Students, eh? A mass band of mad, crazy, drink riddled folk acting as a burden to society, right? Well, there are a few who buck the trend. Although we can’t comment on the filmmaker’s relation with madness and drink, one thing we do know is Charles Mazery is attempting to bow out from the world of education through his unique zealous tale of a dying septuagenarian, a 13-year old suffering a break up and several Elvis Presleys. Welcome to Somewhere The King.
We’ve never promoted a student film before and there are several good reasons why. This sub-genre of productions are all well-intended with creativity, emotion and enthusiasm pouring from its soul yet the brain is sometimes lacking. The ‘student-y’ missteps within productions – such as poor cinematography or lighting – can detract from their initial basic ideas, and the overall quality disappoints. However, for the first time, we’re taking a leap of faith into this market.
Somewhere The King is writer/director Charles Mazery’s thesis film for his final project before graduating from the USC School of Cinematic Arts to enter the big bad world. This road movie will tell the story of Claudine and June as they travel to an Elvis Presley impersonators contest as they take their own personal spiritual journeys to the competition.
Claudine is an eccentric, quirky, sarcastic 75 year old woman, but a feisty personality can only do so much; the old timer is staring death in the face. At her age, Claudine is looking back at her life. She started her career as a hairstylist before becoming a radio host for 30 years. She never really wanted to get married but ended up marrying George, who had an antique store. They lived a pretty happy life until George died by a bee sting ala My Girl. Her dark humour and garish wardrobe of purple, white and green provides a hilarious if uninspiring lead to her 13-year-old granddaughter June.
So who’s June? An Amelie/Matilde cross breed who’s smart, curious and old beyond her years. She’s a hidden figure in society: covered in the shadow of absentee parents but ready to defend herself against her enemies. The influence of modern ‘kooky’ female runs through the character, cemented by June’s penchant for suspenders and Portugese Fado. However, her life has come crashing down after Marcus – her boyfriend of 34 days – has broken up with her and lo, their story begins.
It is important to point out at this stage that the road movie is not an original concept with the genre littered with game changing entries such as Thelma & Louise and Nebraska to name just a few. Furthermore, the different twist does not indicate an outrageous diversion from the well trodden path of two leads on a journey of self discovery (and Elvis Presley…). Leaving this cynicism aside, the reason why this project was chosen was it contains enough novelty, darkness and humour to earn your curiosity and attention. As well as this, it’s great to see a new talent promoting a tale with two female leads for a change. That being said, why does a student need $11,000?!
Mazery and his team are going for gold for their grandiose project. They need camera equipment, locations, props and set dressing, costumes, food and lodging, transportation, stunt co-ordinators and more. The list is long but it’s not unlike any other production whether it be a student picture or a Hollywood blockbuster (well, potentially the latter would have a slightly longer list…). As with all Kickstarters, there are the glorious returns on an individual’s investment. For an impressive $350 pledge, you can get a DVD copy of the film, a hand written ‘Thank You’ postcard, a ‘Thanks’ in the credit, a Somewhere The King flash drive, an invitation to the LA AND Paris Premieres, a hoodie and an excellent little poster signed by the director. An impressive selection anyone could admit.
So, this is our first student Kickstarter project to back and we think it’s a good ‘un. With any project there are risks but if there’s an opportunity to support new and burgeoning talents to create exciting and funny projects, it plays into Kickstarter’s DNA to support these. As always, we suggest you check the Kickstarter page and the video below to see whether you want to support this exciting young prospect.
Have you got a project you want to promote? Get in touch with us via Twitter at @1RoomWithAView!