Preacherman (1971)

There’s nothing I hate more than seeing the Troma logo displayed before a movie they only have the rights to. It’s often enough to make me shut a film off, which I did with this one before heading back one more time to try and make it through.

Preacherman was shot entirely on location in Monroe, North Carolina and was produced by a Charlotte, NC production company, Preacherman Corp. Eleven of the seventeen actors in this movie were locals from the Carolinas and most of the crew was from there, too. Outside of star, writer, producer and director Amos Juxley (actually Brooklyn-born Albery T. Viola) and Iilene Kristen, who played Mary Lou and would go on to be on Ryan’s Hope and One Life to Live, not many of them ever acted again.

The Preacherman Amos Huxley loves to get money and make love to young ladies, which runs him afoul of the law in White Oak County. Soon, Amos has escaped yet another series of cops and begins living with the Crabtree family, who are farmers and therefore must have a farmer’s daughter, Mary Lou. He somehow convinces everyone that he’s going to return her virtue and also gets her to believe that the angel Leroy is coming to make her clean again.

The cops are in on the Crabtree’s main crop, which is moonshine, but the Preacherman convinces them to start a new church funded by that demon alcohol. Hijinks, as they say, ensue.

Bill Simpson, who played Sheriff Zero Bull also played Zero in Moonshine Mountain. He also reprised that role in the sequel. Yes, somehow there was a second movie in this series, entitled Preacherman Meets Widderwoman, which never received a national distribution and only played regionally in the South. Screenwriters Joseph Alvarez and W. Henry Smith also penned the hicksploitation-centric romps Trucker’s Woman and Redneck Miller.

You can watch this on Amazon Prime.

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