Showing us exactly what you can do with no budget and a good animator is Drawn by Pain. It’s a live action with drawn overlays series that arrived in my in-box courtesy of the fine folks at zero punctuation (they ran a trailer advert for it) and it’s turned out to be a good watch.
Drawn by Pain follows it’s sometimes heroine Emily as she confronts her inner demons while terrorizing NYC lowlifes (or possibly Connecticut’s south coast, there’s a 106.9 WCCC sticker in there). She appears to be slowly driven mad by her youth, hounded by forms given life through her odd artistic powers.
What really lies inside Emily’s abilities to injure and kill to defend herself with drawings and how she’ll tackle the problems they cause is the focus of the series.
Artistically the shorts are tight Drawing is sketchbook style and pops out of the screen from the city and ‘burb backdrop. Camera work is competent shot with (if I had to guess) a couple of Canons GLs or similar cameras and some good recording gear. Acting improves as the series gets its chops broken in.
If you want either an action/drama that’s fun to watch or a study in making a good mixed media film on a shoe-string budget this one’s for you. (Drawn by Pain drawnbypain.com)
Along with every other American with nothing better to do this weekend I showed up at the theater to see Pirates of the Caribbean 3. Not having seen the other two movies in the series it left a mixed impression.
Pirates has a standard plot, good special effects, and some solid acting. All of these made the movie enjoyable.
Everything that Pirates 3 has going for it gets balanced by it’s incredible length. You’d be forgiven for sleeping through bits of the movie and not noticing. Whole scenes could be erased to improve the movies flow and ease up on the boredom.
After discussing the movie briefly with a smattering of other people this view is justified. Even fans of the genre came up with a “but it could’ve been shorter”. This is a length rarely seen outside war documentary-esque films.
So, if you’re easily bored this might be one to wait for on DVD. Unless it’s something you’d really like to see. In which case, it’s probably worth hitting at the theater.
At the insistence of Jolene and Jay (actually ran into him at Taste of India, which is cool) I finally saw Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.
While Sacha Baron Cohen’s humor is definitely not for everyone (pretty over the top) it is exceedingly funny.
To recap: Borat is one of Sacha’s characters. He’s a Kazakhstan reporter coming to America to do a cultural exchange report.
Never mind the fact that Sacha’s speaking an odd mix of bullshit and Yiddish (it’s obviously not a Russian dialect, anyway. This was noted on NPR when they interviewed him). Or that he looks suspiciously unlike a Kazakh. No, he passes just fine stateside (except maybe in New York on the morning commute. Those people are equally pissed off at just about everyone.)
Live comedy abounds as he hoodwinks people on his tour into believing in his character. And to be honest he plays Borat to the hilt. At one point during filming he passes out and snaps back up still in character.
There’s quite a bit of outrageous material in here. Such as Borat chasing his traveling companion Azamat (Ken Davitian) naked down the hallway (of a prestigious hotel) waving a sex toy. Even so, I can’t bring myself to call it offensive; most of it is simply derogatory towards Sacha himself rather than demeaning toward others.
Everything considered, Borat is worth seeing. As long as you’re not offended by the content it’s hilarious. He affectively lampoons people by showing them as themselves, making for some classic scenes.