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Tuesday 25 June 2013

Reunion (review and release)

Reunion is another project from Maria Olsen and her team.  More details on the project follow my review of the trailer.

The trailer...

There's always something sad and creepy about the cruelty that some people endure (at least in the movies) in mental health facilities. While some patients or in-mates are there for a good reason, does the reason justify the cruelty? It's kind of like a controlled eye for any eye, I guess.

Isn't the purpose of a mental health facility, ultimately, to make the person better in some way?

In Reunion, we see a woman in such a facility experiencing cruelty at the hands of the caregivers. Is this justified?  We then see the tables turned and the woman now terrorizing some young people in a house.  Why?

According to the description she is searching for her long-lost son and is guided by a dark spirit.

If someone suffers from demonic possession, has the demon is exorcised, but then the demon comes back, is it called demonic repossession?

The trailer for Reunion is nicely paced and suspenseful.  It paints a picture in about a minute of a story that shows depth and emotion.  At first we sympathize with the woman in the facility, then we watch as she extols her own brand of cruelty.  The question it leaves us with is: are her actions justified?

Either way, Reunion looks like a good, thought provoking scare.

Below is the recent release... please view the trailer and please support the film.

Here's the latest news...

Reunion Film seeking Production support through CrowdFunding site Indiegogo.

Reunion is an independent thriller/horror film spearheaded by a diverse team of professional industry veterans.

Los Angeles, California – June 14th 2013

It's a cold, stormy and thunderous night.  Trapped in his own home, former rock stars Brad Norton and Grant Foley prepare for the return of their infamous band when a strange woman, Mia, shows up at their door looking for her son she calls "Alan." Unbeknownst to them, she is guided by a dark spirit and is convinced Brad kidnapped her long-lost son.

The filmmakers have assembled an experienced crew from Emmy-award winning TV shows, studios such as Lionsgate, and feature films such as "Pirates of the Caribbean," "Star Trek: Into Darkness," and "The Dark Knight."  Starting with a rock solid screenplay written by Bert Havird and led by Producer Thelonius Alexander and Director Shawn Chou, the philosophy of the filmmakers was to look for undiscovered talent that wouldn’t break the bank.  After laboring through months of casting, they recruited talented up-and-coming actors Sarah Schreiber, Cara Santana, Reign Morton, Arielle Brachfeld and Leif Gantvoort.  The independent movie also features a young heartthrob Jack Turner in his debut as well as veteran actor-producer Maria Olsen, who plays Mia, who is best known for her role as Mrs Dodds/The Fury in Fox’s “Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief”.

“We rely on our team’s passion and dedication to bring our vision to life,” says Shawn.  “The most important thing is to tell a story about a ghost who tries to reunite his lookalike twin with this mysterious murderer.  It’s filled with twists and turns.  Ultimately, we ask tough questions about why people repress their memories to cope with life.”

Jack adds, “It's an incredibly interesting relationship to investigate with all its myriad complexities, amnesia, abuse and sexual tensions, and Maria is wonderful to act with.”

Here’s a link to the film’s stunning trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1J1XPXHuiH8

The film has plans for theatrical distribution and aims to break new boundaries in the thriller/horror genre.  And why not?  They have a great script, cast, crew, and an established formula in place.  Join Team Reunion on their journey.

Reunion is raising $75,000 and is being co-produced by Alex/Chou Pictures and MOnsterworks66.

Indiegogo Link: http://bit.ly/197Hr2W

Monday 24 June 2013

The Travel Virgin

A good friend who has been quoted many times on this blog is putting together a pilot.

Please like it on facebook:

Please check out the link and support it: 


When was the last time you had a first time?

Our friend, Christian " Boots" Elizalde hasn't had it easy so far. Yes, everyone has troubles and we won't bore you with a reality show moment sob story. Suffice it to say that his circumstances and surroundings were never in his favor. First and foremost though, he is a survivor and rises each time he falls, remaining positive no matter what the adversity. 
And, respect to him,  he never ends his quest for knowledge. He, like most people, gets most of that knowledge online. His particular research passion is the "Ancient Astronaut" theory, knowing virtually everything there is to know about the mysterious places around the world that figure into it. If you hear him talk about the subject, you get the sense that you're speaking to a worldly, albeit on the fringes, man of interest.
That is why we were shocked and baffled to learn that Boots, for all his knowledge and compellingly weird theories,  had never even been on a plane. 
After several redundant rounds of "Really? Never?", we realized that we were presented with a singular opportunity; to document an actual, completely virgin, first journey. Rarely do you have the chance to watch a grown man's whole life change right in front of you and see the world from this most unique view.

The Plan:

This is designed as a pilot for an ongoing travel/adventure show. Although he won't technically be a “virgin” after the first trip, Boots has never been anywhere so anywhere we go will be fresh and new to him. We're confident that after people see him in the pilot, they will want to continue following him. If, on the slim chance that we are wrong, and the networks and distributors we are meeting with like the idea but don't want to see Boots each time, the model of “The Travel Virgin” remains the same and we accept video submissions of people like Boots, taking them out in the world for the first time.

The Goal:

Aside from the usual financial and commercial benefits, our goal is simple; if we entertain you, you may entertain the idea of doing something you've never done before.

The Trip:

Taking into consideration Boots' keen interest in “Ancient Astronauts”, we chose the geographic heart of that theory, Peru. To go from Los Angeles to Lima is a bit of an adjustment for some of the most seasoned travelers, so in Boots' case, it should be a fairly epic eye opening. From Lima we'll be traveling to some well known sites like Machu Pichu but we will also be taking in the lesser known but equally fascinating places like Amaru Muru and Markuwasi. Because this trip is about changing perspectives, we will be doing family stays, camping out and traveling in a most un-luxrious manner so we can see all sides of Peru. Furthering that, we'll also be devoting time to doing local volunteer work. (We will update on the specific organizations when we have details) 

The Bastards Doing This:

David “Nino” Rodriguez- The Chaperone

Because every virgin needs some protection, we procured an undefeated heavyweight boxer and UFO aficionado. “Nino” is from El Paso and currently ranked 12th in the world by the WBC. When we told him the plan and the destination, he immediately agreed to “chaperone” Boots on his first time. Outside the ring, David has participated in paranormal investigations in the US and abroad with the focus mainly on UFOs. David's infectious zest for life will act as both security blanket and cattle prod on Boots' journey.

Matt Paolasso-The Point Man

Born and raised in the beauty of SoCal, Matt embodies the essence of his home state. He acts, he surfs, he builds sets...Most recently, Matt received critical success with the black comedy “Johnny, Pam, Ronny and Sam”. An accomplished bassist, guitarist and singer, Matt can often be found in local LA music venues as the "only" guy to stand in for an absent musician. A co-conspirator on this project, Matt's almost dangerous willingness to get the right shot is only overshadowed by his rabid curiosity to see what happens when Boots finally leaves his comfort zone. 

Huss- The Ringleader

The tactician and inmate running the asylum, he is most anxious and mischievously delighted to be the lead “scientist” in this social experiment. Huss is a writer originally from Toronto and no, he hasn't written anything you've heard of as he spent most of the past fifteen years as a script doctor. Done feeling like a whore, Huss decided to work on original projects, or in layman's terms starve, penning three original TV pilots and four feature scripts that are currently under furious procrastination by his agent.

But its still funny...

Make no mistake that we aim to entertain. The battle between willingness and stark terror is sure fire amusement, especially when its not you. And have no doubt that we will be taking our dear friend Boots on an adventure that we are hoping will include his temporary, fear based incontinence. 
But for whatever hilarity and hijinks may ensue, the Travel Virgin is about perspective.
Can you really know a place you've never been? Can you really understand a culture you've never experienced? And, the most important question, how will it change you?
Give yourself the opportunity of supporting an honest, hilarious, mystical and first ever journey into the world.
When you've never been anywhere, everywhere is an adventure.

Friday 21 June 2013

This is The End

Film has licence to make fun of almost anything:  alien invasion, genocide, serial killers, Hollywood, Smurfs, identity theft, cancer - not to mention all of the obvious stuff like, family, celebrity, relationships etc.

I am still mad at Seth Rogan for butchering The Green Hornet.  But am less mad at him for casting the brilliant Christoph Waltz as the villain.

So a comedy about the end of the world as seen and experienced by pot heads. I guess because it's seen and experienced by pot heads it's going to be funny.  I've heard that it's funny.  My friend, Ian, from the U.K. said it was juvenile funny.  Well, what would one expect from end of the world stoned people?

The trailer is kind of funny.  It shows exactly what the film is about: stoned people at the end of the world.  That's all I can really say about the trailer. I didn't laugh nor smile during the trailer.  I wasn't stoned, though, and haven't been in more than 7 years.

I guess I'd want to be high at the end of the world.  You know, to enjoy the cool sights and sounds and take it all in.  I could imagine that our entire universe is like a speck of dust in the fingernail of some giant being and universes are created and destroyed in what seems like tens of thousands of years to us but is really only a millisecond to our giant being host.

No, I'm not high while writing this.

Yes, I'll see this one but mostly because the wife wants to.

Monday 10 June 2013

Truth or Dare (New Trailer)

Truth or Dare is a new film by Scream Queen, Jessica Cameron and it looks like it's almost ready go!  Thanks for sending the update....

Here's my comment on the original teaser for Truth or Dare trailer:

"The teaser for Truth or Dare is just that, a teaser. It gives a small glimpse of the potential for this story. A story, I'm guessing, where lines are crossed and blurred...  When there are no rules there is nothing to bend - only pushing boundaries until something breaks. It seems like more than bones will be broken in Truth or Dare, likely spirits, too."

The second teaser was literally torture with a clear message.

The new trailer for Truth or Dare has much more polish.   It's interesting how we can watch with wonder, repulsion and even thrill, horrible acts on a screen. Torture, murder, acts of senseless violence. When we know it isn't real, it makes it easier to digest.  When it becomes to easy to digest, does that mean we become desensitized? Yet, if the horrible acts are real, do the desensitized look away?  I didn't look away while watching the teaser...

But what happens when we are so morbidly fascinated that we partake in the acts? Truth or Dare is an extreme look at a place where we are so desensitized that the only way to become sensitized is to become the morbid that we are so fascinated with. J.G. Ballard has some thoughts on this in his book, Crash... but that's for another discussion.

As for Truth or Dare, let's just say it's fun and games until someone loses an eye... or a leg... or a life...

Have a look.

And best of luck with the film, Ms. Cameron.

Wednesday 5 June 2013

Update: Way Down in Chinatown

Here's the latest on Way Down in Chinatown... Best of luck at the festival! M.
 ZZFlyer3.jpg                ZZFlyer4.jpg
WMM Fest and 2013 Hollywood Fringe Fest present: Post-Apocalyptic Noir Feature Way Down In Chinatown
June 03, 2013 – Described by the director as the ”best damn thing out of old Hollywood town since VON STRONHEIM’S GREED”.  The 2013 Hollywood Fringe Festival in conjunction with We Make Movies’ WMM FEST is proud to present a preview screening of feature film WAY DOWN IN CHINATOWN.  Written and directed by EMK (alias for director Eric Michael Kochmer, a protégé of experimental filmmaker/artist George Landow aka Owen Land) - and co-produced by Maria Olsen of MOnsterworks66, who can also be seen playing Bob - WDiC chronicles over-sexed theater couple, playwright Victor and director Jessica Mitchum who while creating a performance piece about the apocalypse begin experiencing the world slowly falling apart. They are slowly seduced by an underworld created to preserve the few who will survive an on-coming apocalypse brought on by worm-people.  The theatrical preview will book-end the Hollywood Fringe Festival with appropriately timed midnight screenings on June 15th, and 29th 2013.
WDiC stars Stephanie Sanditz (Strangers with Candy) and Justin Dray (Lake City) with sparkling cameos by Lisa Loring (original Wednesday Addams) and Nancy Wolfe (Helter Skelter). The film has already polarized critics with claims that audiences will either “…love or hate [it] but whatever your reaction, it’ll get the grey matter working harder than any movie you’ll see this year.”-Knifed In Venice. Some find it “avant garde at its finest”-Gemini Moon, while other critics find it “…a stream of nonsense …”-John Sandel.
We Make Movies (www.wemakemovies.org) is a Los Angeles based film collective of over 2000 filmmakers dedicated to making some really cool shit. WMM gears their energy toward empowering independent filmmakers and providing the resources and connections that will help them get their movies made. Since 2009, more than 40 shorts and 6 features were developed, produced or directly funded through WMM. The group alternates free weekly writers workshops, improv nights, and industry guest interviews in an effort to help filmmakers get feedback on their work, try new ideas, and learn what's working for others. #wemakemovies @wemakemoviez


Media Contacts:

Sapna Gandhi                                  Nicol Razon                                         HWFF PR
sapna@wemakemovies.org             nicol@wemakemovies.org                   PR@hwff.com

Monday 3 June 2013

VIEWED: Hitchcock

My trailer review for Hitchcock said...

"The trailer for Hitchcock brought back the admiration that I had for the great director who, by the way, always had a very brief cameo in almost all of his films.  I found myself smiling at the story, interested by the controversy of the film, Psycho, and ultimately, very eager to see this film.

Throw in the lovely and talented Helen Mirren, the lovely and slightly less talented Scarlett Johansson and the just as talented as Helen Mirren, but not as lovely as Scarlett Johansson, Toni Collette and you've got a great supporting female cast. Added bonus, really."

What fantastic supporting roles by the above-mentioned women.  Is there any role that Helen Mirren can't play?  She is truly remarkable.  Scarlett Johansson gave a spunky and sincere performance as Janet Leigh and while she didn't look like Janet, I believe she captured her spirit.  Toni Collette gives a beautiful, hilarious  and brilliantly understated performance as Peggy, Hitchcock's assistant.

While Hopkins' didn't always look like Hitchcock, he captured the dry, subtleties of the Master's personality that his fans enjoy.

I know that the film didn't get great reviews but I believe that it told the story of Hitchcock's struggles, both personally and professionally during the making of, Psycho - arguably one of the most ground breaking films of the 20th Century.

That said, from the opening sequence to the closing credits, this film captured my imagination.  I am a fan of Hitchcock.  I recently watched Rear Window and had a wonderful discussion with a friend about the lesser known classic, groundbreaking classic, Rope.

I don't care what real critics have said, I really enjoyed this biopic.

Sunday 2 June 2013

Viewed: Star Trek into Darkness

My trailer review for Star Trek into Darkness said...

"While the trailer had all the big budget epic action I'm not sure if it was good or not.  Mainly because I think any trailer for Star Trek, regardless of quality couldn't prevent me from seeing remake prequel sequel Star Trek 2 without the colon.... Yeah, I hope to see this movie soon."

The wife and I went to see this on date night.  She really wanted to see Iron Man 3, which I already saw because of our little tiff.   Without any spoilers, I maintain - and will not bend - that Bane was a more serious nemesis than The Mandarin because The Mandarin had a logo and Bane did not.

Enough of that.

Star Trek into Darkness, despite not having a colon in the title, was exactly what it was supposed to be and because I entered the cinema with no expectations or thought about the logical progression of story, sequence/sequel/prequel/remake I found it entertaining and was amused by the kicker.  That's all I can say without spoiling it.

I can't wait for the next one.

The wife had never seen any of the Star Trek movies and says she didn't care for any of the TV series.  During the film she occasionally elbowed me or whispered, "is this serious?"  or "are you kidding me?" 

I suspect she is part Klingon.