Notes from the Manager
And… back to the movie.
If anybody from Shortpacked! has decided to stick around with Multiplex after last week's crossover, as you might have guessed from this strip, we're in the middle of a story arc. So I'd recommend hopping back to the beginning of Chapter 26 to get caught up, if not the very beginning.
Special thanks to Phat Do and Chris Wood, two Multiplex: The Movie Sponsors who appear in panel 2. (Phat was also a Kickstarter backer and had an cameo in the Multiplex: Enjoy Your Show Prequel, so I was able to sneak his head into panel 1, as well.) Don't worry, guys. You'll be back. And thank you for your support!
There are a few more Sponsor spots left, although — as current sponsors know — I was a little off in my guess about when the bulk of these cameos would pop up. Soon. I want the cameos to be worthy of their generosity (and patience), and most of the earlier zombies needed to be existing Multiplex characters or were kind of crappy. There will be lots more zombies. But telling the story properly takes precedence.
One point of continuity for Multiplex readers: the crossover was actually set after the next few strips. (I'll be rearranging them in any collections I do at a later date.) The only thing that has to do with anything is that Phantom Menace 3D came out in February, so obviously they took place then. And the next few strips finishing off Chapter 27 are set in January, when they gang is just getting back to filming their movie after the holidays.
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Saturday, October 4, 2014
Written and directed by James Ward Byrkit.
Starring Emily Foxler, Hugo Armstrong, Nicholas Brendon, Elizabeth Gracen, Lauren Maher, Alex Manugian, Lorene Scafaria, and Maury Sterling.
A new Patreon backer at the $50 level opted out of the usual reward of a plug in the “Become a Multiplex Patron” box (above, on the website), asking instead for me to plug the 2013 indie science fiction filmCoherence (with which he is not affiliated). I was happy to oblige, and so “A fan of Coherence” — a.k.a. The Patron, as I’ll refer to him from here out — is, for the duration of his patronage, among Multiplex‘s supporters. (And, yes, I will review just about any movie a $50 backer asks me to.)
What really got my interest in the film (aside from being asked very nicely to see it) was that The Patron compared it to Shane Carruth’s Primer, one of the best no-budget sci-fi movies ever made. I can definitely see the comparison: both are decidedly low-budget films with small casts and a science-fictiony premise. I feel like seeing the film fairly blind is probably the best, so I won’t summarize the plot beyond the premise of eight friends having a dinner party when a comet passes over and Strange Things Happen, but I don’t think I’m quite as enthusiastic as The Patron.
Unfortunately, the “go in as blind as you can” suggestion means I feel like I need to be pretty vague. Some clunky (and largely unnecessary) exposition gets spat out early on, which tried my patience a bit, but it gets fun as the plot gets rolling. And the plot is definitely the star of the film, not the largely forgettable cast of affluent, Southern California white people or the dialogue, which often feels improvised (in that it neither pushes the story forward nor reveals character, as good dialogue ought to).
Despite some genuinely terrifically creepy or suspenseful moments in the film, a handful of contrived plot points hold it back from being much more than a fun genre flick for me, but I found myself wondering what would happen next — almost up to the very end. A late turn in the film got more of an eye-roll from me than the shock that I think it was supposed register. As always, your mileage may vary, but the film’s merits make it well worth a viewing, particularly for science fiction fans suffering from blockbuster fatigue.
Here’s the trailer! If it piques your interest, please do check it out. It’s available for rent from Amazon Instant Video or for purchase from its official website, among other places. (I never recommend reading YouTube comments, but definitely on’t read the comments if you want to stay away from spoilers.)
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