6.9/10
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3 user 2 critic

Way Down in Chinatown (2014)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Horror, Sci-Fi | 1 September 2014 (USA)
A playwright and his director wife are trying to produce a great play, while the world around them is slowly ending.

Writers:

Eric Michael Kochmer (screenplay & story), Eric Michael Kochmer | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Stephanie Sanditz ... Jessica Mitchum
Justin Dray ... Victor Mitchum
Maria Olsen ... Bob
Eric Michael Kochmer ... Ken
Lisa Loring ... Vera
Nancy Wolfe Nancy Wolfe ... Lindie
Ashli Haynes ... Annie Lorraine
Tara Samuel Tara Samuel ... Mara
Whit Spurgeon ... Leonard
Alana DiMaria Alana DiMaria ... Lisa
Angel Corbin Angel Corbin ... Ghost
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tim Ahrens Tim Ahrens ... Actor Audtitioning
Michael A Barrett Michael A Barrett ... Worm
Troy Butcher ... Worm Priest / Worm Press
James Anthony Cotton ... Larry fingers
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Storyline

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 Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

black comedy | See All (1) »

Taglines:

... the show must go on ...

Genres:

Comedy | Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 September 2014 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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User Reviews

 
"Sorry but rehearsals were canceled... because of the apocalypse."
22 September 2014 | by Michael A. MartinezSee all my reviews

This low budget art film has a few very hilarious moments, some surprisingly great acting, and is just weird enough to maintain viewer interest in where things are going. However, the film suffers from leaden pacing, obtuse plot, and grating sound design.

A 30-something playwright and his wife attempt to cast and put together a musical focused on the end of the world, but matters become complicated once they bring in some demonic producers (played by the actual director and producer of the film), start cheating on each other, and lose their sense of reality. Perhaps the real apocalypse starts too loom as well? It's difficult to tell - this isn't the kind of film that delineates between the story's reality and the characters' hallucinations.

In many respects it owes a lot to David Lynch and David Cronenberg, recycling a lot of "plot" (if you can call it that) elements from MULHOLLAND DRIVE including a focus on a small box, a subplot involving entertainers putting together a production, and a befuddled protagonist succumbing to a lesbian seduction. Also things seem vaguely centered around the concept of parasitic worms which spread corruption through oral contact, echoing SHIVERS, though nothing is really spelled out. What keeps things somewhat original though is a focus around the oncoming end times, but this element is largely undone by how it's portrayed, reminding me of the old Star Trek episode "The Alternative Factor" in which the universe winks out periodically and everyone gets disoriented. In this film, the apocalypse is realized (annoyingly) by frequent clouding of the picture accompanied by a sound negatively comparable to nails on the chalkboard, causing characters to fall ill or simply drop dead. If being exposed to audio/visual nuisances and confusion is your sort of thing, look no further, because there is a lot of that this film.

Even if the film doesn't feel completely original, it's largely saved by terrific and convincing work from most of the cast who look like they're having a ball. Strangely enough, despite WAY DOWN IN CHINATOWN's shortcomings, it actually manages to be more accessible, interesting, and successfully surreal than most of its inspiration David Lynch's recent and more expensive work.


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