DVD Review: Produce Your Own Damn Movie!

Lloyd Kaufman and Troma are synonymous with gore and independent filmmaking. “Almost 40 years of Reel Independence” is what they’re website is touting this year. Produce Your Own Damn Movie is Kaufman’s latest in the … Your Own Damn Movie series following Make… and Book tie-ins are also available as Kaufman manages to mention several times throughout this DVD set. He also pimps his upcoming Book/DVD set Sell Your Own Damn Movie. And all of these are available at troma.com.

If that first paragraph sounds like I’m shamelessly plugging Troma products, it might be because I just sat through hours of Troma plugging itself and I think some of that penetrated deep.

That’s right; the biggest thing to take away from this film is that if you can get Lloyd Kaufman to be in your film, no matter how small a role, he’ll show up with a camera, make a little featurette about the making of your film and include it on one of these DVD released, it doesn’t matter if you’re a 16-year-old kid or horror icon Herschell Gordon Lewis. That’s 90% of what the first disc contains. There are some pretty good tidbits hidden within like how to make your own green screen as well as boom mics and steadicams. There is even a great interview with Lewis on the set of his latest film The Uh-Oh Show, which Kaufman, of course, has a small role in. You also get to see Kaufman on the set of Troma alumni, James Gunn’s latest film Super.

The second disc is a lot more informative than the first. Kaufman sits down with the likes of David Cronenberg, Roger Corman, Avi Lerner, Joe Dante, Mick Garris and others who talk about how they got their start in the industry and impart some pretty good words of wisdom to inspire every young aspiring filmmaker to get out there and, well, make their own damn movie.

The film is presented in 1.33:1 full screen and Dolby Digital Stereo. This is pretty much all hand held documentary stuff, so it doesn’t look that all that great, but it’s really not meant to. Some times the sound gets really nasty, but for the most part the look and sound is acceptable.

There are not special features in this collection, but there really doesn’t need to be.

This might not be the best DVD to help you learn how to produce your own damn movie, but if you’re a fan of Troma and Lloyd Kaufman, then you’ll find something in here to be entertained. If you’re just going to rent one disc for some reason, skip the first and go straight to number two for all the great interviews.

Troma presents Produce Your Own Damn Movie!. Directed by: Lloyd Kaufman. Starring: Lloyd Kaufman, Herschell Gordon Lewis, James Gunn, David Cronenberg, Roger Corman, Joe Dante and Mick Garris. Running time: 300 min. on two discs. Rating: Not Rated. Released on DVD: 9-13-2011. Available at Amazon.com.

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