Monday, May 16, 2011

You've Got Redneck on You - An Exploitative Review!!

Redneck Miller (1977)
Directed by: John Clayton
Ex-Fest 2011, film #5 (Rednexsploitation)

There are two distinct facts I learned from DJ Miller - the ass kicking, Schlitz sipping, record spinning good ole boy who can make any woman’s panties drop with his cocksure swagger. One – You can’t argue with a bullet. And two - The forced and nonconsensual sex of your partner by her captors is not an effective tool for bargaining or torture. Simply put by this Down South Confucius, “You can take a lot of lovin’, but I can only get killed once.”

In those few words, DJ has successfully rationalized rape. Not only does she accept it… but so do you!

Redneck Miller (1977) stars Geoffrey Land as the titular DJ. He’s an early morning radio host, playing requests and easing the morning traffic with his scratchy, baritone voice. His love for the ladies is only matched by his affection for his “wheels.” When his chopper gets used in a theft of narcotics, he’s wrongfully accused and held responsible for the missing “stuff.” Why it’s always referred to as stuff, with huge emphasis on all the fricatives is anyone’s guess.

What follows are a string of random encounters, coincidences and empty beer cans that lead to DJ’s truck and chopper being held until he comes up with the missing stuff. Shoot at him, chase him down, kidnap him…hell, you can even threaten to rape his concubine- none of that fazes him. But if you steal his ride(s), his field of vision narrows like a sniper’s sight on the target.

What makes all of this special for the viewer is that this turn doesn’t happen until the very end of the second act, which means the audience is treated to over an hour of aimless and clich├ęd awesome before a secondary inciting incident is even established. If the idea of no plot development for nearly an hour bother’s you, you’re stupid, because DJ Miller is the most entertaining redneck this side of the Mason-Dixon.

Director John Clayton has brought us the “reverse racism” equivalent to 1970s blaxploitation era of cinema. Redneck-sploitation, if you will. Miller is an unapologetic male slut who doesn't discriminate who gets his fist or wiener (some circumstance may call for both). He's an equal opportunity asshole, caring deeply only for his pick-up and chopper. It's a simple existence, but it's his "un-mol-ested" one.

The audience is torn on Miller for the majority of the picture. He's clearly a terrible human being, but you can't help but get carried away in his utterly selfish exploits. All in all, this film is lightning in a bottle. If you put exploitation cinema in the grinder with racial stereotypes, country music, They Live style fist fights, a convoluted plot and a shit load of pull tab Shlitz beer cans, you've got the masterpiece that is Redneck Miller.

So remember, next time some jive talking turkeys with names like Super Mack and Preacher (just try to guess their ethnicities) have you dead to rights and feeling up on your lady... She can take a lot of lovin,' but you can only get killed once. It's the least she can do, right?

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