Jeff Grace

Karpovsky Sleepwalk With Me

Let me start off this latest edition of Fund This Film with full disclosure: I don’t know Ryland Aldrich from Adam, unlike some of the writers and editors at Film School Rejects and our colleagues elsewhere. He follows me on Twitter, and I’m aware that he writes for Twitch, but that’s as close as we get. His email asking for his new project, Folk Hero & Funny Guy, to be spotlighted in this column received the same skepticism as every other email pitching a crowdfunding project that I get on a daily basis. Fortunately it turned out to be a campaign I could be excited about, because otherwise it might have been awkward. Not because of the relationship Aldrich has with others here at FSR so much as because the campaign video directly mentions FSR as the best, most important place for movie criticism on the web. That last bit is a tad exaggerated. But we are mentioned and our logo is even featured on screen. Turns out someone here (Luke Mullen) positively reviewed (A-) another movie Aldrich produced called Snaps, which was at SXSW this year. I haven’t seen it. I also haven’t seen It’s a Disaster, which is another movie someone else here (Kate Erbland) even more positively reviewed (A). With a grade like that, I should get to it, especially since it’s on Netflix Instant and would have been good to be familiar with since one of its producers and stars is Jeff Grace, the writer and […]

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Todd Berger

Though it might often seem as if most of the wheeling and dealing that goes into the acquisition of festival films happens actually during festivals, there are plenty of worthy titles that end up getting snapped up months after their premieres (just look at John Dies at the End). Though Todd Berger‘s It’s A Disaster premiered back in June at the Los Angeles Film Festival and we’re just getting word of the film being bought now, there was never any question that the LAFF favorite (and major crowdpleaser) was going to get picked up, distributed, and totally loved by anyone who has the good sense to watch it. IndieWire reports that Oscilloscope Laboratories has acquired North American rights to the film and is planning to release it both theatrically and digitally in early 2013. Written and directed by Berger, the film stars Julia Stiles, David Cross, America Ferrera, Erinn Hayes, Rachel Boston, Kevin M. Brennan, Jeff Grace, and Blaise Miller in a fresh and funny spin on the worn-out apocalypse film trope. It centers on a group of friends who gather for a Sunday brunch and, too consumed with their own (quite funny) dramas, utterly fail to notice that the world is literally ending around them. Oscilloscope’s David Laub said of the film, “It’s A Disaster is a real gem, one of those great discoveries that you don’t come across very often…Todd has combined a perceptive, Woody Allen-esque relationship comedy with a unique take on the apocalypse film, and in the […]

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The jokes write themselves – It’s a Disaster is, in fact, not a disaster at all (though a brief glitch during the film’s final screening at this year’s Los Angeles Film Festival did result in half of the audience tittering “it’s a disaster!” to a temporarily blank screen). Todd Berger‘s film takes some familiar ingredients – an end-of-the-world plot, a cast of characters who are stuck with each other, suburban brunch at its absolute worst – and mixes them up into one heck of a funny and acutely realized comedy stew (quiche?). Amusingly acted, incredibly well-written, and surprisingly adept at mixing and mingling disparate tones, It’s a Disaster is the exact kind of fresh comedy that audiences hope to find at film festivals. The film centers on a Sunday brunch that is already going to get a bit weird – hosts Pete (Blaise Miller) and Emma (Erinn Hayes) have an ulterior motive for bringing together their best pals for their traditional couples brunch, and it’s not just to meet Tracy’s (Julia Stiles) latest boyfriend, Glenn (David Cross). Likewise, it’s also not watch the Kivels (Kevin M. Brennan and Rachel Boston) go at it when they’re not talking about their latest adventures with drugs and music. And it’s not even to dance around the delicate topic of just when Hedy (America Ferrara) and Shane (Jeff Grace) are going to tie the knot. Of course, all that will happen – along with the most unplanned event of all: a decidedly unnatural disaster […]

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