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My first film in almost four years.

Filmfights.com 3rd place for May 2009.

I will flag your reviews if you give negative scores because this is a live action movie. There is nothing in the NG rules and regulations that says "no video". Not only that, but I'm showcasing three very talented Audio Portal artists in this piece.


Nice try

"I will flag your reviews if you give negative scores because this is a live action movie. There is nothing in the NG rules and regulations that says no video."

This is the Flash portal, not the film portal. You're asking us to review something that isn't really a Flash work. Everything by everyone doesn't literally mean everything. You can't submit some awesome lego castle you just made to the Flash portal, or an origami crane. It would not be appropriate to just shove some cake you just baked into a Flash window and expect people on Newgrounds to review it as Flash content. Everything means everything everyone ever made in Flash, and even then people don't always submit their stuff. Also, the reason it doesn't say "no video" is because you are actually allowed to include video in your Flash, but it should still be something made primarily in Flash.

I'd give you a zero since there's really no Flash content to review, but I'll go along and say that's not what I'm reviewing this time. I guess I'm really reviewing a film. Well, being somewhat of an actor myself, all I really have to say is that your actors are terrible. But they aren't really actors, right? They're just your friends. Well if you were really serious about filmmaking, as most of the animators here are really serious about animating, you would hold auditions. I don't care where you live, there are always loads of people who would jump at the opportunity to be in a movie without any pay at all. Of course you'd get better actors if you paid them, but whoever you get, at least they'd be actors.

I'm glad you're showcasing NG composers, but the showcasing should be done elsewhere.

Doomhammr responds:

Speaking of Lego, stop motion Lego movies which are live action actually ARE popular and respected on NG.

What's with the flak?

This is better than most of the stuff on here. Sure it may be a bit derivative (seeing that it has things not dissimilar to Resident Evil and 24), but I have seen much worse. The acting in this one may not match Orson Welles or Mel Blanc; but for everyday people, it out does most low-budget, straight-to-video stories. Hell, you might give Dark Maze's V for Vile shorts a run for their money. I also appreciate the fact that you used audio portal music that isn't from Paragon X9 (and this is coming from someone who is a fan of his work). Plus, your selection added to the atmosphere that this short film was trying to build up. As for the camera work: I don't know anything about camera positioning, but you and your friends did a great job at that. I also liked the blood effects as well.

What I like:
-Decent acting for something made on a shoestring budget.
-Proper camera angles
-Appropriate music selection
-Good image quality
-Shoestring budget special effects done right.
-The length

What I didn't like
-People will start accusing you of ripping off Resident Evil and 24, but who are they to criticize?

Overall: I'm getting sick of people downrating this just because it's a live video. Hell, I have a rant about video files on my page. I am giving this a nine because I enjoyed it for what it is. This almost makes me want to do my own live video stuff.

Doomhammr responds:

I'm pretty sure I didn't put on NG that this was inspired by 24, and if I didn't, I'm thrilled you picked up that it was. 24 isn't the only show to use tons of rocky handheld shots but I really love that style of video. Imitating someone else's style is often how people come to develop their own. I also really enjoyed putting some audio portal artists out there for people to listen to. I know I'm REALLY guilty of it in my old work (but there was no audio portal back then and I was a teenager who didn't care about legit music), but I can't stand people taking music from a movie score and throwing it in their flash these days with all the great music to choose from in the audio portal. Do you have any videos elsewhere on the net? If you're really into making shorts, you ought to get into the ring with everyone over at Filmfights.

OH... MY... GOD....

That was awful. The acting was awful, the quality sucked, and why was it daytime in the guy's house? It was night where the guy was calling from. 1/10.

Seriously, there's a reason people don't like live-action movies on NG. This is an example. You can't fit a high-quality (by that I mean picture quality) movie in a 10MB video file.

Doomhammr responds:

Sorry my actors aren't up to your standards. Christian Bale and Tom Cruise weren't available that week. Who says Fred was calling from outside? He just said he was at a hotel. He could have been in a dark room.

This wasn't bad at all

There's only a few things here and there (presently) that I can say that needed some touching up on. Before I go further, I want to mention that have somewhat of a bad memory.

The person on the phone making the request had an almost script-like response on the phone. There wasn't enough enthusiasm or tonal change. The person's girlfriend's screams were a little too unrealistic, and so was her response. I don't know about other people, but if someone I was dating pointed a gun at me for stealing some of his special merchandise, my first reaction wouldn't be to scream my head off. The courier (what I'm calling the leading male role) did a good job overall. The dialogue at the end should have been more realistic in terms of his tone though.

There were some plot holes here and there. The person on the phone was able to somehow smuggle an important drug out without getting caught. It seems as if this would make for an even more awesome action thriller to see. I'm just assuming the guy seems to be pretty good at whatever he does. The courier should have had some sort of skills too, seeing as he isn't your average "mail man". The girlfriend randomly snooping around, sniffing the drugs makes me wonder how bad she really had it and why the two were even together. The guy at the junkyard seems to have been through this before, which makes me question what kind of junkyard that is.

I guess some of the acting seemed strange to me. The guy on the phone who was calling . . . never seemed to look formal and was at a meeting of some sort with lawn chairs (or at least casual looking chairs . . . I guess). The person is told about a gun and checks if it's loaded, not worrying about getting his fingerprints on it. It seems strange to me that he didn't care until he saw the girlfriend. The junkyard worker fell down too unrealistically. As apparent as it was that he was going to die, he didn't need to flail his arms and fall down like that. The courier tried to drown out the noise. Why? My first reactions probably would be to look at a guy who's screaming. Or at least see what's going on.

The camera angles were great. I liked how it was filmed. The twist ending makes me interested enough to want to see more. The music really fit each scene. If there's one thing I could really be picky with on a personal level, it's the fashion of everyone, but then again, it's better to not have anything with logos or trademarks, so I can't really say much about that. Overall, this movie is great. Good luck you guys! ^.^

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Doomhammr responds:

No offense to them, but I can't be cranking out Academy Award acting if the only actors I have to work with are my friends. How many of your friends can nail something as good as Nicholson's rant at the end of A Few Good Men? Not to many I suppose. As for the girl's screams, let me tell you that she's my sister, I've dealt with her for the 20 years she's been alive, and she actually does scream like that. The movie was made for filmfights.com which prefers movies under 8 minutes so I can't go and fill every plot hole. As for clothing, the main character and the girl's clothes were trashed with fake blood when all was said and done so they had to be cheap. And for this to be able to submit to film festivals, I couldn't include any logos without obviously paying or being paid for product placement (see how the courier's VW logo is blurred out?).


The main problem here is that this isn't a flash animation. Newgrounds was specifically made for flash animations and games ONLY. If i wanted to watch real people, I'd go to youtube. Here, I want to see stick figures, platformers, and people getting creative with new art styles.

As for the movie itself, though, let me point out a couple things you could have improved. When he's talking to hs friend, it sounds like the guy in the car is having a conversation with himself. Also, why is the music tense while he's driving? Nothing crucial or drama-building has happened yet. I mean, there was that woman coughing up blood, but that was a totally different scene. We're elsewhere when we're in the car, and nothing strange has happened there yet.

When he gets there, I was confused at first as to why he wasn't more questioning about the gun. Another continuity problem is why he didn't ask him to clean up the blood, not to mention if she was shot, she would have fallen backwards, not forwards. What also confused me is to why the killer just shot her and left her suffering instead of finishing her off. If he did shot her again while she was on the ground, we should have seen that in the opening. In fact, that probably would have added to the drama.

I wish I could tell you more, but I honestly stopped watching after he told him to "just go", because I lost interest. Neither of the voice actors were convincing, not to mention the guy chosen to get rid of the body didn't seem suited for the task. He, himself, didn't seem rough or involved in that type of lifestyle, which left me wondering why the guy on the phone chose this dude to do it. All in all, it's okay for an amateur flick, but nothing really stood out to me as particularly good.

Doomhammr responds:

Where does it say animation only? The masthead says EVERYTHING by everyone last I checked. You argument is not valid. Tom Fulp has never openly condemned live action movies in the portal. If you don't like it, you shouldn't have even loaded the movie after reading the description.

The movie had to be under 8 minutes for filmfights.com. I can't go in and fill every plot hole or else it'll take forever. It's obvious that if a big shot is having someone dispose of a body, he's gonna have him clean up. You're dense if you can't pick that up. If you take any classes in scriptwriting, you'll know that you don't need to explain menial stuff like that because it goes without saying and it would slow the plot down. People don't want to watch the main character mop the floor. They want to see him dealing with this dead girl and getting screwed over by his friend.

Sorry my actors aren't up to your standards. Christian Bale and Tom Cruise weren't available that week.

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Credits & Info

3.55 / 5.00

Apr 15, 2009
4:41 AM EDT