The Last Stop Drive In – Still Riding in the Late 70’s – Part 1

ALBUQUERQUE-9-2-779-2-77, Albuquerque

The Last Run Drive In still had movie ghouls like us as regular customers  and I know people like me would have been regular customers if we were born at the right time. Still, there was the growing problem to bring in as many people as possible as the Late 70’s crowd were not frequenting the DIs as much as they could and the original audience were moving on with their lives after spending their wild years partially at these paces. Even the more atmospheric Horror films from Europe of the day (or at least released in The US in that day years after) were admittedly best seen in some low-budget and sometimes ran down indoor theater still playing the Independent flicks when that term really meant “Picked-up” and by then “Second Run” or “Third Run”. There were some winning genres for the Drive In’s final days, especially the large catalog of films from SRC which were really re-titled films from Hemisphere’s collection of Schoolgirl Report flicks brought over to the new company as well as MPM’s early run of films with titles like Vampire Playthings were were also re-titled flicks, and of course some big hits traveled well to the outdoor screen, but there is something special about seeing a Biker flick or even one of those clumsy attempts to gear a film into that genre.

Thankfully, there was the Biker Film, the Chopper-Opper, and the Cycle-Psycho films still ready to be played which I’m sure at least brought back some customers. Even Easy Rider, a film that still has those saying it’s not, was brought back out to play! The best of these shows was the AIP super-cycle shows with five of their top-grossing hits that must have brought back some memories for Drive In customers, but even someone like Howard Mahler saw fit to unleash the Shaw Brothers variation of the genre, Killers on Wheels in a time when these films were not as profitable (the New York City Unwritten Grindhouse Law: If It Has Sprockets, We Play It!).


2-7-77, Terre Haute, Indiana

Howard Mahler was the company who brought this wild ride from the Shaw Brothers, but sadly there’s nothing of it’s US release to post around these parts. Thankfully, this gave Drive Ins a chance to throw on some classic Biker flick from the classic years making it perfect for this post. The Shaw version of the genre. Some screens decided to have Wild Riders as the second film or even on the other screen – there goes your Weekend Money!


8-12-77, Al Adamson’s flicks were an easy pick!


4-29-77, Toledo – they did right with this double-genre double bill, Biker and Possessed Woman!


10-12-79…read the date right, too!!!


10-28-78, San Antonio – someone took Super Ball and threw in some Psycho Billy Jack on a Motorcycle plus some false advertising (Linda was NEVER in this film)! I’m sure that despite the deception, it’s far better than Billy Jack Goes to Washington. Now that’s extending a life of a film!


8-15-75, Brandon, Manitoba – Let’s throw in this set, too! Featuring Riders and Rollers (the kind loved by The Scene, of course!)


~ by screen13 on January 8, 2016.

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