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The Psychotronic Encyclopedia of Film Paperback – October 12, 1983


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Paperback, October 12, 1983
$143.66 $39.97
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I Know You Think You Know It All
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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

The Complete Viewers' Guide to the Weirdest Movies of All Time!

From the slightly offbeat to the outlandishly bizarre...from the no-budget quickie to the multimillion-dollar box-office smash...

Psychotronic films range from Attack of the Killer Tomatoes to E.T....from Angel's Wild Women and Hellcats of the Navy to/Dismember Mama and Let Me Die A Woman...from sincere social commentary to utter trash.

Psychotronic stars are ex-models, ex-sports heroes, dead rock idols, future presidents, would-be Marilyns, and has-beens of all types.

Psychotronic films keep sleepless fans glued to their TVs and lined up outside revival houses in big cities and small towns all over the country.

See these outrageous films through the eyes of Michael Weldon, the world's leading authority on Psychotronic films!

Arranged from A to Z!
Crammed with rare illustrations!
Featuring cast, crew, and characters!
Uniquely eccentric reviews of over 3,000 movies!

Warning: The author of this book has been watching these movies obsessively since the age of 6. He is now unfit for conventional employment. Because of the addictive nature of these films, we the publishers cannot guarantee that your sanity won't be endangered by reading this book. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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I Know You Think You Know It All
"Great Gifts for Grads"
Get your grad the gift of advice and observations to get them started in the working world with I Know You Think You Know It All. Learn more | More gifts for grads

Product Details

  • Paperback: 831 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1st edition (October 12, 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345303814
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345303813
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 7.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #720,937 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By El Kabong on July 1, 1999
Format: Paperback
It's scary to think 16 long years have gone by since this landmark was published. Michael Weldon's book -still the crown jewel of B movie books- remains a colossal work for the same reasons it towered over ALL competitors back in '83: he's crazy enough, and loves these movies enough, to do the job RIGHT. When the world of genre and grindhouse movies was more reliant on oral history than on a few sketchy reference works, he scaled an Everest of obscure trash art to reclaim the form away from the snickering contempt of the Medved Bros (who, till then, had made the most impact in this specialized publishing subgenre with their GOLDEN TURKEY books), giving it back to people who, for good or ill, were similarly exposed to these amazing movies at a very young age and were impacted forever by them. The followup VIDEO GUIDE is equally essential, but just can't engender that same powerful affection those of us who bought this baby hot off the presses in 83 feel for this one. And contrary to what you might read, the black + white graphics are stunning and work PERFECTLY here. Most of the pix are old AP wire photos related to various outrageous studio promo campaigns that you won't find in any other film book. Tremendous artifacts of a time we won't see again. Buy this book and wallow again in the intense dopey pleasure of being a 14-year-old movie nut who's especially susceptible to lurid advertising!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael Sean on April 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
This mind-boggling encyclopedia grew out of Michael Weldon's handmade, xeroxed "Psychotronic" zine in the early '80s, a weekly program guide to low-grade and forgotten movies airing on TV in New York. The term 'psychotronic,' lifted from the 1980 B-movie "The Psychotronic Man," is used by Weldon to describe not only the world of odd horror and sci-fi flicks, but cult and exploitation films of all kinds. From the flying saucer movies of the 1950's to the James Bond series to the glut of disaster epics from the 1970's, they're all covered with obsessive consistency. Before this wonderful resource came along, it was nearly impossible for the average viewer to find any serious information on a majority of these films. At the time, these movies were scoffed at by critics and ignored in reputable film guides. For better or worse, their legacy has been preserved in Weldon's book. It was published in 1983, prior to the cable TV boom and the rise of video cassette rentals, so most of Weldon's info came from the original movie press kits, old newspaper ads and articles, and by watching the films themselves on late-night movie marathons on TV. The individual entries are brief but informative, detailing the directors, writers, and producers involved, notable cast members and cameos, the year of release, the studio that released it, and any other titles the movie was released under. Entertaining trivia and production notes are often included along with a succinct plot description. The book is filled with an indispensable array of archival press photos, vintage movie ads, and B&W stills, and a handy index that helps you locate the entries with your favorite people (be they Bela Lugosi, Roger Corman, or even Nancy Sinatra).Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 9, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am the first to confess that not everyone spends their time wondering if they might like to watch Untamed Women tonight, or have an Ed Wood film festival, but I am one of them. Call me crazy (ahem!), but I like really bad old movies, especially the ones that try to scare/pander you. Perhaps I yearn for the time when showing a bit of cleavage was considered racy. So I nose around the discount rack looking for such gems as Mermaids of Tiburon or The Earth Dies Screaming. I come across a copy of Demonoid. Should I buy it or not? Comes the rescue the Psychotronic guide which safely guides me through these murky dark waters. It and its companion Video guide are essential for those who share my idea of fun, with reviews of 6000 screen gems, such as Curse at Cactus Creek and Robot Monster.
Perhaps my only objection is that the guide makes no pretense at being authoritative. For example, When a Stranger Calls is reivewed (favorably), but its sequel, When a Stranger Calls back, does not appear at all (and is arguably the better movie). There is also a smattering of "legitimate" film, such as Pursuit of the Graf Spee, and Polyester. No matter, all the films reviewed are, at the least, quirky, and there is a pretty good chance, at any rate, that the film you seek is reviewed. If not, you will have great fun just looking for it.
My only grief is that the concordance is limited to an index. After all, what more important thing could there be than a filmography of Barbara Steele, the geratest actress that ever lived?
These things aside, I recommend this without hesitation. There are other books listing gore/sleeze/exploitation films, but you will find none better.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 30, 2000
Format: Paperback
Beware of this book! It's hard to resist spending hours on end flipping back and forth through Weldon's amazing lexicon of trash, cult, exploitation, and just plain wierd films. Even if you're not a bad-movie junkie, you'll enjoy Weldon's tongue-in-cheek reviews of these cinematic oddities. Vampires, teens, zombies, bikers, mutants, psychopaths, space-vixen, and other B-movie fixtures abound, and the Psychotronic Encyclopedia guides you through them all with humor and more than a little insight into this bizarre cultural phenomenon. Tons of rare production photos, film stills, and movie poster images help make this book an indispensable addition to any film lover's library.
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