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DVD Review


by Mike Corrigan

The title, vintage (1969), and source (Seattle-based Something Weird Video), should give you a pretty good idea about what goes on in this titillating tale of teenage corruption from the golden age of drive-in sleaze. But here's a quick synopsis anyway. Title teen Alice Trenton is a normal, well-adjusted college student until her free-lovin' gal pal Frieda turns her on to the wonders of smoking grass at a sexed-up pool party with far-out chicks and lumpy guys in tight swim trunks. Eager to prove herself "hip" to the group, Alice soon pulls out all the stops, smokes reefer, chugs booze, buys a hippie outfit and gets it on with a guy named "Animal." But when she succumbs to the lure of L.S.D. and enters "Acidland," her world splits from black and white to Technicolor -- and her mind splits altogether. The soundtrack consists of standard issue '60s go-go rock backing a deadpan narrator attempting, Jack Webb-style, to spin the seedy spectacle into a morality play. It's unintentionally hilarious, if more than a little squirmy and rough in spots. Yet there's more. Acidland is teamed double feature-style with the 1968 B & amp;W sizzler, Smoke and Flesh, another poorly acted, spaced-out love-in with a splash of violence. Both features have been digitally remastered from original prints, so they look great (with the exception of the occasional missing frame or jumpy soundtrack).

But the real kicks (as with most Something Weird releases) are the seemingly endless extras you get for the humble price of admission. The best here -- arguably better than either feature -- is the howlingly funny, full color, and very naughty The Sexual Secret of Marijuana, which attempts to extol the aphrodisiacal properties of weed over those of alcohol -- and which co-stars none other than John Holmes. Also included is The Trip to Where? featuring acid guru Timothy Leary, theatrical trailers for a dozen more druggy gems and a gallery of underground sexploitation movie magazine covers.

Obviously, this package is only recommended for adults with a taste for madness and in possession of the sophistication and sense of humor necessary to take it for what it is: ridiculously and hopelessly wrong.

Publication date: 2/17/05

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