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Trailer Hitch 

An underground movie that revels in its own excrement

Wednesday, Mar 30 2005
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Trailer Town is a bad movie. You realize this early on, when a grizzled old man takes his shit on a date. Literally. He does his business, pulls up a chair, whispers a few superfluous sweet nothings, then ... well, things get really bad. He makes love to his excrement. And he's not acting.

This is outlaw filmmaking. Can you handle it?

Directed, written, produced, edited -- we could go on -- by Giuseppe Andrews, Trailer Town concerns life in a trailer park. Specifically, the director's own trailer park, where he still resides despite the fact that he's a bona fide movie star, a young, teen idol-ish sort with roles in Independence Day, American History X, and the short-lived TV series Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place, among others. A spot in 2002's Cabin Fever led to a friendship with director Eli Roth, who hyped Andrews' crude home videos (all right, films) about his trailer-park pals, leading to a 2003 DVD release of Trailer Town via surprisingly mainstream outlets like Tower Records and Amazon.

A slight, weary-looking man, often photographed with crude tattoos, a mustache, and $2 aviator sunglasses, Andrews grew up in, yes, a trailer park, as well as his dad's van. He is not swayed by Hollywood. He considers trailer parks "holy" and their inhabitants the "gorgeous fucking heroes of the United States of America." "I love these people," he told Filmmaker Magazine. "I think they are warriors ... to me this place is a heroic place."

Fair enough: The guy sees something noble in the down and out. But Andrews goes the extra mile, giving the actors lots of beer and persuading them to tell his stories, a jumble of pornographic adventures. They speak in an odd, stilted cadence, as if repeating something someone just told them; in fact, Andrews feeds his actors sentences one at a time, then edits himself out. No, it's not believable. But that's not the point. Even though the dialogue is clearly audible, he adds English subtitles, because "every fucking line is beautiful and poetic."

Here's an example: "Did you blank that little blank blank blank?" "Yeah, I took my blank and blank blank blanked ...," and so on, with little variation, for the entire film. Sometimes the characters gush lovingly for a spell before more blank blank blank. Sometimes they speak in verse, which usually involves rhyming something with "twat" or "bitch."

It's courageous, subversive -- all that good film-theory stuff. Critics are grouping Andrews with early John Waters and Harmony Korine, while fans add Rainer Werner Fassbinder and Werner Herzog. You'll be fascinated, disgusted, and bored by Trailer Town, and you just may like it. But here's our advice: Don't bring a date.

About The Author

Michael Leaverton

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