Aside from owning/operating and writing for my small press publishing company and associated website Spectacular Optical and occasional writing for Fangoria, Rue Morgue, Shindig!, Filmmaker and others, below are some books I have either written or contributed to:
HOUSE OF PSYCHOTIC WOMEN:
An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films
(FAB Press, 2012)
Author: Kier-La Janisse
Final edit by Harvey Fenton, after a first edit by Adele Hartley and Naben Ruthnum
2nd Edition Hardcover (Possession cover) available from FAB Press HERE. (note the 2nd edition does not come with the Flexidisc record)
Softcover (Dr. Jeckyll et les femmes cover) available from FAB Press HERE.
House of Psychotic Women is an autobiographical exploration of female neurosis in horror and exploitation films. Anecdotes and memories interweave with film history, criticism, trivia and confrontational imagery to create a reflective personal history and examination of female madness, both onscreen and off.
God, this woman can write, with a voice and intellect that's so new. The truth in the most deadly unique way I've ever read.
- Ralph Bakshi, director of Fritz the Cat, Heavy Traffic, American Pop, etc.
Fascinating, engaging and lucidly written: an extraordinary blend of deeply researched academic analysis and revealing memoir.
- Iain Banks, author of The Wasp Factory
Cinema is full of neurotic personalities, but few things are more transfixing than a woman losing her mind onscreen. Horror as a genre provides the most welcoming platform for these histrionics: crippling paranoia, desperate loneliness, masochistic death-wishes, dangerous obsessiveness, apocalyptic hysteria. Unlike her male counterpart - 'the eccentric' - the female neurotic lives a shamed existence, making these films those rare places where her destructive emotions get to play.
Named after the U.S.-retitling of Carlos Aured's Blue Eyes of the Broken Doll, HOUSE OF PSYCHOTIC WOMEN is an examination of these characters through a daringly personal autobiographical lens.
This sharply-designed book with a 32-page full-colour section is packed with rare stills, posters, pressbooks and artwork that combine with family photos and artifacts to form a titillating sensory overload, with a filmography that traverses the acclaimed and the obscure in equal measure. Films covered include The Entity, The Corruption of Chris Miller, Singapore Sling, 3 Women, Toys Are Not for Children, Repulsion, Let's Scare Jessica to Death, The Haunting of Julia, Secret Ceremony, Cutting Moments, Out of the Blue, Mademoiselle, The Piano Teacher, Possession, Antichrist and hundreds more!
A VIOLENT PROFESSIONAL:
The Films of Luciano Rossi
(FAB Press, 2007)
Author: Kier-La Janisse
Available from FAB Press HERE
Italian cinema's tough-guy specialist explodes into action. A must-have for fans of '70s macho cinema!
With nearly seventy films under his belt, almost exclusively in the colourful, controversial and eye-catching realm of Italian exploitation, character actor Luciano Rossi (1934-2005) remains one of Italian cinema's unsung heroes. But while always memorable, until now he has existed only as a footnote in most Italian-focused film criticism, even in the work of ardent fans of the exploitation genre. By luck or judgement, Rossi made appearances in many of the greatest low-budget films ever to come out of Italy, working in all the popular genres, from spaghetti westerns, mafia shockers and horror films to cop thrillers, sexploitation, and every conceivable brand of bizarre Euro exploitation.
One would be hard-pressed to find a fan of spaghetti westerns or 1970s Italian crime films who isn't immediately gratified by Rossi's presence in any given film. Rossi gets brutalized more regularly and more spectacularly than any of his supporting counterparts, whether it's at the flaming fists of Maurizio Merli or via blowtorch to the nether regions courtesy of Klaus Kinski - and he deals it as furiously as he takes it.
A Violent Professional is the first book to fully examine the career of Luciano Rossi - complete with a brief biography and first-hand reviews of all of his known film roles - and stands proudly as a long-awaited appraisal of this dynamic actor's immeasurable contribution to Italian cinema.
This stunningly designed full-colour book is an absolute feast for the senses; hundreds of ultra-rare posters, pressbooks, stills and artwork have been put together to form an innovative and eye-opening package oozing with style, and every bit as dramatic as the classic films discussed in its pages.
Films covered include truly great Italian cult movies such as Django, They Call Me Trinity, Return of Sabata, Death Walks in High Heels, So Sweet So Dead, The Bloody Hands of the Law, Death Carries a Cane, Death Smiles At Murder, The Violent Professionals, Red Light Girls, Violent Rome, Emanuelle's Revenge, Salon Kitty, SS Experiment Camp, Violent Naples, Red Nights of the Gestapo, Contraband, City of the Living Dead, and many, many more!
Janisse, the first lady of euro-trash, has put together THE definitive
work on Luciano Rossi. Ms. Janisse captures his mercurial oddness in
text and pictures as only someone devoted to art and trash could. BUY
- Craig Ledbetter, European Trash Cinema
Rossi is one of the most identifiable and yet little known faces in
Italian genre cinema. Kier-La Janisse's book is invaluable, both for its
focus on Rossi and for the fascinating journey it takes us through the
changing landscape of Italian popular cinema.'
- Pete Tombs, Mondo Macabro
FLESH & BLOOD, Book 2
(FAB Press, 2012) Edited by Harvey Fenton
Available from FAB Press HERE
*Flesh & Blood Volume 2 includes my essay "Boccaccio's Bastards: The Decameron from Pop to Porn" about the Italian 'Decamerotic' film fad of the 70s.
The Cult Movie Journal that Boldly Strode into the Dark Heart of the Exploitation Film Jungle!
The widely acclaimed journal of cinema and video for adults returns with this uncompromising collection of cutting-edge features and interviews.
Flesh & Blood is the Cult Movie Journal from FAB Press, lovingly crafted for everyone who is interested in sex, death & movies! Flesh & Blood Volume 2 includes all new material from some of the best cult and genre film writers around.
DESTROY ALL MOVIES!!!
THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO PUNKS ON FILM
Edited by Zack Carlson and Bryan Connolly
Available from Fantagraphics HERE
*I contributed several reviews for this book as well as interviews with Chris Petit and Stefan Arngrim.
The most dazzlingly insane film reference book of all time, DESTROY ALL MOVIES!!! is an informative, hilarious and impossibly complete guide to every appearance of a punk (or new waver!) to hit the screen in the 20th Century. Featuring A-to-Z coverage of over 1100 feature films from around the world, as well as dozens of exclusive interviews with the cast/creators of crucial titles like Repo Man, Return of the Living Dead, The Decline of Western Civilization and Valley Girl.
Also examined are several hundred prime examples of straight-to-VHS slasher trash, breakdancing fairytales, no-budget apocalyptic epics and movies that barely exist. Plus hundreds of eyeball-smashing stills and posters, many in full color!
Six years in the making, this pulse-bursting monument to lowbrow cultural obsession is a must for all film fanatics, music maniacs, anti-fashion mutants, '80s nostalgists, sleazoids, cop-killers and spazzmatics!