They Came From The Swamp: The Films of William Grefé
Directed by Daniel Griffith
If there is one thing that I’m always on my soapbox about, it is learning about the horror genre, from the very beginnings to modern day. The reason is simply because we need to recognize what came before us and remember what they gave us. It helps us appreciate where we are now. So when I heard about a documentary that was being made about this lesser known Florida based filmmaker, William Grefé, needless to say, I was excited.
What do titles like Sting of Death, Stanley, Mako: The Jaws of Death, Wild Rebels, The Naked Zoo, Death Curse of Tartu, Impulse all have in common? They were just a handful of the films directed by Florida based filmmaker William Grefé! And now, the incredible history of this low budget filmmaker comes to the screens in this new feature lenght documentary, thanks to Ballyhoo Motion Pictures this April!
While other low budget directors were running off the the sunny skies of California to make their independent pictures, William Grefé stayed in the other sunny part fo the country, in Florida everglades area and made that his own little Hollywood. There he created about sharks, snakes, a jellyfish man, bikers, and many more titles that were sure to lure them into the drive-ins. And he always delivered.
No, this doesn’t have anything to do with the new Star Wars movies. But it is about another Empire. Empire Pictures, a low budget studio back in the 80s that delivered the goods when it came to low budget and damn entertaining films. Many of these were enjoyed by people my age, when video stores were all over the place. Empire Pictures was a name that you could trust to give you something you probably haven’t seen before, with some wild imagination, crazy special effects, and so much more. Titles like Trancers, Re-Animator, Crawlspace, From Beyond, Trolls, Ghoulies, and so man more.