Warped and Faded: Weird Wednesday and the Birth of the American Genre Film Archive is an obscure movie lover’s dream. Coming in at over 400 pages, the book is a chronicle of some of wildest, strangest, and most sultry exploitation films to ever screen at the Alamo Drafthouse. It is also the story of Weird Wednesday and friendship.
The book itself is gorgeous. Filled with full color and black & white photos of rare movie posters and stills, Warped and Faded constantly has the reader in awe. It is akin to looking at a montage of iconic film moments, except here the question keeps that keeps coming up is, “What is going on there?”
Warped and Faded is also an introduction to movies that are long forgotten and not often referred to. Author Lars Nilsen discussed his history with the Alamo that eventually led to the book being put together.
“There was a struggling theater that I would go to all the time called the Alamo Drafthouse. I would go and talk to the owner and offer suggestions.”
And how were movies picked for Weird Wednesday?
“The cardinal sin was suggesting a movie was too well-known. There was supposed to be a sense of discovery.”
Every page of Warped and Faded offers a sense of discovery. This is a book that caters to fans of hard to find cinema. Paired with today’s streaming landscape, this also means that movies that were literally tossed on the trash heap can now be watched.
A surprising aspect of the book is the sense of friendship and camaraderie that is found. Through the oral history told and even in the brief synopses of the movies, a deep love and respect comes though in the writing.
“It was a time of great friendship. It really was a wonderful time.”
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