Extra*Ordinary Short Film

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Synopsis: What if your best friend had superpowers? Dylan and Alex have been inseparable for as long as they can remember. When an accident reveals Alex’s incredible secret, their friendship is put to the test.

Film available upon request.

Production Year: 2009
Type: Fiction Short
Role(s): Marketing Director

Website Information:

Visit the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) page

Awards/Screenings:

  • Honolulu Film Festival – Honolulu, Hawaii; Silver Lei Award Winner
  • Worldfest – Houston, Texas; Bronze Remi Award
  • Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival – Seattle, Washington
  • SoCal Film Fest in Huntington Beach – Huntington Beach, California
  • Wisconsin Film Festival – Madison, Wisconsin
  • In The Palace International Short Film Festival – Balchik, Bulgaria

News:
May 19, 2009:

I’ve been helping out on the short film “Extra*Ordinary” as the marketing director and we recently received notification that it has been selected for its first film festival.  It’ll be appearing at the “In the Palace” festival in Balchik, Bulgaria from June 20-27, 2009.  It was apparently selected as one of the short films for screening out of 4,000 entries.

http://www.inthepalace.com/

“Extra*Ordinary” is listed in the IMDB.

July 29, 2009:

The short film “Extra*Ordinary” that I’m marketing director on received notification that it has earned a spot in another festival.

It’ll be appearing in the SoCal Film Festival in Huntington Beach, California.  The film is scheduled to screen on Tuesday, September 15, 2009.  It is the 2nd film in a block starting at 8:10 PM PST.

 

January 30, 2010:

“Extra*Ordinary” is playing today at the 2010 Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival in Seattle, Washington.  This festival is associated with the Seattle International Film Festival and the screening will be taking place in downtown Seattle at the legendary Cinerama Theatre.

February 2, 2010:

Some links and reviews of “Extra*Ordinary” from this past weekend at the 2010 Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival in Seattle, Washington.

The best review was from the ‘Northwest Science Fiction Society’:

Extra*Ordinary: My hubby’s quote sums this up perfectly: “It’s Heroes. Done right.” This was one of his faves for the evening. Two friends. One has superpowers and one doesn’t. And then the ‘normal’ friend finds out about his buddy’s abilities. Not easy to show a friendship tested by secrets revealed and then resolve those issues in less then 15 minutes, but this film did just that and did it well. (Northwest Science Fiction Society, 2010)

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer…. a critic reviewed the films in the first of the two screenings….

Extra Ordinary – After a failed robbery attempt, a boy finds out his best friend has superpowers. Dylan has a hard time dealing with what he’s just learned about his best friend. (Hall, 2010)

My grade: C  – The film started good, but sort of fizzled towards the end. It may have been better if they took a little more time to tell the story. I thought the actor who played Alex did a fantastic job.

This person didn’t really care much for it:

Extra*Ordinary:  Two best buddies are going about their day when one learns that his best friend is secretly super-human. Jealousy, drama, and bad acting ensue.

The movie took itself too seriously to be taken seriously. Moreover, it’s the same storyline that has been rehashed countless times. Just watch any episode of Heroes. I personally love  media that explores the human side of super-powers; how people relate to friends and family, the conflict of trying to take advantage of your gifts or to blend into the crowd, and so on.  This movie had plenty of potential but didn’t realize of any of it.   Poor. (Smith,2010)

 

February 15, 2010:

“Extra*Ordinary” has been selected to receive the Silver Lei Award for Excellence in Filmmaking at the 2010 Honolulu International Film Festival. The Festival will take place April 24th and 25th, 2010 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

 

February 16, 2010:

“Extra*Ordinary” will be playing at the 12th Wisconsin  Film Festival in Madison, Wisconsin.  I will be working on a marketing plan for execution during the festival; it plays on Saturday, April 17th at 11:00am in the Play Circle Theater.

 

April 17, 2010:

A bit of wrap-up from this past weekend’s Wisconsin Film Festival screening of “Extra*Ordinary.  The screening was held in a rather small theatre and the couple hundred people in the audience really packed the room.  People seemed to enjoy the film, although the screening had an odd vibe given that the shorts in our block were shown in the morning and there were children at the screening who weren’t a good fit for the PG-13 or above nature of the material.

Here was a review of the film from The Onion AV Club.

“Extra-ordinary”

April 17, 11 a.m., Play Circle

Synopsis: In Ian Christian Blanche’s short, two suburban kids decide to take a field trip to the bad part of town. When they’re walking home through a seedy alley, they get jumped by some thugs who treat the mouthier of the pair to a bullet in the chest. But when he jumps up unharmed, his shocked friend becomes absurdly jealous.

How it fits: The nerdy friend refuses to believe he doesn’t have superpowers of his own, and goes through a litany of tests to try to find his mutant ability. He nearly drowns himself in the bathtub, tries to grab hold of an open flame, and finally dresses like X-Men’s Wolverine.

If you like creepy shorts, you’ll like this because: It’s in many ways a poor man’s Heroes, and Heroes is a poor man’s X-Men. So if bleached-blond third-string Wolverine clones creep you out as much as they did us, this should do the trick. (Riechers, 2010)

Here were some notable competitors, as discussed by The Onion.

“Martha”

Synopsis: “You’re not a real Gallucci unless you can decapitate your egg,” Martha’s father scolds. When she refuses, her father-of-the-year claims that her mother and he found her after she fell off the back of a gypsy wagon. In Katja Straub’s my-family-is-too-weird-to-function tale, Martha’s colorful home life becomes a problem when she starts crushing on a neighbor boy.

How it fits: Martha frequently escapes into two recurrent and slightly off fantasies. The first involves her seeing the gypsy wagon she was supposedly dropped from, a driverless horse-drawn. The second involves Martha enacting her dream conversation with the boy across the street inside the paper-craft world of her dollhouse.

If you like creepy shorts, you’ll like this because: Martha’s odd fantasies aside, her egg-assaulting father takes the creepy crown. He dreams of opening his own restaurant where he can perform yo-yo tricks for his bewildered patrons, and his response to a fairly standard childhood request for a pet guinea pig is, “In Peru, people eat guinea pigs. I should put it on the menu!” (Riechers, 2010)

That film opened the block of shorts.  It was quite well done and it was my second favorite amongst our block of shorts.  The story’s character arc was about a girl realizing that she really does like her family.  The production values were very good.

“Never”

Synopsis: Devon Ford’s “Never” builds a surreal experience out of a simple concept: What happens when the cheery world of Peter Pan collides with the oppressive, mundane, and horrifying moments of reality? An ignored and abused housewife dresses up as Tinker Bell, and Captain Hook tries to get his laundry done while suppressing pirating delusions with pills. Peter himself makes one last escape to Neverland by taking on his hospital’s nursing staff in a battle royale that ends with a SWAT team being called in to quell the uprising.

How it fits: Magic isn’t all that innocent in this world—Tinker Bell pukes up her fairy dust, which kills everything it touches. This results in the winged housewife being gunned down by police in front of a heartbroken little girl. Hook has his treasure map stolen by a rival pirate, but he manages to steal her panties. And so forth.

If you like creepy shorts, you’ll like this because: Like the best adult fairy tales, this one craps all over a beloved childhood classic, but affectionately so.  (Riechers, 2010)

If they’d ended this short about 5 minutes in, it would have been a cute little audience-pleaser.  Instead of ending though, they had police shoot a faux Tinker Bell in the back, had a character sniff panties, and generally creeped out the audience for another 15 long minutes.  Needless to say, it got a half-hearted applause when it finally did conclude.

The Onion comments above make it sound hip and original.  It might have been, but I didn’t care for it.

“Practical Manual for Imaginary Friends (Abridged)

What does an out-of-work imaginary friend do? He gives lectures at conferences for other imaginary friends (a comical audience filled with leprechauns, giant ducks, and talking flowers), warning them of what might happen if they don’t protect their job. Captain Kilotón lasted longer than most, but when his human Fernando finally got a live-in girlfriend, things change.  (Riechers, 2010)

This one was my favorite short from our block.  It was light-hearted, often very funny, but also struck some notable emotional cords.

Oh, and I really want to know where the filmmakers got a human-sized Alf costume.

 


Hall, Tim. “Seattle’s Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival.” Seattle Post-Intelligencer 31 Jan. 2010. Web. 12 Apr. 2012.
Mark Riechers. “Creepy Shorts (Mini-Fest #6).” The Onion 13 Apr. 2010. Web. 12 Apr. 2012.
Northwest Science Fiction Society. “The Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival.” Northwest Science Fiction Society 31 Jan. 2010. Web. 12 Apr. 2012.
Smith, Chris. “Science Fiction and Fantasy Short Film Festival Part II.” A Chris Smith On Software 5 Feb. 2010. Web. 5 Feb. 2010.