THE MANSON FAMILY at the Hi-Pointe Midnights this Weekend!

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If blood-smeared orgies and acid-induced infanticide isn’t you cup of tea, steer clear of The Hi-Pointe Theater next weekend because Charles Manson and his band of bloodthirsty miscreants will be taking over the big screen in a film you won’t easily forget. Fifteen years in the making, director James Van Bebber’s THE MANSON FAMILY (2003) is one grim and gory mockumentary about the infamous group of free lovers turned homicidal psychopaths and their notorious 1969 murder sprees and it’s this month’s Late Night Grindhouse Midnight show brought to you by the crazies at Destroy the will be screened midnights at St. Louis’ fabulous Hi-Pointe Theater (1005 McCausland Avenue) this Friday and Saturday (April 12th and 13th). The pre-show begins at 11:30.

There have been previous films about Charlie and the gang but they’ve been mostly made-for-TV (HELTER SKELTER) which ain’t right. The subject matter is just way too intense and cries out for a gruesome, graphic staging of the events which landed the gang in prison which is exactly what THE MANSON FAMILY provides. Bypassing the Hollywood system was the only way the real story could be told and Vanbebber has told it right. Blood is plastered on the walls, a caesarian is performed, drugs are devoured, orgies are thrown, heads are shot, and innocents are strangled, killed, mutilated, and tortured……. Damn Hippies!


Rather than reiterate the events as described by prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi in his book Helter Skelter, Vanbebber sets the story during the height of the summer of love from the point of view of the Manson gang. He digs deep into the bacchanalia of life on the Spahn ranch: the orgies that escalated into abuse and then violence. Since Charlie Manson himself was never at the Tate or La Bianca murders, this means the film focuses squarely on “The Family”—Manson’s band of hippy followers who viewed the madman as a sort of god, twisted messiah, and new age guru all rolled into one. As such, the film follows an ensemble cast (including Vanbebber himself as Bobby) as they become increasingly more indoctrinated into Manson’s way of thinking.

Van Bebber’s movie is only ten years old but intentionally crude-looking, capturing the dingy and washed-out look of the great exploitation flicks from the 1970s and the hallucinatory imagery of the underground art films of the ‘60s.Van Bebber rubs our noses in our own lust for excess, transforming his attraction to violence into an art of depraved catharsis. THE MANSON FAMILY is completely insane, uncompromising and scary as hell.


The Hi-Pointe Theater site is HERE

Destroy the Brain’s site is HERE

The Facebook event page for the Friday night show is HERE

The Facebook event page for the Saturday night show is HERE



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