They Came from the Swamp (2016)

If you’ve been following along this week, you know exactly how much we love the films of William Gréfe. So this documentary — originally released by Ballyhoo Motion Pictures as a limited edition double disk (you can get it at Diabolik DVD) — is exactly the kind of thing that we devour, absorb and now, share with you.

Honestly, if you have the smallest interest in exploitation film or if you’re an absolute maniac who thrills at the very mention of names like Barry Mahon and Crown International Pictures, then you absolutely must own this. Luckily, if you buy the new He Came from the Swamp set, you get this film along with several of Gréfe’s films.

“If there were rules to making a movie, one indie director would break them all!” These are the kind of taglines that make me beyond overjoyed to watch a documentary and trust me, this one delivers.

As a Miami-based regional filmmaker, Gréfe transformed the Everglades into his own personal studio. This doc has everyone from Ross Hagen, Frank Henelotter, David F. Friedman and Fred Olen Ray to William Shatner, Herschell Gordon Lewis and many of the actors that worked with Gréfe on his many films all speaking about what it was like to be part of this magical time in low budget filmmaking.

If you’re the kind of person who obsesses about the extras on a DVD, then you’ve probably seen the work of director Daniel Griffith. It’s a real joy to see him expand his work to a full-length feature on one fascinating subject. I can’t wait to see his next movie, Celluloid Wizards in the Video Wasteland: The Saga of Empire Pictures.

The Arrow Video He Came from the Swamp box set is available at Diabolik DVD or from MVD. You can also learn more at the official site for the film.

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