Saturday, March 16, 2013

Ariztical Entertainment's Rolling Heads To DVD On May 14

DVD and Blu-ray Release Report
When news arrived this past week that Ariztical Entertainment had selected May 14 as the DVD release date for Damon Jamal’s Rolling, the knee-jerk was “OK, what’s this about?”

A new director; his first feature film … an independent production (he also produced), with a young cast.   How bad will this be?   After seeing so many of these “15 minute” movies you just want to scream (15 minutes is about how far you can get into them before it becomes too painful to continue and the screening disc is ejected from the player).

Poor production values, bad writing, amateur actors — it’s a long list of things that can go wrong with an independent film production, especially when it is from a “first time” filmmaker.

So it was quite a pleasant surprise to discover that Rolling is not one of these “15 minute” movies.   Yes, it does have “unknowns” as the cast members and it is an indie, but the filmmaker seems to know what he’s doing and the productions values on the screen belie the film’s limited budget.

Wait a second, this guy is no newbie filmmaker … what’s has been delivered — cinematically speaking — is clearly not from a “first time” filmmaker.   The pause button is hit and you’re off to google “Damon Jamal.”  Instinctively you know that what you’re watching is from someone with experience in framing a shot, lightning a sequence and using the camera in creative ways.

Sure enough, it doesn’t take long to discover that Jamal has been creating music videos for artists in the bay area for years … his film school training was the street.   Work fast, get it right, be creative and know what the talent needs for their music.   It has to be visually exciting; it is like painting a picture.

That experience has been successfully translated to Rolling, which is being billed as a film inspired by the John Hughes gem, The Breakfast Club.   A diverse group of kids and high school, sure there’s a connection.    

The set up is a bit of stretch as Drake (Matthew Thompson — Mad World, Tru Loved) breaks into his high school late at night with his friends to shoot a film school video.  He has scripts for his “actors” to follow, but they all seem surprised that he’s ready to roll and they are just hearing about this.

Once past the initial “gathering” sequences, the film kicks into high gear as the relationship between Drake’s cast members, who are a diverse group of kids with little in common, begin to interact with each other.   

Clearly Sully (Ryder Darcy) is the equivalent of Judd Nelson’s character from The Breakfast Club.   He’s the bad boy in the group, the druggie, but his underlying intelligence and sarcasm are used by him as a mask — personal issues; whatever.  

Ellen (Joy Regullano) is Drake’s film buddy, who is shy, hides behind her glasses, but is probably the smartest of the group — you suspect that she likes to go unnoticed, but you are never quite sure what she is afraid of.    

There’s the kid, Tim (Maxwell Chase), a cheerleader named Carly (Debbie Kagy), a jock, Sean (Taylor Piedmonte), and the sexy loner, Michaela (Mara Klein).   A diverse group that by morning will be close friends.

Ariztical Entertainment has a sleeper here with Rolling … it is well worth a look-see and guaranteed to be more than a “15 minute” movie!   We suspect that it will become filmmaker Damon Jamal’s calling card for even bigger projects down the road.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report: DVD & Blu-ray Release Report 

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