10,000 Bullets   Exploring the world of Cinema from the Arthouse to the Grindhouse™

The Teacher/Pick-Up (Welcome to the Grindhouse) 
Written by: on August 7th, 2007

Theatrical Release Dates: USA, 1974 (The Teacher), USA, 1975 (Pick-up)
Directors: Howard Avedis (The Teacher), Bernard Hirschenson (Pick-up)
Cast: Angel Tompkins, Jay North, Anthony James, Marlene Schmidt, Barry Atwater, Med Flory, Rudy Herrera Jr., Quinn O’Hara, Sivi Aberg (The Teacher), Jill Senter, Alan Long, Gini Eastwood (Pick-up)

DVD released: July 3rd, 2007
Approximate running times: 98 minutes (The Teacher), 77 minutes (Pick-up)
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen (Both Films)
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English (Both Films)
Subtitles: N/A
DVD Release: BCi Eclipse/Deimos
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $12.98

The Teacher: Sean (Jay North) a high school senior has an affair with a twenty eight year woman named Diane (Angel Tompkins) whose husband abandoned her. Ralph Gordon is a mentally disabled war veteran who has become infatuated with Diane and when she shows an interest in Sean he then tries to blackmail him. Will Sean and Diane find happiness or will Ralph’s anger end their torrid romance?

The Teacher is your basic story about an older woman seducing a younger man. This plot device was used more successfully in The Graduate. Besides the seduction other back stories include murder and blackmail. The film has three main leads starting with Angel Tompkins as Diane Marshall the teacher that seduces Sean. Tompkins fully embraces the part and her physical features only enhanced her desirability and sexuality. She spends plenty of time in skimpy bikinis or wearing nothing at all.

In the lead male role is Jay North as Sean Roberts a shy young man who has a crush on the woman who eventually seduces him. North who many will remember as Denise the Menace from the early 1960’s television series of the same name gives an average and times flat performance as Sean. He really struggles during the moments where he is being seduced and even later when he has given in to Diane’s advances he still feels like he would rather be somewhere else.

Every story needs a heavy an adversary to disrupt perfect harmony and in the role of Ralph Gordon the disturbed veteran is actor who does a wonderful job conveying his creepiness as he stalks his prey. The story while not totally original still manages to keep things interesting and exploit the films strongest asset Angel Tompkins. Ultimately The Teacher is more like a soap opera then your typical exploitation film.

Pick-up: Two promiscuous teenage girls hitch a ride with a hippy bus driver. They get lost along the way when a storm forces them to take a detour. They end up in the Florida everglades where they go on a drug induced journey to find themselves.

Wow what a wrapped film about hippies on a road trip that looks more like a bad trip. After the opening moments of the three leads on the bus we are then forced to endure them for near an hour lost in the Florida everglades. This part of the film features endless shots of running around sometime naked, having sex on swings and people popping up out of nowhere.

At least there taste in music is pretty good as they listen to Bach. The films score is pretty awful and it is highlighted by the abysmal “Touch Me” song. One of the most enjoyable parts of the film where the two flashbacks one for each girl which show use some of their back stories and hwy they are who they are. The plot is nonexistent and the acting is down right awful. Ultimately this might have been more enjoyable if it where a twenty minute short film which discarded the other hour of footage.

The DVD:

Both films have been given anamorphic widescreen transfer that look clean, detailed and colors and flesh tones look accurate. Even though both transfers have not been flagged for progressive playback the image remains stable throughout.

Both releases each come with one audio option Dolby Digital Mono English. The audio sounds clear and balanced.

Extras for this release are limited to trailers. BCI kicks off its welcome to the Grindhouse with an odd pair of films The Teacher and Pick-Up. Both films come with above average transfer and audio. These films are affordably priced and the option of watching them in the Grindhouse mode adds to their overall viewing experience.

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