FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE...beware yon spoilers!

May 29, 2009

once again, i am just saying...

...there are movies out there in the world that seem as if they were made for me and for me alone. This is one of them. I MUST SEE IT.

In tangentially related news: holy fucking shit, I had no idea that Chuck Norris is so huge. Apparently the camera adds ten pounds but takes away 250 feet.

May 27, 2009

LUDLOW something something

I made this while I was dumping footage onto my computer. Working on a painting of the same image for...whatever reason.

It's so Dawn of the Dead-y, although that wasn't my intention going in. I don't even know if I had any intentions going in- it was just for fun. As was this painting, which is now sitting over in the corner:

So...I don't know. If anyone out there wants to buy a Gill-Man (The Creature Waves Hello!) or commission something else entirely, hit me up with an email. You can check out more over at the gallery on my website. Paintings make great gifts!

I assume. I mean, no one's ever bought me one, so I wouldn't really know.

*tear*

Go see Drag Me To Hell this weekend!!

May 22, 2009

so i made a movie, part six

I'm, like, totally in "post-production" on Ludlow. Since I went way overboard with the info sharing regarding the shoot, I figured, you know, why not indulge myself and share way too much info during the entire process of putting this movie together? It's what The Internet is for. Well, it's for sharing too much information and it's for LOLcats.

So, WARNING: this is all about me and my big ideas for Ludlow and seriously, it’s so boring, I’m falling asleep whilst typing ittttttttttwiooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Oh, if you have no idea what the fuck a "Ludlow" is, click here and catch up. Or don't and remain clueless. Whatever, man, that's totes your beeswax.

During filming, Shannon Lark looked far into the future and yawned upon reading this boring post.

If you’ve watched any of my previous…uh, let’s call them “films” for lack of a better term, shall we?…then you may or may not be surprised to find out that they’re all edited on l’il ol’ iMovie5. See, I’m always about 6 or 8 steps behind the curve when it comes to computers due to the fact that I’m not a millionaire. It’s true! Though I exude exquisite class and glamour all over The Internet, I am little more than a humble pauper.

Another example of exquisite class and glamour.

As such, I plod along all humble pauper-style working with programs from 5 years ago and everything’s generally cool; I’m a big proponent of the idea that your equipment doesn’t entirely matter, but rather it’s all about what you can do with it. *sexual innuendo, wakka wakka* The point is, geez… the first three episodes of Ghostella’s Haunted Tomb were shot on VHS, and they’re…largely coherent, at least.
SHANNON LARK: Stacie never gives herself enough credit. "Lack of a better term?" Her movies are wonderful! And they actually make sense. Especially her latest with that wedding dress-thing.
In related news, did you know that NOBODY uses VHS anymore? Weird, right? I just don’t understand this modern world! VHS is so cool. Why I remember the day I stepped up to VHS from using this thing. Oh, what a day that was. Electric Youth!

I’ll readily admit that top of the line equipment would be swell to own- after all, there’s no arguing that stuff shot on the Red One (fancy, expensive) looks better than stuff shot on VHS (not fancy, obsolete). But again, I’m not a millionaire and thus I make do. Sometimes, though, you just gotta bite the bullet and upgrade your crap to crap plus.

Sorry, VHS. I mean, you don't look THAT bad and I still love you and all...

Sometimes, upgrading is all about ease. After those first three episodes of Ghostella, I dumped my VHS camera for a cheap (but kick ASS) mini-DV camera. In addition to superior picture quality, this meant I could simply import footage directly from the camera into iMovie rather than burning a DVD from the VHS tapes, extracting the footage from the DVDs, converting the file types, and THEN importing to iMovie. I still make out with my little camera every night as my perverted way of thanking it for saving me so much time and hassle. The making out is also my way of letting it know that I think it’s pretty.

...but this is a little sharper...and widescreenier...and insanier.
SHANNON LARK: I agree that you should make out with your equipment. It makes it function better (as long as no saliva hits the mother board) as the good vibes permeate its mechanical consciousness.
I’m trying to make a…well, a GOOD MOVIE here with Ludlow. Relatively speaking, natch. I want it to look beautiful, and I want as much as possible to avoid the deadliest of pitfalls that frequently lay waste to no-budget movies: shitty audio. Whether or not I’ll achieve these goals remains to be seen, but to give myself a leg up I used Shannon’s fancy-pants camera to shoot the film (although not wanting to neglect my own beloved camera, I brought it with me to capture behind the scenes shenanigans and, you know, to make out with). The second part of this mathemagical equation involves post-production and my decision to…dun dun dunnnnn…upgrade from iMovie 5 to Final Cut Express 4. This is roughly the equivalent of upgrading from sitting on your ass all day to going all nutcake and doing the Ironman Triathlon in under an hour.

I don’t know if that makes any sense, or whether doing the Triathlon in under an hour would indeed indicate a level of nutcakedness, but perhaps you get the point.

What? No, I’ve never done the Ironman Triathlon. BIG DEAL. It’s not like I’ve never done ANYTHING. I mean, this one time I stayed up for two days straight and lemme tell ya, it broke my fucking brain! It was during a road trip with my friend Jim, and the highlight of the trip was probably the moment when my mind completely melted and I couldn’t remember the name of the restaurant where we’d had breakfast. The restaurant was called Country Pride (gross, awesome), but the closest I could get to calling it that was to blurt out “Purity Face”.
SHANNON LARK: Hahaha! I went to a place like that recently. It had a giant pig in front of it, which I rode.
"Purity Face" is clearly not even close.

Anyway.

Look, I’m not trying to knock iMovie Version From 5 Years Ago, believe me. I’ve done some cool stuff with it, if I do say so myself (and clearly I do say so myself). However, the program is largely aimed at people who want to make a “movie” of their kids pooping at the beach and Ken Burns-style photo montages set to the tune of Jim Croce’s “Time In A Bottle” to give as a gift to Nana and Pap Pap for their 60th wedding anniversary- and that’s…you know, mega-cool. But for Ludlow, I want more control than iMovie can provide; I want to filter audio and correct colors and all that deluxe good-time jazz. Lo, I say unto thee, this is a story about control. Control of what I say, control of what I do- and this time, I’m gonna do it MY way. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do. Are we ready? I am- ‘cause it’s all about control…and I’ve got lots of it.

NnnngaaaahhhhhJANET JACKSON GET OUT OF MY HEAD.

"I will fuck up your dreams!"

Sorry, wait…mmm. Err, where the fuck am I going with this?

Oh yeah- so I upgraded my computer and now my stupid big fat scanner is no longer compatible with my system (it sits, useless and mocking) which means I can no longer scan in…you know…STUFF FOR MY LIFE which includes COMICS and I’ve got Final Cut Express but it’s super complicated and I don’t know what I’m doing and I hate not knowing what I’m doing and I feel my self-imposed deadline looming and I’m totally freaking out.

SHANNON LARK: Girl, you are gonna get the freakin' stupid editing system BLAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! Just keep working at it. You are super smart and you do things and you have the BESTEST blog on the intarweb where people send you fanmail and some of them even try to look up pictures of me naked just because you have let me go blablabla on your blog about masturbation and Ludlow. This is just Ludlow trying to bring you down, man. Fuck Ludlow. Fuck it with an iron fist and conquer this program till you hit yourself in the face cause your fist goes right through it, all transparency-like.
SWEET MERCIFUL CRAP did I really write all this just to bitch about how my new editing program is OH SO HARD and WAH WAH WAHH and IT’S GOING TO TAKE ME SO LONG TO LEARRRRRRRRNNNN? Hmm. I guess I did.

Well, I SAID it was boring…and YOU read it anyway! SUCKER!

Sorry, that’s not very nice at all. I’m going to go make an iMovie video featuring a Ken Burns-style montage of all our favorite Final Girl pictures from over the years, and I’ll set it to the tune of Icy Spicy Leoncie’s “Man! Let’s Have Fun” as my way of apologizing.

Actually, that video sounds pretty cool. Wow, I should be a jerk more often!

And please don’t remind me that I’m bitching about editing movies on my computer while the world is riddled with people who have no homes or clothes or perhaps not even eyes, because I feel guilty enough about my meager entitlements already. I BID YOU GOOD DAY.

May 21, 2009

and now for a musical interlude...

...courtesy of the sensational 1976 film Track of the Moonbeast.



By "sensational", of course, I mean "craptacular". But it's borne of a craptacular ilk of which everyone should partake once in his or her lifetime- I really only recommend once, as this movie is really, really bad. But still.

I also recommend traveling back in time so you can watch it when you're about 8 years old; when I was about 8 years old and I saw Track of the Moonbeast, I was oblivious to its atrociousness. As such, the scene where the dude hears a noise outside and he goes to check it out and the dude's wife is all "Noooo!" because duh, the noise is coming from the Moonbeast, but the dude goes anyway and he totally gets killed outside and we know because his blood comes oozing in under the door totally scared the mental pants right off of me. I still think about that scene and how it moonrocked my face off like a lunar Mount Rushmore.

Now I like to pretend that "California Lady" was written just for ME!

May 20, 2009

The Mellencamps

Baby, sometimes bad movies just hurt so good! Over at AMC today I've listed 10 of my favorite bad horror movies, so check it out! I've talked about most of them before, I think, but it never hurts to spend some more time discussing Rumplestiltskin.

OR DOES IT?

If you thrilled to the exploits...


...of Ghostella's Haunted Tomb, then perhaps you'll enjoy this new trailer for Deadly Dress 4: Never A Bride. Surely you recognize the title from my list of 50 Horror Films I'd Like to See. Surely you'll recognize some familiar faces: there are Ghostella alums Heidi Martinuzzi, Elissa Dowling, and Bridget McManus; there's Bobbi Sue Luther of Laid To Rest; there's Shannon Lark of Ludlow; and there's Lena Headey of...well, enough stuff to make you wonder what she's doing in the trailer for Deadly Dress 4: Never A Bride.


If you like what you see, head over to Funny or Die and vote 'funny'. Frankly, I'm no longer sure if it's actually funny or not, but if it's not...I swear I can do better! Just please don't make me DIE because of it. I mean...it DOES feature a crazy townsperson, without which no horror movie is complete!

Also, you know, if there's enough public interest I'll TOTALLY make the prequel film, The Whiskeytown Dress Murders. Which...is something.

May 19, 2009

Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus vs Final Girl

When the trailer for Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus began making the rounds a couple of weeks ago, it spawned an internet boner heard 'round the world. How could it not? Among the tantalizing highlights are a mega-shark chomping the Golden Gate Bridge, a mega-shark leaping into the air to chomp a commercial airliner, and the promise of appearances by Lorenzo Lamas and Deborah Gibson. If there's that much awesome packed into a two-minute trailer, then surely the other 90 minutes of the film will be so awesome that Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus will rip through the very fabric of space and time and create a new universe all its own, right? Well, those were my expectations, anyway, and I really don't think they were too high.

The fact that MS vs GO comes from The Asylum is either a cause for alarm or for celebration, depending on your tastes. The Asylum, see, is the Designer Imposter Fragrances of the movie world: they're the ones responsible for Snakes on a Train. When The Day the Earth Stood Still hit theaters, The Asylum rushed to release The Day the Earth Stopped. Michael Bay's Transformers, meet The Asylum's Transmorphers...and so on and so on. They're shameless, and I kinda dig that. However, my grudging admiration doesn't mean their films are actually any good; rather they're an orgy of awful: bad acting, bad CGI, bad green screen, and bad writing combine to form a sweaty miasma of- you guessed it- bad movie awesomeness. Suffice it to say, Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus had a lot to live up to.

If there's one thing I learned from my beloved Shark Attack 3: Megalodon (and believe me, I've learned way more than one mere thing!), it's that nothing gets the blood pumping like hot, hot underwater mini-sub throttle action. Right off the bat, MS vs GO doesn't disappoint: Deborah Gibson and a pal are tooling around in a mini-sub, looking for...stuff...and there's plenty of button-pushing and throttle throttling to satisfy even the most cynical movie fan.

What's perhaps most magical is that sometimes Deborah Gibson is wearing goth nail polish, and sometimes she's not.

Let's get this out of the way: I love Deborah Gibson in this movie. I like the fact that she's got some years on her. She's earnest, a bit charming, and she manages to say lines like "There's poetry here!" in a way that doesn't completely make you want to kill yourself. Bravo, Asylum, for casting her. I hope she's in every movie ever made from now on, amen.

Some Army dudes or something or other drop some sonar something something...eh, it didn't make much sense. Just know this: the mega-shark and the giant octopus were frozen in place as they were grappling (presumably) to the death (the Ice Age came on fuckin' fast, y'all), but now they're free! Free to grapple! Free to fight! Free to be you and me KILL!

And kill they do, sort of. Frankly, the trailer shows all the best bits, like when the mega-shark takes down the Golden Gate Bridge...

...or when it inexplicably leaps...what, 15,000 feet into the air to take down a jumbo jet:

Besides the OBVIOUS amazingness of the sequence, the shark vs plane scene provided another moment that will live forever in my heart of hearts: as the plane hits some turbulence, a stewardess asks a man to take his seat. The man replies, "I'm getting married in two days." It makes no sense- did he then expect her to respond with "Oh, sir, we had no idea- in that case we'll go around the turbulence!"? I assume it's supposed to add some poignancy to the man's imminent death at the mega-teeth of mega-shark, but all it adds, in the end, is more nonsensical awesomeness.

These positively mysterious deaths cause Deborah Gibson and her cronies to DO SOME SCIENCE. Apparently they work at the Kool-Aid Institute for Underwater Studies, as their "research" involves pouring one colored liquid into a container of another colored liquid, then frowning at the results.




My oh my, I love it when people do science in movies.

After she has sex with a co-worker in the employee breakroom, Deborah Gibson has an idea: they should use pheromones to lure the mega-shark and the giant octopus into some kinda traps! It's a foolproof plan, I tells ya! Lorenzo Lamas shows up as some sort of...err, Army guy, I guess, whose job it is to have a ponytail and to glower.

I'll admit, Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus was a somewhat rollicking good time up until this point; then everyone piled into a submarine and the proceedings came to a big, fat, grinding halt as there was about a half an hour of this:

Deborah Gibson looking concerned, the...uh...submarine driver looking nervous, the captain saying "steady!", and Lorenzo Lamas hiding his face in shame. Seriously, this went on forever.

Eventually, the mega-shark and the giant octopus resume their battle, and I have to wonder what happened between them that caused them to hold a grudge for millions of years. I bet it involved infidelity. Somehow, in my dreams, a weave is also involved.

The biggest fault with Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus is that there's simply not enough mega-shark vs giant octopus. That's what folks wanna see- these two CGI behemoths duking it out. We want to see more ridiculous, impossible outrageousness. If the shark took down the Golden Gate Bridge, then why couldn't the octopus go after the Statue of Liberty? It's all made out of computer anyway, so the filmmakers should just balls-out go for it. It's not about making it real, it's about making it fun. Unfortunately, the fun to not-fun ratio in this film is roughly 1:5. I expect those odds to improve in the sequel. Yes, the ending sets up for one, and yes, I'm already looking forward to it- especially if Deborah Gibson is back to do more science!

May 18, 2009

I mean, if you are a LAMB and you want to...

...you can vote for Final Girl over at yon Large Association of Movie Blogs's LAMMY Awards, where yours truly has been nominated in 8 (eight!) categories.

Voting is only open to those who are LAMBS themselves...if you've got a movie blog and you're NOT a LAMB, well, what's your problem? Join usssssss.....

Here's a link to the complete list of nominees and all that jazz. Some of the comments are awesome, and that's all I'll say about that.

May 16, 2009

happy birthday Tracey Gold!

Yes, folks, our little Tracey Gold turns 40 today. To celebrate, let's all spend some time thinking back on the joy she's brought us in films such as Solar Flare, A Crime of Passion, Dirty Little Secret, and of course my personal favorite, Midwest Obsession. Although I have to say, I'm also a huge fan of Face of Evil, wherein Tracey plays a right wackadoo who kills some college freshman and takes her place. She falls in love with her roommate's father and as you might expect, things turn deadly! Bodies in suitcases and a young Shawnee Smith in some awful '90s hat? Look out, Midwest Obsession, there's a contender for your crown!

May 15, 2009

awesome movie poster friday- the PHANTASM edition!

THRILL! to the return of Awesome Movie Poster Friday! WITNESS! the paper-bound antics of El Hombre Alto! HAVE! a super weekend!

I love how the Japanese posters involve, like, fractals and shit. Also, that cityscape (7th down) is supposed to be for the original film, but...huh? Really?












May 13, 2009

It's Wednesday Day!

...which, of course, can only mean one thing: I've got a new column up at AMC! This week, feast your eyes upon 10 kickass horror movie taglines! Chime in with your own favorites, but don't get all up in my grill with stuff like "How could you not include The Thing?" because, yes, I agree that "Man is the warmest place to hide..." is a fantastic tagline and I did include it, but the list I submitted was culled from 25 taglines to 10. Oh, these crosses I bear!

In other news, I went to a screening of Drag Me To Hell last night. There's an embargo on reviews for another couple of weeks, but...umm...it was fucking awesome.

May 12, 2009

halp!

I'm drowning in a sea of stuff I need to watch and review. DROWNING I SAY. This photo represents but a WEE portion of the movies waiting to be loved and expounded upon here at The Old Final Girl Place; I'll admit I've watched Cherry Falls and Unhinged, but they've gone neglected all wordy-style here. So I leave it to you dear readers, trusted companions, and even you, the one jerk who no one likes: what's next for me?

May 11, 2009

Film Club: Amityville II

I'm not going to expend a lot of jibber jabber before I get to the nougaty center of this story, which is thus: I totally did not watch Amityville II: The Possession.

I know. Could I BE any more of a lame? No...no, I could not. But gather 'round, all yon children, whilst I weave a tapestry of reasons and excuses to hang on the wall of the Final Girl Film Clubhouse!

Mr. Roper obviously has neither the time nor the inclination to listen to my blathering. He also seems to indicate that he finds the entire affair a little "fruity".*

Anyway, since I announced the selection I kept putting off watching it and doing other things and making some stuff and whatever, you know? And let's face it, I was a little bit bleh about the whole thing from the get go, which left me unmotivated to watch it- just ask my mom! I told her that very same thing yesterday when I dutifully did my duty and called her for Mother's Day. I probably should have postponed the due date, but those of you who are far more diligent than I started sending links to your reviews, so I felt I should I should just dutifully do this other duty- the duty of watching it. Earlier today I decided the time was right and Burt Young or no Burt Young, I had to get going. I went over to Hulu to get my Amityville on, only to discover that the movie was GONE. Gone as in no longer on the site, as if it fell into the depths of Hell through that weird, hidden red room in the basement. This was discouraging.

Denise Richards is as shocked as I was.

Rest assured, however, that my quest for Amityville II did not end there! People, I actually put on shoes and walked to the video store to pick up a copy, only to find giant signs plastered everywhere stating that Video Hut is going out of business, and that everything simply must go. I spent a good deal of time browsing, as movies were going for $5. However, this sale has been going on for a week or so and the place was pretty picked over- I'd go so far as to say that the remaining pickins, in fact, were quite disappointing. Either I'd seen the movies but felt no desire to own a copy forever and ever (stuff like I Know What You Did Last Summer) or my curiosity about a film simply didn't warrant spending a whopping five bucks (stuff like The Return starring Sarah Michelle Gellar; did anybody actually see that?). I almost bought Guns and Lipstick starring Sally Kirkland and Robert Forster, but in the end I left Video Hut empty handed. Of course, now that I'm thinking about it, I kinda want to go back for that movie. Or if I have a sudden, burning desire to pick up anything from the Erika Eleniak catalogue, as it seems it was available in its entirety.

As I walked home, I felt like a big ol' douche that I wouldn't be able to post a review for my own fucking Film Club. But then The Carrie Nations came on my walkman...excuse me, my iPod...and I felt better. So much better, in fact, that I spent the rest of my stroll home wondering why I haven't yet picked Beyond the Valley of the Dolls for the Film Club regardless of the fact that it's not horror. Then I wondered how I could get Erica Gavin to be in one of my movies, and then I was home. Then I did some other stuff, and now I'm here telling you all about my fascinating attempts to watch Amityville II: The Possession. That's...totally better than a review, right? Briefcase Woman thinks so, hooray!


Film Club Coolies, y'all!

The Film Club Coolies are EXTRA cool this time ('cause, you know, they actually watched the damn movie and wrote about it), and I implore you to visit their sites. They're not lame-os like yours truly, even though REALLY it's all Hulu's fault**.

The Verdant Dude
Zombie Cupcake
Vegan Voorhees
Creature Cast
Banned in Queensland
Michael Petrik
The Deadly Doll's House of Horror Nonsense
The Horror Section
Bloody Good Horror
Down Inside You're Dirty
RJ Battles
From the Depths of DVD Hell
Emma Blackwood
Stephanie Vaughn
















*Big ups to my pal Brent Schoonover for sending me this picture. I've been waiting for any old excuse to post it.

**Still, I'm gonna watch this movie one day, I swear. No, honest, I SWEAR. I really want to see Amityville Dollhouse and Amityville Part Whatever: It's About Time, so I'll just have to make an Event Week out of it. I mean, I friggin' loved Amityville 4: The Evil Escapes!

LUDLOW teaser trailer

Well, after everyone endured all my blabbing...and blabbing...and blah blah blah-ing about the making of Ludlow, I felt it was only fair to make good on my promise to post a teaser trailer. It's only small, but...ack. Anyway, here. I have to go...I'm feeling all nervous.

May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!


Yes folks, it's the one day a year where we all thank our moms for enduring nine months with a parasite sucking her dry, 30-40 hours of excruciating pain to spew out the parasite, and the rest of her life dealing with the parasite's illnesses, bad behavior, and facial piercings.

Okay, maybe there's some up side to childbirth, but frankly I just don't see it. I'm certainly glad, however, that my mom did. My mom is pretty damn awesome, actually- she's the reason I got into horror movies to begin with, which is why I interviewed her for Pretty Scary way back in the day. Go check it out, and say nice things in the comments, because she's probably reading this.

I figured I'd also post a link to something else I wrote back in said day, an AMC column dedicated to horror movie moms. Sure, sure, we all dig Mrs Voorhees, but be sure to give Wendy Torrance some love!

May 8, 2009

so i made a movie, part five

I recently made a short horror film called Ludlow, starring Shannon Lark and Elissa Dowling. I thought I'd share all the boring details about how that came to be, because...you know...sharing is caring and if there's one I thing I do, it's care. Part one of the saga is here, part two is here, part three is here, and part four is here.


The alarm went off at 5:30am. I opened my eyes and saw the overhead light was on. Power had come once again to Ludlow! I sat up, a big, goofy grin on my face, and- being the nerd I am- literally gasped aloud with glee. However, I restrained myself from clasping my hands to my cheeks all moony-eyed style. I looked over at Shannon to see if she shared my excitement, but she was still passed out. Why wouldn’t she be? It was 5:30 in the fucking morning!

By 9am we were rolling and we never looked back. I realize this is all in sharp contrast to the first two days of our undertaking, but we really encountered no problems at all on Thursday. Lemme tell ya, it was really fucking nice.
SHANNON LARK: I couldn't believe it! I was half expecting an airplane to crash through the roof, or something. This feeling made me haul ass and concentrate like my life depended on it.
you have no idea how effing hot it was outside

We shot outside in the blazing sun, we shot inside making day-for-night…we cranked and cranked and cranked, not stopping until about 4:30pm or so when my other actors- Elissa Dowling and Ned Christensen- showed up on set. I’d just like to take this opportunity to point out what a superstar Ned is; maybe you recognize his name from Ghostella’s Haunted Tomb, as he provided me with a good portion of the music found throughout the series. But he has a regular, rather fancy-schmancy job, and I know that driving all the way out to Ludlow after work- only to turn around and drive back that night so he could work the next morning- is something…you know, not just anyone would do. He’s as rare as a unicorn, that one.

Bearing in mind Ned’s time constraints, we cranked out all of scenes as quickly as we good. Lots and lots of violence, lots and lots of blood, lots and lots of awesomeness. Shannon had some extremely intense work to do, and she did it amazingly. I was happy that Ludlow was finally giving us a break, and I couldn’t have been happier with what I was seeing through the camera lens.

no one tried the French Dip, despite its famousness

We finished up with Ned around 11pm and he high-tailed it back to Los Angeles. We continued to work after he’d gone; scenes with Shannon and Elissa outside the motel, scenes with Shannon screaming inside the motel…and of course by this time of night, the motel was in fact full up. At one point, we got some neighbors- a woman who didn’t look a day under 70 and another woman who could have only been her mother. I went over to warn them about what was going on, that unfortunately there’d be a bit of yelling and blood, but we were making a movie so there was no cause for alarm. Their response?

“Oh, alright. We’ll keep the TV turned down low so we don’t bother you.”

I swear, my eyes welled up; it’s stupid but I get that way when people are inordinately sweet and nice and kind. I clarified that I wasn’t asking them to be quiet at all, and I somehow resisted the urge to, in the onset of my late-night delirium, give the grannies a hug.


We finally called it a night around 1am and stayed up a while longer to sort of process- we’d finally managed to get a day in with no problems. Granted, it was an incredibly long day, but we were under the wire. Is that a saying? I have no idea. We were somewhere around the wire, at any rate, somewhere in its vicinity, trying to cram a lot of work into not a lot of time. As much as we’d accomplished on Thursday, we still had about 15 scenes left to shoot on Friday. That’s…kind of a lot. Some time around 2, as I was finally drifting off to sleep, Shannon quietly muttered the last words of the day:

“Wud up, Ludlow??”
SHANNON LARK: Not before I crammed Miso soup down Stacie's face. We realized we hadn't really eaten all day, except for those pepperoncinis topped with peanut butter...and some toasted seaweed.
Up again and cranking by 8am, we just kept on doing our thing. Our thing went all crazy kick ass like; you’ll be pleased to know that everything went as smoothly as could be expected- YOU WILL BE PLEASED I SAY. Ludlow and fortune continued to smile upon us: the power stayed on, the Chevron kept the free coffee and water flowin’, and I kept the blood flowin’. We worked and we worked and then when we got tired, we worked some more.

the pink sunglasses with the spinning pearls make everyone cool

I combined a few scenes in the interests of flow and…you know, time, which was a wee bit scarce as Shannon was due to fly out of Los Angeles at 4pm on Saturday. I rewrote some stuff on the fly and would hand scenes off for a bit of rehearsal while I organized my thoughts and changed my shot lists. It was exhausting and exhilarating; the biggest change I made was in the very last scene, where Krista has a large monologue. Due to the work we’d been doing, to my directing and to the way Shannon had been playing the character up to that point, the monologue really didn’t make sense by the time we got around to shooting it. The character was in a different place than I’d anticipated when I wrote the script, and she simply wouldn’t say the things I had her saying. The tone was far different than I intended- in fact, it was better. All the changes I made were for the better, and in the end there were more than a few- and Shannon just rolled with it. She learned new lines and got on with it. It was an amazing collaborative effort and no matter the end result (HOLY CRAPPING CRAP I HOPE IT’S GOOD), it was an incredibly rewarding process.

When I said “Cut” the last time, when I turned off the camera for good because we’d gotten what we’d needed to, the clock said 6:34am. 6:34am on Saturday. We shot for about 22 hours straight, because...you know...that’s how long it took to get everything done. The whole script- the whole movie- was in the can. I couldn’t believe how long we’d been at it, and that it was finally over.
SHANNON LARK: By that time I was giggling like a perfect mixture of a blushing school girl and a crazy person. I sat down. I slept for 5 minutes with my bloody hands in the air. I love filming!!!
Unfortunately, there was no time to celebrate. We packed up and cleaned the room as best as we could, wiping blood off the walls and the doorknobs. Shannon finally got a chance to wash her hair, which she hadn’t done all week (for the character, man, I swear!). We loaded the car and were on the road by 8:30, but not before Ludlow had one last laugh at my expense- violent winds had begun to blow (like, dust storm violent), and my car door slammed on my foot as I was sliding into the driver’s seat. I wasn’t surprised that Ludlow would try one more time to defeat us, but in the end it couldn’t. Later that evening, after Shannon had gone home and I was about to pass out from exhaustion, I laughed at the purple bruises on my foot and my sunburned arms. Ludlow was already becoming a memory, some weird sort of dream.


SHANNON LARK:
I went to the airport and had a bloody mary with some almonds. I immediately became drunk, and that bloody mary was "airport" weak! I was yelled at by an attendant on the plane, and promptly passed out all the way home, my fingers on my laptop keyboard.
Then eventually I started writing this, and…you know, I remembered it all.

WUD UP, LUDLOW??

MONDAY: TEASER TRAILER! In the meantime, enjoy some screencaps. ENJOY THEM.