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directed by Ward Roberts
USA 2012

 

War vet Jack (Aaron Gaffey, THE REVOLTING DEAD) is searching for inner peace through Yoga while working as a plumber in the middle of the desert. His only friend is stoner Mo (Devin Barry, NATIONAL LAMPOON'S ADAM & EVE) who has embraced his Native American heritage as a way to get chicks. Jack's life gets complicated when he answers a call from Ella (Amber Benson, TABOO) who has been living alone in a former foreclosed home rife with home improvement problems while her husband is away on tour. Ella's husband Herman (Travis Betz, LEGEND OF THE SASQUATCH) is actually closer than she thinks, since he's a crackhead who has run up quite a huge tab at the "House of Buzz" and Buzz (Jeremiah Birkett, L.A. CONFIDENTIAL) wants payment any way Herman can get it. Herman fails to "hustle" the money out of Jack, but Jack takes pity on Ella and tries to help Herman out by offering a down-payment to Buzz out of his own pocket. This does not go over well with Buzz, and an all-out brawl ensues that results in the explosive demolition of the "House of Buzz". When Buzz and his henchmen - including Mr. Lizard (Al Burke, WEREWOLF IN A WOMEN'S PRISON), strung-out Shakes (Christian Badami, FREEWAY KILLER), his girl Tammy (Galicia Vaca Lopez, THE DEAD INSIDE), and Keith (associate producer Mike C. Nelson) - and his speed-freak followers capture Herman, Ella (and her baby), and Mo, stoic Jack reverses his non-violent stance with extreme prejudice...

DUST UP looks pretty much like the grindhouse era viewed through Quentin Tarentino/Robert Rodriguez-tinted lenses; fortunately, the film is immensely entertaining and amusing on its own (although it certainly tries, it's gore setpieces are never as jolting as those in Tarentino's films). Despite the title sequence animation and some of the original score, the desert landscape (and the humor) as seen here seems less evocative of Sergio Leone than Russ Meyer (minus the jiggling D-cups). The film starts to run out of steam towards the end (then again, Buzz's ability to hold his followers enthralled is also waning during this time) and the climax - while gory and violent - lacks a certain ferocity (although the infliction of one compound fracture is appropriately wince-inducing), but one's interest is held throughout wondering how far the filmmakers intend to go. DUST UP reunites cast and crew members from the romantic horror comedy LO, which was directed by Betz, and featured Gaffey, Birkett, Barry, Lopez, and DUST UP director Ward Roberts (as an actor).

Eric Cotenas

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Theatrical Release: 26 October 2012 (USA)

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DVD Review: Breaking Glass Pictures - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Distribution

Breaking Glass Pictures

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:34:18
Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.25 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Breaking Glass Pictures

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• Audio Commentary by actors Travis Betz, Devin Barry, Amber Benson, Aaron Gaffey, and director Ward Roberts
• Featurettes:
• - Making the World More Good (16:9; 1:06)
• - Eye-Patch People (16:9; 1:38)
• - Cannibals Anonymous (16:9; 2:48)
• - Safely Smoking Crank (16:9; 1:37)
• - The Desert Runs Red: Spindrift Scores (16:9; 6:33)
• - ADR stands for Amazing Dialogue Recording (4:3; 4:39)
• - Best Friends Forever: A Morning with Jack & Mo (16:9; 2:51)
• - Ride the Pony! (16:9; 3:39)
• - The Herm Dawg Diaries (4:3; 34:58)
• - Stuff Shannon Saw (16:9; 17:37)
• Photo Gallery
• Theatrical Trailer (16:9; 2:08)
• Trailers for SHIFTY, K-11, and SIX DEGREES OF HELL

DVD Release Date: 13 November 2012
Amaray

Chapters 12

 

Comments

Breaking Glass' dual-layer disc sports an attractive rendering of this DSLR flick (blown-out highlights are likely the results of both the original photography and the amped-up secondary color correction). The 5.1 track showcasing the soundtrack and a lot of exaggerated sound effects, although the sound design never seems as busy and crowded as it should be.

The audio commentary track is a rowdy experience, heavier on humor than information but worth a single listen, and a couple of the shorter featurettes are more jokey than informative. "Best Friends Forever" is a lengthy extension of a scene from early in the film, while "Ride the Pony" reveals that the Mo character was originally supposed to ride into the climax on a pony, but the hired animal was uncooperative. The lengthier featurettes "The Herm Dog Diaries" - a video diary by actor Travis Betz - and "Stuff Shannon Saw" - shot by DP Shannon Hourigan - offer unfocused but more entertaining looks behind the scenes. The scoring and ADR featurettes are also worth a look, especially for independent filmmakers.

  - Eric Cotenas

 


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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Breaking Glass Pictures

Region 1 - NTSC

 




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