Zack Carlson

Miami Connection

A rock band who practice Tae kwon do and sing about the joys of friendship. Ninjas who move noisily between drug deals on speeding pocket rockets. Welcome to the dangerous world of Orlando, circa 1987, and the little film that found a second chance on eBay. Miami Connection opened and closed in central Florida in 1987, never to see public exposure again, but when an industrious Alamo Drafthouse employee bought a print online for $50 a legend was reborn. The film follows a group of friends who go to college during the day and rock out at night as the house-band for an Orlando nightclub. Their world is shattered though when they’re forced into a confrontation with a rival band, poorly dressed gang members and drug dealing, motorcycle riding ninjas. Let’s listen to some commentary!

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If you live near an Alamo Drafthouse, you probably already know that Tim League, Zack Carlson, Lars Nilsen and co. have coordinated an amazing summer series devoted to the blockbusting year of 1982. If you’ve been reading FSR lately, you already know that our site co-sponsored a screening of George Miller’s Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior in coordination with the Drafthouse’s site-specific Rolling Roadshow series. And if you live anywhere within five hundred miles of the Thunderhill Raceway in Kyle, Texas, then you probably attended said screening. But for you feral kids who may have not had a chance to witness this awesome event, or for those of you that did, here’s a first-person account of the happenings by one of FSR’s own. The Road Warrior is something of a sweet spot in Mel Gibson’s history. The peak entry in the Mad Max series (sorry, Tina Turner), The Road Warrior gives us a Gibson who is too young, too unknown, and too accented to yet become a bona fide Hollywood star, but someone who has also (thanks largely to the first Mad Max film) developed enough charisma to be a magnetic force of nature onscreen. He’s hardly a man with no name, but Gibson’s one-man machine doesn’t need to say much – hell, he doesn’t even need both eyes – to give us a degree of intensity that hasn’t been seen before, or arguably since. Yes, Max is surrounded by several comic relief characters (notably the Gyro Captain, who […]

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If you’re the kind of person who builds air cannons and small motors for bowls of spaghetti around Halloween, Michael Stephenson might want to have a word with you. The director of Best Worst Movie is setting his sights on the boldest homemade haunted house fanatics to create a new documentary for NBCUniversal. The project is casting right now, and you can submit yourself or friends or family. Or enemies if you’re so inclined. If you’re not that kind of person, the good news is that you can still kick back and enjoy what sounds like a fun documentary by a proven team. Magic Stone will be producing, and they’ve brought on the Alamo Drafthouse’s Zack Carlson as a writer/producer. In short, this sounds awesome. People who try to make strangers pee themselves in terror should be celebrated, and it’s high time a filmmaker did so. The project is still untitled, but their website name, Homemade House of Horrors sounds pretty solid. Now if they can just get George Hardy to host it, things would be perfect.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, we talk with people that want to live forever and punks who throw rocks at their faces all night long. The minds behind the book “Destroy All Movies!!!,” Zack Carlson and Brian Connolly, talk about how punks have been portrayed in movies from 8MM to Zombie Nightmare. Barry Ptolemy, director of Transcendent Man, shares with us the challenges of shooting a documentary, the joy of getting to know Ray Kurzweil, and the recipe for eternal life. Plus, Katey Rich from Cinema Blend and Germain Lussier from /Film go head-to-head in our movie news quiz, and we all end up talking about Hunger Games. Naturally. Loosen up your tie and stay a while.

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Consider originality celebrated for the day. Michael Stephenson, director of Best Worst Movie, has got his next project underway, and it’s a dark comedy called Destroy that features a vampire hunter set loose in a world where he’s taking down innocent elderly men. Well, not completely innocent. Old men have seen some things, ya know? Luckily, our human-staking hero has an assistant to help him out. Fans of the Alamo Drafthouse will be interested to know that the script was written by lead programmer Zack Carlson alongside Bryan Connolly, but the concept is enough to get me excited. It’s comedic and horrible and new, and it sounds like Don Quixote transplanted onto the world of Universal monsters. Plus, it comes at the perfect time to act as an antidote to the vampire outbreak we’ve seen in theaters. Check out the concept art by Johnny Sampson here:

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