9 1/2 out of 10
Drawing Flies (1996)
User ReviewsReview this title
9 1/2 out of 10
Of course, this film has it's share of problems, too. Poor sound, the fact that large sections of the movie seem to be missing ( it is somewhat disjointed and has a running time of less than a hour), plus an ending that I didn't particularly like.
If you're not a fan of View Askew, then there is no real reason to watch this movie. If you are a fan, then by all means buy the DVD. After one initial viewing, be sure to watch it again with the cast commentary.
I gave this movie 7 stars.
the good news: if you're a fan of Jason Lee you'll enjoy this one. He pulls an "Atlas" and carries the entire film. There is also some suprisingly good cinematography. I was suprised to see that 90% of the cast of Mallrats is in it.
bottom line: rent first, buy later.
Here's a start for "Plan 9 From Outer Space" - In dreams the surrounding don't look or feel real. The people talk in strange tones and rhythms that have little resemblance to how people speak. Random images appear and become juxtaposed for no particular reason with other images. Entire scenarios appear out of nowhere and lead to nothing.
The things I said there all could be put to that thesis. All those things are true of both "Plan 9 From Outer Space" and the human dream cycle. Given the time, energy and desire, I could expand that theory into a full blown essay and probably even draw some deep symbolism out of the whole thing.
Does that mean I should start putting my Ed Wood DVDs next to my Luis Buñuel DVDs on the shelf?
I don't think so.
"Drawing Flies" is many things. Genuinely surreal, in any meaningful sense of the word, isn't one of them.
It is confused. It is tedious to sit through.
It's painful to watch the actors put in such a good show with so little material to back them up. Poor Jason Mewes has a part as a pretty non-"Jay" regular guy in this, and does a respectable job with it, all for naught, though, as his character does nothing of note through this piecemeal throwaway.
The cinematography is bland, but could be forgiven considering the budget and inexperience of the directors. Nothing can be said to forgive that editing, though. A monkey with a rusty camping knife and some rubber cement could have done a better job of editing.
As to the story, it switches between misguided sub-soap opera melodrama based around character relationships it never bothers to make clear enough to create empathy for and rather lame attempts to mimic Kevin Smith's humor style. Neither works on its own or as a companion to the other, leaving the movie flailing in the wind with nothing to do.
I wish everyone involved the best, I'm sure they're all groovy cats. I know the cast is. I just don't see any merit to this movie as a work of its own at all. Sloppy.
An obsessed fan of Star Trek may be called a Trekkie. I call myself an Askewie: an obsessed fan of View Askew. There are now many films produced under View Askew, but the ones truly deserving to be obsessed by an Askewie are the ones in theView Askew Universe: Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back, and Clerks II (It is permittable, however, to enjoy other movies by the View Askew God, Kevin Smith, such as Jersey Girl and Zack and Miri Make A Porno) But what about their red-headed step-sibling? What about that rare lost View Askew film, Drawing Flies? What about it?
Drawing Flies may be arguably part of the aforementioned series with many names:Askewniverse,New Jersey Trilogy, the Clerks films, etc. Although it is not written and directed by Kevin Smith, in which the others are, but by Malcolm Ingram, who did the less-known View Askew produced film, Small Town Gay Bar. Kevin Smith is, however, the producer, along with his partner, Scott Mosier (no, not that kind of partner, you sicko, that partner is Jen Schwalbach). The arguable points in favor are one: most of the cast are from other Clerks films (as Kev seems to enjoy recycling actors); and two: Askewniverse characters are employed in this film (as Kev seems to enjoy recycling characters).
The said cast are Jason Lee, Jason Mewes, Joey Lauren Adams (credited as Lauren Lyle), Renee Humphrey (Tricia Jones from Mallrats), and Carmen Llywelyn (Kim, Alyssa Jones's girlfriend in Chasing Amy; and the model of the poster in which Silent Bob crashes through and into the dressing room to reveal, again, Joey Lauren Adams, in Mallrats) (credited as her married name at the time to co-star, Jason Lee). The said characters are Silent Bob and William Black, portrayed respectively by their original actors, Kevin Smith and Ethan Suplee. The said are also credited as their character names ("Silent Bob as himself" and "Ethan as William Black").
The story follows roommates, Lee, Lee, Mewes, Humphrey, and no-namer Martin Brooks, into the British Columbian woods for a camping/hiking trip after refused from their Welfare checks. Throughout their joint-and-vodka-fueled adventures, they stumble across a diaper clad gang led by Scott Mosier.
Only later do they realize that they were used for a "delusional" mission of Jason Lee's character, Donner, to discover Sasquatch. After learning of Donner's ploy, wounded Az (Mewes) and Cassidy (Mrs. Lee) leave the rest of the gang to return to ....Vancouver...., while Meg (Humphrey) and Jake (Brooks) attempt to nurse Donner back to sanity. Meg and Jake fail however as Donner plunges to lows of rubbing himself in "sasquatch" feces and even eating it! The acting can be said to have been lost if wasn't for Mr. Lee's "Atlas" role of carrying the film on his shoulders, according to a reviewer on IMDb.com. Also, the quality is very low in the looks and sounds department. Clerks was also in black and white but did not look as shitty as this. In addition, I had a difficult time trying to classify the genre between my choices of comedy and drama, no clear signs were shown. Again, I'm going to have to recommend that you reserve some time from your busy movie-viewing life for Drawing Flies, the possible lost View Askew film.
To read more reviews or other forms of writing from me, check out my aforementioned site.
A group of slackers have no money and are on the verge of actually getting a job when one of them, Donner(Jason Lee), wants to go to his uncle's cabin in the woods with them. What they don't realize is that Donner is going insane and really just wants to look for Sasquach. They're too stoned to realize this though and proceed with him into the woods.
The best thing about this film is definitely Jason Lee's performance. He gives so much depth and personality that could have otherwise been disposable. The rest of the characters are pretty much spot on. They are mostly likable, especially Renee Humphrey's character. The only one who doesn't quite work is Jason Mewes, although he is still funny as usual. In fact, the only real reason why his character doesn't work is because he practically plays the same person as he usually does. But he's good at it, so it doesn't really matter. Carmen Lee gives the film a nice dose of sanity while Martin Brooks does his thing.
I love the rough feel of the film and i like how deadpan it is. It is perfectly enjoyable. Maybe not life changing, but still pretty cool. Check it out, if you can find it!!! I showed it to my little sister and she loved it!!!
There are only 2 real reasons to view this movie. One is if you're a view askew fan and want to see another movie featuring a lot of players from Smith's directorial projects are like when he's not behind the camera, as many of them are present here. The other is Jason Lee. Lee delivers in this movie, just like he always does. delivering his dialogue to perfection, even if I do feel that the way he chose to play his character wasn't quite the right decision because you sometimes find it hard to like him when it seems like you should. He is still the most enjoyable aspect here by far.
There's actually a scene towards the end of the film's pretty brief 70 odd minute life span where one character reads another's palm. We are told that the straighter a certain line on your hand is, the easier it is to achieve a great career. We can definitely assume then that Lee has a very wonky line on his palm, as it seems whenever he's in a good film he's usually underused or, like in Drawing Flies, he's stuck as the only truly great thing amidst a whole lot of average-ness.
Those of you who said you were expecting a great Kevin Smith Comedy,but instead were disappointed: You got what you deserved. It wasn't a Kevin Smith Film, it was a View Askew film. Made by film makers who do not share the exact same flow or style, if you will, with Kevin Smith. I thought the movie was great. If you didn't view this movie with an open mind, or the only reason you saw it was to compare it to the rest of the View Askew films, too bad for you. The movie didn't let you down, you let yourself down. The movie delivered just what it advertised, a film, a film submitted for your entertainment. I understand that every movie isn't for everyone, but a movie can't entertain you if you don't give it a chance.
4 1/2 out of 5 stars!