Title: CLAPBOARD JUNGLE
Director: Justin McConnell
Featuring: Guillermo Del Toro, Richard Stanley, Barbara Crampton, Paul Schrader, Tom Savini, George A. Romero, Gigi Saul Guerrero, Michael Biehn, Frank Henenlotter, and many more.
Movie length: 1 hours 38 minutes
This was an interesting dive into what it is like to be a film maker inside Hollywood. It’s a documentary that follows film maker Justin McConnell on his journey to getting his projects greenlit and made. I can’t lie, as I watched more of this film it made me want to look into the films and shorts, he did make. I even went as far as to order THE COLLAPSED off Amazon, I have yet to watch it but am incredibly intrigued to. I watch so many documentaries that it’s sometimes hard to find the gems, this one was actually really good. It shows the inside of what can make or break anyone in the hardships of writing, directing and even producing independently. It follows Justin around with a couple different projects that seem to almost get their feet of the ground and then become dead in the water.
I think perhaps this documentary hit close to home for me because I have worked on several film sets and short sets in my time, I even produced an independent project starring two actors I grew up watching on the screen and from experience I know it can be a messy process. I’m sure everyone has this idea that it’s all about the money, this film proves otherwise. It shows just how long the process can be to take your idea and make it into a reality. Not only is it about money but it’s about the right story to tell, the right script written, and the right actors placed in the roles. That’s just the beginning you still need sets, props, a script supervisor and a workable budget. I know everyone has seen one of those campy little horror films from the 1980’s, I happen to enjoy most of those and the fact is some have become what is known as “Cult Classics” today.
Fact is they all went through the same sort of process and Justin McConnell breaks it down for the audience of this film. As a viewer there were times while watching where I even got frustrated with what was happening to him and his partner, eventually it all pans out as he does the work visiting festivals and going to different parts of the world to try and get funding. It’s obvious that Justin will go on to make other films, this documentary is already proof of that and I hope he gets the opportunity to continue to do so. I give this an 8.5 out of 10, there were some parts I thought could have been cut a little smoother, overall I enjoyed watching it and even learned a couple new things.
CLAPBOARD JUNGLE is now available on Video on Demand services including iTunes, Amazon Prime Video, and Vudu in the US and Canada.
Do you plan to see the movie? Have you already? Let me know in the comments or chat with me on Twitter.