PAST INTENSE: The Final Girls and Labyrinth of Lies


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Warning: SPOILERS
final girls
The Final Girls is one of those low budget independent films that comes out of nowhere and give low budget independent films that come out of nowhere a good name. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating since most low budget independent films that come out of nowhere are so bad these days, I’m not sure that anything could actually give them a good name, but you know what I mean.
At any rate, this new post modern parody of horror films that is also not just a parody but also a film in and of itself (like Scream in many ways, though Scream is more serious, but unlike the Scary Movie franchise which does nothing but make fun of its precursors), is a ton of fun.
The basic premise revolves around Max, whose mother Amanda made the low budget slasher film Camp Bloodbath that unexpectedly was a success and because of that, Amanda could never do anything else and her acting career languished.
Years later, Amanda dies in one of those car accidents that seems to be the de jour way to kill off people in movies today (does anyone die any other way but in car accidents anymore, and not just car accidents, but accidents where a vehicle is hit and goes bouncing around in multiple somersaults like it’s Olga Korbut, always…ALWAYS…ending up on its roof, like a turtle; I have no idea what that’s about) and Max hasn’t been able to get over her death.
She is talked into going to a late night showing of Camp Bloodbath and when there is a fire incident at the theater, she and her friends exit through the screen, ending up in the movie within a movie itself. And now they must figure out what is going on, how to get back and how to stay alive long enough in order to get back. While providing the audience with tons of chills, thrills and giggles. Continue reading

My recommendations for film watching this week in L.A. 10/9-10/16/2015


First, a word from our sponsors: I am now offering a new service: so much emphasis has been given lately to the importance of the opening of your screenplay, I now offer coverage for the first twenty pages at the cost of $20.00.  For those who don’t want to have full coverage on their screenplay at this time, but want to know how well their script is working with the opening pages, this is perfect for you.  I’ll help you not lose the reader on page one. 
 
Ever wonder what a reader for a contest or agency thinks when he reads your screenplay? Check out my e-book published on Amazon: Rantings and Ravings of a Screenplay Reader, including my series of essays, What I Learned Reading for Contests This Year. Only $2.99. http://ow.ly/xN31r,
 
And check out my script consultation services http://ow.ly/HPxKE
My recommendations for movie watching this week in L.A. 10/9-16/2015
lauraON NETFLIX: Laura, the classic film noir based on the book by Vera Caspary and directed by Otto Preminger, is one of the most enjoyable thrillers from that period. A woman is murdered and the detective involved falls in love with her through her portrait and her history as told to him by a vicious gossip columnist who was her mentor and who loved her as well. Though Gene Tierney as the title character and Dana Andrews as the investigating officer can’t quite make the romance convincing (they were never the greatest of actors), the supporting cast, Clifton Webb (nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor) as the Wenchell like columnist; Vincent Price (in what I think is his best performance) as a gigolo; and Judith Anderson as a wealthy matron more than willing to pay for his services, make the movie as a triumvirate of some of the nastiest characters in film. And the screenplay gives them the wit to do it.
life of crimeON HULU: Based on a book by Elmore Leonard, Life of Crime is a fun, if perhaps minor, comic thriller about a kidnapping that doesn’t go according to plan. Written and directed by Daniel Schechter, it stars John Hawkes as the head of the gang; Jennifer Anniston as the one abducted; and Tim Robbins as the husband who doesn’t care if he gets his wife back or not.
final girlsFIRST RUN and OPENING: The Final Girls, Taxi Tehran, Victoria, The Martian, Labyrinth of Lies, Pawn Sacrifice Continue reading

My recommendations for film watching this week in L.A. 10/2-10/9/2015
First, a word from our sponsors: I am now offering a new service: so much emphasis has been given lately to the importance of the opening of your screenplay, I now offer coverage for the first twenty pages at the cost of $20.00.  For those who don’t want to have full coverage on their screenplay at this time, but want to know how well their script is working with the opening pages, this is perfect for you.  I’ll help you not lose the reader on page one. 
 
Ever wonder what a reader for a contest or agency thinks when he reads your screenplay? Check out my e-book published on Amazon: Rantings and Ravings of a Screenplay Reader, including my series of essays, What I Learned Reading for Contests This Year. Only $2.99. http://ow.ly/xN31r,
 
And check out my script consultation services http://ow.ly/HPxKE
My recommendations for movie watching this week in L.A. 10/2-10/9/2015
man on wireON NETFLIX: With the opening of the movie The Walk, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Philippe Petit, perhaps it’s time to revisit the documentary about the original incident: Man on Wire. In 1974, a daring French tightrope walker illegally strung a wire across the Twin Tower of the New York’s World Trade Center and made it across to become a world hero. The winner of the 2009 Oscar for Best Documentary, it’s an exciting and breathtaking movie.
modern timesON HULU: Made after silent films were a thing of the past, Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Times is not a sound film, but it’s not a silent one either (he uses titles for dialog and to keep the action going, but he has recorded sound effects and there is one spoken line), this comedy about the exploitation of workers was released in 1936, five years after his previous film, City Lights. It was a huge hit and helped make a star of Paulette Goddard who plays the female lead. As usually for Chaplin, it is hysterical, sentimental and brilliant.
martianFIRST RUN and OPENING: The Walk, Freeheld, The Martian, Mississippi Grind, Labyrinth of Lies, Sicario, 99 Homes, Pawn Sacrifice, A Brilliant Young Mind, Coming Home

Continue reading