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Scenic Route (2013)
13 March 2013 8:08 AM, PDT
Written by: Kyle Killen
Anyone who's been on a long car trip can attest to the fact that even if the journey starts out with two best friends, there are bound to be a few legs of the trip where you are ready to push the other party out of the moving car. Scenic Route, which played SXSW this week, is a film that explores this idea to the extremes.
Scenic Route follows two lifelong best friends, Mitch (Josh Duhamel) and Carter (Dan Fogler), on a drive through Death Valley. The two have drifted apart in the last few years since Mitch got married to a woman who Carter believes isn't right for him; as a result, Carter is no longer such a big part of Mitch's life. The road trip is intended to be a bonding experience, »
- Amanda Rebholz
Cheap Thrills (2013)
13 March 2013 7:44 AM, PDT
Directed by: E.L. Katz
What would you do for $250,000? What about $20,000, or $10,000? What about fifty bucks? What price can you put on your health, your body, your relationships and your soul?
These are the questions asked by the thought-provoking and glorious indie film Cheap Thrills, which found its debut this week at SXSW. Starring Pat Healy (The Innkeepers, Compliance), Ethan Embry (Empire Records, Can't Hardly Wait), Sara Paxton (The Innkeepers), and David Koechner (everything ever), the movie is a smart, relentless and troubling exercise in exploring the depths of a man's resolve.
The movie begins with an introduction to Craig (Healy), a meek, kind family man with a beautiful wife and a toddler son. Craig is a failed writer working as a mechanic, but in the first ten minutes of the »
- Amanda Rebholz
You're Next (2011)
12 March 2013 4:14 PM, PDT
Directed by: Adam Wingard
Written by: Simon Barrett
When Adam Wingard's You're Next debuted at Austin's Fantastic Fest in 2011, the theater sold out and the film was so well-received that studios entered a massive bidding war over it, which dragged out for two years. The Alamo Drafthouse, one of the most famous independent cinemas in the country (if not the world) even painted an iconic image from the film on the side of one of their Austin buildings. To say that the film "garnered buzz" is a bit of an understatement, and once I heard that it was an "extreme home invasion horror film," I couldn't wait; I can genuinely say that in my long lifetime of watching scary movies, the only ones that truly unnerve me are the home invasion flicks. There's something about having »
- Amanda Rebholz
Rewind This! (2013)
12 March 2013 9:58 AM, PDT
Directed by: Josh Johnson
We're living in the digital age, my friends, where media exists in a cloud and has no actual physical form. But you would never know it, based on the enthusiastic SXSW audience that packed the beautiful Paramount Theatre yesterday for the premiere of Rewind This!, a wonderful documentary on the video tape boom of the '70s and '80s.
Director Josh Johnson's new doc is a loving paean to the past, a simpler time when people prowled the aisles of their local Blockbuster, marveling at big, clunky VHS clamshells covered with garish promo art that promised cheap thrills rarely delivered.
Rewind This! traces the birth, ascendance, dominance, death and rebirth of video tape through an entertaining combination of interviews and movie clips. By assembling a fascinating cross-section of academics, actors, filmmakers and fans who are in turns persuasive, »
Evil Dead (2013)
11 March 2013 8:50 AM, PDT
Directed by: Fede Alvarez
When it comes to remaking a classic horror film, creators find themselves on the receiving end of a shitstorm from the diehard fans no matter what. But when the film is as beloved as the original Evil Dead, the outrage is almost palpable. Fans online buzzed relentlessly as each new tidbit was released — rumors involving the production, Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell's involvement, and much more spiraled among the horror community for over a year before the first teaser was released. And now, at the film's world premiere at SXSW, ninety minutes before the doors were set to open, there were nearly a thousand people in line to get in.
The film isn't so much a remake as a complete reworking; forget anything you know about the »
- Amanda Rebholz
11 March 2013 8:16 AM, PDT
Directed by: Jacob Vaughan
Milo, which had its world premiere last night at Austin's SXSW festival, is a hard film to describe. Is it a movie about a husband and wife's efforts to conceive a child? Or a movie about a man plumbing the depths of his psyche to deal with his past? Aw, screw it. Let's face it, Milo will be forever known as the "butt monster" flick.
In Jacob Vaughan's twisted new horror comedy, Ken Marino stars as Duncan Hayslip. Duncan is a super-nice guy, but he's under a lot of stress. His wife wants a child, his unscrupulous boss is putting him in charge of layoffs, and his chronic stomach problems are becoming too much to bear. Then there are those mysterious, gruesome deaths, seemingly the work of a rabid raccoon. »