Kickstart This: 'Killer of Men', 'Alden & James', 'Hudson River' + 'Narrated by Morgan Freeman'
by Ben Pearson
May 4, 2012
Welcome back to another edition of Kickstart This, FirstShowing's weekly column dedicated to spreading the word about cool indie projects that need your help to become a reality. This week, we've got four film projects that we want to point you toward: a violent western called A Killer of Men; a pilot loosely based on Calvin and Hobbes called Alden & James; a cool NY-based documentary called The Hudson River Project; and a fun movie called Narrated by Morgan Freeman. Take a look at each of these projects, sound off in the comments below, and don't forget to toss them a few bucks if you can. Check them out!
If you appreciate the revenge movie subgenre and admire the work of Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino, George Miller and Clint Eastwood, this one is right up your alley. It's called A Killer of Men, and it's about a young boy who's raised by the same band of roving miscreants that killed his family. When he begins to show signs of compassion, the heartless killers leave him for dead - but we all know that's never a good idea. He hunts down the killers across the lawless west for an epic showdown that mixes brutal violence with a sense of fun. The filmmakers want us to revel in the villains' deaths and want to provide the audience with a sense of satisfaction as we watch these guys get what's coming to them. Take a look at their awesome promo video, which features clips from a ton of awesome movies that give us an idea of what they're going for:
For more information about A Killer of Men, or to help support the project, visit its Kickstarter page. Director Gregg Meller and his team are seeking $50,000 by May 27th, so let's help them reach their goal!
Next up, there's a schizophrenic buddy comedy show called Alden & James that's loosely based on the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes. Instead of a little boy and his tiger, this time it's a college freshman named James and his wild alter-ego, Alden. But it's not just another show or movie about a guy wandering around talking to another dude no one else can see. The filmmakers plan to open every episode with a different genre-based sequence that mixes James' real-life college experience with Alden's crazy outlook on the world. It looks like they've also got a great supporting cast to complement the main actors, and the passion of these filmmakers definitely shines through in their promo video. Take a look below:
For more information about Alden & James, or to help support the project, visit its Kickstarter page. Michael Kvamme and Jordan Dunn are looking for a total of $8,000 by May 26th, and they just need one final push before they finish their project.
Next up, we've got something a bit more reflective. The Hudson River Project is a documentary that follows filmmaker James Bowthorpe as he builds a boat from random trash and debris collected from New York City and attempts to sail from the source of the Hudson River all the way back to Manhattan. There are some beautiful shots of New York here, and this entire trip is a fascinating symbolic journey from the source of what made New York City what it is today while riding on remnants from people who have lived there in the past. And if that premise wasn't cool enough, perhaps the involvement of the Scottish rock band Mogwai is enough to get you interested. Take a look at their meditative promo:
For more information on The Hudson River Project, or to help support the film, visit its Kickstarter page. Antony Crook and James Bowthorpe are hoping to secure $100,000 by May 24th, and they've got an uphill battle ahead of them.
Finally, here's a project that I thought was cool enough to highlight here, despite not having a promo video. It's called Narrated by Morgan Freeman, and it's one of those cool creative projects you hear about sometimes in which filmmakers come up with a crazy idea and go all out trying to make it happen. (My Date With Drew comes to mind as an example.) This set of student filmmakers lost hours worth of editing work during a computer crash for a class project, so instead of re-editing their previous work, they came up with a new idea entirely: track down the one and only Morgan Freeman and try to have him narrate the events that occur in their documentary. Do they succeed? You'll have to donate to their IndieGoGo page to find out, and director Alexander MacDougall is a few hundred short of their $3,000 goal. We've only got until May 16th to help them out, so let's see if we can get them what they need so we can see how it unfolds!
I also wanted to specifically point you toward Ethan's recent write-up of a documentary called Drew Struzan: The Man Behind the Poster, which tells the story of one of the most (if not THE most) iconic movie poster creator of all time. Chances are pretty good that if you love a movie, especially one from the 80s or 90s, this dude worked on a poster for it. The filmmakers need help putting the finishing touches on this film so we can all finally see it, so help them out at their IndieGoGo page if you can as well.
That's it for this week's edition of Kickstart This, we hope you like these picks. You all continue to impress me with your e-mails, which have pointed me toward a lot of these fantastic projects, so keep those coming to BenPears85@gmail.com with more suggestions of cool indie efforts you'd like to see here in the future. It means a lot to these filmmakers that you guys are helping out like this, so thanks for your continued support and be sure to let us know what you think of all of them in the comments below.