Chris (Mikelen Walker), Adam (Erich Lane) and Barrett (Henry Alexander Kelly) are aspiring entrepreneurs trying to sell the latest indie board game hit, the titular Murder Bury Win, where the premise is to kill someone and get away with murder. After their fundraising campaign on a site called Game Changer isn’t successful, they’re invited by a mysterious caller (Craig Cackowski) to his cabin in the middle of nowhere. He wants to publish their game, with the understanding that he is the sole owner and he will just give them cold hard cash. A freak accident occurs here, and the trio have to use everything they’ve learned from their game to dispose of the body so they can keep their dreams of board game fame alive. I love these kinds of films that start with innocent games that then become a little too real. Think recent hits like Game Night, Ready or Not, or even Jumanji. The charm of this film definitely comes from its screenplay (written by Michael Lovan, who also directs, with a story by credit to John Hart), as the film itself was partially funded by Kickstarter, which really helps make the film’s commentary on the struggles of indie creators feel more authentic.
On this episode of Filmcraziest Interviews, I chat with Adam Rehmeier, the director, writer and editor for the new film Dinner in America, which had its World Premiere at Sundance and has recently won the Audience Award at Nightstream, a virtual genre film festival. The plot: An on-the-lam punk rocker, Simon (Kyle Gallner) and a young woman, Patty (Emily Skeggs) obsessed with his band unexpectedly fall in love and go on an epic journey together through America’s decaying Midwestern suburbs. It also stars Griffin Gluck, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Pat Healy, and others.
If you’ve ever wanted a movie with the abrasive punk rock attitude of Green Room, or the quirky comedy of films like Napoleon Dynamite, you need to look no further than Dinner in America. Simon as a character is in-your-face, abrasive and offensive, and just everything that’s cool about punk rock. Patty is everything sweet and nice but gets bullied for not being the smartest person. She doesn’t even get bullied at school – she’s a 20-year-old who gets picked on by high schoolers because they’re on the same bus route. She totally seems like a character that could fit in that Napoleon Dynamite world, but she’s totally her own person.
Sometimes watching a film, it’s easy to forget just how much craft goes into creating it. With the super unique gorefest Frank and Zed, though, it’s also easy to appreciate the effort that writer/director Jesse Blanchard – and the whole team, really – put into this nutty puppet spectacle that took seven years to make. Two reanimated corpses – the titular Frank and Zed but known more commonly as Frankenstein and Zombie – have lived a peaceful life for the past 200 years in a castle by a nearby village. In that village, 200 years ago, they were attacked by a monster, and to save the people, the King made a pact with a demon to protect them. In exchange, when the royal bloodline ended, the villagers would have to fulfill an ancient prophecy called The Orgy of Blood. Nudging this into action are two power-hungry villagers who trick the others into attacking the castle where Frank and Zed live.
Ah, I love delightful surprises like Bloody Hell. I was interested by the bank robber hook in the write-up on the Nightstream website, and that helps start the film off with a bang. Rex Coen (Ben O’Toole) finds himself in a crazy situation during a bank robbery and decides to take the opportunity to play hero and save the hostages. Instead, he’s hailed by a hero by some and a lunatic by others and is sent to jail. Once he’s released, he leaves this mysterious past behind for better pastures in Finland. But Bloody Hell, Finland is way worse.
Directed by: Josh Ruben. Starring: Josh Ruben, Aya Cash, Chris Redd. Runtime: 1h 43 min. In Josh Ruben’s directorial debut Scare Me, he plays Fred, a has-been-before-he-ever-was ad executive trying to make it as a horror writer. He goes up to a cabin for the weekend to focus on his writing and meets best-selling horror [...]
Some things don’t always go according to plan. That’s a statement filmmaker Al Bailey seems like he’d be familiar with, as his new documentary DTF really wanders from its original premise. The set-up is following his air pilot friend “Christian” as he flies around the world, hooking up with women on Tinder, and we see this in the first part of the film as “Christian’s” dates are documented.
Alison (Maaike Neuville), boyfriend Michael (Bart Hollanders) and Alison’s mom Sylvia (Annick Christiaens) travel to a shady hospital in Eastern Europe to visit an acclaimed plastic surgeon. Alison wants a breast reduction surgery – a scene talking about this emulates Superbad’s “she has back problems, man” discussion – and Sylvia is getting what seems like every plastic surgery imaginable. The anxious but supportive Michael is just along for the ride. They find more than they bargained for when Michael inadvertently releases Patient Zero in the hospital’s basement as he wanders around with hospital employee Daniel (Benjamin Ramon). Zombie horror ensues.
Directed by: I-Fan Wang. Starring: Megan Lai, Bruce Hang, Chung-wang Wang. Runtime: 1h 36 min. Released: This film premiered as a part of the Midnight Madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 11, 2020. The set-up for Get the Hell Out is relatively simple, as its main action hero Hsiung Ying-Ying (Megan [...]