Monday, June 17, 2013

DARK ROMANCE is online!

Here's DARK ROMANCE from 8mm Films, part of the 48 Hour Film Project - NYC. Thanks to Matthew and Ross Mahler for the chance to be a part of the project and to colleagues Cameron Rankin and Tiffany Browne-Tavarez for their great work. 

Dark Romance from Ross Mahler on Vimeo.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

MALLAS, MA is online!

MALLAS, MA, directed by Sean Meehan is now available for viewing online.

Check it out here:

Mallas, MA by Team Fix It In Post from Daniel Bérubé on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013


Here's HOMELESS REAL ESTATE from All Things Random and Phalanx Film & Video


Ross Mahler sent me and the cast a private video version of DARK ROMANCE yesterday and I was quite impressed. For a film that was shot and edited in 24 hours, it came out pretty well. Again, I must commend Ross, Matthew and the entire cast and crew on jobs extremely well done. Hope to share the film with all of you very soon.

Rogue Cinema Review of TROUBLE

Film Reviews: Trouble (2013) - By Cary Conley
Posted on Monday, June 03, 2013 @ 21:40:25 Mountain Daylight Time by Duane

Being a teenager is tough, even on the best of days. But if you are a juvenile delinquent and have been sent to St. Sebastian's Quiet Academy for Disreputable Youth, life can be even tougher. On his first night at St. Sebastian's, Isaac is hazed, setting in motion a pattern of abuse and bullying that goes on for weeks. This bullying causes Isaac to try to escape, but each attempt is thwarted. As the bullying continues, Isaac hatches a last-ditch effort to escape St. Sebastian's during the annual Christmas dance.

Created as a senior thesis, Trouble is a 12-minute short written and directed by Daniel Witkin. It is equal parts comedy and drama. There is nothing funny about being bullied, and Witkin films these more dramatic sequences with authenticity. The bully, Greg, is slightly taller and more muscular than Isaac and never lets Isaac rest. He turns off Isaac's music while Isaac is working, beats him up, and regularly offers more of the same whenever there's a chance to beat on him. Isaac has taken to sleeping in the library so he isn't tortured every night. Anyone who has ever been through high school will recognize the relationship between Greg and Isaac--we all knew a Greg and an Isaac in school, and perhaps some of us even played one of those roles during our teen years. Bennett Kirschner as Isaac and Max Carpenter as Greg are both solid in their starring roles.

But Witkin also lightens the tone of the film with some gentle comedic scenes as well, most notably with Timothy Cox as the headmaster of St. Sebastian's. The headmaster fancies himself a thespian and writes scenarios for the boys to read in class:

"I am from a troubled demographic...I sometimes entertain dark thoughts."

"You sound like you need relief."

"Tell me about it!"

"I'm going to go drink Schnapps and then I intend to relieve my sexual urges."

"That is not an appropriate way to deal with my problems."

The two boys, Isaac and Greg, are hilarious as they read the lines as woodenly as any two teenage boys probably would. Cox pompously stands by urging them on through the humiliating wordplay.

Another funny scene portrays all the boys dancing in the school gym as David Bowie's "Let's Dance" pours forth through the sound system. The boys' contortions and gyrations are hilarious to watch in the foreground even as Isaac silently sets his plan into motion in the background.

But in the end, Isaac gets the last laugh--both literally and figuratively--as his plan works perfectly. The school administrators will shake their heads and purse their lips while the bullies will think they have successfully run the new kid off. But just as Isaac told the school nurse with absolute certainty, "I'm not like the other kids," he knows that ultimately he has triumphed over the school as well as the bullies.

Trouble is smart and funny, and very enjoyable. Daniel Witkin has created a very solid film debut.

Trouble has not been released to public yet, but if you get a chance to see it in the near future, it comes recommended.

Rogue Cinema Review of WE JUST WANT TO PLAY

Film Reviews: We Just Want to Play (2013) - By Michael Smith
Posted on Monday, June 03, 2013 @ 23:43:47 Mountain Daylight Time by Duane

We just want to play is a short film, senior project from Team 3 Productions, which consists of:

Jimmy Capp,
Matt Freund,
Mike Morgese,
Frank DeRosa,
Ryan Conde, and
Anthony Futia.

The film is a “reworking” of National Lampoon’s 1978 film Animal House. The film looks great and obviously shot on a digital camera and the editing and sound all fit together nicely. The sets look great and feel fairly realistic.

Rogue Cinema favorite, Timothy J Cox graces the film as Athletics Director Dickerman and he is quite possibly the best thing about the film apart from the obvious enthusiasm of the cast and crew.

While the acting talents of most of the “students” leaves a tiny bit to be desired, the script and the set up for each one of the scenes works well and shows a lot of promise.

A lot of the usual “mistakes” that are present in student short films are missing here. There aren’t any ADR problems and the score of the film does not intrude and over-ride the actors spoken dialogue in their scenes.

Overall, this is a funny and loving parody of a classic comedy film.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Film Shoot A Success Today!

Two successful 48 hour film festival shooting projects in a row...both a blast.

Today's project, tentatively titled DARK ROMANCE, was penned by Ross Mahler and his uber-talented, 15 year old son, Matthew, who also directed the film. This kid was on the ball and a real delight to work with. It was a family run set addition to Ross and Matthew, Paula (wife and mother) also helped as well as Morgan (youngest daughter and sister) also chipped in. After arriving in Ronkonkoma, we quickly set up and jumped right in at around 11:30AM and worked quickly, zipping through scenes and set ups in one or two takes. We had lunch after a few hours, then resumed and finished at around 6:30pm.

I had the pleasure of working with two excellent actors in Tiffany Tavarez and Cameron Rankin, who brought talent and humor to the set.

DARK ROMANCE tells the story of advertising executive Tim Cooper (me) who is hardworking, driven and successful, but is also extremely kind hearted and well liked, especially by his loyal secretary Tiffany (Tiffany). Also in the film is Tim's colleague Cam (Cameron) who is the polar opposite of Tim: crude, rude, with little respect for anyone.

Tim begins to receive cards and gifts from a secret admirer, with a special focus to specific lines and speeches from Shakespeare's ROMEO AND JULIET, lines that deal with the darker sides of romance. A tad off putting, but Tim doesn't think much of it, but as the gifts continue to pour in, the lines Tim receives become more and more darker, even disturbing, until Tim receives a gift that shocks him to his very core. Needless to say, things don't end too well for Tim.

I had a blast working on this project today. Between this and MALLAS, MA...I feel spoiled, as both experiences, working with so many talented people (in Boston and NYC)...have made me love this 48 process so much.

Thanks to Ross, Matthew, Paula, Morgan, Tiffany, Cameron and everyone else who made a creative contribution to DARK ROMANCE.

Matthew is currently editing the film, which is due at 7PM tomorrow night. Sadly, I will miss the screening, which is this coming Friday, but I hope to share this film, as well as MALLAS, MA, very soon.

48 Hour Film Festival Shoot Today in Long Island

I'm heading out the door in a few minutes to catch a train to Ronkonkoma in Long Island for today's film shoot.

I heard from Ross Mahler last night and the genre we picked was romance, so Ross and his son Matthew have been hard at work coming up with a script since last evening. They shared the direction they wish to go in with me last night and it sounds like it will be a lot of fun.

Looking forward to a great working day.