Nov 27, 2014
Aside from his part as a producer for the early works of auteur filmmakers like Curtis Harrington, Paul Bartel and Monte Hellman, as well as a couple of the films in his 1960s Edgar Allan Poe cycle like The Masque of the Red Death (1964) starring Vincent Price, exploitation mogul Roger Corman is someone I never really cared for, especially considering that the older I get, the more weary I am of schlockmeisters and solely monetary-motivated exploitation hacks. From blaxploitation to hixploitation to piranha-ploitation and everywhere in between, Corman has attempted to capitalize on virtually every social controversy, scandal, stereotype, fad, and phenomenon that has plagued the United States, so it is only natural that he would try to profit off the race-hate of the Civil Rights era and the military-enforced racial integration of the South, which, at least financially speaking, ultimately backfired on the anti-auteur. Indeed, The Intruder (1962) aka The Stranger aka I Hate Your Guts! aka Shame is notable for being, among other things, the only film Corman ever made that lost money, which is a fact Corman would be keen to bring up anytime he was asked about the film. Indeed, as belated celluloid sleaze addict Bill Landis and his wife Michelle Clifford noted in their book, Sleazoid Express: A Mind-Twisting Tour Through the Grindhouse Cinema of Times Square (2002) regarding the reason for the failure of the film, “…not many theaters in his distribution network wanted to play a film that used the word “nigger” every few seconds. Years later, Corman called THE INTRUDER the only film he regretted making.” Despite Corman’s vocal regrets regarding the film and casting a then unknown William Shatner as the lead (the director apparently blamed the actor for its failure and Shatner even once joked that the film’s re-released title I Hate Your Guts! was aimed at him), the sometimes race-hustler would later describe it as his greatest film, which is pretty convenient considering the current socio-political climate, especially considering the fact that the United States has a mulatto president with his own bargain bin brand of pimp-like race-hustling. Starring semi-Nordic-looking Hebrew William Shatner as a fiendish double-talking white nationalist type with the predictable Germanic surname ‘Cramer’ (which, ironically, is a surname that Jews oftentimes have) who arrives at a fictional southern town via bus to incite racial hatred against poor innocent and defenseless negroes and prevent them from integrating into a white school, The Intruder is based on the 1959 novel of the same name by speculative fiction novelist and screenwriter Charles Beaumont of The Twilight Zone fame and thus reflects the same sort of sensational fantasy filmmaking, even if the film was shot in a semi-gritty pseudo-Fuller-esque fashion that was utilized to make the viewer feel like they were trapped in the backwards confederate realm of sub-literate racist hick bigots of the ultra-untermensch sort. Notably, Corman made such an ass of himself in the southern town where he shot the film, East Prairie, Missouri, that the chief of police of the area kicked him and his crew out. Indeed, seeing how Corman portrays the place and people of The Intruder, it is no surprise that the chief of police threw him out for being a communist, as the film uses Soviet style agitprop à la Sergei Eisenstein’s anti-Kulak Bezhin abortion Meadow (1937) to get its misbegotten message across, albeit minus any sort of nuance or symbolism. Still, despite all of its glaring flaws and insanely manipulated cultural Marxist essence, The Intruder is, aside from some of his Poe adaptations, easily the best film Corman ever dumped out of his mixed-up, money-worshipping mind.
Adam Cramer (William Shatner), a handsome Nordic-looking fellow in black sunglasses, gazes at negroes picking cotton from a bus window while headed to the fictional southern town of Caxton where he will attempt to rile up the already ‘negrophobic’ white majority against the black minority. Ku Klux Cramer works for a group called the ‘Patrick Henry Society’ (a name clearly taken from the real-life anti-communist conservative group ‘The John Birch Society’, which, unlike the group depicted in the film, was not critical of Jews) and has the hypnotic charm as well as all-American good looks to easily talk people into following his anti-colored/anti-kosher cause. Upon checking into a hotel, Cramer learns that the people already hate coons after the elderly front desk attendant complains regarding the bellboy, “I swear, I believe that boy’s got nigger blood in him somewhere.” Cramer also uses his charm to swoon an underage blonde high school girl named Ella McDaniel (Beverly Lunsford), whose grandfather fears “a great big black flood”and asks his granddaughter regarding the forced integration of ten negroes at her school, “What about you, Ella? What do you think about sitting in a room with a bunch of big buck niggers?” Ella’s father Tom (Frank Maxwell) is a reluctant liberal journalist and he immediately has a gut feeling that Cramer is an evil conniver who plans to spread hatred and violence in the town. One of the first things Cramer does upon getting in town is meeting with its richest man, Verne Shipman (Robert Emhardt), who almost instantly provides him with money and a corvette to drive, which he uses to impress stupid teen Ella into letting him screw her after he divulges his plan to enforce segregation in the town. While Shipman at first argues with Cramer’s plans to destroy racial integration and reinstate segregation as he thinks his methods are illegal, the intruder argues that integration is anti-democratic, stating, “Is it the collective will of the people that niggers should be able to take over the whole world? Because that’s what’s going to happen.” Of course, it is no time before Cramer gets the lynch mob going, as everyone in the area seems to agree that integration is the “greatest wrong the government has ever perpetrated.”
Providing complete validation to Gustave Le Bon’s classic text The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind (1895), Cramer incites a large crowd to attack a car full of negroes after delivering an impassioned speech where he states, “This so-called ‘Advancement of Colored People’ is now and always has been nothing but a communist front headed by a Jew who hates America and doesn’t make any bones about it either. Well, the commies didn’t waste a second. They knew only too well, friends, that the quickest way to cripple a country is to mongrelize it. They poured all the millions of dollars that the Jews could get to them to do one thing: desegregation,” and declares he is willing to give his life to make sure his country stays “free, white, and American.” Rather strangely, the entire mob pussies out after the negro patriarch, who has a mustache similar to Hitler, gets sassy with them. Of course, things get ugly later when Cramer drives Shipman’s corvette through “Nigger Town” (the black area of the town) with robe-adorned KKK goons who eventually burn a cross to scare the spooks. After that, Cramer goes back to his hotel room and seduces the ‘reformed nymphomaniac’ wife of his new ‘friend’ Sam Griffin, who is a salesman that is out-of-town. Being a salesman, Sam knows Cramer is a bullshitter and confronts Cramer after his wife Vi leaves him after learning from the front desk clerk at the hotel that they fucked the previous night. Cramer also finds himself in trouble when some of his followers blow up a black church and kill the negro pastor, resulting in his arrest, but his followers protest and bail him out. Exceedingly arrogant, Cramer is proud of his arrest, stating, “Never underestimate the value of a jail sentence. Remember Socrates, Lenin, and Hitler.” Meanwhile, proto-liberal do-gooder Tom, who has more or less degenerated into a ‘white uncle Tom’, coerces a young negro teen named Joey Greene (Charles Barnes) to go back to the white high school despite threat of death. When Cramer’s followers see Tom walking negro Joe to the high school, they decide to teach him a lesson by beating him so badly that they break a bunch of his ribs, poke out one of his eyes, and cause him serious internal bleeding that leaves him in critical condition at the hospital. Cramer uses Tom’s hospitalization as a means of coercing his daughter Ella into making up a lie about being raped by Joey, as he claims it will help her father. Of course, Ella obliges and a lynch mob comes for Joey, but luckily Sam Griffin, who is still pissed that Cramer screwed his wanton wife, saves the day by getting the teenage girl to admit that she lied about the rape. Needless to say, Cramer is revealed to be a lying sociopathic conman to the townspeople and he tries in vain to discredit Griffin by calling his wife a Jew and nigger-fucker, but it is already too late. Demonstrating he is the ‘better man,’ Griffin gets Cramer, who looks discernibly defeated, to leave town on the next bus. As for Joey, one can only hope that he produced a grandson (who looks like Trayvon Martin) who got even with those evil white folk by impregnating some poor cracker girl, thus completely destroying her bloodline for all of eternity.
Featuring real-life poor grizzled white trash scum and tobacco-spitting porch monkeys as extras, not to mention ominous cross-burnings and bloodthirsty cracker lynch mobs, The Intruder most certainly demonstrates that would-be-auteur Roger Corman really went out of his way to incite racial hatred and controversy while attempting to peddle it off as ‘progressive’ social realist art. Of course, anyone with half a brain can tell while watching the film that Corman is just about as sincere in his negro-championing as villain Adam Cramer. In the 2007 featurette Remembering The Intruder, Corman would state regarding the film: “I took great creative pleasure in making that film. I was disappointed that it didn’t do well commercially but it almost got its money back and I thought, 'Well, I lost a little bit of money but I made a film that was important to me.'” In the same featurette, William Shatner remarked regarding Corman and The Intruder, “He brags about how this is the only film of his that ever lost money…and I think, really, that he deliberately lost money on it, so that he could brag about at least one of his pictures not making money.” Even in Alex Stapleton’s documentary Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel (2011)—a superlatively sappy and sentimental love letter to the schlockmeister—Corman cries about the failure of the film, while also pretending he is some sort of morally righteous artistic martyr, melodramatically stating in a revoltingly phony fashion: “The picture was a wonderful commercial failure. I started to say a wonderful critical success but I got confused but I’ll leave the confusion there because it’s all wound up in my mind. It sort of gets me in the stomach when I talk about it.” In the same documentary, Corman’s brother Gene Corman, who co-produced the film, declares regarding The Intruder, “This is the only film that I don’t think we ever made money on yet it was our best film. We were ahead of the time.” Rather absurdly, in the same documentary, Corman more or less credits the film for turning him into an ‘artiste’ and more serious filmmaker, declaring that the work made him “rethink” his “method of making pictures” by learning the “method acting technique” and then proceeds to talk about “text and subtext” like a pedantic community college professor who has never even seen a F.W. Murnau or Ingmar Bergman flick.
With all the recent senseless and animalistic destruction, opportunistic theft and looting, and savage violence committed by hordes of mindless angry self-entitled negroes as a result of a white cop being cleared of killing a violent negro thug from Ferguson, Missouri whose equally degenerate parents have done their damnedest to profit off their son's death thus demonstrating that integration is an abject failure, The Intruder seems all the more like a patently absurd and sociopathic manipulative joke. Notably, Corman would even note the failure of multiculturalism and black-and-white race relations in the featurette Remembering The Intruder where he states, “this problem is still with us. It’s been partially solved, but it hasn’t been completely solved and it will not be completely solved for a long time.” Of course, the problem will never be solved, unless you’re one of the Hollywood lobotomized automatons who hope to see a future where everyone has a light feces-colored complexion. In The Intruder, every white character, including the protagonist’s daughter who presumably sleeps with the ‘fascist’ villain Cramer on their first date and lies about a poor innocent righteous negro raping her, is portrayed as either moronically evil or terribly flawed to the point of easily succumbing to evil, while the single black character is portrayed as an innocent lamb that just wants to live a simple life in a rotten world plagued with cracker brand racism. Corman also attempts to portray antagonist Cramer’s remark that integration was a Jewish plot as patently absurd, but it is an indisputable fact that the NAACP was co-founded by Israelite Henry Moskowitz and that Jew groups like The American Jewish Committee, the American Jewish Congress, and the Anti-Defamation League were all central in fighting anti-negro prejudice, and that black groups like the NAACP, the Urban League, the Congress of Racial Equality, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee received the greatest funding from Hebrews, not to mention the fact that about 50% of the civil rights attorneys in the South during the 1960s were Jews, as were over 50% of the ‘Whites’ who went to Mississippi in 1964 to eradicate the Jim Crow Laws. Of course, as Malcolm X revealed, Jews, who owned the majority of liquor stores in black neighborhoods, were not doing this out of the kindness of their hearts, but to weaken the white Christian majority and gain the power they wield today. Unsurprisingly, Corman is himself half Hebrew (his paternal grandparents Jacob Corman and Bessie Arst were Russian Jewish immigrants), thus his personal motivations for making The Intruder are obvious. While Corman is oftentimes credited as a ‘rebel’ who subverted Hollywood, it could not be further from the truth, with The Intruder being one of the most conformist works he ever made, as a work that spreads the very sort of message that the culture-distorters in Tinseltown are all about, albeit having been done in a less sophisticated fashion that was made to appeal to the very people it denigrates. In that sense, Corman may be cinema history's most brazen and shameless yet successful carny huckster, as a sort of west coast Lloyd Kaufman, albeit minus the wit, charisma, and eccentricity.
Posted by Soiled Sinema at 4:51 AM
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