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‘Hicksploitation’ Cult Classics "Common Law Wife" and "Jennie, Wife/Child" from Film Masters on Blu-ray & DVD June 25th

Backwoods Double Feature:

Common Law Wife (1963) + Jennie, Wife/Child (1968)

In Partnership with Something Weird, New 4K Scans of ‘Hicksploitation’ Cult Classics

 On Blu-ray + DVD, June 25th


Film Masters in a partnership with the distribution company Something Weird dig into the world of Hicksploitation which is a genre of backwoods films that are usually outrageous and off the chain. Two features out of this realm are Larry Buchanan (Mars Needs Women, 1968; It’s Alive, (1969); Naked Witch, 1964) "Common Law Wife" and "Jennie, Wife/Child" from James Landis (Airborne, (1962), Stakeout! (1962), The Sadist (1963). Both films are receiving a 4k restoration and will be available to the public June 25th. The "Backwoods Double Feature" will also have all kinds of extras including Ballyhoo Motion Pictures documentary, "That’s Hicksploitation: The Origin of Southern Sinema". Read ahead on how you can get your hands on this latest release from Film Masters and Something Weird.

Make a jug of sweet tea, y’all, and enjoy some summer viewing with these “Hicksploitation” films from the ‘60s—over-the-top exploitation films that targeted cultural stereotypes of rural Southern culture. Old men cast their eyes on young women, moonshine brews in the swamps, young farm hands, town floozies … This pair of slice-of-life films transports you to the best of the backwoods!


Available June 25, the special Backwoods Double Feature collector’s edition—on Blu-ray and DVD from Film Mastersfeatures Common Law Wife (1963) and Jennie, Wife/Child (1968), newly restored versions of two films originally released by Something Weird Video in 2003.


From a genre that doesn’t often see a lot of TLC, these films get a glow-up that provides a whole new appreciation for backwoods hillbillies. Both films are from original 35mm archival elements—with supplemental 1080p footage in Common Law Wife—for an upgraded viewing experience, on Blu-ray for the first time.


EXCLUSIVE BONUS! Ballyhoo Motion Pictures presents a new, hour-long documentary, That’s Hicksploitation: The Origin of Southern Sinema; that dives into the Hicksploitation genre, tracing its roots from the origins of film from 1930s all the way up to the 1970s. Exploring the cultural impact and importance, the documentary is narrated by C. Courtney Joyner, who also wrote the documentary.


In Common Law Wife, Shugfoot Rainey (George Edgley) trades in his longtime girlfriend (Annabelle Weenick) for a newer model ... who just happens to be his niece, Baby Doll (Lacey Kelly). Unfortunately, his mistress does her research and discovers she is his common law wife … and he won't be able to get rid of her that easily! Directed by Eric Sayers, the film is actually spliced together with an unfinished film, Swamp Rose, directed by Larry Buchanan (Mars Needs Women, 1968; It’s Alive, (1969); Naked Witch, 1964). Marketed as an “educational film” in the original trailer, it warned its potential viewers of the lecherous lives its characters led. As parts of the film were shot a few years later, Baby Doll is allegedly played by a couple different actresses, contributing to a frenzied, not completely cohesive, storyline. It's backwoods at its best!


In Jennie, Wife/Child, aka Albert Peckingpaw’s Revenge, Albert Peckingpaw (Jack Lester) takes Jennie (Beverly Lundsford) to be his wife ... But Jennie is a whole lot younger and has her eye on the young farm hand, Mario (Jim Reader)! Old Man Peckingpaw is bound to find out what's happening on his farm sooner or later and, when he does, watch out! A catchy theme song draws you in immediately and the film features even more country-style earworms throughout. Cinematography by Vilmos Zsigmond, a later Oscar winner for Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977), elevates this film above others in the genre.


"What a treat to see these relatively little known low-budget potboilers from the ‘60s given first-class treatment with brand new restorations and extras,” said Lisa Petrucci from Something Weird, who pens the liner notes. “I think fans will appreciate the enthusiasm, time and effort that went into this wonderfully weird Blu-ray release."


SPECIAL FEATURES:  Ballyhoo Motion Pictures documentary, That’s Hicksploitation: The Origin of Southern Sinema; archival audio commentary for Common Law Wife by director of Swamp Rose, Larry Buchanan, and film historian/Mondo Digital founder, Nathaniel Thompson; Millie De Chirico, film programmer, writer and host of the podcast I Saw What you Did, and Ben Cheaves, programmer at Turner Classic Movies, provide a new, feature-length commentary for Common Law Wife; De Chirico also provides the full-length commentary for Jennie Wife/Child; liner notes by Lisa Petrucci; original, restored trailer for Common Law Wife; and newly created trailer by Film Masters for Jennie, Wife/Child.


Both films are presented with an aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Discs are region free and include English SDH.  Audio is DTS-HD/Dolby AC3s.

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