4:3)
• MARK OF THE WITCH trailer (16:9; 1:34)

DVD Release Date: August 25th, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 11

 

Comments

TEENAGE GRAFFITI is presented in an anamorphic widescreen 1.85:1 transfer and exhibits more damage than the disc's co-feature. The image is softish and grainy but some of that is the result of the budget and shooting conditions though some must be blamed on the source print. Reel change marks show wear and one transition is particularly splicy (the print condition may be the reason that Code Red canceled its planned single disc issue).

The anamorphic, progressive transfer of TEENAGE MOTHER looks quite nice for the most part with bold colors and the expected grain. There is also the expected amount of damage with some lime green vertical scratches and coarse reel changes that are very suited to the grindhouse feel of both the film and the disc. The 1.78:1 cropping works for the most part since many scenes are photographed in static medium or long shot but a lot of moving shots seem not to have been composed for theatrical matting and some close ups seem to have more dead space above the heads than below with the widescreen framing.

 


The commentary by Cinema Head Cheese contributors Jeff Dolniak, David Hayes, and Kevin Moyer does not add much to the context of the film's story or production and the remarks are often off-color (to say the least) for the most part (though the viewer may find it hard not to relate to some of their reactions to the stupefying prolongued sight of Duke's epileptic dancing style). Besides trailers for the two features and two drive-in concession bits for atmosphere, the disc is rounded out by trailers for future Code Red releases that can be watched all together or interspersed before and between the two features with a seperate Play option.

Possibly due to some confusion over the film's rights, TEENAGE MOTHER will also be released on a competing double feature release from Alternative Cinema paired with Jerry Gross' faux-Italian/Spanish co-production FEMALE ANIMAL (also starring Arlene Sue Farber under the pseudonym Arlene Tyger). That release features an interview about Jerry Gross by Independent International's Sam Sherman who had acquired some of the Cinemation library (including FEMALE ANIMAL).

 - Eric Cotenas

 



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Screen Captures


Right: a young Fred Willard.

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

 


 

(aka "Country Dreamin' " )

 

directed by Christopher G. Casler
USA 1977

Poster

Theatrical Release: May 1977 (USA)

Reviews      More Reviews      DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Code Red - Region 0 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

Runtime 1:29:09
Video

1.83:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.53 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono)
Subtitles none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Code Red

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.83:1

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary on TEENAGE MOTHER by Jeff Dolniak, David Hayes, and Kevin Moyer
• TEENAGE GRAFFITI trailer (16:9; 1:42)
• TEENAGE MOTHER trailer (16:9; 5:04)
• CHEERLEADERS' WILD WEEKEND trailer (16:9; 2:17)
• CHEERING SECTION trailer (4:3; 2:33)
• KING FRAT trailer (16:9; 3:08)
• I'M GOING TO GET YOU... ELLIOT BOY trailer (16:9; 1:27)
• FAMILY HONOR tv spot (16:9; 4:3)
• MARK OF THE WITCH trailer (16:9; 1:34)

DVD Release Date: 25 August 2009
Amaray

Chapters 13

 



DVD Menus
 

 


Screen Captures

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 


 

 

 


DVD Box Cover

 

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Code Red

Region 0 - NTSC

 





 

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