The Kids Are Al­right

SFX - - Reviews - A fi­nal shot fea­tur­ing 300 ex­tras and clos­ing com­ments by the voice of God was cut by stu­dio AIP – to Cor­man’s fury.

re­leased OUT NOW! 1970 | 18 | Blu-ray/dVd Di­rec­tor roger Cor­man Cast Bob Corff, elaine Giftos, Bud Cort, Talia shire

In the late ’60s, fortysome­thing B-movie king Roger Cor­man switched from Edgar Al­lan Poe adap­ta­tions to counter-cul­ture movies – even go­ing so far, in prepa­ra­tion for LSD flick The Trip, as to drop acid him­self. Watch­ing this post-apoc­a­lyp­tic black com­edy, you may won­der if it hadn’t worn off.

Set af­ter the ac­ci­den­tal release of a chem­i­cal weapon kills ev­ery­one over 25, it fol­lows some hip young long­hairs as they travel across the coun­try, en­coun­ter­ing fascis­tic Amer­i­can foot­ballers, a coun­try club run by Hells An­gels, and a biker version of Poe. The script was rewrit­ten dur­ing shoot­ing, and the re­sults are free­wheel­ing to the point of aim­less­ness.

There are nu­mer­ous mo­ments of off­beat charm, like a dune buggy chase and a blood­less shoot-out which sees gun­fire re­placed with yelling the names of tough-guy ac­tors. But you’ll need a strong tol­er­ance for flower power apho­risms – and ca­sual rape jokes. Equal parts in­ter­est­ing and in­fu­ri­at­ing, Gas-s-s-s is very much a prod­uct of its time.

Ex­tras A fea­turette about Cor­man’s counter-cul­ture films (nine min­utes); two hour-long au­dio in­ter­views with the di­rec­tor, from 1970 and 1991; gallery; trailer. Ian Berriman

The M20 slip road: flip­ping night­mare.

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