CAPSULE: 2012 AFICIONADO DVD ZINE: ISSUE #0 (2012)

Beware

DIRECTED BY: None credited

FEATURING: N/A

PLOT: A two-plus hour “mixtape” of video clips, some rare, some shocking, a few weird, arranged with a minimum of editing.

Still from 2012 Aficionado DVD zine issue #0

WHY IT WON’T MAKE THE LIST: The “mixtape” concept is easy to  attempt, hard to master. This one contains little of interest and much that’s in terrible taste, with extremely irritating editing experiments as the rancid topping on an unappetizing pie. Few will be able to watch it to the end; many could not make it five minutes into this “movie” without giving up. For aficionados of 2012 only.

COMMENTS: Way back in the VHS era, tapes of rare video material—embarrassments taped off public access TV, censored news footage, forbidden clips from video nasties, strange home videos found in thrift shops—circulated among collectors who would often edit them into anthologies or “mixtapes.” In the age of the high-speed Internet, when everything has been uploaded and we are able to select our own clips with a mouse click, watching a video mixtape is like being trapped inside someone else’s YouTube playlist. Unless you invest your compilation with some sort of thematic coherence—like the ensemble, who elevated the genre to an actual artform with Doggiewogiez! Poochiewoochiez!—-there is no reason for anyone to watch it. Just stringing together stuff you think is cool is no longer sufficient.

“The 2012 Aficionado DVD Zine” falls into the “stuff the editor thinks is cool” school of mixtaping. If you don’t agree this stuff is cool—and most adults won’t think much of it is—then you’re not going to be interested in sticking with it through the bloated 2-hr. plus runtime. The “original” source material seems to be videotape, and the images are blurred and fuzzy, which adds more eyestrain than charm. Time stamps are frequently visible, particularly when some editing experiment is being done (in an attempt to add some artistic input of his own, the compiler is fond of looping the material so that the playback repeats and stutters, which becomes highly irritating—see below). There is only occasionally any kind of logical flow to the material—at one point, a George W. Bush speech segues into an anti-capitalist Afropop music video, which is about as close to a creative statement the assembler makes. Most of it is a random stream of fuzzy Bollywood dance scenes, evangelical propaganda videos, animated softcore porn, homemade amateur punk/rap/metal videos, a puppet singing about unrequited interracial love, John Kilduff’s public access exercise/painting program, exploding anime heads, Japanese softcore porn, a slo-mo version of “Soul Train,” a homemade sex tape of a furry making love to an inflatable dolphin, and so on.

It’s not as much fun as it sounds. First off, there is the horrible video quality and the fact that there is no flow to the clips. Second, there are several objectionable Faces of Death-type atrocity scenes added merely for their offensiveness and rarity. The clip of cat abuse (it is still debated how much of this scene was achieved through special effects) comes from the Hong Kong exploitation film Men Behind the Sun. Even more tasteless is the footage of combatants being eliminated by drone strikes, and a film purporting to show a man being burned alive without a trial by a vigilante mob. Since the mixtape provides no political context to these scenes—we aren’t even told what country the immolation occurs in—this is pure snuff entertainment. Finally, as if all that wasn’t enough to turn you against the project, there are the aforementioned irritating editing experiments, culminating in a one second clip of Pokemon characters yipping that is looped to run for—I kid you not—nine minutes. When I reached that point in the tape I had to turn it off and finish it the next night. You don’t have to go that far in; you never have to watch any of it at all.

I don’t understand how “the 2012 Aficionado DVD Zine” is, as it advertizes itself, “the first ever zine in DVD format.” A zine was an underground magazine composed of original material written or drawn by hobbyists. It did not consist simply of unauthorized reprints of other people’s work. Other than the ill-advised edits, nothing here was actually created by the person who assembled it. Still, it’s available here, along with five more episodes which are also each over 2 hours long. Some of you will doubtlessly be tempted to try this—but don’t say you weren’t warned.

(This movie was nominated for review by someone [almost certainly the original editor/uploader] whose comments have since been lost. Suggest a weird movie of your own here.)

3 thoughts on “CAPSULE: 2012 AFICIONADO DVD ZINE: ISSUE #0 (2012)”

  1. This sounds almost as unbearably excruciating as that time I attempted to sit through the Retard-O-Tron mixtape series.

    Outside of Everything is Terrible!, the only other mixtape compilations that I can think of that are even remotely of quality are Derrick Beckles’ TV Carnage series(which I would wager would be infinitely more rewarding and entertaining to review for this site, considering its notable influence on Tim and Eric and other alt comedy fringe acts; they also tend to have actual skits created between the edited clips which can be rather very hilarious).

    But when I think about it, it seems very hard for me to rightfully consider a compilation to be included as coverage on a site that deals with film predominantly, outside of the occasional outlier with thematic tissue.

    Maybe this sort of stuff(at least the mixtapes that are notable in quality) would be more fitting to place in the Shorts section?

    Just a suggestion. (:

  2. Gaah, Men Behind the Sun. Still gives me nightmares, that one.

    But seriously, there’s rarely, if ever, any artistic merit in mixtapes. They’re lazy and pointless.

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