I have to first start of by saying, sometimes reviewing a film is difficult. It’s easy to look at someone’s hard work, then critique it from the safety of your own computer. Not taking into consideration what they may have had to go through to get their vision made. Studio cutbacks, poor acting, time conflicts etc. I’m sure even with the same budget, time constraints, actors/actresses, I wouldn’t be able to pull off something even close to this. But as they say in Hollywood, The show must go on!
Where do I begin with this film.. I initially was intrigued by the cover and the synopsis of this piece.
Set in a world where demons live among us, this exhilarating vitrine of effects and action sees a hard-boiled demon named Vine confronted with the ultimate choice between the salvation of his own kind and the life of an innocent human girl.
This film begins with sort of a “Shock and awe campaign” but immediately falls short and just comes across creepy. And not in the this is scary and could get good sort of way, more of a what the hell am I watching sort of way.
Fire City then goes quickly from a gory, rapey, demon movie, to a CSI of apartment dwelling demons. And yes you heard me correctly, a CSI of demons. Most of which come across on screen like super low budget Star Wars spin off.
The movie follows Vine, a demon who has found his place on Earth as the feeder of other demons in his apartment complex. The demons feed off of the misfortune and misery of the humans who live there. Suddenly Vine awakens to find that everyone has found happiness and peace. There mysteriously is no misery in the world around him. As the demons begin to starve, Vine realizes he must unravel the mystery of what is causing this to happen. Hence the CSI.
The movie takes some twist and turns, that only lead outside of this apartment building one time.
I was confused most of the film as to what was going on. The question you might be asking yourself is, “Why didn’t you just turn it off?” The answer is simple. I actually began to find it funny. I know Director Woodruff was not going for a comedy here. But if you actually look at it as such, it becomes a decent film. The ending of this film doesn’t do much to help you understand what you just witnessed. But It definitely stays true to itself. Being that its confusing, and kinda silly.
If you want a laugh, or are into this sort of thing, by all means check it out. But if you are like me and maybe just expect a little more out of an Indie film, please do not and I mean do not put yourself through it.
A Kind of Kidnapping – Dark Comedy with Politics
Written and directed by Dan Clark, this fairly star studded independent film follows a young couple who are stuck in a financial situation, and decide to kidnap a sleazy conservative politician in order to receive a ransom, that will allow them to escape their static lives.
Patrick Baladi (The Office) plays Hardy our creepy politician, Kelly Wenham (Double Date) plays Maggie, a complex woman who seemingly is always drawn to the “bad boy”, Jack Parry-Jones (The Crown) plays Brian our voice of reason within all of this, or is he?
The character development is well written and allows the space for character arcs, unlike a lot of small films, where there isn’t that room in the script. The three main leads feel very grounded and familiar, everyone knows someone like this in their life or perhaps public figures in the media.
The performances of the main three lead actors are great, if it wasn’t for them, I don’t think this film would work as well. Alongside the strong performances, the editing of the film helped to navigate this non-linear plot and allowed the film to peel aways the layers of backstory which all helped to create a stronger character driven piece.
As the film was nearing the final act, it felt as though it was dragging a little. Dan Clark mentioned in the Q&A after the screening how this was a short film before and I can definitely see how it could work in a confined setting really well. Maybe there was a bit of padding in second to third act to reach that feautre length requirement that didn’t aid certain character moments.
If you want to hear my full thoughts, the best thing to do is check out my review over on YouTube and let me know your thoughts in the comments.
When independent film is fighting for its life, A Kind of Kidnapping is the light in the dark. This is one of the better British produced indie films I’ve seen in a long time.
A Kind of Kidnapping is out on digital on 24th July on iTunes, Amazon, Google and Sky.
This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, the [series/movie/etc] being covered here wouldn’t exist.
Ms. Davis’ Close Friend | Film Review
This short film written and directed by Richard Schertzer tackles the themes of mortality, loneliness, and memory through the perspective of the main character Marina Davis (Danette lllig), a breast cancer patient.
Marina is visited by her carer, Katie (Kike Ayodeji), who lends warmth to her character and provides a ray of hope for Marina’s daily struggle. Marina’s sole family is her son John (Donald Imm), who is away for college and on a trip to China, so she can only video contact him, which adds to Marina’s loneliness. Then Angel of Death (Trey G. Riley), an enigmatic figure, enters the picture. This causes her to ponder life and death, as well as what will happen beyond.
The film’s primary highlight employs a sombre colour scheme to depict the protagonist’s sorrowful mood. The sceneries are mostly grey, black, and white in colouration. The lack of colour suggests that the character has lost interest and enjoyment in life, seeing everything as drab and depressing. Instead of informing the audience how the character feels through speech or narrative, the film uses this visual technique to show the audience how the character feels.
Marina is placed in the centre of the frame by the director (Schertzer) to illustrate how she is the major focus, but also how the other characters swirl around her. Despite the fact that the tale solely takes place within the structure, Schertzer captures the audience’s attention with unique views, angle frames, and music soundtrack. While the concepts are similar to the Netflix series After Life (2019-2020), the short film allows the spectator to empathise with the character’s emotions.
‘Wednesday’ Co-Stars Jenna Ortega and Percy Hynes White to Star in Romance Film ‘Winter Spring Summer or Fall’
Even the folks at Netflix couldn’t have thought that Wednesday would turn into the hit that it did. The Addams Family property is one that many in the cultural zeitgeist are aware of, however, many would be hard pressed to believe that the mythology within that franchise is as rich as Tim Burton has been able to make it with the series. One of the reasons for that is for Jenna Ortega who plays the titular Wednesday Addams, and she has lined up her next project.
According to an exclusive from Deadline, Ortega will re-team with Percy Hynes White, who plays Xavier Thorpe on Wednesday for the romantic drama, Winter Spring Summer or Fall. The film will be the directorial debut of Tiffany Paulsen with Ortega serving as an executive producer on the project. Winter Spring Summer or Fall is described as Before Sunrise meets The Perks of Being a Wallflower following two teens coming-of-age into adulthood who meet and fall in love over four days throughout the year in all four seasons, hence the title of the flick.
Ortega has been skyrocketing to stardom due to Wednesday but has had a massive year in film and television. The young Latina was recently nominated for a Golden Globe for her performance in the Netflix original but also starred in horror films Scream 5 and X in 2022. She’ll next be seen in Scream 6 which hits theaters in March 2023. The highly in-demand actress will also star in a crime thriller for Paramount titled Finest Kind alongside Ben Foster and Tommy Lee Jones as well as Miller’s Girl for Lionsgate where she’ll star with Martin Freeman. Ortega’s co-star Hynes White is best known for his lead role in Fox’s X-Men based series, The Gifted where he played Andy Strucker.
Paulsen is best known for writing the Netflix holiday rom com Holidate which starred Emma Roberts. Additionally, Paulsen also wrote About Fate which stars Roberts, Thomas Mann, Madelaine Petsch and Britt Robertson which is streaming currently on Amazon.
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