Something hidden -- go and find it;
Go and look beyond the Ranges
Something lost behind the ranges:
Lost and waiting for you. Go!

-- from Guy Maddin's CAREFUL

Being a periodic meditation on some of the more obscure outlying regions of cinema;
regarding movies that are inadequately publicized and hence, easily overlooked --
and by cinema, it is meant in the larger sense of films/tv/DVD/internet --
that might be worthy of your interest, but perhaps has escaped your notice.


Friday, July 6, 2007


       Arin Crumley and Susan Buice really want you to see their self-distributed, shot-on-DV movie, Four Eyed Monsters. So much so, that they’ve decided to post it, in its 71 minute entirety, on Youtube, now through Aug. 15th. I’ve embedded just the trailer above, as I find it kind of annoying to watch something feature-length on a screen smaller than a post card -- you might feel differently, though. Apparently this is the first feature film to be presented as such on Youtube --       ... well, legally, at least.

       The title refers not to some fanciful beasts, but to the aspect of two people in love -- two mouths, four eyes, eight limbs, etc.. The film’s basically a post-modern romance -- fairly autobiographical, by all accounts -- between the leads who made it: Arin and Susan; and about how the hip-geoisie in NYC fall in love nowadays. At that level, it’s a fairly conventional, if updated take on Boy-meets-Girl. So what’s the modern spin on this all too familiar subject matter? Such contemporary elements as Boy-stalks-Girl, Boy-contracts-STD and Girl-does-Pole dance. We follow Arin and Susan through the ups and downs of their burgeoning romance, up to the point, elliptically enough, when the two decide to make a movie together about their relationship.

       While Four Eyed Monsters is by no means perfect -- the plot is meandering, the acting is sub-par (in their defense, only when the leads try to act) and the whole thing seems to veer dangerously close to Art Therapy more than once -- there’s still enough good (a really funny mock-commercial for an “artist’s retreat”, an excellent soundtrack that works well with the NYC montages and an engaging visual style throughout) to make it worth viewing at least once. Despite the fact that the couple’s conflicts seem to be as much the result of them being 22 years old as anything else, the film has a good sense of humor about itself -- they may take themselves pretty seriously, but at least they had the clarity of vision not to have the movie itself take them too seriously. Flaws aside, Four Eyed Monsters has the appeal of any good romance -- you get to watch two people fall in love; this time, apparently, for real...

       Other than viewing it on Youtube, there’s a variety of options for seeing the film (ranging in price from $3.00 to $15.00): a small download suitable for viewing on a video iPod, a larger, DVD-quality download for your computer, and a DVD proper, for the old-fashioned amongst us; all available through the film’s online store. Four Eyed Monsters is also screening at theaters around the country, more or less randomly -- check the website for details.

Some links:

Four Eyed Monsters official website.

Arin & Susan’s MySpace page.

Request a screening of Four Eyed Monsters at a theater near you.

Join for free and help Arin and Susan pay off the immense amount of credit card debt they racked up making their film.

Next post -- 07/13/07

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