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Reviews wanted: Ganja and Hess

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Reviews wanted: Ganja and Hess

Old 08-29-00, 04:23 AM
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Anybody seen this film? well?
Old 08-29-00, 03:12 PM
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You seem to be making inquiries in line with my taste!

I was privileged enough several years ago to take a film class where an extremely rare 16mm print of Ganja & Hess was shown. I was blown away by the film's artistry, many layers of meaning, on and on. I couldn't believe that the film was so rare, unknown and largely ignored. When I saw it on the shelf at my favorite DVD rental store my eyes almost literally popped out of my head!

The film is very difficult to describe. On its most basic level it's a black vampire film...but only on its most basic level. It also deals with the 'otherness' of being a black American, with the destructive potential of lust, the burden of African history, the sometimes destructive influence of Christianity. Its grainy, glowing 16mm photography is beautiful, its soundtrack is haunting and the performances are grand. The DVD contains very interesting audio commentary from several crew members (sadly, the film's director is deceased) and notes on the film's troubled history which are very very interesting to read.

It truly speaks to the potential of the DVD format that lost films like this, and Fando and Lis are revived by people who are passionate about film appreciation, history and preservation.
Old 08-31-00, 12:02 AM
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Ganja & Hess is a fascinating movie, managing to subvert its commercial horror angle and to explore the contrasts between Western and African cultures - the former represented as repressive and puritanical, the latter as more virile and liberating. Impressionistic, vibrant, and rhythmic, Ganja & Hess is a memorable and haunting movie, and one of the best black-centric pieces to come out of North America.

[This message has been edited by darktrippers (edited September 03, 2000).]
Old 08-31-00, 01:40 AM
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quote:<HR>Originally posted by darktrippers:
Ganja & Hess is a memorable and haunting movie, and one of the best black-centric pieces to come out of Hollywood.<HR>


Sorry to nitpick, but "Hollywood" had absolutely zero to do with Ganja & Hess. It was very much an independent East-Coast of America production, made for a tiny budget and shot in upstate New York. Which IMO makes it all the more amazing.

Old 08-31-00, 03:25 AM
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I love the fact that actor Duane Jones from George Romero's "The Night of the Living Dead" is also in Bill Gunnn's "Ganja & Hess." Two kick A zombie/Vampire -- aka livin' dead -- films that also pack great social comment, whether intended or not in the case of NOTLD. Besides, they're also great entertaining films by great directors. adios, Tony Block
Old 09-03-00, 05:28 PM
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quote:<HR>Originally posted by Jepthah:
Sorry to nitpick, but "Hollywood" had absolutely zero to do with Ganja & Hess. It was very much an independent East-Coast of America production, made for a tiny budget and shot in upstate New York. Which IMO makes it all the more amazing.

<HR>


Sorry, I stand corrected.


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