Written by: Michael Den Boer on August 27th, 2009
Theatrical Release Dates: USA, 1977 (Teenage Graffiti) USA, 1967 (Teenage Mother)
Directors: Christopher G. Casler (Teenage Graffiti), Jerry Gross (Teenage Mother)
Cast: Michael Driscoll, Jeanetta Arnette, James Devney (Teenage Graffiti), Arlene Farber, Frederick Riccio, Julie Ange, Helene Farber, Howard Le May, Alex Mann, George Peters, Fred Willard(Teenage Mother)
DVD released: August 25th, 2009
Approximate running times: 89 minutes (Teenage Graffiti), 69 minutes (Teenage Mother)
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen (Both films)
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
DVD Release: Code Red
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.98
Teenage Graffiti is a drama set in the rural farmlands about a young man named Josh who at the beginning of the film has everything he could ever want and need. Josh is about to go away to college and has recently been given a car as a graduation present from his parents. Josh’s world slowly starts to fall apart when he becomes friends with a wealthy couple who befriend him after he gave one of them a ride home one day. One of this film’s main sub plots is Josh’s two older brothers whose jealousy towards him getting all of the attention they so desperately desire. They also put a lot of emphasis on the fact that Josh was adopted and he is not blood. They also are hell bent on Josh getting the farm they have put a lot of hard work into. Opportunity arises when Josh has a falling out with the wealthy couple who befriended and he is forced to leave town for awhile. Tired of Josh being in the way his two older brothers concoct a plan to get rid of him once and for all.
The film opening gives a quick montage of the town Josh lives in and people in his life. Small town fun includes nude swimming with friends, destroying water melon patches, impromptu wrestling and a laid back sheriff who is more interested in napping then having to arrest anyone. Oh boy does this film take a while to get to where is wants to go and by this time it is a little too late. About the only interesting moments in this film are the scenes involving Josh’s older brothers. Also the film’s title is kind of misleading since the teenagers in this film are far from delinquents.
Teenage Mother: After a new sex education curriculum is introduced at a high school bad things start to happen.
Teenage Mother was directed by exploitation movie producer Jerry Gross, whose notable films as a producer include Whirlpool, I Drink Your Blood and Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song. Besides Teenage Mother other films that he directed include Girl on a Chain Gang and Female Animal.
First off the films poster art with its lead actress Arlene Farber is very misleading since she never looks like this image at any point in the film. My guess is the poster was designed to hype up what is nothing more than a very long PSA announcement about having safe sex. The poster art for this film is an exceptional example of ‘ballyhoo’. All of the events leading up to the actual birth events are moments that could fit into any Teen film from this era. Besides the film’s use of actual birth footage there is nothing remotely shocking about this film. By waiting tell the final moments of the film to show the ‘birth footage’, this scene resonates more than it would have showing it at any other point during the film. Some other things that stand out in this film are a bizarre dance that a character named Duke does while trying to impress Arlene and the deliriously bad dialog that may bring on an unintentional laugh or two.
Both films are presented in an anamorphic widescreen that frames the image in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio. Both films have been flagged for progressive playback. Teenage Graffiti has noticeable nicks and scratches that vary in degree throughout. Besides the print damage this is a more than serviceable transfer. Teenage Mother has robust colors, natural looking flesh tones and black levels look solid throughout. While there are some noticeable instances of print damage is it never to excessive.
Besides this double feature release, Teenage Mother is also being released on another double feature release from Secret Key Motion Pictures on November 10th, 2009. When comparing the two transfers the transfer on the Exploitation Cinema double feature wins hands down in every way. It looks more colorful, details are stronger and the overall source looks cleaner. There is more information in the top and bottom of the frame for the Secret Key Motion Pictures DVD release and the Exploitation Cinema double feature DVD release appears to have more information of the sides of the frame. This only applies to all of the scenes expect the birth footage which was most likely shot separately and Secret Key Motion Pictures DVD release versions appears to have more information on all four sides of the frame then the Exploitation Cinema double feature DVD release. The running times for both releases are as follows Exploitation Cinema double feature DVD release, sixty eight minutes and fifty eight seconds and Secret Key Motion Pictures DVD release, sixty eight minutes and fifty five seconds.
Both films come with one audio option each, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. Both audio mixes sound clear and free of any distortion.
Extras for this release include trailers for Teenage Graffiti, Teenage Mother, Cheerleaders Weekend, Cheering Section, King Frat, I’m going to get you… Elliot Boy, Family Honor and Mark of the Witch. The main extra included with this release is an audio commentary with Jeff Dolniak, Kevin Moyer and David Hayes (Cinema Head Cheese Comedy Troupe), for the film Teenage Mother. This is another hilarious audio commentary that ends up being more entertaining than either of the two films included with this double feature release. Overall this latest installment of the Exploitation Cinema series is a well rounded release that is highlighted by the superb audio commentary track.
Secret Key Motion Pictures DVD