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#45: Off with Her Head?

February 20, 2006

Notes from the Manager

Ngh. Sorry, I got a little too serious this time, I think. I won't make too much of a habit of this sort of strip, but after I saw the full trailer at Apple's Quicktime Trailers page last night, I couldn't stop thinking about it, and it screwed any chance of doing something else this week.

I don't want people to think — as I've seen around the internet, in forums or whatever — that Multipex is a "movie review comic," à la Joe Loves Crappy Movies and Popcorn Picnic (both of which I love and highly encourage you to read). It's not… well, not usually. I guess this time is sort of a movie trailer review. But usually, the characters aren't stand-ins for myself, and their opinions are often not in any way related to my own. In some cases — such as the Saw II strip, way back when — I haven't even seen the movie the gang is talking about.

Me, I'm on the fence about the Marie Antoinette trailer. I'll definitely see the movie, though. (I loved Lost in Translation and The Virgin Suicides way too much to not see whatever Sofia Coppola does next.) Becky and Jason are saying a few of the thoughts I've had running through my head, but I can't honestly say I like it (like Jason, whose opinion is usually closest to my own) or not (like Becky). As Becky says, I do think it looks perfect. But what is the deal with the New Order song? One of my favorite things about period films is the period music, so hearing an 80's New Wave pop song (not to mention the black and hot pink movie poster) took me aback, just a bit. I even love that song, but what does it have to do with the film? Is "Age of Consent" even going to be in the movie? The shot of people dancing, thankfully, does look like they're dancing to 18th-century-appropriate music, but you never know.

I know the film's original score will be by Air, a French band that I used to consider one of my favorites until they unleashed 10,000 Hz Legend on the world and made me want to stab my ears out. (Their latest album, Talkie Walkie, is pretty good, but they will never totally compensate for the wretchedness of their second album.) Air's Virgin Suicides score was really good, and I hope they'll adapt their talents to the subject matter well. But again, you never know.

I guess what I'm saying is, I hope we get something a little closer to Vangelis's slightly (but not jarringly) anachronistic, synth-laden score for Chariots of Fire and as far away from the "We Will Rock You"-sporting Knight's Tale as possible.


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Review: Coherence (2013)

Saturday, October 4, 2014

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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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