Tag Archives: Joe Lynch

Venom Fan Film – Eddie Brock: Truth In Journalism

Welcome to another installment of Unknown Fan Films where we delve deep into the World Wide Web and select for you some of the best and most interesting fan films that you might have missed.

This week we look at Truth In Journalism, a film which focuses on one of Spider-Man’s most ferocious enemies – Venom. Or to be more precise, it focuses on his alter ego, the disgraced journalist Eddie Brock.

Eddie has become further corrupted since his days at the Bugle, and the saddest thing is he doesn’t even know it. The only truth to be found here is in Eddie’s real personality change, or what Eddie perceives to be true journalism. Certainly Truth In Journalism focuses on a type of reporting, whether this is considered to be the best kind of journalism is left up to the viewer to decide. Here is what director Joe Lynch and producer Adi Shankar has to say about his project.

[quote] “This was 200% pure “passion project”, a dream come true for a comics ‘n cult-film loving fan to work within two distinct worlds I grew up loving. As a lover of mixing pop culture into storytelling, in a Warholian way, TRUTH IN JOURNALISM is pure ‘Pop Art’. I’ve rarely been as proud of something I’ve created as much as I had with this project and thrilled the TRUTH has been unleashed to the world. To CineMAAA!”  – Joe Lynch

“I don’t subscribe to the school of thought that as a feature film producer I shouldn’t dabble in television, web content, or even comic books … that thinking perpetuates the consumerist mosh pit we are now desperately trying to dig ourselves out of. I have a burning desire to entertain and different mediums allow me to do this in different ways. These shorts are as much a part of my filmography as the movies are. I’m here now, I’m inevitably going to die at some point, and as an artist I feel an ardent urge to constantly be creating. ”  – Adi Shankar. [/quote]

Like Man Bites Dog director Joe Lynch takes the documentary approach with a French crew following Eddie around the streets of New York. The black and white gives the film a crisp, realness to it that makes it thoroughly engaging (the scratches on the film add another element of realism to it). There are some nice little touches to – Eddie working out (which happened quite a few times in the comics), talking about the events after the Bugle (when he became Venom), talks to Venom in the bathroom and instantly gets changed, ties up villains and the shocking ending.

Unknown Fan Films truth in journalism eddie 3

Actor Ryan Kwanten (from True Blood) really brings to life the character of Eddie, more so than attempt in Spider-Man 3. Not that his attempt was bad, it’s just has more time to get engrossed in the character and bring him to life for us. And he certainly does that, with his black attired clothing and common man attitude he does come off as a likable guy but there are scenes that pop up that show the menace underneath (a key scene involving a stab victim begin one of the shocker scenes). This sense of underlining menace builds up to a truly sinister and quite disturbing ending where Eddies true self comes out. This scene alone is incredible, using the shock techniques seen in  many a homemade horror flick, but used correctly (and very similar to the ending of REC). Not to give to many spoilers away but this is handled perfectly and for once it actually makes Venom seem alien, like something not of this Earth and most important it makes Venom scary. Director kind of knows the darkness of this scene because he gives us a nice (and very funny) cameo from one of Marvel comics most well-known killers.

Unknown Fan Films truth in journalism eddie 2

A stunning short to watch and in just 15 minutes manages to tell a story that Spider-Man 3 with his compilation of characters really struggled to tell correctly. This version of Eddie is dirty, gritty and more importantly shocking. A must see for all Spider-Man fans but fans of good quality movies should also check this out to.

Unknown Fan Films truth in journalism venom

Wherefore art thou ‘Knights of Badassdom’?

Sit back, close your eyes, relax… and let me tell you a tale that will frustrate and infuriate even the most chill amongst us.

It starts back in 2010 when a group of actors signed on for a movie about a group of LARPers (that would be Live Action Role Playing for those who aren’t in the know or who haven’t seen Role Models) who accidentally summon a real demon and the hijinks that ensue. This just isn’t your run of the mill group of actors though. No, this is a group of actors that get the neck hairs of a wide variety of geek standing on end. Peter Dinklage, Danny Pudi, Jimmi Simpson, Steve Zahn (a personal favorite of mine), Ryan Kwanten, Joshua Malina, and of course the geek girl herself, Summer Glau. I don’t know that it’s possible to look at that list of names and not want to immediately see what they have put together.

Well, fast forward to 2011 San Diego Comic-Con and a trailer is released. Our own esteemed Dr. Kronner did the honors and provided a nice write up about it, including interviews with the cast. You will most certainly want to check that out, but just for ease of use right now, let’s go ahead and put the trailer here as well.

Right? Even though I’ve never had the chance to don chain mail and wield a foam sword myself, I am a huge fan of LARP and movies about LARP. I’ve watched Faintheart more times than I can count, and Unicorn City is one of my “because you liked…” categories on Netflix. Hell, I’ve even watched All’s Faire in Love more times than anyone should ever admit to, so it isn’t really surprising that I really want to see this movie. Enter the problem.

It appears as if Knights of Badassdom has hit a bit of a snag and by that I mean, it’s having a lot of issues, and by that I mean, we might not ever get to see it. With a trailer being released in 2011, one would expect to see the movie in 2012, especially when the movie’s site has a banner that says…

Incredible MS Paint job credit to: Me.
Incredible MS Paint job credit to: Me.

In case you’ve been living under a rock, 2012 has come and gone and this movie has not been released. Actually for quite a while there was nothing even mentioned of this movie. In July of 2012, an unknown investor in the movie took to the internet claiming that the film’s production company, IndieVest, was doing nothing but stringing them along. Then radio silence again.

I googled June 15th and got this as a response. Apparently Google doesn't believe Mr. Wade either.
I googled June 15th and got this as a result. Apparently Google doesn’t believe Mr. Bradley either.

That was until March of this year. It seems as if the original cut of the movie, done by director Joe Lynch and completed days before the trailer was released at Comic-Con (remember this was back in the summer of 2011), was tossed aside by the Indievest and namely, it’s CEO Wade Bradley. It was actually Wade Bradley himself who responded to the ‘Rip-Off Report’ complaint by saying that “The film is now readying for its final mix and is on schedule to be released (by IndieVest Pictures) in the first half of 2013.”

I’m thinking that perhaps Mr. Bradley needs Santa to bring him a calendar this Christmas because there’s only roughly three weeks left in the first half of 2013 and there’s been neither hide nor hair seen of the recut Knights of Badassdom. But what of director Joe Lynch? What has he been saying in all this? Well when IndieVest was planning on screening their own edit, he took to twitter to make sure that everyone knew that it was not his version of the film by often using the hashtag #notmyedit.

He hasn’t said much else about it since then, instead choosing to tweet about Joss Whedon and S.H.I.E.L.D., conversations with friends, and his podcast, The Movie Crypt, with Adam Green.

When asked directly about Knights of Badassdom, the answer is a little sad.

Joe Lynch The Knights of Badassdom Twitter

I’m a person that hates to see good people get hurt (unless they’ve wronged me then I take glee in it – I’m a complicated individual) so it’s disheartening to see a director of a movie get shut out of his own project publicly like this. Granted this was probably mishandled by everyone involved but it’s hard not to paint IndieVest as the demon in this situation.

The real victim here though? Well that of course is the movie and the potential fans of said movie. I think we can all agree that this is the type of film that it doesn’t really matter if it wasn’t the best writing, or the best story, or the best anything. As a rule, if you don’t mess up the major things like Star Wars, Star Trek, or any other established universe, we geeks can be rather forgiving. There aren’t many shows or movies that have LARP as a main aspect so I think it’s safe to say that most of us would embrace it regardless. Sadly, no word yet on if we’ll ever get that chance.