I am selling a few films on eBay. One of them is THE INDEPENDENT (2000) by Stephen Kessler. It’s such an amazing film, and it’s funny how I stumbled across it in the bargain bin of a discount store. Before packing it away, and ready to sell, it turned out that I was curious and had to watch it again. Big mistake – think I am going to keep it. lol
In case you haven’t seen it, the film stars Jerry Stiller in the role of an ageing B-Movie producer who is looking to secure the rights to make a serial killer film, whilst the killer in question wants it to be a musical, the bankers are threatening to foreclose on his career and events are conspiring to shut down his career once and for all.
The film is a surprisingly endearing mockumentary about a fictional character, who’s a sort of hybrid of Russ Meyer and Roger Corman, as he is being followed by a documentary film crew and talking about his ‘art’. His 427 films are classed as trash, only suitable for those who enjoy the breasts, the guns and the explosions and can ignore the over indulgent thematic messages and shonky dialogue. But to him and the people involved in his films, they all have a peculiar personal message.
There are some amazing cameos in the movie, from Nick Cassavetes, Ben Stiller (as “Whale of a Cop”), Fred Williamson and Karen Black, but the best of all is from Oscar Director and former HAPPY DAYS star Ron Howard.
One great quote from the film, from a proud Dad showing off his son to his idol – Stiller (apologies for the bad paraphrasing):
“Your films have taught me many things… how to pleasure a woman… and how to tell if she’s a vampire. They’re also a lot easier to masturbate to.”
Who can say the same of their own career? That quote had me spewing beer across the room and the ending brought the threat of a tear to the corner of my eye.
Beyond the brilliant skits and lines, there is a message. Though the film celebrates his lack of talent, it also proves that some people do not listen to their inner doubting voices and they strive on regardless. Why can’t I switch off my inner voices and do that????
Anyway, in totally unrelated news, I finished my animation tutorial and tomorrow it will be time to play. Lip Syncing proved the trickiest technique… but practice will reap dividends.