"I don't 'get' Star Trek." If you mention our distinctly American phenomenon in a random group of people, chances are at least one person will volunteer that common refrain. When the franchise mantle was handed to J.J. Abrams, its popularity had withered from the mainstream marketplace, though die-hard fans remained as committed as ever. With the pedigree Abrams has built for himself, it seemed a virtual certain bet he could reinvigorate the motion picture arm of the Star Trek universe. Abrams past work includes (take a deep breath): TV shows Fringe, Revolution, Person of Interest, Alcatraz, Undercovers, Alias, Felicity, Lost, and films Super 8, Cloverfield, Mission Impossible III, and the upcoming 5, Star Trek (2009), and he wrote the screenplays for Armageddon and 1992's Mel Gibson vehicle Forever Young.
To put the franchise popularity's decline into context, the last of the original Star Trek films, Nemesis (2002) had earned less money than any other Star Trek film before it ($43 million). The first film, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, had earned nearly twice as much ($82 million), and that was in 1979. It's little surprise that Abrams decided drastic measures were necessary.
Abrams approach included several core decisions: 1) Eliminate the original actors. Shoehorning an 80 year old William Shatner into a Captain's uniform wasn't likely to re-invigorate the movie-going public's interest. 2) Eliminate the original time-line. In fairness, there's no point in remaking the original films. Creating an alternate universe allows for countless new interpretations. This no doubt offends many purists, but opens up opportunities to attract a broader audience. 3) Throw away as much of the original philosophy as possible. Experts will argue Star Trek has endured, not due to incredible set pieces or great fight sequences, but because of its binding humanist outlook. Abrams decided to take a different tack: adrenaline, in as pure a form as possible.
Fast forward to today, and Abrams has taken that formula, and ran with it. That's not to say Star Trek Into Darkness is a bad film, or even a bland one - far, far from it. The bulk of this film is action, effects, and bravado, amp'd up like no other Trek film before it, while lightly seasoned with Star Trek mythology, aliens, anecdotes, romance, and not-so-inside jokes.
To make a film a tent-pole, major summer blockbuster, the primary resource needed is money. Bryan Singer's Superman Returns reboot enjoyed a mind-boggling 270 million dollar production budget in 2006. Warner Brother's return on their investment wasn't exactly gratifying: box office receipts of $200 million domestic, and $190 million international. Seven years later, Abrams has managed to make Into Darkness for just $180 million - a 1/3 smaller budget. With 30 minutes of Imax footage, grand set pieces, nuanced cgi, massive battle sequences, 3D filming, and huge ensemble cast, it looks like he's managed a budgetary hat trick, for as far as the senses are concerned, nothing is left off the table in this film.
Again, purists might be offended by how far afield the new Trek films have run from the original essence that made Trek work. There is a logical explanation, with a 98.7% statistical likelihood to be correct. The movie industry has evolved, and the buzz word today is "emerging markets." In short, there is more money to be made overseas than there is in the US. It's so important today that many, if not most, big budget American films are actually being released to most international markets before we see them in the U.S. (See: Iron Man 3, or Fast & Furious 6, which is already out internationally, etc). A typical box office gross today is 2/3's international, 1/3 domestic, and many popular films follow that trend. Right now, with only 17 days in release, Iron Man 3's take is over $300m domestic, over $700 international. Avatar (2009) scored a whopping $700m domestic + $2 billion foreign. (2 Billion - with a "B"). How does Star Trek fare? Take a look at these numbers:
<data from boxofficemojo, with some Int. values extrapolated from IMDB .>
If there's one point that's clear, Star Trek is as American as apple pie. While science fiction can find enthusiasts around the world, it might be the decades old "space race" between Russia and the U.S. that's responsible for our exaggerated zeal. It's true that a space "shuttle" and even part of the original opening voice-over were lifted directly from ancient (1950's) NASA literature. According to thespacereview.com, Gene Roddenberry lifted part of the dialogue from the March 1958 non-technical document "Introduction to Outer Space," which reads, "...the compelling urge of man to explore and to discover, the thrust of curiosity that leads men to try to go where no one has gone before." (article 506/1, Dwayne A. Day, 12/28/05).
2009: How did Abrams' reboot fair? $257m domestic / $127m foreign. That's a near perfect 66% / 33% split - and dismal by today's standards, despite bettering some of the original films' 80/20 splits. Its strongest foreign market was the U.K.,grossing $35m, with strong performance in Germany and Australia, but just $4m through its entire run in Russia. And given the expected 33/66 split, the studio sees about $370 million left on the table. However, considering its budget of "just" $150 million, it was still a substantial success worthy of a sequel.
Since then, beyond simple speculation, we can look to the almighty powers that be (the executive producers) to see what was to come with Into Darkness. The answer is any sci-fiction fan's worst nightmare: focus groups. Yes, Paramount (film right's owners since ST1), along with SkyDance and Bad Robot (Abrams' production company) co-produced the project, with building international receipts as their prime directive. According to thewrap.com (May 08, 2013), Abrams and crew trekked across the globe showing bits of the film, and asking viewers what they liked, or didn't. "Ditch Spock's ears," writes TheWrap. Sacrilege! In short, all the qualities that define Star Trek should be phased out.
Paramount asks a lot of Abrams, not just to revive a languishing property, but in addition, make the 12th film in the franchise the first one to have the foreign box office out gross the domestic. Given that's become a near requirement to make a modern blockbuster turn a profit, Abrams' final product fulfills their wish, at least in terms of molding it to that market.
Star Trek Into Darkness begins on the fictional planet Niribu. Niribu exists in real world superstition: According to wikipedia, Niribu is a doomsday planet. Generally beyond Neptune, it travels a 350 year elliptical orbit, which eventually will collide with earth. Originated by Zecharia Sitchin, his imagined planet has been adopted copiously into other prophesies as well as literature.
Back into Darkness: Kirk and Spock are on Trek iteration Niribu, which is moments from self implosion. Spock triggers a "cold fusion device" which instantly solidifies a volcano, saving a fledgling humanoid species from extinction. Unfortunately, Spock is in said volcano, and the only way to get him out is for the Enterprise to move in close, in full view of imperiled humanoid species. This violates the Federation Prime Directive: Do not interfere with a species' evolution. Having barely grasped command of fire, seeing a massive space ship ever so slightly qualifies. This adventure is a preface, and clearly featured in trailers, so little is being revealed here. On return to Earth, however, Kirk violated the Prime Directive, so the visit isn't the brief pit-stop he imagined. Hint: violating the PD can result in being demoted, stripped of command, ejection from Star Fleet, or worse.
Abrams's Prime Directive, however, is to appeal to an international audience, so very little time is spent in investigative committees, or on personal conflicts. Before the sun sets, terrorism, phasers, assassinations and betrayals are piling up faster than a tribble's extended family, and the Enterprise (which bears hardly any resemblance to a science vessel anymore, by the way) is off to parts known and unknown to catch the baddies and bring them to justice... or wait, blow them to smithereens (alteration credited: Paramount's international focus groups). And then blow more stuff to smithereens. And then more. In fact, the Enterprise's trip back to Earth looks more like a round of the 1980's arcade game Defender than any episode of Star Trek ever aired on TV.
As mentioned early on, the film is running on rocket fuel and rarely takes time to refill the tank. That's actually fine. The effects are fantastic, the various strands of plot are interwoven with skill, and while Trek lore is downplayed, it's not forgotten. The main characters remain true to their original incarnations, and all of the most well known trivia is used for maximum effect: red shirts, Klingons, unnecessary nods to creatures large and small find a place in this film, and Abrams knows how to include the material in a way that satirizes the original without offending most hard core fans. As a summer popcorn actioner, Into Darkness has phasers set to maximum.
So far, Into Darkness is enjoying a modest improvement in foreign markets. With an over $80m domestic opening weekend, it's also taken over $80m in foreign markets, including an $8m premiere in Russia (twice the entire run there for the last film). While it works for Into Darkness, it remains to be seen if the franchise will endure with pumped up action, while muting the interpersonal charm and philosophical underpinnings than have given Star Trek its remarkably deep roots.
Want more Trek info? Check out my ST:ID preview here.
Another week in May, another week in which there's only one big opening. Producers know where everybody's ticket money is going...
Star Trek: Into Darkness (PG-13) --- J.J. Abrams' (Alias, MI:3) reboot continues. Captain Kirk must go on a manhunt to save the world! I'm sure it will be a fun ride! (Abrams always makes me suspicious of weird plot shakeouts, but I guess it's harder for him to pull them off in a film series where the pieces are years apart.) Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, and Zoe Saldana return. Playing at: Crossgates, Colonie Center, Madison Albany, East Greenbush, Bow Tie Schenectady, Rotterdam Square Mall, Clifton Park, Hi-Way Drive-In Coxsackie, Emerald Amsterdam Tickets & Showtimes
The Great Gatsby (PG-13 -- 3D) --- Baz Luhrmann's (Strictly Ballroom, Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge!) highly anticipated treatment of the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel hits screens at long last. This latest film stars Leonardo DiCaprio (Romeo + Juliet, The Aviator, Titanic), Joel Edgerton (King Arthur, Star Wars III), Tobey Maguire (The Cider House Rules, Spider-Man trilogy) and Carey Mulligan (Drive, Never Let Me Go). This one's getting a LOT of buzz, starting with its soundtrack produced by Jay-Z. The novel hasn't had a major film treatment in almost forty years, and everyone wants to know how Luhrmann's lush sensibility will mesh with the novel's main theme -- emptiness. If he succeeds, expect to see this one on the awards circuit next year.
Playing at: East Greenbush, Colonie Center, Crossgates, Clifton Park, Bowtie Schenectady, Berkshire Mall, Emerald Amsterdam
Peeples (PG-13) --- A man crashes a family reunion (in the Hamptons, no less), to ask for their daughter's hand. Hijinks ensue. Stars Craig Robinson (Pineapple Express, Hot Tub Time Machine), Kerry Washington (currently kicking it on ABC's Scandal), David Alan Grier (In Living Color, Jumanji, Stuart Little). Written and directed by Tina Gordon Chism (ATL, Drumline), whose work has been shepherded by her mentor, Tyler Perry.
Playing at: East Greenbush, Colonie Center, Crossgates, Clifton Park, Berkshire Mall, Hudson Movieplex
Extra, Extra! Apparently, I've been sitting on some inside information and didn't even know it. Major outlets reported today the movie's opening was being moved up. Take note of the timestamp above, as while I had this information for a few days, I still scooped some big outlets, even if just by minutes... And here's what else they aren't telling you...
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J J Abrams follow-up to his insanely popular and critically acclaimed franchise reboot, Star Trek, opens a few days sooner than expected. For those who simply cannot wait, special showings for Into Darkness are scheduled for Wednesday, May 15th. Ensure your tickets by clicking the link above for advance purchases via Fandango. Regal theaters are also offering a 9pm Wed. ONLY Double Feature.
Hint: to find the Double Feature, or the Wed. Imax "Fan Sneak Peaks":use our link to Fandango. If needed, search by zip code, and select the date 'May 15th.' The Wed Imax Fan Sneaks are now rolled into the regular Imax listings, and now qualify for a free download of Star Trek 2009 via iTunes. (code will be emailed). *The Double Feature is the LAST movie in the list (scroll to bottom), for your preferred Regal cinema. If you search by Movie Title first, you wont find these showings as they aren't listed in the Movie Titles or Coming Soon pages.
Finally, the limited edition Imax mini-posters, which they're known to give away, will be available for the Wed. 8pm Imax showing only.
Check out this trailer, and don't miss the awesome Audi commercial below!
Seem familiar? British actor / writer / producer Noel Clarke's slow but steady progress has gotten him notice in Hollywood. Perhaps most recognizable to US audiences as Rose Tyler's boyfriend, Mickey, in the Doctor Who series, Clarke is one of 25 actors who've appeared in both that and the Star Trek franchises.
If you can't contain your geek, and need another Trek fix right now, checkout this truly awesome Audi commercial featuring both Spocks.
Bourdos's film begins with the young red haired woman, Andree Heuschling (played by Christa Theret), cycling to what is to be her job as a model for the famous impressionist painter, Pierre-Auguste Renoir (Michel Bouquet). She becomes the fulcrum between the elder Renoir's renewed vitality in painting during his later years in life, which were fraught with pain and immobility suffering from his rheumatoid arthritis, and the inspiration for his son, Jean Renoir (Vincent Rottiers), who would later become a highly acclaimed filmmaker.
The movie is an homage to Andree Heuschling's role in the famous Renoirs' lives but also a work of art in itself respectful to Renoir's impressionist style. When we first meet the elder Renoir, the camera panning him evokes his own profile self-portrait of 1910. The cinematography becomes like the rolling canvasses that Renoir used to better enable him to paint with large works of art. The use of color and light in the scenery of the film, like the dappled light through the trees, are his brush strokes brought to life. I found myself taken in and enraptured by the scenery as if I were in a museum looking at his own paintings.
Tension and tenderness is a theme throughout the film, flowing between Andree and Pierre, as model and muse to the painter, between Andree and Pierre's son Jean, who is recouperating from a war injury at his family's home, and also between father and son. It is also present between the household staff of women who either begin as models and become maids or vice versa, and in the respect and familial love they have for Pierre Renoir. I very much enjoyed this film, a period piece based in between the space where one creative Renoir ends and another begins giving life and a back story to the paintings of Pierre-August Renoir.
[Sidebar: The director notes that he made this film for Andree Heuschling, who later became the wife of Jean Renoir and known as the actress Catherine Hessling. They later divorced and she drifted into obscurity while he gained notoriety in his career as a filmmaker to such greats as The Grand Illusion and The Rules of the Game. While her role in both Renoir's lives is important, what's interesting to note is the relationship between Gabrielle Renard (played by Romane Bohringer) and the two Renoirs as well.
Gabrielle worked for the elder Renoir as a nanny to the young Jean and formed a strong bond to both of them, which is evidenced in Renoir's painting Gabrielle et Jean. It was actually she who took Jean Renoir to see his first film when he was a child which later inspired him to become a filmmaker. They touch on this bond briefly in the film, but you see and feel the intense connection between Jean and Gabrielle]
We begin the film with Tony Stark (Downey, Jr) going back to the beginnings of his playboy lifestyle in a flashback where he meets an aspiring botanist, Maya Hansen (Hall) who is developing a means to alter DNA in plants to regenerate their broken parts, with sights to use this method of self-healing on humans. However, it's still a volatile process.
Flash forward to present day, a terrorist who goes by the name of Mandarin (Kingsley) is responsible for random bombings all over which have global tensions on edge. Stark avers to come after Mandarin, who in retaliation destroys his house, putting Pepper Pott (Paltrow) and the recently reappeared scientist Hansen in danger.
Tony is presumed dead from the destruction of his home, but instead has been directed by JARVIS (Stark's Artificial Intelligence, for those unfamiliar with the mythology) to Tennessee to investigate what appears to be a Mandarin-related bombing to understand the source of the man's evil in order to put a stop to his reign of terror. However, upon landing, Tony's Iron Man suit has malfunctioned leaving him not only marooned but without the suit from which he's able to communicate to JARVIS, or anyone. This leaves him to his own clever devices to survive and get to the bottom of Mandarin's plan.
Without giving too much away, Iron Man 3 was a delight to watch. The dialogue in the film is clever and hilarious in many parts. Seeing Don Cheadle with more on-screen butt-kicking time was refreshing in his supporting role of Colonel Rhodes. Kingsley was, as ever, stimulating and well-played as the nefarious terrorist, Mandarin. You get to see more of Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark outside his Iron Man suit which was Shane Black's theme throughout the film: the suit does not necessarily make the man, or the Iron Man as it were.
Stay through the credits for a fun final scene. ;)
The weather has turned! Drive-ins are open! The birds are back! And so are the action movies. There's only one big opening, and boy howdy is it BIG! (The folks in Hollywood know what's what, and kept everything else off the table this week.) So dig out your superhero Hallowe'en costume, and go to the multiplex with all your friends! Because it's Tony Stark, baby.
Iron Man 3 (PG-13) --- Tony Stark and Pepper Potts (Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow) are back, with their friends, to fight off a new enemy called The Mandarin and to hopefully find redemption and some retribution along the way. You can chomp down your popcorn and ride along in Tony Stark's Audi R8 e-tron supercar in 2D, 3D, and IMAX, or even ride in your own electric super car to the drive-in.
Playing at: Crossgates (2D, 3D, IMAX), Colonie Center (2D, 3D), Madison Albany (2D, 3D), East Greenbush (2D, 3D), Bow Tie Schenectady (2D, 3D), Rotterdam (2D, 3D), Clifton Park (2D, 3D), Emerald Amsterdam (2D, 3D), Crandell Chatham, Hollywood Drive-In, Malta Drive-In.
If the movie industry could have it's way, the season for the summer blockbuster would start somewhere around September 1st, and continue each week until August 31st of the following year. Working towards that goal, a huge tent-pole superhero film opens the season right about now - which just happens to coincide with the annual Free Comic Book Day.
Oh, Look! There's Ironman, now!
Is the push for earlier and earlier season starters working? A quick check of Regal Cinemas at Crossgates Mall tells all...
To begin, we see online that the 9pm advance showing has sold out, while the 2D Thursday showings also sold well. The midnight Imax filled to about 80% capacity. Online buzz indicates Ironman 3 is expected to near record opening weekend sales. But, back to Crossgates...
Just entering the parking lot already gives a good indication, as can be seen here just before the Thursday midnight showing for Ironman 3. A further look inside the lobby reveals more, as a line of true-believers snakes along walls and around corners.
Inside, J.C. from EarthWorld Comics revs up the crowd, taking advantage of interest that comes pre-assembled in an Ironman audience, and multiplying it through the obvious cross-promotion appeal Free Comic Book Day is designed to leverage.
Free Comic Book Day blends perfectly with the Summer Movie Season opening day but isn't actually a movie theater promotion. In fact, it's its own event - a decade old, nationwide, comic book store promotion. Today, literally dozens of free titles are offered, covering every possible genre (The Tick, The Walking Dead, even Sesame Street) appealing to every potential audience. Officially on May 4th this year, several local businesses are participating. Stores vary in the comics they provide, and extra features on the day. Local shops Zombie-Planet and EarthWorld Comics have had costumed characters in attendance, and many stores cross promote, such as EWC's movie theater appearances and giveaways. JC from EarthWorld apologized for his flighty demeanor as I interviewed him, explaining FCBD marks one of the most hectic weeks of the year. The sweat on his brow as he jostled back and forth between me and theater goers looking for free schwag confirmed this. Zombie Planet reps agree, also pointing out today (Friday, May 3rd) just happens to be release day for a new Magic expansion pack, Dragon's Maze.
A quick check of the comicshoplocator website shows all local, listed shops are participating, including: Earthworld Comics in Albany, Zombie Planet in Colonie, Aquilonia in Troy, Electric City in Schenectady, Excellent Adventures in Ballston Spa, and The Comic Depot in Saratoga Springs.
A little one at Zombie Planet on FCBD 2012. As it says on the ZP facebook page, "Kids reading... 'nuff said."
Check back later for thoughts on the relationship between comics and film, as expressed by a couple of local comic shop operators I've spoken with.
Going to Free Comic Book Day? Seeing Ironman 3?
Tell us in the comments below, or Like or Share this article!
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Crowds of young and old jam comic book stores across the country each year on Free Comic Book Day, like they did here at Zombie Planet in 2012.
Is that a bold statement? I hope so. This really isn't a review, but more about letting people know this film is out there. I feel I have to be careful writing about this film. I don't personally think that I know how to express my feelings when it comes to a film like this. Upstream Color is something different. Something fresh. Something unique. Something that many of you need to see....and yet, it's not for some of you to see at all.
I don't really want to give that much of a synopsis of the film. So please bare with me as I try to entice you into seeing this gem.
Shane Carruth directed, produced, wrote, created the music, edited and even stars in his second feature film. That is him in the poster up above. He is known for his 2004 film Primer which is about a few co-workers who accidentally discover time travel. If you have not seen it then see it. You will not be disappointed. Now he is back after eight years. All of which I am assuming he spent creating this new masterpiece he calls Upstream Color. But maybe he was thinking about this film before 2004, it would not surprise me. It is nice to see a film like this in this day and age. Yes I know that there are many great "independent" films out there that all deserve much praise, but this one stands out, and I might have also found my new favorite director.
Imagine if David Cronnenberg (Videodrome) and Terrance Malick (Tree of Life) had a child. And that child made a movie and then had Brian Eno (Roxy Music) create an amazing ambient soundtrack. Well, that is somewhat of a way to explain what we have going on here. But those comparisons don't even come close to what we as the audience are in store for. I watched this going in pretty much blind other than seeing his first film and knowing a simple sentence some critic wrote after it was screened at Sundance. I don't remember the exact sentence but the some of the words were worms, pigs, people, control, identity and connection. I hope those six words describing a science fiction film intrigue you...they did for me. Maybe it is safe to say that two people meet and have a romance. Thats safe isn't it? Who doesn't like a little romance in a film? Well it is in this and it works...all in many strange ways. Or should I say that people might find this film to be very pretentious. I don't think it is but I'm sure people will argue that.
There, does that build a little hype? This film had my brain working from start to finish. It is not an easy film to digest at all. Almost every scene in the film has you asking yourself "why and how" over and over again. Something else that is interesting is the lack of dialogue in this film. Carruth is able to tell a story more so with image and emotion than spoken dialogue. Which I feel is somewhat like reading a book and making your own image of the story in your head. I had some theories about this film after I had watched it based on what he is showing us. But I don't want to share them. I want to see what other people make of it and see if we are in the same ball park together.
So if you enjoy a smart original science fiction film laced with beautiful imagery, great acting and endless possibilites, this is it. A story like no others I have seen in a long time. You can go online and read others reviews about Upstream Color but I wouldn't recommend it one bit. It's not often people are able to go into a movie not knowing what they are about to experience. Remember, this is not a film for everyone. But those of you who do seek it out, you will not be disappointed. (It is playing in NYC at the IFC Center but comes out on DVD next Tuesday the 7th of May)
Basing a movie on true events is tricky. Basing a movie on true crime events is trickier. You want to tell your story but you don't want to glorify the criminals involved. So what do you do? You change some names, add some embellishments, and you put this nearly unbelievable story up on the screen. Turning it into a dark comedy on top of it is...an interesting challenge.
Pain and Gain is about a small band of hapless gym rats who hatch a scheme to kidnap and extort money from a local rich business owner in an attempt to claim what they believe is the American Dream. What follows is mayhem and foolishness in Michael Bay's fashion.
Admittedly, I laughed at this film. A lot. Bay succeeded in showing some respect to the victims of this awful crime by making the criminals look like bumbling idiots, but that's as far as I could tell any respect was paid. Elements of Wahlberg's Dirk Diggler character from Boogie Nights showed through. Dwayne Johnson acts outside of his usual oeuvre to play a born again Christian ex-con who's easily led astray back into a life of crime, only to act with a childlike conscience and mentality with regards to the deed at hand which at times thwarts the "success" of the robbery.
Bizarre is one way I would choose to describe this film. Bay manages to take a story that's almost too grotesque and unbelievable to be true into a dark farce of a film loosely based on true events. I'm reticent to say that I enjoyed it because I don't want to add to a cinematic mockery of the survivors' suffering, but I did laugh at the expense of the criminals and I'm certainly glad these idiots are behind bars.
Mike DeCriscio was born and raised on Long Island in Valley Stream, NY. Albany has become a second home to me since he began attending UAlbany in 2009. He is currently a senior and will be graduating this coming May with a degree in English. He will be staying in Albany for graduate school to pursue a Master's Degree in English at UAlbany.
Tracy Fears is a Capital Region resident since 2001, is a foodie who enjoys pickles with peanut butter on occasion, loves dogs but is owned by 2 cats, and has discriminating movie tastes but loves campy B-movies with a passion."
Jay Matthiessen is a native local, with a family immersed in the arts (a respected photographer grandfather, a grandmother and aunt professional dancers, a film producer, music teachers, a set designer, and dress maker/costume designers), it would have been no surprise to eventually work in the field. Yet while young, with a few years training under Vladimir Dokoudovsky, at the New York Conservatory of Dance, and a few minor attempts performing, it became clear some can best serve the arts by appreciating it. While majoring in more mainstream subjects, all free college coursework was dedicated to the arts: short story writing, script writing, science fiction film, photography, journalism, communications, and even three dimensional design, as well as writing for the college newspaper and membership in film club. Like his grandfather, though primarily working in a technical field, Jay has spent decades working in his spare time as a photographer, and has worked for a small newspaper. While a massive fan of blockbusters, thrillers, and science fiction films, his formative years have fostered a profound appreciation for the arts in all it's forms.
Drew Suto, not born, but raised around the capital district, lives in Troy NY with his wife and daughter. He was brought up in and around the arts, and has always had a strong passion for film. As a child, he would read the movie parodies in Mad Magazine and then seek out the actual film and watch it. Over the years he has grown to be kind of a film geek, hosting movie nights for friends to attend and even having a private double feature midnight showing of Richard Elfman's The Forbidden Zone and Takashi Miike's Visitor Q for his bachelor party at a local theater. Currently, Drew has started his own visual projection business that operates throughout the north-east and he still finds time to watch a few movies during the week. His hopes is that this blog will allow you to learn more about films that you may or may not know about.
Amy Wilson spent much of her childhood in the mid-Hudson Valley, but went away to college in far-off Virginia. After graduation, Amy lived in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area where she started working as a web developer. A work-to-live person in a live-to-work town, Amy focused on her interests away from the office, eventually writing for Metblogs DC and polishing her skills as an architecture and landscape photographer.
Now after more than twenty years, Amy has returned to her roots in New York. She currently works as a software developer at a local college."