Hick Flicks

The Rise and Fall of Redneck Cinema

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About the Book

While the pimps and players of blaxploitation movies dominated inner-city theaters, good old boys with muscle under their hoods and moonshine in their trunks roared onto drive-in screens throughout rural America. The popularity of these “hick flicks” grew throughout the ’70s, and they attained mass acceptance with the 1977 release of Smokey and the Bandit. It marked the heyday of these regional favorites, but within a few short years, changing economic realities within the movie business and the collapse of the drive-in market would effectively spell the end of the so-called hixploitation genre.
This comprehensive study of the hixploitation genre is the first of its kind. Chapters are divided into three major topics. Part One deals with “good ol’ boys,” from redneck sheriffs, to moonshiners, to honky-tonk heroes and beyond. Part Two explores road movies, featuring back-road racers, truckers and everything in between. Part Three, “In the Woods,” covers movies about all manner of beasts—some of them human—populating the swamps and woodlands of rural America. Film stills are included, and an afterword examines both the decline and metamorphosis of the genre. A filmography, bibliography and index accompany the text.

About the Author(s)

Scott Von Doviak is a film critic for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and a freelance writer focusing on the film industry. His articles have appeared in Hollywood Reporter, Dallas Morning News and many other publications. He lives in Austin, Texas.

Bibliographic Details

Scott Von Doviak
Foreword by Chris Gore
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 232
Bibliographic Info: photos, notes, filmography, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2005
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1997-5
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8212-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Foreword: Triumph of the Hick (Chris Gore)      1
Preface: Downriver      5

PART I: GOOD OL’ BOYS
1. Moonshiners      15
2. Smokey the Red-Necked Sheriff      28
3. Honky Tonk Heroes      42
4. Crackerjacks      56
5. Hick Chicks      67
6. Dixie DeMilles      76

PART II: ON THE ROAD
7. Around the Track      93
8. From Sea to Shining Sea      103
9. Fender Benders      118
10. Keep on Truckin’      123

PART III: IN THE WOODS
11. The Death of Bigfoot      145
12. Creepy Critters      156
13. Hillbilly Horror      168

Afterword: The End of Hixploitation?      182
Filmography      193
Notes      199
Bibliography      209
Index      213

Book Reviews & Awards

“a lot of good information”—Cult Movies; “a substantial and necessary addition…wonderful…pop culture triumph”—Film & History; “a must have…Von Doviak manages to navigate all of the myriad back roads of hixploitation with the deftness of a hillbilly Magellan. That may not sound like exceptional praise, but trust me, it is. The task Von Doviak set for himself when he undertook to write this book was not a modest one…he pulled it off like a champ…if you like good writing that makes you laugh out loud while you pick up a thing or two, then…this book is for you…a thoroughly enjoyable, romp down memory lane…highest recommendation”—American Monsters.com.