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Review: Adjust Your Tracking

Will Coviello watches the documentary about the world of VHS collectors


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In the heyday of VCRs and video rental stores, most customers were not flocking to titles like Vampire Hookers, Cannibal Campout, Death Row Diner, I Piss on Your Grave or the subsequent I Spit on Your Corpse. When Blockbuster crushed independent video stores and new technologies and distribution platforms replaced VCRs, the best films were reissued in new formats. The trash was left to a subculture of connoisseurs. Some of these collectors still live in their parents' basements, and others line their bedrooms with thousands of titles — overwhelmingly horror, gore and slasher flicks. Adjust Your Tracking is a gleeful self-portrait of this community by Dan Kinem and Levi Peretic, the men behind VHShitfest. They interview collectors about their best/worst movies, how they find them (eBay, going-out-of-business sales) and other pleasures associated with VHS tapes, such as the niche of absolutely atrocious movies rereleased with sexually gratuitous images and slick packaging. Just the brief scenes from the worst films make Adjust Your Tracking a mercifully brief but entertaining cheap thrill. But the film-nerd collecting passion is the star, and the former video store clerks and groupies here don't just hoard them, they view and discuss them. They love bad acting and low budgets almost as much as monsters and bloodfests. One separates his collection into subgenres of mad-doctor films, holiday slasher flicks, the occult and others. Another organizes by similar packaging formats (clamshells, slip sleeves, etc.). Kinem and Peretic will participate in a Q&A after the screening. — WILL COVIELLO


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