Month: October 2011

CIFF: Can I have some Depression with a side of Sadness?

Okay, I saw this about 19 days ago… but I had trouble trying to find the right way to explain it.

It’s been a long time since I’ve watched anything so dark and depressing… actually the last time was when I saw Antichrist… another Lars Von Trier film (masturbating in the woods for the win.)

Kristen Dunst (and her ass), Kiefer Sutherland, and Alexander Skarsgard round out a pretty awesome cast.

Melancholia … the feeling you get afterwords… well, let me just show you a picture.

Yeah, basically that’s how you’ll feel after watch Melancholia.

The film centers on a group of folks at a wedding at a really posh hotel with a golf course and all that jazz. But the bride (Kristen Dunst) is all sad all night long. Why? Because she knew the world was ending. That would ruin anyone’s day.

This is the centerpiece for 2 solid hours of pure depression. The movie gets more and moreso into the thrilling finale. But it’s all so beautiful, you really don’t mind getting depressed. Great performances all around. Wonderful scenery… and even though the astronomy being explained was stupid as all hell, I didn’t mind it once I suspended belief (a lot).

I think due to the director’s odd comments at Cannes (that were blown way the fuck out of proportion) that might be keeping this film from a wide release. But I think it’ll do great on VOD and its limited run next month. I suggest you go see it.

A-

Serious Business: Make it Double

All right, as I’ve said about twenty billion times before. Pump it Up: The Warrior’s Path is coming out.

What’s going to make your dance-game related movie experience better is seeing TWO of them back to back.

How the fuck is this going to work? I’ll give you an idea. Have you seen Grindhouse… or even better, played the game Wet ? Then you know where I’m going with this.

Have the two films back to back with trailers and PSAs in between. We’re going back to the 70’s to give you a slice of comedy you’ve never seen before.

As for a release date. I’ll keep that quiet for now. But I do have a Con in mind to roll this out at. Maybe I’ll have some info on that at C2E2 in March.

Lastly, the script is still getting written. I’ve been rolling through it, asking my cast if they like what I’m doing. So far, they’ve been approving what I’m doing. I’m really ramping up the insanity on this one. More profanity, racism, and Ryzen’s mom… all that good stuff. And I will say again, this is going to be the end of Dance Game Movies for me. I have some pretty good projects slated right after this one. But I felt this story needed to be told and finished first. And oh is it going out with a bang.

As for the cast. I’ve gotten every single person from the first film back on board… excluding Barrett… but that’s a conversation for another day. We’re also adding some fresh blood. But I won’t mention them until I can get a solid commitment… and that means rolling out a script for them to read. We handle production in an unusual way, but I guess that’s what makes the flow of these films so great.

Now, it’s back to work. Don’t forget to add the films on Facebook… and all that jazz.

CIFF: Why the Hell Did I Watch This Shit?

One of the advantages to being press at these Festivals is the fact you’ll see a lot of movies.

That said, the worst part of it is that you’ll be watching a number of less than stellar ones too. As is the case of what I saw last week… Sleeping Beauty.

I’m expecting a modern take on the kickass fairy tale… like what the press booklet said.

This didn’t happen. Let’s break the movie down shall we?

Emily Browning (Sucker Punch) plays Lucy, a young university student drawn into a mysterious hidden world of unspoken desires.

Sounds nice. But lets continue.

In between school and her job  she gets another job as an object of sexual fantasy… mostly for creepy old farts. She’s not too thrilled about it of course.

From there. That’s really about it. The rest of the movie is really full of fluff. There were a number of characters I saw I wanted to get to know better, but again… not happening.

Granted, the sex scenes were brave and well filmed. Kudos to director Julia Leigh for that. But the movie I was promised ended up being a 90 minute piece of plotless shit. I spent the whole movie waiting for something to happen. And the ending is NOT supposed to be hilarious but brought laughter to the screening room. It was awful.

Stay away. I feel dirty.

F

I blew up a fucking blimp and flew the ground with a jetpack? Sounds Like a Winner.

I got a chance to play through Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken last week… I gotta say. It was a pretty good time.

First thing was first. I was excited about Co-Op. I always am. I grabbed a friend and we beasted through the Co-Op missions in a couple of hours.

You and a friend get to play as a couple of short chickens as you chase a General’s daughter throughout the beautifully rendered levels.

One thing I noticed right away was the lack of a weapon select. But with the use of team up attackes (ie. standing on the other player’s shoulders) it wasn’t that much of an issue. This did make the final boss ridiculously easy through. All and all, me and my friend ended our session at about 2AM, feeling very fullfilled. We did wish there was a 4-player mode though. Or maybe some online functionality.

The next day, I picked up the single player mode.

Much diffrent game.

The chicken you have is twice as tall. And he picks up new weapons along the way. There’s also a really deep storyline here, something the Co-Op had none of.

Also, there are these AWESOME jetpack levels involving blimps… which are only in single player as well. I think those levels would have been the shit with an extra player.

There are also a number of nice puzzles involving mind control devices that extended play time quite a bit.

The game is also much harder.

That being said, I wish all the levels and story from the single player were in the Co-Op. But I guess that’s something for the next game.

PROS:

Beautiful landscapes. I don’t have a 3D-TV but seeing this makes me wonder if that investment would be a good one.

Hilarious.

Very much so...

I blew up a fucking blimp and flew the ground with a jetpack. If you don’t think that’s cool, you need to kill yourself.

CONS:

Co-Op mode seems like a shell of the rest of the game. I want to jetpack off blimps with my homies.

Frequently getting the LA Police treatment in corners. You’re going to die this way… a lot.

Honestly, I’m not into gaming like I used to, but games like this remind me why I love it. Sitting down with friends and blowing shit up.

A-

Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken is now on PSN. Snatch that shit up.

Chicago Intnernational Film Festival: The Last Rites of Joe May

For out of towners, Chicago may not seem like much of a film city (Batman and Superman beg to differ). But really, there’s no easier city to film in… at least physically filming. Don’t get my ass started on permits and shit.

Anyway, opening the festival tonight is The Last Rites of Joe May, staring Law and Order’s Dennis Farina (a Chicago native) as an aging small time crook who comes out of a long stay in the hospital to find his entire life has been basically taken from him. All his stuff gone.

He eventually ends up sharing an apartment with the unit’s new owner, a woman named Jenny (Jamie Anne Allman) and her daughter.

This is where the movie begins to falter a bit.

Enter abusive boyfriend. You know where this is going.

Not that there’s anything truly wrong with this. There are just stronger, more original ways this story could have gone. Nonetheless, lots of strong performances going on here, mostly on Dennis’ part.

Although it reaches a VERY obvious conclusion, I wasn’t at all disappointed in the film at all. It did exactly what it was supposed to do.

Is it a good movie? Yes. Is it opening night good? I dunno, depends on what you’re into. That said, it’s always good to have things film in Chicago. But this is really an article for another day. But I’m sure you know what I’m thinking.

Check it out On Demand later this month.

B+

Chicago International Film Festival: My Week With Marilyn

I had my doubts about Michelle Williams playing Ms. Monroe.

I hope she will accept my apology for my dumbassness.

Simon Curtus directs a downright stellar cast including Toby Jones, Dominic Copper, Judi Dench, and even post “Harry Potter” Emma Watson.

It follows the memoirs of a then your Colin Clark and the short time he spent getting to know Ms. Monroe… learning about her childhood as well as her strange habits and drug abuse as they worked on Laurence Oliver’s “The Prince and the Showgirl.”

There’s truly never a dull moment here, start to finish. We’re given an intimate look at every moment of Marilyn’s day, her handlers. etc. We also see a young Colin Clark being totally starstruck at all times, because… well, who wouldn’t be?

It can be hard to film with a difficult actor. But I have a lot more respect for directors after seeing some of what I saw. We were getting towards David Fincher numbers with the amount of takes (note: That’s A lot).

The film ends on a very somber, but very happy note. Which you normally don’t see from big biopics such as this. I guess that’s what makes it so special to me.

The Oscar race has started. And if this is any indecation on how this season’s gonna go… it’s gonna be a fun one.

A+

 

Sequel time. And the “Serious Business” saga

Nuke-Con is over and it’s time to chalk up another con been to and screened at. Let’s all have a moment of silence for all of the uncool people that haven’t seen DDR: The Warrior’s Path yet.

Okay, but now it’s time to continue moving forward. We may be hitting another con or two before things really start to get real. I’ve been checking out audience feedback. Just seeing what works and what doesn’t. It’s pretty fun that way.

 

A Hint of Cherry is the next film, but with that just awaiting funding… we need to keep busy.

That’s why it’s time to start talking about Pump it Up: The Warrior’s Path.

 

This will be the conclusion to the “Serious Business Saga”.

Most of the original cast will be back… but mostly in cameos and what not. I like to keep the blood fresh on these projects.

I’m in the process of writing the script now as I confirm who will actually be returning… besides myself.

What I can say right now is we’ll be seeing the deaths of a few returning characters… in a bloody fashion I might add. And we’ll see Yvette reach her true potential.

Casting has begun once more.

After this film is done. We will hit the festival on con circuit much harder than we have. The first and second films will be combined into a double feature. Complete with all kinds of fun things in between the movies. Crazy shit’s gonna go down I can assure you.