Sunday, September 20, 2015

Adam Brooks and Matthew Kennedy's The Editor

Cody takes in a screening of a giallo comedy that has just been released on DVD and Blu-ray.

Over the last few years, Canadian production company Astron-6 has become quite popular among low budget film aficionados and in horror circles for their gory, over-the-top, retro style. They first came to the attention of a wider audience when Troma made a deal with them to expand their grindhouse homage faux trailer for a non-existent rape/revenge movie called Father's Day into their feature debut. They have since followed that up with the sci-fi action movie Manborg and contributed a segment to The ABCs of Death 2.

The latest Astron-6 production is The Editor, a comedic tribute to the Italian giallo murder mysteries of the 1970s and '80s. The story crafted by directors Adam Brooks and Matthew Kennedy with co-writer Conor Sweeney is centered on an Italian production company where the titular editor, Brooks as Rey Ciso, is cutting together what looks to be, from the clips we're shown, perhaps the worst giallo movie ever made.

Ciso is a troubled man with a dark past, he's in a lousy marriage with former starlet Josephine Jardin (Paz de la Huerta) and his work has been suffering since he lost some fingers in an accident. When the cast and crew of the movie he's working on start getting brutally murdered by someone who then severs the corpses' fingers just like Ciso's, the editor becomes the prime suspect in the eyes of the detective working the case, Peter Porfiry (Kennedy).

The love Brooks and Kennedy have for the giallo genre is very apparent in the film. With a small budget (partially acquired through Indiegogo) and modern tech (HD cameras), they managed to do an excellent job capturing the tone and style of the films they're paying homage to and in some cases directly referencing. The characters, the dialogue and delivery, the nonsensical structure, the colorful lighting, all the qualities that make Italian giallos unique are represented here, coated with an extra layer of absurd humor.

My problem with The Editor was, I'm not a fan of giallos, I don't typically enjoy watching them. This film was so successful in being like them that I grew tired of watching it just like I do when watching a regular giallo. I could appreciate what Brooks and Kennedy were doing, I was impressed by how well they had matched the old school Italian style, but the charm wore off for me when there was still an hour of the movie's running time left to go.

If you are a fan of giallos, chances are that you're going to be very entertained by this movie and have a lot of fun watching those familiar elements get replicated and spoofed. If you're like me and find them hard to sit through, The Editor's 94 minutes are likely going to feel like a long time to you.

The Editor is not a bad movie, it's well made and works perfectly for what it is. It's just not a movie that was for me, I'm not in the target audience. If you feel like you would be in its target audience, I recommend that you check it out as soon as possible.

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