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Subject: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: gumbypiz on 01/14/08 at 4:39 pm

Does anyone remember the gruesome Drivers Ed films of the past?
These scare films had a deserved reputation for gore, blood, scenes of death and destruction all with the most monotone deadpan (sic) narration. In my day it was a rite of passage, drivers Ed was taught by the shop teacher (and why not as he already had traumatized us with the bloody shop/tool safety films too).

I was just lucky (or unlucky) enough to find a documentary on DVD called Hell’s Highway and it made me think… I noticed the shock value of these movies seem to have diminished, is it me or just modern times?

The cars, the attitudes, the innocence are so different from today (strange showing nostalgia for gory drivers ed movies huh?). Can you imagine driving these huge hulks of American steel, at 75 or 80 mph WITHOUT airbags (much less seatbelts), no ABS, rolling on tube-in bias-ply tires, drum brakes, and the “impale you through your heart/rigid steering columns”? No wonder these movies were scary, the common average car was a deathtrap.

I’ve talked to some younger people and they don’t really know what I’m talking about, they’ve heard of the films but most schools now don’t even teach drivers ed anymore. Most of these films were made from the 50's to the mid 70's then zap they were gone...am I the only one that remembers these films?
Did those drivers ed films do their job; did they work to keep crazy teens from driving recklessly?

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: whistledog on 01/14/08 at 4:46 pm

I'd always heard about these films, but in my High School, there was no driver's education class.  Probably a good thing though as I would think watching a gory true to life film about the dangers of driving would scare anyone away fron ever wanting to get behind the wheel of a car :o

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: Jessica on 01/14/08 at 6:20 pm

Hahahaha.....yeah, I remember "Red Asphalt". I think I was the only girl who sat through it with a bored expression. The rest were acting like little bitches.

I don't think they show the films anymore at my old high school, possibly because the teenagers just don't give a crap anymore.

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: AmericanGirl on 01/14/08 at 7:17 pm

Took Driver's Ed in '75 between my soph and junior years.  I remember those gory films.  They completely freaked me out  :o

I think it made me more careful around railroad crossings - the absolutely worst images were from there.

I don't know if they use them anymore.  The way some people drive around here, I think they should resurrect them  :-\\

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: bookmistress4ever on 01/14/08 at 7:36 pm

I remember seeing those in 1985ish... Does it make me ghoulish to say I thought they were fascinating to a point?  Now I doubt I'd have the same reaction, as I hate gorey movies like saw and the like.  I remember one image of this young guy getting impaled by a telephone pole he crashed into, how horrible!  What was my very first accident after I got my license?  I side-swiped a telephone pole because I made my turn too sharp in town, thankfully it only dented in the passenger side panel a little, with no damage to the pole itself.  So I guess those films didn't really influence me that much after all.  :D

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: coqueta83 on 01/14/08 at 8:06 pm

We didn't see any gory movies in Driver's Ed, just gory pictures from actual automobile accidents.  :(

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: gumbypiz on 01/14/08 at 11:14 pm


I remember seeing those in 1985ish... Does it make me ghoulish to say I thought they were fascinating to a point?  Now I doubt I'd have the same reaction, as I hate gorey movies like saw and the like.  I remember one image of this young guy getting impaled by a telephone pole he crashed into, how horrible!  What was my very first accident after I got my license?  I side-swiped a telephone pole because I made my turn too sharp in town, thankfully it only dented in the passenger side panel a little, with no damage to the pole itself.  So I guess those films didn't really influence me that much after all.  :D

Well, I think that is true, those type of films don't have as much impact now.
I think the large amount or increase in violent movies and media have someone reduced our reaction to such blood and gore now.

Fifteen minutes of "Saw" or the like would make one of the older drivers ed films look quaint in comparison. Some kids that have been playing Manhunt or watching the 10th sequel to some slasher flick just isn't going to react like we did before.

Also some of those nasty accidents don't happen anymore and some of the gory situations (like being impaled by the steering column (collapsible steering columns) or being thrown from the car (seatbelts)) just are not common or possible due to some of the safety features we take for granted & are standard on cars nowadays (thanks Ralph Nader and "Unsafe at Any Speed").

No I wouldn't call you ghoulish to say you were somewhat fascinated by these films or their existence, I was too. I picked up the Hell's Highway DVD and found some very interesting information on how the movies came to be, how they were made and political/scandals therein (did you know some of the same producers of these films were notorious porn producers as well and had some connections with the mob? This was the nationally funded Highway Safety Commission for chrissake!).

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: quirky_cat_girl on 01/14/08 at 11:23 pm

I took driver's ed in school (it was a requirement)...I do think that I remember seeing certain films of this nature...but I can't seem to remember specifics.

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: snozberries on 01/14/08 at 11:57 pm

gumbypiz stole my answer  ;)  complete with the Saw reference

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: Lindee on 01/15/08 at 10:48 am

I took Driver's Ed in my junior year (1977-78) and I remember having to watch them. In one the guard rail went right through the car into the front seat trapping the two kids inside. I always wondered how they made those movies. Was there a film crew just waiting for accidents? Did the victims know they were being filmed and did they give their permission?

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: gumbypiz on 01/15/08 at 3:50 pm


I took Driver's Ed in my junior year (1977-78) and I remember having to watch them. In one the guard rail went right through the car into the front seat trapping the two kids inside. I always wondered how they made those movies. Was there a film crew just waiting for accidents? Did the victims know they were being filmed and did they give their permission?

The first series of films were done by police and local authorities. The photos and camera work was done by the police in the beginning, then later a group of assigned people (NOT professionals) from the Highway Safety Commission were on call for filming. More professional crews were hired once the films became profitable. The people/victims were real and releases weren’t really needed (or even considered), as the movies (edited from actual film at the accident scene) used were initially for police investigation, not really for show.

I surmise from the interviews of the original cameramen/women (the majority of the accident scenes from classic drivers ed films were shot by one woman), they don’t sleep too well with the sights they saw and photographed.

Once the films became profitable to sell to local school districts, and grants were given by the government to film them, a lot of fly by night production companies came in. Sometimes some of their “victims” weren’t actually victims or even injured at all (fake blood, bodies and accident scenes). Where they got their footage and the authenticity of the film is questionable. But as these were marketed as “educational” films most never bothered to really ask questions… :-X

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: snozberries on 01/15/08 at 6:48 pm




I surmise from the interviews of the original cameramen/women (the majority of the accident scenes from classic drivers ed films were shot by one woman), they don’t sleep too well with the sights they saw and photographed.



yeah being at the scene is different than watching it on tv.  It different too looking at photos actually holding them  rather than watching them through the filter of TV. I have seen more gruesome photos than I should admit and eventually you just become numb to them.

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 01/15/08 at 9:51 pm

The ones our instructor showed were totally boring.  I would fall asleep ten minutes into them.  The projector cover would inevitably pop off and clang to the floor waking me with a hell of a start!
::)

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: Davester on 01/17/08 at 12:03 am


  I don't remember any gore vids in driver's ed...

  Now, this one pic I saw in the police academy will always stay with me:  heavy fog in Napa causes car to run off road.  Driver sticks his head out of the window to see better (I can't imagine how he'd see better) and sideswipes a barbed wire fence down in a gully off the side of the road.  The fence acted as a chain saw and sawed through his head right beneath his nose.  So the pic is of his head laying on the ground, right side up.  Reminded me of one of those "Kilroy was here" doodles... 

  http://content.answers.com/main/content/wp/en/thumb/9/9e/300px-WwII_memorial_kilroy_was_here.JPG

  Keep your heads and limbs inside the car at all times, kids...

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: Marian on 01/17/08 at 1:53 pm


   I don't remember any gore vids in driver's ed...

   Now, this one pic I saw in the police academy will always stay with me:  heavy fog in Napa causes car to run off road.  Driver sticks his head out of the window to see better (I can't imagine how he'd see better) and sideswipes a barbed wire fence down in a gully off the side of the road.  The fence acted as a chain saw and sawed through his head right beneath his nose.  So the pic is of his head laying on the ground, right side up.  Reminded me of one of those "Kilroy was here" doodles... 

   http://content.answers.com/main/content/wp/en/thumb/9/9e/300px-WwII_memorial_kilroy_was_here.JPG

   Keep your heads and limbs inside the car at all times, kids...
Pretty gory!

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: Davester on 01/17/08 at 6:17 pm


Pretty gory!


  Fur shure...

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 01/18/08 at 8:11 pm

And the crummy AV projector would go "chicka-chicka-chicka-chicka" (that's how long ago it was, before schools converted to VCrs!) And the 1950s-style educational film voiceover would go "Ken got stuck in the snow, but Ken was smart.  Ken brough a snow shovel and a bag of kitty litter.  Don't forget the safety flares, Ken.  There you go...."

"In order to avoid an uncrollable spin-out, Jane steers into the skid.  Notice how she lightly taps the brakes.  This dries them and keeps them from lock up..."

http://www.inthe00s.com/smile/09/sleep.gif

The "Carnage on the Freeway" films were reserved for those who had to go to traffic school, like in the movie "Moving Violations"!
;D

They always told you to "steer into the skid," but when you actually hit the ice, you couldn't "steer into the skid" 'coz you'd smack into that oncoming truck!  Sheesh!

Subject: Re: Gory, scary Drivers Ed films

Written By: bookmistress4ever on 01/18/08 at 11:39 pm

On tonight's episode of Las Vegas, two of the main characters had to attend traffic school where they show the ending of a gory Drivers ed film called "Mechanized Death"

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