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Drawing Flies
Drawing Flies (Soundtrack)

Drawing Flies Drawing Flies Review

Directed By: Matt Gissing, Malcolm Ingram.
Starring: Jason Lee, Jason Mewes, Renee Humphrey, Carmen Lee.

Synopsis: Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier produced this Canadian-made comedy about five slackers who hit rock bottom when they are cut off by the Canadian welfare system. In order to avoid their rent-demanding landlord, they head for the wilderness for a week. Unfortunately, their leader, Donner (Jason Lee, Vanilla Sky) has lost his mind and is leading them on a hunt for the legendary Bigfoot. A handful of regulars from Smith's other films show up in this early View Askew productions.

I had a special reason to want to see this film. While it is true I am a big fan of Jason Lee and will watch anything he's in, the real reason was Malcolm Ingram.

I am intrigued with this Canadian director because he grew up in my neck of the woods. The once Film Threat magazine writer, now director and Kevin Smith cohort, used to rent movies from the video store I worked at and go to the high school that was bitter sports rivals of the one that I went to. I think it's just cool that a local boy made good in the film business.

Drawing Flies, which is a reference to the Soundgarden song, was produced by Kevin Smith's (Clerks, Chasing Amy) company, View Askew. Jason Lee stars as Donner in a simple story about a group of going nowhere twenty-somethings in Vancouver, who on Donner's sudden urgings go out into the wilderness to be one with nature. Only Donner's real agenda is to search for the infamous Bigfoot. Also appearing are Jason Mewes (Jay from all of Kevin Smith's films,) Carmen Lee (Chasing Amy and Jason Lee's wife off-camera) and Rene Humphrey (Mallrats)

This film has some good performances; in fact a late scene where Jason Lee freaks out on his friends was the main influence for Kevin Smith to write the Banky Edwards character in Chasing Amy. Mainly, I found more setup would have been nice for I found the motivation weak. I mean, one night, sitting on the couch, Donner just suddenly decides to go into the woods and find Bigfoot? The diaper scene was totally lost on me, too. The (DVD) commentary doesn't really offer much to explain it, either. The scene came about through Malcolm Ingram and Matt Gissing's unique brainstorming techniques, as did most of the script. This would also explain why Ingram had suggested Lee's character be visited by Hockey Hall Of Fame Habs forward Howie Morenz, before they finally settled on Bigfoot.

(Scroll down for the DVD review)

Copyright© Written By: Tom Servo

DVD Information:

Special Features:
Audio Commentary Track Featuring Directors Malcolm Ingram and Matt Gissing, Executive Producers Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier, Cast Members Jason Lee, Jason Mewes, Renee Humphrey and Carmen Llywellyn
Both Standard Version and Director's Cut
Bloopers/ Outtakes/ Deleted Scenes
Special Introduction by Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier

Video: Standard 1.33:1

ENGLISH: Dolby Digital Surround
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital Stereo

The DVD Review:

This DVD does have a lot of special features, though. This is not a huge surprise considering that Kevin Smith's DVD's are some of the best on the market, in terms of extras.

There are two commentaries. The first features the two directors, Ingram and Gissing along with Kevin Smith, Scott Mosier and the main cast, minus Martin Brooks. Brooks is probably wishing now that he had been there, as he is berated devilishly throughout. For the most part, this audio track is complete chaos with everybody going in different directions, but the party atmosphere that is View Askew commentaries always makes you wish you could dive through the screen and join in.

The other commentary is more serious with just the two directors. It is on this track that you really get a sense of how small a production Drawing Flies really was. It was shot in three weeks on a budget of $40,000US. It is sedate, but ultimately interesting. It is also painfully apparent how much Ingram prefers living and working on the West Coast, rather than his native Toronto suburbs.

Other features include a director's cut, outtakes, deleted scenes and also an additional titles section that lists some works that look even more bizarre than this one.

Evil Ash

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