Todd Strauss-Schulson

Alls Fair Short Film

Why Watch? After a brutal breakup, a weak-kneed ex-boyfriend finds himself desperate for intimacy, so he hires a hooker. Instead of sex, he’s dropping fifty bucks an hour to silently watch cooking shows and have her complain about the room being too cold. You know, relationship stuff. More than anything else, All’s Fair is surprisingly sweet, showing a sentimental side to director Todd Strauss-Schulson who produced a bare-breasted Heaven for the third Harold and Kumar and delivered the cell phone body-horror Valibation last year. This is a different, cuddlier animal that features an everyman who manages to avoid annoyance, a fantastic turn from a Beyonce-channeling Cleo King and some real talk about letting go from a lady of the night. Touching and funny, it’s a light meditation on what it costs to keep a broken past going.

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EnterainBotCameraTest

Using the Genuflex Mk III rig, director Todd Strauss-Schulson wanted to create something he thought Busby Berkeley might if he were alive today, so he got some dancers and a robot to help out. The result is a very cool video featuring some fantastic motion control moments that boast a stop-on-a-dime technique while channeling the high energy of the choreography. Strauss-Schulson made A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas as well as the wonderfully bizarre body horror short film Valibation (watch here), so it’s clear that he’s into some weird stuff, but it’s difficult to pin him down. The test is for a new project called Entertain_bot, and while the filmmaker isn’t revealing any details about it, this camera test impressively speaks for itself:

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Valibation

Why Watch? If it weren’t obvious before watching Yale (James Kirkland) look over at his iPhone while getting ridden to climax by a beautiful friend with benefits (Margaret Savinar), our hero is addicted to his cell phone. Fortunately (and terrifyingly) for him, its about to merge with his body. Employing some clear Cronenbergian story technique (and a direct visual hat tip to The Fly), everything about this short is wonderfully bizarre and should hit way too close to the pockets of pretty much everyone with a cell. Especially those of you that are reading this through our mobile app. Yes, you. We can see you. Production value is sky high here, but special bonus points go to camera design that’s dizzying, production design that makes every setting feel like a cartoon nightmare and smarmy perfection from a very sarcastic Kirkland. It’s a black comic wonder, navigated without hesitation by director Todd Strauss-Schulson. Plus, the real star of the show is an inanimate object brought to diabolic life through obsession and some stellar special make-up effects. Watch it, and then go outside to fly a kite or something. What will it cost? Around 20 minutes. Skip Work. Watch More Short Films.  

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr grabs a protest sign and a test so he can occupy something. All the big cities are taken, so he decides to Occupy Hollywood, but being one of the 99%, he can’t afford a plane ticket from Ohio to California. So, he occupies his local multiplex, squatting in the front of their biggest screen. There, he has a chance to check out the loosely-related Tower Heist and later drinks some spiked egg nog and wanders into a later screening of A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. At least that’s what he’s telling the authorities.

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A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas is the world’s first interracial stoner buddy holiday comedy to be presented in the third dimension. It’s sure to be the last, too. A twin celebration of the joys of yuletide and bong rips, the flick is an appropriately manic and thoroughly nonsensical entrant in the popular trilogy that’s celebrated the joys of White Castle in one movie and condemned Guantanamo Bay in the next. This Christmas takedown is a one-time only feat, a symphony of pristine ridiculousness. You go into a Harold & Kumar flick expecting a heavy dose of weed-tinged surrealism, and director Todd Strauss-Schulson, working with the familiar team of writers Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg, doesn’t disappoint. This is a madcap farce that sends the now estranged heroes (John Cho and Kal Penn) on a frantic Christmas Eve journey into New York City to find a replacement tree.

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Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle was a small and unassuming comedy that happened to be pretty damn funny. John Cho and Kal Penn have some fantastic chemistry together, and that combined with some fairly sharp writing and a brilliantly conceived cameo by Neil Patrick Harris made it a winner. The sequel from 2008 saw the boys go to Guantanamo Bay, and while it was bigger in scope it was a bit smaller in laughs. Harris was still hilarious, and the movie did feature a bottom-less party scene which I had hoped would catch on both in other films and in my life (sadly it was not to be), but it seemed the magic of that first pairing was lost. But now, seven years after we first met this rascally duo they’re off on a new adventure. And it all starts when Harold murders Santa Claus… Check out the trailer below courtesy of Yahoo Movies.

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