Tuesday, April 6, 2010

3D Gimmicks and A-Hole Grifters

So this weekend Clash of the Titans made an estimated $61.2 million across North America. For genre fans like us, this should be a good thing - so why am I so apprehensive?  I haven't seen the film yet, but the consensus from the majority of the critics is that while its a decent enough movie, the 3D is fucking atrocious. Here's what the New York Times Mahnola Dargis had to say:

"The 3D in the Clash of the Titans remake, which was added after it was shot, has none of the immersive quality of Avatar and instead segments the image into discrete planes, bringing to mind the unintegrated levels of a pop-up book.

A pop-up book.  For an extra five fucking bucks per ticket.  Now that Clash and Alice in Wonderland, both using the "post" 3D conversion, have made millions, the fear is that every film will now be pushed through a crappy conversion just to con you from your hard-earned cash.  Could we be seeing crap like "Sex in the City 3D" soon? Jesus horse-fucking christ, imagine the thought of Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Catrall's old asses in IMAX 3D - that's one scary flick.

Despite the impressive tech wizardry of Avatar, 3D is ultimately a gimmick.  If Hollywood wants to keep people in theatres, it needs to go William Castle and embrace the gimmickry. Why was 3D so successful in the 1950s? Because it was used by real showmen to give their audiences a new experience.  And why did it die out?  Because Hollywood over-saturated the market with cheap-ass 3D films.  Same with the 3D resurgence of the 1980's.  And with Alice and Titans, it's happening again - studio execs taking a great idea and running the fucker into the ground.

Thankfully, a few horror filmmakers are still embracing the roots of the technology.  Patrick Lussier, director of last year's wicked My Bloody Valentine, knows the purpose of 3D - to THROW SHIT AT THE AUDIENCE.  As great as an immersive three dimensional environment can be, at the end of the day we go to 3D flicks to duck, bob, and scream as shit flies at our heads.  Lussier is following up MBV with a new Nic Cage flick called Drive Angry, a violent, supernatural car chase thriller.  While the prospect of Cage's hair in 3D is frightening, Lussier is shooting the film in 3D, not post converting.  Chatting with MTV, Lussier said:

"No, none of that post-conversion crap. This is totally shot in 3-D. We have 3-D cameras out from Paradise FX, which are working brilliantly. We're shooting 3-D every day. We're watching all our 3-D effects on every single shot as we shoot."

So what can you, the horror fan do?  Like any good consumer, just keep yourself informed.  Sites like Ain't It Cool News, Shock Till You Drop. Dread Central, etc. will give you the straight-up on whether a film is worth that extra fiver or not.  And while this new 3D trend may just be another fad, just like in the 50's and 80's, let's hope that guys like Lussier can still crank out eye-popping films that do exactly what 3D should do - make us shit our pants.

Speaking of gimmicks, April 17 is when we're presenting our next DEDsploitation event at Metro Cinema - our first double bill!  Before Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day, Ivan Reitman dabbled in the world of horror and exploitation with his 1973 film CANNIBAL GIRLS.  It stars a couple of faces familiar to fans of comedy - Eugene Levy and Andrea Martin - playing newlyweds whose vacation plans take a turn for the grisly when their car breaks down in the small town of Farnharnville. The town's population? Three gorgeous women with an insatiable hunger for raw flesh!

Tits, ass and gore... we could ask for no more!! For the more sensitive viewers, Mr. Reitman has equipped the film with a warning bell system. When the bell rings, the gore begins! Watch the on-screen carnage at your own risk! BEWARE THE CANNIBAL GIRLS!!

and as a special treat, before the feature we present:

All the way from London, Ontario comes the nastiest, raunchiest, most riot-inducing and retina-melting assemblage of Grindhouse trailers ever handled by human hands!!

DEDsploitation Cinema, VAGRANCY FILMS, and MAPLE-SCHNITZEL FILM INVESTORS GROUP proudly present "TRAILER APOCALYPSE"!!!! The Cinematic Equivalent to the Mix Tape!

Join us as we unspool four reels of Grindhouse depravity... packed to the brim with Vampire Vixens, Kissin' Cousins, Italian Zombies, slashers, flashers and degenerates of all kinds! From soft core porn to hard core gore, TRAILER APOCALYPSE will take you through a tour of the 60's, 70's and 80's most bizarre and extreme exploitation films ever made. Over 30 + Grindhouse, Sex, Horror, and Trash movies - 3 minutes at a time! This is the show your mother warned you about!

I got a chance to hang with the guys from Vagrancy when I was in Toronto for the Rue Morgue Festival of Fear, and let me tell you, they're crazy fuckers!  I can't wait to show all you sick fucks in Edmonton what these even sicker fucks in Hamilton have cooked up for you.

The reel is so notorious, our own film classification board had to screen it!

Join us on Saturday April 17 for our double bill of debauchery!  TRAILER APOCALYPSE starts at 7PM, CANNIBAL GIRLS starts at 9PM. As always, the lovely Gabe and Kyle from Filthy McNasty's will be slinging booze.

And for the kiddies, sorry but the event is rated R - no one under 18 is allowed.


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