Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
The Watermelon (2008)
Interesting, but slow!
I was able to watch "The Watermelon" from start to finish, and that puts it head and shoulders above most of the no-budget films I've seen. This was made possible by a strong lineup of actors; Will Beinbrink's lethargic Achilles was well-complemented by Elyse Ashton's Ex-Wife/Antigone; her delivery was so spirited and over-the-top, that it took two roles to contain it all. Kiersten Morgan was competent as Persephone, but she seemed miscast; she just didn't have that worn, weary look of someone who's had a rough life-- someone whose mind and body have been through the wringer. For me, the standout supporter was Julia Aks. She was the perfect fit for the role of the nutty Artist-- I found her so convincing, that for a few moments, I was convinced that I was watching a real person, rather than a fictional character played by an actor. My complaint with this movie lies with the direction and editing. At certain points, the movie seemed to slow down so much, that I was fighting to keep my thumb away from the fast forward button. Also, the frequent changes among waking/flashback/dream/hallucination states were hard to distinguish, and thus made the story harder to follow. Shortening (or possibly omitting) a handful of select scenes would have made this film much more watchable. Despite this, though, I can say with few reservations that I had a good time watching "The Watermelon".
Star Quest: The Odyssey (2009)
Forget about me! Save yourselves!
I rented this movie from Redbox for a dollar, and even at that cut-rate price, I feel like they gypped me. Always looking for a story in space, I was immediately attracted to the words "Star Quest," which appeared in big letters on a beautifully-done cover. Well, as they say, never judge a book (or a DVD) by its cover. After watching this movie for five minutes, I found to my chagrin that, apparently, the majority of this movie's budget went into producing the cover art. Where should I start? How about the terrible fight scene at the beginning, between the star captain, and the Borg/Klingon knockoff guy? Strangely, the star captain never hit the other guy with his left hand, but still managed to hold his own against a guy who had 50 pounds and six inches on him. The CGI models were actually pretty nice for a low-budget film, but the motion was shot at such a low frame rate, that I felt like I was watching it on a View-Master, except without the cool 3-D effect. The costumes were laughable, but didn't hold that against the movie; I expect that of a movie with such lofty aspirations (sci-fi ain't cheap), but such a paltry budget. The acting was not really that bad; I think a competent director could have coaxed some decent performances out of the actors. The problem was that the directing was bad enough for me to suspect that there was no director at all! That really doesn't matter, though, because a Serpentor-like amalgam of the greatest directors in history couldn't even save this ragged screenplay. This movie's writing was so awful, that I doubt it would receive a passing grade in 9th grade English Composition class. This movie had no plot, the dialogue was little more than a string of clichés, there was no relatable characterization, there was nothing to connect one scene to the next, and it had NO ENDING! I'm not exaggerating; when the credits started running, I started to wonder if I had accidentally skipped to the next chapter!
To tell the truth, the most enjoyment I got out of this travesty of film making was the gag reel, where one of the actors railed on one of the stagehands in a full-on cursing rant reminiscent of Christian-Bale.
I'm really happy that advancing technology has made American movie distribution much more accessible to the little guy movie makers, but in my opinion, this movie is a flagrant abuse of those newfound freedoms. Cut it out.
"Filthy" is unbelievably bad. Don't get me wrong; I love bad movies-- I'm a huge fan of the "so bad it's good" school of thought. However, to paraphrase Scarlett Johannson in "Ghost World", this movie "is so bad, it goes right past good and back to bad". As far as writing, "Filthy" has dialogue that feels so forced and clichéd, that the actors sometimes looked like they couldn't hide their embarrassment from having to deliver such tripe. The premise is so poorly-conceived that I don't think anyone has enough rope to suspend their disbelief enough to enjoy this movie.
I was bait-and-switched into watching this waste of electrons when I attended a showing of "Brainjacked", a full length movie from the same creative cadre (which turned out be pretty good). Rather than first showing the movie that I came to see, and saving "Filthy" as a bonus for people who wanted to see it, Andrew Allan and co. made the decision to show "Filthy" first. Now, I can see his strategy behind this: he made "Filthy" completely immune to walk-outs, considering that a crowd which paid 8 bucks to see "Brainjacked" wasn't likely to leave until they had seen the feature.
As I sat through "Filthy", I developed a strong empathy for protagonist Dana Diamond. It was not because of the movie itself, but because I walked into that theater willingly, and almost immediately I was trapped, and all I could see was rotten garbage.
The Tampa Bay connection earned this movie two of the three stars I gave it.