Category Archives: Uncategorized

Trailer for sleep paralysis doc The Nightmare visits the scariest place in the world

theundergroundmultiplex:

I’m one of those who suffers from this occasionally. Luckily, I don’t get the shadowy figures and voices that occur with these unfortunate folks. Instead, I just find it to be a pain in the ass having to wait out the paralysis. –Legendary Lew

Originally posted on Rhino's Horror:

Room 237 director Rodney Ascher’s new documentary, The Nightmare, is one of the more intriguing horror films releasing this year with its focus on the terrifying true stories of people who suffer from sleep paralysis. After a long and successful festival run, we finally have a trailer for the film and it’s one you won’t soon forget.

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The Look Back and the Look Forward to 2015

cropped-wp-index-page-header-xox.jpgby Legendary Lew

We at The Underground Multiplex wish you all a wild and wonderful 2015. It’s been a head spinning one for me personally as I’ve had to spend the latter half of 2014 searching out places to live (things are much settled now, thankfully). But we’ve had a doozy of a 2014 with a lot of accomplishments:

We kicked off the year with the promotion of the Meinecke Art Studio, where the surviving sons of Tristan Meinecke, Brad & Scott, along with their dedicated team brought about a resurgence of interest in the enigmatic, lunatic genius. I had the pleasure of interviewing one of his collaborators, Gene Bowen.

TUGM had its very first schedule of programs dedicated solely to its own output,

Paintscape no. 15: Punctum Contra Punctum

Paintscape no. 15: Punctum Contra Punctum

courtesy of  the VOLUME Series at Chicago Filmmakers, curated by Jake Weisman. Chicago had its first taste of The Lost Marionettes working draft documentary footage with Ralph Kipniss in attendance. Strike That Line!, the radio comedy podcast, made its live stage performance debut. Sci Fi Sol made a successful return engagement, topped off with an interview with director/star musician Melody Nife. And TUGM introduced The Free Media Manifesto, a TED-style talk designed to urge those in the entertainment fields to shift their thinking to new paradigms of production and distribution.

We assisted Elephant and Worm Educational Theatre Company with the return of its Emmy-nominated TV program on CAN-TV and successfully helped get the word out about inadequate funding of public access TV stations in Illinois. (Recently, Chicago made it possible to actually increase funding for necessary operational costs at CAN-TV, a victory for free speech).

scrapersTUGM began its first offshoot production, the stoner rom-com Scrapers, starring Dakota Loesch and Sally Anderson. And finally, TUGM guested at an overview of Razzies winners and nominees (we’ll be hosting yearly podcast specials on The Razzies beginning this year).

That’s a lot for a year when The Brain Kitchen Theater closed, Joe Lewis got married and I had to search for an apartment three separate times.

But 2015 has some exciting new plans in store. We’ll be hosting the next yearly Razzies Podcast very soon. Mediatrocities will begin as a weekly podcast featuring myself and the very talented actor/producer Tyler Pistorius with overviews on indie and IMP films. Strike That Line! will return as a quarterly comedy podcast and we’ll be scouting out further locations for our next live presentation. Shy City, our documentary webcast series highlighting our work on The Lost Marionettes and The Art of Tristan Meinecke, will be completed and scouted for screening locations. Finally, we’ll be scouting locations to host the next series of Night School. We’ve had a lot of requests for its return.

Here’s wishing all of you great health and happiness for this year and all to come. As always, I thank the great team at TUGM and all of you for supporting us in these last 4+ years.

Palin Drunken Brawl with Pictures (!) Found by the Strike That Line Crew!

The folks at Strike That Line! were able to find pictures from the scene of the recent Alaskan brawl involving the Palins. For the first time, see exactly what Bristol Palin was referring to in her statement to police. Please note that this video is NSFW:

 

 

New Strike That Line! Podcast Begins Production Next Week

Film genius Ernie Tarte

Film genius Ernie Tarte

by Legendary Lew

After a long hiatus to concentrate on some groundbreaking projects from The Underground Multiplex, the comedy podcast Strike That Line! resumes production next week.

In the next episode, our narcissistic hero, Ernie Tarte, delves into his most ambitious project yet: the religious epic “Savior Cash: The Story of J-Man.” It tells the tale of the making of the ultimate story of Jesus. Stay tuned for more details as the production gets underway!

And I would like this young man to evaluate the finished feature:

Is Comcast Trying to Kill Chicago’s Public Access TV Stations?

Comcast

by Legendary Lew

Comcast is Chicago’s largest cable provider and wants to renew a 10-year contract with the city. Part of the licensing renewal agreement, if agreeable to the city of Chicago, would be to provide air space on their spectrum for public access.

This has always been a pesky little matter for cable giants, because providing public access stations gets in the way of important things like profits from vital, universe-changing programming like Duck Dynasty or disputing reports of their incredibly low-ranking customer service ratings.

Well, negotiations for a renewal, including budgeting for CAN-TV (Chicago’s public access TV stations) have now been going on for over a year with no agreement. Seriously. Comcast can’t seem to get it together enough to promise to do right for Chicago with a guaranteed budget to keep CAN-TV operating. The current contract with Comcast was extended for three months and expires on June 15, 2014.

That means that, conceivably, Chicago could be without public access channels after that date. This would be a travesty and would totally undermine the original goals of serving the public interest promised by the cable companies.

Comcast made $6.82 billion last year. Current operating costs for CAN-TV run about $2.7 million dollars total. The cable companies don’t even provide all that money, some of it comes from fundraising and donations, etc.

Even if cable companies were to provide all the $2.7 million. That means in terms of just Comcast’s income alone from last year, it would amount to .04% of those earnings.  This is a pittance to ensure a great service for the community.

Forty-three Aldermen signed a petition to Comcast asking the cable company to stop dragging its feet and provide for the services Chicago needs to keep CAN-TV operating at its best potential.

In a time when the cable giant is willing to put up the bucks to purchase Time Warner for $45 billion for a super cable conglomerate, it’s ludicrous to believe Comcast can’t cough up enough to provide basic, vital community programming for its local viewers.

As part of the production team of the Emmy-nominated Elephant and Worm TV show (my public disclosure), I’d like to call on others to join CAN-TV in contacting and thanking their Alderman for taking the right stance with Comcast. You can find the list of those who signed the petition here. (Find your Alderman here). If your Alderman did not sign, please ask him/her to do so.

Also, call CAN-TV and tell them you support their programming and ask how you can help. They need to hear from you, Chicago, if you value the true choices in programming that the cable lobby always promises the public.

Hey, Robbie Collin, I LOVE the Razzies. Here’s Why.

Johnny Depp (left) and Armie Hammer get sucked into the rot of Hollywood

Johnny Depp (left) and Armie Hammer get sucked into the rot of Hollywood in “The Lone Ranger.”

by Legendary Lew

Robbie Collin of the UK’s The Telegraph just weighed in on The Razzies, the 30+ year institution that comes along every year around Oscar time to chuck produce at the worst Hollywood had to offer during the previous 12 months. I now look forward with great anticipation to watching and reviewing all of the movies nominated for the golden fruit. This usually requires a concentrated effort of peering into hours of hell for a couple of months, but I feel it’s well worth it for a sense of grounding. After watching a whopping 19 Razzie nominees in just over 30 days, I’m ready for my annual ranting Razzies podcast with my co-horts.

I agree with Collin over much of what he states in his post. There are some particularly sloppy choices for this year’s Razzies. Lindsay Lohan, IMHO, was chosen for three movies, simply because she’s Lohan. Playing herself in Scary

Tyler Perry, master scammer in "A Madea Christmas."

Tyler Perry, master scammer in “A Madea Christmas.”

Movie 5 and InAPPropriate Comedy was the best thing to happen to both those films and she was terrific in The Canyons. What should stun Razzie followers is that her co-stars in the latter film (Nolan Funk and Amanda Brooks) were not nominated as they were both horrendous. I can also nitpick about choosing Halle Berry for The Call, a movie for which she had to fall victim to a ludicrous script suggesting to future serial killers they should use Tracfones and not use OnStar.

I could go on about the other acting choices, most of which are good ones, but there’s a bigger point to be made and one which I part with Collin. It’s fascinating he writes the following:

“the Razzies’ ongoing failure to train its sights on anything but the most obvious targets means it grows more tired and redundant by the year.”

I could have written the very same thing but replaced ‘Razzies’ with ‘Oscars.’ In fact, there’s a great deal of overlap between the Oscars and the Razzies, and that’s because both are  influenced greatly by the studios’ public relations machines.  Of course, Razzie voters are going to choose people like Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, Ashton Kutcher, Chris Brown and others who pop up all too often on our “news” homepages when we turn on our computers and smart phones. Given the over-saturation of some celebs who readily appear in easy-to-find movies at your local Redbox or on Netflix, who do you think they will vote for? Same as with the Oscars, do you think the nation’s top streaming service, top DVD rental distribution company, and top theater chains provide enough choices to the widest available audiences for most viewers to make the most informed choices? And if Mr. Collin believes the Oscar voters actually watch all the films they vote for, I’ve got the Willis Tower here in Chicago to sell him.

The biggest things the Razzies provide for me are reasons for a party (perhaps next year, not this time though) and, much more importantly, a chance to really discuss what Hollywood does very wrong and sometimes right in a yearly podcast I’ve been organizing with Dominick Mayer for the last three years. It’s vitally important to know WHY Jack and Jill, That’s My Boy and Grown Ups 2 are bad movies. Anyone can easily say it’s because of bad jokes, sexism, transphobia, racism or any number of details, but has anyone even close to Hollywood dare to openly say that the movies are essentially scams? I have during HeaveMedia’s Razzies podcasts and so have the Half in the Bag guys in what is, hands down, the best damn insightful review of Jack and Jill ever.  

No one is going to call for throwing The Oscars into the trash bin, myself included. I wish for the Academy Awards to be better, and I do for The Razzies.

They've got your $13 bucks when you watched "Grown Ups 2"

They’ve got your $13 bucks when you watched “Grown Ups 2″

Robbie Collin may complain that Razzie voters don’t need to watch the movies they vote for, but at least anyone can become a Razzie member by subscription, meaning that you and I could join and help influence who eventually gets those awards. To vote for Oscars, you have to be chosen which, you would think, should give Academy members pause to take their balloting much more seriously than they do.  Pity those who still believe most Academy voters take they duties with great reverence. Perhaps in the first live telecast of The Razzies, Seth MacFarlane can do a song and dance number called “We Saw Your Booby Prize.”

Legendary Lew, Dominick Mayer and Tyler Pistorius will be giving their takes on this year’s Razzies on Pod People, Heave Media’s podcast due out tomorrow.

 

 

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Invitation to a Lunatic Seance

Invitation