Sometimes life isn't all it's cracked up to be! Doctor Spine, a mild mannered chiropractor, or a bone-popping madman?! When his brain is split into three separate personalities by a ... See full summary »
John Wesley Norton
The atmosphere is quickly depleting but nevertheless playwright Victor Mitchum and director Jessica Mitchum continue to audition and mount their play. While they are coping with these pre-production conditions two strange theater producers stalk them and possibly have an answer to a tour in the next world. Way Down in Chinatown is a sci-fi noir thriller that will challenge your senses. Written by
Eric Michael Kochmer's "Way Down In Chinatown" is an artfilm that blends sci-fi, noir, and the surreal in a truly experimental "Dada-esque" overture. The story follows a playwright and his lover/director out to create the ultimate avant garde musical about a love affair in the time of the Apocalypse. The film is really extreme expressionist's theatre born of the underground. I could not honestly begin to explain everything that this film is trying to do, or really shed light on all that the director/writer Kochmer is intending for the audience to take away from the movie. It, like a lot of experimental art, is meant for the viewer to take way from it whatever his mind chooses. "Way Down In Chinatown stars Stephanie Sanditz, Justin Dray, Maria Olsen, Eric Michael Kochme and of course the American folk song "Goodnight Irene". That sound takes on a very bizarre character within this movie.
The story is a dark melodrama with a heavy despondent atmosphere. It plays on the passion and fire that drives creativity, and counters it with the hollow emptiness that comes from producing it for the masses. The surrealistic visual moments of the film are reminiscent of American neo-Dada of the 50's, with momentary hints of German modern experimental theatre. The use of the worm, as representative to the disease of success and marketability of artistry as industry, carries heavily through the film. (At least from my perspective-that is what I took away from this piece. There is also a opus to success devouring the very cradle that nurtured it.) It is not horror in the sense that it is scary or affirmative in standard nightmare follies. So the standard horror audience will take nothing from this film but heartache. However for those who love to explore beyond the standard repertoire , seeking for more emotionally and mentally provoking formats, then you will be enthralled by the expressionism and avant garde aspects of the film. "Way Down In Chinatown" fits into that small group of films that cannot really be categorized as one specific genre. The elements of so many play out in an almost Dante meets Shakespeare fashion.
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