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"We made it for the audience, and we're taking it straight to them."
April 20, 2014 11:38 PM   Subscribe

"It’s a very exciting night for us, because it’s not just the première of the film, it is the worldwide release date." - Joss Whedon's new film, "In Your Eyes" celebrated its global premiere and release simultaneously tonight. The Dissolve weighs in on the release, mere days after the first few minutes of the film were previewed online. TheWrap has further coverage on the film and on the evolving nature of self-distribution in the arts world.

The film, which was written by Whedon and directed by Brin Hill tells the story of two folks who are connected through a metaphysical bond that allows them to experience each others' lives.
posted by raihan_ (21 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
The typical scenario for a small, niche-y movie like this five years ago would have been a series of festival playdates followed by a teeny theatrical release in like 5 U.S. cities and then an unceremonious dump onto DVD. This seems preferable.
posted by eugenen at 12:16 AM on April 21 [9 favorites]


Cool. I'll pay.
posted by xammerboy at 12:31 AM on April 21 [1 favorite]


It's not as if this is without some precedent. Dr Horrible was released online and was a big hit. And the $5 price point for original content worked for Louis CK, so why wouldn't it work for a project with Joss Whedon's name on it?

Are there any reviews of the film itself? Or is every last bit of coverage about the distribution?
posted by mneekadon at 4:07 AM on April 21 [2 favorites]


Worth pointing out that the Louis CK show was a $5 no-DRM download, no mess no fuss. It was pretty much *exactly* what advocates of digital distribution were asking for. This is a $5 time-limited Vimeo stream, which is quite a different animal.
posted by Mothlight at 5:20 AM on April 21 [7 favorites]


It's not as if this is without some precedent. Dr Horrible was released online and was a big hit. And the $5 price point for original content worked for Louis CK, so why wouldn't it work for a project with Joss Whedon's name on it?
I think it's basically an evolution from Dr. Horrible and from some ways from Much Ado About Nothing. Dr. Horrible grew out of the writer's strike and Whedon's growing belief that he wasn't going to be able to accomplish everything that he wanted to accomplish within the existing industry structures. Since then, he's been experimenting with ways to do it differently. What if you self-finance and shoot on a shoestring and then get traditional distribution? What if you self-finance, shoot on a shoestring, and then distribute it through the internet? I think it's sort of admirable that he's putting his money and his effort where his mouth is and actually trying to figure out how to make alternative models work. There are some limitations to those alternative models, but it's great that at least some big names in the industry are trying to figure out new ways to create and distribute the stuff they love.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 6:13 AM on April 21 [9 favorites]


I agree with ArbitraryAndCapricious -- it's great to see this experimentation going on, even if none of it represents a clear best model for the future. At the end of the day, I want to see independent and experimental productions have a viable production and distribution path, whatever form that may take.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:17 AM on April 21 [3 favorites]


Also, Much Ado About Nothing was a gorgeous, hilarious film, and it made me start to believe the "Whedon would be perfect if it weren't for all this *business*" complaining that Whedon-ites have done for ages. I expect this movie will be similarly lovely.
posted by TypographicalError at 9:55 AM on April 21


To be fair, it is Brin Hill's new film... at least as far as directing the picture is concerned.
posted by markkraft at 10:28 AM on April 21 [1 favorite]


"The typical scenario for a small, niche-y movie like this five years ago would have been a series of festival playdates followed by a teeny theatrical release in like 5 U.S. cities and then an unceremonious dump onto DVD. This seems preferable."

I'm not so sure. This distribution method seems like something that won't lead to lots of people watching the film, unless, of course, it's torrented to high hell.

... and hate to say it, but a film's ability to be accessed has a LOT to do with its longterm appreciation and societal value. It could be a great film, but if you're not able to show it to your wife, kids, or friends a few years down the road, or talk about it with others, then chances are you simply won't appreciate it as much.
posted by markkraft at 10:34 AM on April 21 [1 favorite]


You realize that a digital release now doesn't preclude physical media later, right?
posted by kmz at 10:41 AM on April 21


I realize it. But what *does* limit the reach of a physical (or digital) release later is the distribution channel... and I can't imagine that it would be nearly as good without the major entities involved.
posted by markkraft at 10:50 AM on April 21


"Though It's a Wonderful Life was a multiple Oscar nominee it did not take home any statues. It wasn't long before the movie was forgotten.

Fate arrived in the early 1970's. The movie's copyright expired and it went into public domain. Television began repeatedly airing this oldie on the cheap and within a few Christmas seasons it became a household staple."

...which, I guess, is another way of saying that if you don't have the industry on your side, you're better off being as generous with your distribution channel as possible. Creating something of widely appreciated value always leads to potential rewards.
posted by markkraft at 11:01 AM on April 21


Ugh. Vimeo doesn't work on this machine. So annoying.
posted by amtho at 11:25 AM on April 21 [1 favorite]


The film, which was written by Whedon and directed by Brin Hill tells the story of two folks who are connected through a metaphysical bond that allows them to experience each others' lives.

Seems odd to remake Upstream Color after only two years.
posted by FatherDagon at 12:50 PM on April 21 [3 favorites]


The typical scenario for a small, niche-y movie like this five years ago would have been a series of festival playdates followed by a teeny theatrical release in like 5 U.S. cities and then an unceremonious dump onto DVD. This seems preferable.

The real difference is the speed at which something like this percolates through the culture, now that you can find out about a movie you want to see and then see it right away without needing to physically track it down. It used to be that a movie like this would percolate through a sort of "influencer" culture of arthouse theaters and college campuses, via DVD copies being passed from friend to friend, and then a few years later people in the wider culture would discover it. Now everybody gets it simultaneously.

TL;DR: Does this represent the death of the hipster?
posted by Sara C. at 3:37 PM on April 21 [1 favorite]


I just finished it. While getting the streaming to work was excruciating--it kept stalling for the first minute for like an hour--I eventually found some tips on Whedonesque to get it to work (in my case, clicking off and on on the HD link at the bottom until it did). And oh my god, sooooooo romantic. I'm not gonna deny there's cliches, but their relationship was SO strong and adorable and the chemistry and banter and fun were through the roof that it was a pleasure to watch. I haven't seen this romantic of a movie...maybe ever? In ages, anyway. Think of all of the shitty no-chemistry couples you've seen on screen. These two have whopping chemistry without even being on screen together. It's amazing. I really want to know how they did it.

Fiction this will remind you of: Awake the TV show (blue and orange worlds), Sleepless in Seattle, and in my case the kids' book Being Of Two Minds. Especially the last one.

I wish I had a possibility of owning this movie, because I would buy it and force anyone who showed up at my house to watch it. I hope I can find the time to watch it again (though uh, streaming issues) before the time is up.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:55 PM on April 21 [2 favorites]


Thanks for the review jenfullmoon!!!!!

Definitely going to sit down and watch this later in the week :)
posted by raihan_ at 1:15 AM on April 22


Take my money, please.
posted by odinsdream at 10:31 AM on April 22


So, oh man, so many thoughts. I loved this idea and a lot of the movie, but I felt like it was totally just getting started and it ended. Truly; something got fucked up with the playback bar and I thought I had 40 minutes to go and then the credits rolled.

So, that sucked. But other than that, awesome $5.
posted by odinsdream at 8:16 PM on April 22


Gotta disagree with the positive review. The couple's chemistry played so false to me. I'm a huge Joss fan, but this was pretty awful. It was a combination of an after school special and a Nicholas Sparks movie. And the peripheral characters were barely even two dimensional. Ugh. I think I need to go watch Much Ado or Cabin as a palate cleanser. Keep your $5.
posted by greermahoney at 10:46 PM on April 22


It was a combination of an after school special and a Nicholas Sparks movie.

You say this like it's a bad thing.
posted by odinsdream at 4:26 AM on April 23


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