Episode 8: My Scientology Movie

my_scientology_movieWe love documentaries and I’ve been thinking about reviewing some here, but I always thought how can we review a documentary? Most documentaries are documenting an event, a place, or even a life of a person, etc. In my opinion, documentaries are not about filming technique or cinematography, it’s about the story and how they address it. Look at 5 broken cameras or The Square. We have shaky, cell phone unprofessional audio and video, yet they were both great documentaries and won awards too

In My Scientology Movie you will find out right away what Louis Theroux’s overall goal is. As with his other documentary series and specials, Theroux’s goal is always to find the human side of the issue he is reporting on. He is constantly trying to humanize the evils of today’s society while ultimately telling a profound story along the way.

 

my-scientology-movieLike with his documentary special titled “The Most Hated Family In America” Theroux tried to ask the overtly insulting west boro baptist family questions regarding basic human decency, basically searching for any bit of soul he could. Theroux doesn’t want to settle with any person being just plain evil, there has to be something human in each and every individual regardless of their background or history. 

One of fhe major strengths of this documentary was Theroux working with Director John Dower. Theroux is not just a “presenter” or actor, he is also a documentarian and while he is in front of the camera he understands what the director wants. Dower is an award winning director with multiple nominations. Basically these two are the perfect duo for providing a thought provoking and engaging documentary.

Louis and John called the church humorless in an interview published on RollingStone.

 

Theroux like others just wants to understand what the church is up to and question them about all the stories we have heard. It certainly doesn’t come off as honest when the church deliberately dodges any sort of questioning. Why remain so secretive unless you have something to hide maybe?

For this episode we have very little Farzan Fun Facts to share. However we were able to give you two…

1. Louis Theroux is cousin to Justin Theroux, husband of Jennifer Aniston.

2. This was Louis Theroux’s first feature film, hopefully he makes more!

Episode 7: Okja

okjapostertrailerOkja is the story of a little girl named Mija and her best friend Okja who happens to be a genetically superior pig who was made in a lab by an evil corporation called Mirando. This story is set in a not too distant future in South Korea and in New York city.

This is a heartwarming tale of a girl and her giant mutant pig. It is also the tale of animal rights activists doing battle with a Monsanto-like corporation that wants to turn said pig, allegedly the cutest in a batch whipped up by genetic scientists, into a poster animal for a revolutionary line of meat products.

Ok so let’s jump right into this episode:

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Now it’s time for Farzan’s Fun Facts:

1-    There is a post-credit scene.

2-    At one point in the movie, the character played by ‘Giancarlo Esposito (I)’ can briefly be seen checking the bottom of a cup of coffee. This is a nod to the famous “Kobayashi” cup in _The Usual Suspects (1995)_, a film Esposito also starred in.

3-    This will be the second Netflix movie co-produced by Plan B Entertainment. The first movie is War Machine.

4-    Tilda Swinton (Lucy Mirando / Nancy Mirando) also played her own twin in Hail, Caesar! Apparently she likes to be her own twin sister.

Episode 6: Shimmer Lake

large_fwwk8uuhtnhsbev1xcsaqixlwcvShimmer Lake! The film was released on Netflix on June 9, 2017. Principal photography began on October 13, 2015. This movie directed and written by Oren Uziel. Oren Uziel is most known for his writing credits like 22 Jump Street, Freaks of Nature, and the Mortal Kombat legacy mini series that is available for streaming online free via valve’s popular platform Steam and of course Youtube, we will talk more about the Steam streaming platform in a bit (ie Neil Blomkamp’s Oats Studios).

Shimmerlake is Oren’s directorial debut and it’s quite the feat of a movie for being his first. “Uziel was a lawyer who quit his day job in 2008 to write a novel, thinking that would be his way into screenwriting… and “Shimmer Lake” was the first screenplay he ever wrote. “I had no idea what to do with it,” he admits. “So I put it in the mail to the Austin Film Festival screenwriting competition. And I started getting calls: ‘You’re a semifinalist, you’re a finalist!’” Uziel went on to win the fest’s Latitude Productions award.”

Now, let’s listen to this episode and then check out extra links like trailer , and more info on Oats Studios.

 

Want to listen to Rainn Wilsson, Baha’i Blogcast podcast? click here.

In this episode we also talked about Neil Blomkamp’s Oats Studios. Oats Studios is a studio dedicated to creating experimental short films, testing ground breaking ideas and creativity leading to the possibility of full scale feature films based on the ideas developed.

To watch the current 3 available short films go to Oats Studios Steam page, or the Oats Studios YouTube Page. Also check this out, Neil Blomkamp tweeted a poll asking what movie people want made into a feature and the people have spoken.

Episode 5: It Comes at Night

it-comes-at-night-posterIt Comes at Night is an indie production with a low budget of  $5 million, Euronews reported $2.4 million! This movie was filmed in Woodstock, New York, and made $11,124,631 domestically (16 June 2017).

According to IMDb: Secure within a desolate home as an unnatural threat terrorizes the world, a man has established a tenuous domestic order with his wife and son, but this will soon be put to test when a desperate young family arrives seeking refuge.

Shults, the director, told Reuters that his father death inspired him and the line in the opening scene is what he said to his dad: “It really comes from losing my dad and my dad’s death. The opening scene of the movie, what Sarah is telling her dad is what I said to my dad on his deathbed and he was full of fear and regret and he didn’t want to let go. It was a traumatic thing that changed my life and two months after that I wrote this script and it like spewed out of me in three days.”

Let’s get into this episode:

 

Here’s all of Devon’s snapchat videos he took while he was at E3

Monday – a Reel Brothers i48 2017 Film

This time we have a short film for you. Devon and his friends participated in i48 Film Festival and Competition here in Boise, ID.

The Idaho Forty Eight Hour Film Competition and Festival hosts teams of filmmakers from around Idaho. Each team has 48 hours to write, pre-produce, cast, shoot, and edit, an original short film three to six minutes long. Each team is given a genre, line of dialogue, character name, and a prop that they are required to use in the short film.

Synopsis: Written, shot, and edited over the span of 48 hours “Monday” tells the story of an average office at a miscellaneous tech company. The people who work there appear somewhat normal, off work is a different story. The new guy shows up for his first day not knowing what he was in for.

Please watch Devon’s short film: Monday – a Reel Brothers i48 2017 Film

i48 2017 Film Festival –
Group: Reel Brothers
Title: “Monday”
Genre: Comedy
Character name: Diana or Dylan Patch
Line of Dialogue: “Is this some kind of game?”
Prop: Sound dampening ear muffs.

Directed by Devon Callaway and Kyel Shippey
Written by Reel Brothers
Edited by Devon Callaway
Camera by Devon Callaway, Lisa Strader, and Kyel Shippey
Audio/Grip by Lisa Strader, Stewart Saeed, and Devon Callaway

Actors:
James Masson
Devon Callaway
Chasen Callaway
Stewart Saeed
Kyel Shippey
Lisa Strader
Pat Callaway

This film made as part of i48/2017.

The film entry titled “Monday” was created by our i48 group Reel Brothers and submitted on June 04, 2017

Episode 4: Master of None

masterofnoneIt’s no secret that Aziz Ansari’s Netflix Original Series Master Of None has become an instant Netflix favorite among viewers. The show has been critically acclaimed for many reasons, including its great soundtrack throughout both the first and second season, and it’s incredibly interesting and diverse use of characters.

The music of season one was called “prolific and distinctive” by critics at Pitchfork. Each song used set the tone of the episode and also helped create an emotionally symbolic backdrop for the main character Dev played by Aziz as he goes through his many misfortunes in New York City among other places. But season two’s narrative launch in Italy takes the soundtrack into equally distinct, if not more diverse musical directions.

without further ado let’s listen to our podcast on Master of None:

I checked Aziz Ansari official website but I couldn’t find his bio there!! So, I checked his Wikipedia page. Aziz Ansari was born in Columbia, South Carolina, to a Tamil Muslim family from Tamil Nadu, India. He was born in February 23, 1983. He is an American actor, comedian, writer, producer, director.

ap_688989647357_custom-65f84e2528c61e69ef8b3ac5832d9f9b79ac2a2a-s900-c85“Ansari grew up in Bennettsville, South Carolina, where he attended Marlboro Academy as well as the South Carolina Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics. He graduated from the New York University Stern School of Business with a major in marketing. His mother, Fatima, works in a medical office, and his father, Shoukath, is a gastroenterologist. Both Fatima and Shoukath have appeared on Master of None seasons 1 and 2.”

Here’s the music video we talked about:

If you want to read Aziz’s article about modern love, you can find it here. And his article about travel ban is here. Enjoy!

Time for things you didn’t know aka fun facts:

  • Dev’s Parents Are Aziz’s Actual Parents. Despite them not being real actors, the audience just loved them both.

  • Aziz Also Interned for Nickelodeon. The show borrows many elements from Ansari’s personal life. Like his character, the actor also did an internship at Nickelodeon. He confessed this via his Twitter account a few months ago

  • Aziz’s Brother Was One of the Show’s Writers. It’s all about the Ansari family here. Aziz published on Twitter that his brother, Aniz, was a staff writer for the show and actually got some of his favorite jokes

  • Paro the Seal is Real. If you were wondering if it really exists… it does. The robotic seal was created in Japan for therapeutic purposes

Episode 3: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

mv5bmtg2mzi1mtg3of5bml5banbnxkftztgwntu3nda2mti-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_In our third episode we talk about Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2. Devon and I went to the theater and both liked it-it was fun! In this episode we talk about superhero movies, Marvel characters like Ego, and so forth. Here’s more info about Ego:

“Ego’s official first appearance came in 1966, in Thor #132, “Where Gods May Fear to Tread!”. In this issue, Thor made a deal with a race known as the Rigellians who were threatening Earth. If he could save the Rigellians’ home planet from being devoured by Ego, they would leave Earth alone. Unsurprisingly, Thor managed to win the battle, convincing Ego to remain in the Black Galaxy and saving both Earth and Rigel from destruction. Ego has something of a history with the Hulk, thanks to an appearance on the animated series Hulk and the Agents of SMASH.”

 

Here are some fun facts you probably don’t know about Chris Pratt:

  1. Growing up, Pratt wrestled and even finished fifth in a state wrestling tournament in high school.

  2. Before he got into acting, Pratt was waiting tables at a Bubba Gump Shrimp restaurant in Maui, Hawaii.

  3. His first substantial role was on the WB show “Everwood,” which aired for 4 seasons.

  4. Perhaps best known for his role as Andy in “Parks and Recreation,” Pratt was only cast as a guest star in Season 1 with the intention his character would be temporary. Needless to say, his character was a hit, and Pratt was soon written into the show as a regular.

  5. As for his personal life, Pratt is married to actress Anna Faris. The two actors welcomed a son in August 2012

Episode 2: Train to Busan

mv5bmtkwotq4otg0ov5bml5banbnxkftztgwmzqyotm0ote-_v1_This week we talked about Train to Busan, a Korean Zombie movie.

In Train to Busan we are introduced to our characters not unlike most horror movies. They are just normal everyday people who don’t know whats going on around them until it’s already too late. The movie takes place in two of the biggest cities of South Korea. Right away you are getting a bad feeling about the place they are in… because if you know the zombie genre then you know these cities would be hot spots for a zombie apocalypse because of their population density. What makes Train to Busan stand out over other zombie films is it takes place on a train.

Train to Busan, a Korean Zombie movie, directed by Sang-ho Yeon in 2016. The film received 7.5 out 10 via IMDB, which is pretty good. The movie stars Yoo Gong, Soo-an Kim, Yu-mi Jung, and Dong-seok Ma. According to IMDB, the synopsis is: While a zombie virus breaks out in South Korea, passengers struggle to survive on the train from Seoul to Busan. 

The Oxford English Dictionary informs us that zombie is a word of West African origin and that it was first recorded in English in 1819. It’s related to the words zumbi (meaning ‘fetish’) and nzambi (meaning ‘a god’) in the Kikongo language, which is spoken in Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and surrounding areas. The term zombie or zombi originally also referred to a snake-god in the voodoo religion of West Africa.

Top 7 terrifying South Korean horror films according to CNN:

1-      I Saw the Devil (2010)

2-      Train to Busan (2016)

3-      The Host (2006)

4-      Bedevilled (2010)

5-      The Wailing (2016)

6-      A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

7-      Spider Forest (2004)

Episode 1: Under the Shadow

mv5bmjiwmjqwmdu2ov5bml5banbnxkftztgwnzmwmdg2ote-_v1_ux182_cr00182268_al_Here we are! Our first episode of Shiraz2Boise with Farzan and Devon. We are very excited. On this episode we talked about Under the Shadow, an Iranian horror movie. If you are a fan of this genre, and you have Netflix, then get on it.

Here’s Under the Shadow plot summary according to the IMDb page: “As a mother and daughter struggle to cope with the terrors of the post-revolution, war-torn Tehran of the 1980s, a mysterious evil begins to haunt their home.”

This movie is directed by Babak Anvari.