Saturday, September 25, 2010

Arizona Underground Film Festival Part 1

Over the last two days I have probably watched enough "underground" films that it would be deemed dangerous by the British film commission. I sat through 2.5 films on Thursday night (Earthling, Ticked Off Trannies with Knives and Nude Study) and then did 3 in a row last night (The Last Lovecraft: Relic of Cthulhu, Robo Geisha and Nude Nuns with Big Guns) and plan to do three again tonight. So far (when I can see through all the random crazy scenes that are looping through my head) I give the film festival two very enthusiastic thumbs up (four of the six so far are good to great movies). Never being to a film festival before I did not really know what to expect but its pretty awesome; so far out of the movies I have seen the directors showed up for two of them for a little q and a which is a nice treat; its really cool to hear filmmakers talk about their film before and after viewing it. There are really only two downsides to this whole ordeal, the turnout being one and how bad my ass hurts from sitting in the screening room for hours being the other... I think the most people I saw in the theater at one time was about 20-25 and as low as 2 or 3 for the 11pm showings the last two nights (Granted, I have only been to one theater for only two nights) . Hopefully enough money is made over the entire week to support this again next year because its fucking fan-tastic (did I mention drinks/snacks are only 1 buck each??). Ok, on to the movies, which I am going to list in the order that I enjoyed them ...

Earthling - This was the movie I was looking forward to the most based on the descriptions in the Film Fest program guide, hailed as "one of the best Sci-Fi films to come out this year" all I could think of was how awesome "Moon" was last year. The trailer for this film is good as well, music that lures one in and ideas that seem interesting but it all ends there. If this *does* end up being the best of the year then count me out for anything else that follows. This movie was a piece of shit, while the plot could have been pretty cool it was nearly impossible to follow due to horrible storytelling and nearly as bad acting. This was the first movie I saw at the fest and while I somewhat enjoyed watching it by the end I was left with a few questions (the major one being why even put this out in the current form), like, why is the supporting actress referring to the lead as "mother" and as her "wife" being that the lead was this girls teacher in high school and she is underage. This does not seem to phase the teacher as a lesbian scene endures and all is explained because they are all "aliens" blah blah blah blah blah, roll credits. Did I mention there is an 8-10 year old pregnant girl as one of the main characters as well?? Horrible presentation, decent story on paper. I told a few of my friends to come out to this movie and while they all suck because no one showed up (which shows I in fact have no real friends) but its also great because they would have thought I was a fucking moron.. Maybe I am just not smart enough for this film, but I doubt it because I am hailed as a fucking genius around my piers and have awesome taste in film..and on that note, next movie.

Nude Study - So far this is the most "experimental" film I have seen at the fest. I am not even entirely sure what it was about but it also had a fair amount of lesbian motifs as well. It seemed like a decent enough movie, about a girl that is commissioned to go Alaska in the dead of winter to work on short art films but I was so tired trying to watch this at 11pm that I could not stay awake and checked out around midnight. It did have some really nice shots of the Alaskan countryside in the dead of winter. I did not see any of the scenes that include eating fried chicken while pouring milk all over oneself in the nude but these scenes are depicted in the trailer below so I know they do in fact take place at some point in the film. This opened with a short titled "An Affair With Dolls" which was a decent 11 min. horror narrative which had a creative way of telling a dark and disturbing tale which had a nice twist on the ending with a good score.

What is this, a short before the movie? Yeah, I forgot to mention that before *every* movie a short is being played as well, which is another plus in my book; this format works out great and I wish all movies would learn from this. A good short will not waste your time and you really don't need to give up much either for it.. its a win/win.

Ticked Off Trannies With Knives - Wow, what a title ehh? All I knew about this one before going into it was that John Waters loved it and GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) wanted it banned so it was already gold in my book. TOTWK is a throwback to the exploitation films of the 70's and more specifically almost an homage to the golden years of John Waters.

The movie is really sleazy in a wonderful way , basically about a guy (who apparently got most of his acting tips from Bill Moseley in texas chainsaw massacre 2 and more recently Devil's Rejects, looks and acts, which is not really a bad thing) who goes home with a women and then finds out she is really a dude. He gets angry, takes some pretty brutal revenge on a group of Transexual guys and in return some of these "ladies" take even more brutal revenge on a group of Transexual haters including the Bill Mosley wana-be (he is the lead and all). I not sure why GLAAD wants to ban this movie, I mean these "gals" get some *serious* revenge on the villains which makes the viewer feal pretty good; these be some nasty villains. If this film was not somewhat a comedy It would be hard to watch , it is brutal to the max but like a John Waters flick its lots of fun and does not take itself to seriously, I mean just look at the damn title. One would think GLAAD would love this film, I am sure that this type of hate filled violence does happen in real life but how often do the victims really get revenge?? Overall I really dug this movie, funny, shocking and very entertaining..

The short before TOTWK was Demiurge Emesis which was a really short little creative blurb about the life of artists shown through animation of a mummified cat and the skeletons of its past meals. It was narrated by Danny Elfman and was a visual treat at 3 minutes long.

DemiUrge Emesis from Aurelio Voltaire on Vimeo.

Thats it for today! My first day at the film fest summed up above, more to come soon. Oh, also, Nude Nuns with Big Guns (World premiere was last night) is some of the most bad-ass cinema I have ever seen on the big screen, more on that later.

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