“B Is For Bad Cinema” operates outside of standard trash tropes

book cover - b is for bad cinemaState University of New York Press has a very excellent addition to film criticism with their new book, B Is For Bad Cinema, edited by Claire Perkins and Constantine Verevis. Rather than focusing as so many books about “b-movies” do, using the standard definition of the form — cult, grindhouse, trash, et al — it steps outside the expected. In some cases, we’re talking major releases as much as we are low-budget features.

Now, granted, in some cases there’s a crossroad where bad meets big, and you end up with something like William Friedkin’s Cruising, which — while trashy (and it certainly is) — also features what essay author R. Burton Palmer describes in “Redeeming Cruising” as “significant” imagery: namely, “the kind of sexual display previously seen only in gay stag films was suddenly at the representational center of a major Hollywood release.”
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