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directed by Kevin Hamedani
USA 2012

 

Usually when independent filmmakers get satirical about their own works and the sometimes comparatively pretentious works about their colleagues - sometimes for lack of better ideas - they lack a sufficient self-critical distance. JUNK - written, directed, and starring the makers of ZMD: ZOMBIES OF MASS DESTRUCTION - gets by nicely on the rapport of its lead duo (not great actors but naturalistic enough that their stoner attributes do not seem like posturing and they have an obvious affection for the movies they are making fun of), assured direction and pacing for a sophomore feature (the festival version apparently ran over two hours), consciousness of the "mutual admiration society" tendency of flocking filmmakers as well as the sometimes unsubtle ways they work through their own issues on film.

When his film ISLAMA-RAMA 2: MOUSTAFA LIVES is accepted into the Outsider Film Festival in Seattle, filmmaker Kaveh (Kevin Hamedani) must reunite with his estranged co-writer Raul (Ramon Isao) who enrolled in Columbia University's writing program to pursue a career in writing fiction. Kaveh is honored that his film is getting two screenings at the festival, while Raul is saddened about his contribution to the dumbing-down of American culture. When Kaveh's agent Saul (Kieran Mulroney, GETTYSBURG) informs them that the "Japanese Roger Corman" Yukio Tai (James Hong, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA) will be attending the festival to receive a lifetime achievement award (unlike Corman, Hong may have been more prolific onscreen than offscreen but the actor also went behind the cameras for films like HOT CONNECTIONS, TEEN LUST and THE VINEYARD), the pair plans to pitch him a "pro-choice zombie western" only to discover that a pair of artier rival filmmakers are also planning to pitch him "Jodorowsky's HOLY MOUNTAIN or THE SEARCHERS meets Kafka's METAMORPHOSIS meets THE TRIAL". Going with the agent's recommendation of pitching a remake or a sequel of a horror movie, they work on pitches for GREMLINS III and CHUCKY: POV; however, they soon discover that the ploy of dressing up like waiters to gain access to the producer's penthouse room doesn't work as it does in the movies when said producer has gun-toting bodyguards, their filmmaking rivals, and even their trusted allies can betray them in more personal ways. BLACK DYNAMITE auteur Scott Sanders, Marcus Dunston - writer of entries in the FEAST, THE COLLECTOR, and SAW series - appear as themselves, while director Lynn Shelton (HUMP DAY) and TROLL 2 star George Hardy - the subject of the documentary BEST WORST MOVIE - also appear in small roles.

Eric Cotenas

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Theatrical Release: 19 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 1:45:36
Video

2.00:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.56 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 2.0 stereo
Subtitles none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Breaking Glass Pictures

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.00:1

Edition Details:
• Audio Commentary by writer/director Kevin Hamedani, co-writer/actor Ramon Isao, and actor Brett Davern
• Making-of featurette (8:51)
• Deleted Scenes (52:47)
• OK Go Music Videos:
• - 'This Too Shall Pass' (3:07)
• - 'White Knuckles' (3:17)
• Photo Gallery
• Theatrical Trailer (2:38)
• Trailers:
• - 'Unhung Hero'
• - 'Buttwhistle'
• - Antisocial
• - 'Daddy's Little Girl'

DVD Release Date: March 25th, 2014
Amaray

Chapters 14

 

 

 

Comments

The occasionally rough and inconsistent look of Breaking Glass' progressive, anamorphic transfer is very intentional with harshly lit interiors, exteriors sometimes meant to look like they were grabbed by guerilla filmmakers and ones that actually were (using public events as backdrops), and the Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio sometimes reflects this approach as well (although none of the dialogue is lost in the mix). The film is accompanied by an audio commentary that is heavy on wisecracks (a natural extension of the filmmakers' onscreen chemistry) but covers the extended shoot, the origins of the project at a film festival, and using other filmmakers as actors.

Extras include over fifty minutes of deleted scenes that include extensions of scenes in the film, additional character bits for the leads as well as Cooper Hopkins' actor character and a more extreme change for Davern's character, and more of the film's musical performances (it would have been nice to know which of these extra bits comprised the fifteen-odd minutes trimmed from the two hour festival cut to the feature's current length). A short making-of featurette (once again featuring Hamedani, Isao, and Davern), music videos for songs heard in the film, a photo gallery, and a trailer are the only other film-related extras (the disc also includes trailers for other Breaking Glass titles).

  - Eric Cotenas

 


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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Breaking Glass Pictures

Region 1 - NTSC

 




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