The Acid Eaters (1968) is a titty flick written, produced and photographed by
none other than David F. Friedman. Regular readers know that he is a personal
favorite, most especially for The Erotic Adventures of Zorro. Sad to say, this
is a much lesser effort, but does score several points for weirdness.
We open with close ups of people going through their workday. Finally, it is
quitting time, and a group of them take off on motorcycles to enjoy the weekend.
They start at a swimming hole, topless of course, then indulge in body painting.
Finally, one of the women gets intimate with the wrong man, so they get into a
knife fight. The transgressor falls into quicksand, and flips the others off as
she goes under. Not to worry, she comes out in a room with an Indian and a
miner, and then later reappears when the Indian performs magic. The group then
takes off in search of the "sugar cube pyramid" which is an unlimited supply of
acid. They find it, and it is so large it is visible from the road a couple of
miles away. The group enters the pyramid and descends into hell, where they
discover that one of their own has become the devil. Then all of the women show
their tits again on one pretext or another, and everyone heads back to work on
This odd film pretty much bites the big one, but there is some good
news. This oddity is available on a Something Weird double feature, and the
other film is a gem. Rather than add a second exploitation drug film, Something
Weird included a documentary film made by hard core legend Alex de Renzy as a
reaction to a Presidential Commission on Marijuana. This is a wonderful time
capsule, and a real oddity from someone who mostly made hardcore porn. To give
you some idea of the context, they are interviewing GIs when armed forces radio
announces the Charles Manson verdict. It shows the legal and illegal use of
weed, the procedures of anti-drug enforcement, and the easy availability of the
drug in places like Nepal and Vietnam. The documentary was obviously edited such
that the logical conclusion was to legalize it because, as the film said,
criminalizing pot use essentially turned a sizable percentage of American youth
into criminals, and that couldn't be a good thing.
The Acid Eaters is incoherent and the sex/nudity is inexplicit, but it is
competently filmed and is thus a D, more or less.
The entire package, however, is actually worth owning or watching if the
subject of the documentary interests you. That would grade out at
IMDb readers have this at 3.3 with only 40 votes.
This film sounds like a bummer, but Friedman is one fascinating guy. If
you can find a copy at a reasonable price, I highly recommend his memoir,
A Youth in Babylon: Confessions of a Trash-Film King. He is a very funny, very
smart guy who might have succeeded in many different fields, but life's twists
and turns let him into exploitation cinema. The book is not only highly
entertaining and sometimes laugh-out-loud funny, but is a complete education in
every aspect of the world of trash films. It's an insider transporting you into
a world that he knew better than anyone and, unlike the authors of many such
efforts, Friedman is an insider with a gift for a good yarn.