Archive for December, 2011

Bellflower

Posted in Strange Love with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 27, 2011 by Cristina Blackwater

Bellflower – 2011

plot: Bellflower follows two friends as they venture out into the world to begin their adult lives. Literally all their free time is spent building flame-throwers and weapons of mass destruction in hopes that a global apocalypse will occur and clear the runway for their imaginary gang “Mother Medusa”. While waiting for the world to end, their call to excitement comes unexpectedly when one of them meets a charismatic young woman and falls hard in love. Quickly integrated into a new group of friends, they set off on a journey of betrayal, love, hate, infidelity and extreme violence more devastating and fiery than any of their apocalyptic fantasies.

Let me start off by saying words can hardly explain how much i loved this movie. so pardon me if this will be perhaps yet another very partial pretend-review of a movie, but after all, this is my damn movie blog so you guys deal with it or leave now. Bellflower is up there in the top 3 movies i have watched this year, next to Drive and I Saw The Devil. it touched me in so many ways. so many real, raw, visceral ways. but let’s start with a little back story.

Bellflower is an indie 2011 movie written and directed by Evan Glodell, who is also the protagonist of the movie. it’s essentially, at the poster says, a love story. of many kinds. first and foremost we have Aiden and Woodrow (Evan Glodell), two best friends who move to LA from Wisconsin, with a common passion for Mad Max and homemade pyrotechnics. they are set on building their own homemade flamethrower and a replica of the Medusa car, in the hope that a global apocalypse will occur and clear the runway for their imaginary gang

in the meantime, you know, they’re just boys being boys. there’s lots of partying, laughing, fighting, and especially drinking. tons and tons and tons of it. then there’s the girl. there’s always a girl, isn’t there? Woodrow meets her and instantly falls for her, and then shit starts hitting the fan. you could very easily compare her to a Fight Club’s Marla of some kind, or even better, to an Eternal Sunshine’s Clementine. the girl is wild and young and carefree and  nutty on the side. the two of them, on their first date, decide to go on a spontaneous road trip to Texas, and are pretty much inseparable since.

this seemingly strange but mostly romantic movie turns progressively (MUCH) darker as their relationship crumbles, and the rest is a voyage that takes on surreal, truly apocalyptic notes that more than one reviews rightly describes it as a generational statement. the people in the movie try to find themselves, and try to find something bigger than themselves, something to believe in even in a post apocalyptic fucked up world that seldom offers means to grab onto reality.

and what a grand journey that is! Evan Glodell worked on this movie for years, shot it with a non existing budget and a crew of 11 dedicated people and built most of the props, including the flame throwers and muscle car. also, at some point in the movie he grows a beard and is a total fucking babe. but i digress. Glodell not only wrote, produce, directed, co-edited, and starred in his movie, but he also built a custom camera for it, a “Coatwolf Model II digital cinema camera who looks like a steampunk wet dream, from the old-school bellows on the front to the hand-machined nameplate on the side”

what more do you need as an invitation to hurry up and watch this? how about a hot beard picture?

alright, i lied. that wasn’t for you. it was entirely for my pleasure.

seriously though.. this movie is awesome. i hope this is the start of a very long, brilliant career for this young director who managed to make yet another indie gem out of virtually nothing. and to hell with the huge hollywood blockbusters.

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Insidious

Posted in Horror Cinema with tags , , , , , on December 23, 2011 by Cristina Blackwater

Insidious – 2011

plot: Saw franchise veterans James Wan and Leigh Whannell team with Paranormal Activity writer/director Oren Peli to give the familiar haunted house story an exciting new twist with this tale of a family that moves into an old house and begins to suspect they are under siege from otherworldly forces when their young son inexplicably falls into a deep coma. As devoted parents Josh (Patrick Wilson) and Renai (Rose Byrne) struggle in vain to uncover the root cause of their son’s condition, the stress of the situation gradually begins to take its toll on their once-strong relationship. Later, when darkness falls and specters appear to reach out for them from the shadows, the frightened parents realize they’re dealing with powers beyond human comprehension.

thank heaven we are almost at the end of tho-thousand-eleven. see? i even made it rhyme. why, you ask? well i don’t know about you but personally, with a very few exception, this year cinema has been mostly boring, and disappointing. i will not even say that it was bad, i’ll say it with the tone of a parent that just stares at you and silently shakes his head. no son, i’m not mad, it’s just that i am very disappointed. i expected better from you. i know you have potential. but as Mumford and Sons would say, sigh no more! today i bring you a flick that makes things a little bit better.

Insidious is a fun little (as in low-budget) indie gem that comes from the combined efforts of the creators of Saw and Paranormal Activity. At first glance we are presented the good ol’ haunted house formula, with a child who is all of a sudden inexplicably comatose, a mother who practically just starts crying and freaking out until the very last-minute, and a skeptical father who is all like, come on now, i’m not having any of this shit. the kid is pretty badass looking. look at that haircut! even mom and dad are intimidated.

so for a little bit we move into the familiar realm of the “oh look there’s a creepy shadow behind the bed, and gosh darn! who keeps moving my sheet music box around?!” and all that, until finally the mother, between one freak out and one hysterical crying attack, asks the mother in law for some help

mother in law has a solution to everything. she decides to call up ghostbust… erhm, i mean an old psychic and her two minions with very funny looking ghost hunting instruments.

after that all hell breaks loose. turns up the kid is not reaaaally in a coma and his astral body is trapped in another dimension called The Further (which was also the original title for the movie), where ghosts and demons alike party like it’s 1999 all day and night. also also! the father had an experience with this dimension in the past (and the psychic helped him out of it) but had completely removed it from his consciousness. and so he becomes green lantern and goes into ghost world to save his lost kid

that’s not your kid, dude! come on! and the light is supposed to be green. oh, amateurs..

that’s better.

but to make it short! Insidious is a fun, fucking fun movie. it has no gore, virtually no blood but for a couple bloody hand prints here and there, and still it delivers a few scares. you’ll jump off your seat, and laugh, and notice all the little imperfections and holes in the plot and even the few ridiculous ideas, but the entertainment is guaranteed. i thoroughly enjoyed it. yay ghostbusters!

and remember kids…

even demons like to photobomb.