The Reeler

Recent Comments

FILM ON THE WEB

A Girl and a Gun
A_Film_By
Ain't It Cool News
Alliance of Women Film Journalists
Anne Thompson
Art Fag City
ArtFlickChick
Better Than Fudge
Big Picture Big Sound
Bitter Cinema
Blank Screen
Blogumentary
Brian Flemming
Bright Lights
Celluloid Eyes
CHUD
Chutry Experiment, The
Cinecultist
Cinema Confidential
Cinema Eye
Cinema-Scope
Cinemarati
Cinematical
CineMe
Coming Soon
Cool Cinema Trash
Cyndi Greening
Dark Horizons
Defamer
Drew's Blog-O-Rama
Errata
Esoteric Rabbit
Film Detail
Film Experience, The
Film Journal, The
Film Journey
Film Stew
Film Rotation
Flickhead
GreenCine Daily
Greg.org
Hacking Netflix
Hammer to Nail
High Sign, The
Hollywood Elsewhere
House Next Door, The
IFC Blog, The
In the Company of Glenn
IndieScene Movie Marketing Blog
indieWIRE.com
indieWIRE Blogs
Jay's Movie Blog
JoBlo's Movie Emporium
Kaiju Shakedown
Kamera
Kinoeye
Like Anna Karina's Sweater
Last Night with Riviera
Light Sleeper
Long Pauses
Looker
Masters of Cinema
Matt Zoller Seitz
Midnight Eye
Milk Plus
Mind Jack
Metaphilm
Movie Blog, The
Movie City Indie
Movie Hole, The
Movie Poop Shoot
New York Cool
NY Post Movie Blog
News of the Dead
No More Marriages!
Notes From Underdog
Out of Focus
Persistence of Vision
Pullquote
Queer Film Review
Reel Roundtable
ScreenGrab
Screen Rush
Screener (Film Journal Int.)
Screening the Past
Self-Styled Siren
Short Sheet, The
Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine Blog
Still in Motion
Stranger Song, The
They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?
Tisch Film Review
Twitch
Vince Keenan
World Film (at About.com)
You Know, For Film
Zoom-In

The Reeler Blog

Now on DVD: Microbudget Brooklyn

Brooklyn 'Bots: Christine Spencer under pressure in Automatons, out today on DVD (Photo: MonsterPants Movies)

By S.T. VanAirsdale

Your home viewing options expanded by a few dozen today, with thrilling fare like The Invasion, Daddy Day Camp and GLOW: Greatest TV Moments reaching DVD at last after excruciating periods of unavailability. Even more anticipated around Reeler HQ, however, are the releases of two of my favorite Brooklyn-based DIY efforts of recent years.

First up is Automatons, Jim McKenney's microbudget sci-fi allegory pitting robots against humans, robots against robots, humans against humans and other random permutations of things that die, bleed, melt and/or explode. Having shot over 15 days in an abandoned ice cream factory in Greenpoint, McKenney spoke with The Reeler before the film's December, 2006, theatrical release at the Pioneer Theater:

The robots symbolize the extinction of ideology as much as that of humans; their specific purpose has its roots in warfare, not victory. As such, McKenney said, that political criticism you hear is not just in your head. "All great science fiction is always a comment on current times, whether it's Star Trek or Godzilla or whatever," he said. "It's really just about the stupidity of humanity, that we can build these devices that will wipe everybody from the face of the earth, but that includes us. They might outlive us."

Indeed, their attempt to do so is a sight to behold. Another ravishing vision of a more recognizable Brooklyn, Aaron Katz's sublime feature Quiet City also hits shelves today. Packaged by Benten Films with Katz's debut Dance Party USA, Quiet City was hands down the finest film to screen at last year's New Talkies series and is one of 2007's best all-around efforts. I did what I could for its Oscar chances. Alas.

Not to be outdone, Mumblecore patron saint Joe Swanberg premiered his new Web series Butterknife yesterday at Spout. The show features Frownland director Ronnie Bronstein as a Brooklyn private eye who, in an apparent reversal of genre conceits, is disillusioned with his job yet happily married -- to a woman portrayed by Bronstein's real-life wife Mary. I don't get the first episode at all, but perhaps No. 2 will be the one that sets it off for me. I'm patient; here, you try it. Worst-case scenario, you can always scroll back to the top of this message and repeat recommendations.

Posted at January 29, 2008 12:40 PM

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.thereeler.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb-AjOOtIAl.cgi/1529

Search The Reeler
Join the Mailing List

RSS Feed

Archives

Send a Tip