Plot: What’s it about?
In The Hooked Generation, we watch as three small time hippies seek to move into the world of drug dealing, and in grand fashion. No, the idiots known as Daisey, Acid, and Dum Dum don’t want to start off small and work their way into larger scale deals, they wish to kick it off with a massive shipment of narcotics. As no one would trust such imbeciles with a valuable shipment, they access the drugs by killing off the Cubans who served as smugglers, giving our trio the chance to sell the goods for pure profit. The scene wasn’t pretty however, as the three had to not only knock off the Cubans, but slay some Coast Guard members and take two hostage, who were just innocent bystanders at the event. With the FBI hot on their trail, can the trio move the drugs and score the big cash like they’d wanted? In The Psychedelic Priest, a once upstanding priest named Father John (John Darrell) finds himself on a drug fueled passage of pleasure. Of course, he never would have taken drugs by choice, but when he sipped on a soft drink spiked with LSD, it kicked his brain into overdrive and changed his life forever. He quickly goes from preaching to tripping, spending all of his time getting hopped up with his new hippie brethren. But what happens when his high bottoms out and his life is stuck in the gutter?
This is one freaked out double feature, with two movies destined to bomb your out of your mind, or at least just bomb. The trials and tribulations of drug use cause the characters a lot of grief, but we’re more inclined to laugh at their misfortune. These movies aren’t in the same vein as Reefer Madness per se, but they do seem to trumpet the pratfalls of narcotics, though not in a preachy kind of fashion. Instead, we’re shown that drug users are either stupid in the first place, or turned into idiots once they take up the habit. And as both were made back in the era for rampant drug abuse (late 60s & early 70s), you’ll see tons of real life hippies, free love, and far out visuals, all needed for the complete psychedelic experience, of course. I found both to be a lot of fun, but how can you top a priest tripped out on LSD? I mean, as wild as The Hooked Generation was, The Psychedelic Priest seems so much more outrageous and hilarious, since its a man of the cloth dabbling in alternative medicine, as opposed to the hippies. As you’d expect, the visuals are injected with vivid colors and wild costumes, while some hot chicks add to the visual feast. I was more than entertained by these two pictures and with both stuffed into one release, plus some nice bonus materials, I can’t help but give this disc a high recommendation.
Video: How does it look?
The movies are presented in full frame, which seems to be open matte, as no pan & scan is evident in either treatment. As expected, the prints have been banged up over the years, but look solid, given their age & low budget nature. You’ll see some marks, debris, and grain in most scenes, but these elements never overwhelm the visuals, though also as expected, there is a lot of softness present. The image in both cases is on the hazy side, but that seems natural in these kind of movies and is due not to the transfers, but the limitations of the productions. The colors and contrast reflect the overall softness, but aren’t hindered too much and overall, I think these movies look just fine, all things considered.
Audio: How does it sound?
The included mono tracks won’t have you in a state of euphoria, but they sound solid and have held up well over the years. No, these audio mixes don’t sound as clean & sharp as more recent tracks, but all things considered, the material is well represented and while flawed, the tracks are more than acceptable. The outta sight music in both films sounds stable and adds to the fun, while the various sound effects are thin, but these are older mono options, so that is to expected, I think. No real problems in terms of dialogue either, as vocals are clean and understandable throughout, leaving me to score these tracks well enough.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The same man directed both of these epics and thanks to the world of audio commentaries, William Grefe can guide us through these offbeat pictures. In a most generous notion, Grefe has sat down and commented on both movies, so we can get the scoop on each one. Grefe isn’t the most insightful speaker, but he keeps a solid pace and reveals some good information. A glimpse into the production of The Hooked Generation is also available in visual form, thanks to about twenty-three minutes of behind the scenes footage. I was surprised to see this material included, but it a treat to see and I am thrilled it has been tacked on here. This disc also includes some bonus trailers, as well as a selection of exploitation artwork.