Last night I had the extraordinary pleasure of attending a showing of THE DEVIL’ CARNIVAL appropriately in Sin City Las Vegas, NV and I can’t begin to tell you how much I enjoyed the night. Now, I am not going to go into specs like how absolutely handsome Terrance Zdunich is in person or how Darren Bousman is like an awesome giant kid trapped in an adult body or even how beautiful Alexa Vega and Emilie Autumn are but I will go into the night and how it went (LESS any and all spoilers because I am not a douche bag).
Wait, wait, wait, before I get into all of this, let me give you a background on the show so you can can understand all of what I am about to say.
After the amazing success of REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA, Darren Bousman and Terrance Zdunich decided to get back together for another rock musical, something that has been what both have always dreamed of doing, and made THE DEVIL’S CARNIVAL. Now, I can not speak to the specifics of the whole process as I was not able to sit them down for a formal interview (…yet… AHEM… hint…hint…you get me…) but however it went down, they made another amazing film that has quickly become a cult classic as their first brain child. Deciding to say SCREW THE NORM, they embarked on a tour around Canada and the U.S. on their own dime and time to bring this show, AND EXPERIENCE, to the masses. I say experience in caps because I want you all to understand that this is much more than just your regular movie night with popcorn, soda, and snacks, this is a complete production unlike most will experience unless they are willing to bypass the Hollywood movie norm and actually succumb and embrace the meat and heart of the film world which are Indie films. Through exhaustion, long days and nights on the road, and many game of “guess the smell” that make for a very odoriferous car ride, they have been pressing through city after city to give fans the one thing every fan truly wants… Something new and amazing to keep us proud and content with being horror fans.
Now that I have given you a taste of the start of things, let’s get down to to the business at hand.
If you follow my column, you should all have an idea of how excited I was when I found out Darren and Terrance had gotten together to make another film. I was a huge REPO! fan and have a bit of an obsession with any film that includes the Prince of Darkness (thank you LEGEND). I have studied the writing style of Terrance and the directing style of Darren not only as part of my job, but also as a huge fan of both of them. I went into this with no expectations and no plans to dissect the film, I just wanted to experience the film as a fan of film and a fan of alternatives to the norms.¬† I am glad I did this because it allowed me to take in each aspect of the experience from the meet-and-greet in the beginning of the show to the film itself. I can say that at no point was the professional nor the fan girl inside of me disappointed.
Very rarely are there teams of people who just “work”. Meaning that when these two get together, you can expect world of amazement from them when you came into the situation with no expectation whatsoever. There is something extremely magical with Terrance and Darren that makes the snobby and overly-numb industry insider inside of me actually start to feel hope and excitement again. They have the rare ability to almost share the exact same vision from two separate brains and put it together in such a way that we, as the audience, can actually get a peek into a window of both of their souls. This is rare and something and special and not something to be looked over. It is a true gift to the audience and I personally thank them for it.
The film itself is something to truly behold.
Visually is was amazing and had better production design than most of the major films that I have seen come out of Hollywood in many years. There was never a moment when they eye isn’t roaming trying to soak in all of the pieces that are put in place to make the carnival scene complete. The make up and character design so f’in cool! Wick, the painted doll, the hobo, the tamer, the scorpion, all of these characters you could actually imagine being carnies in a carnival that Satan, himself, would run. My next statement is one that I am only going to say because I mean it wholeheartedly. Being a woman who is SO completely picky of how Lucifer is portrayed in films, I can say that many fail my taste. To me, there is no more a quintessential Lucifer than Tim Curry’s character in LEGEND. He was amazing, astounding, and the epitome of what Beelzebub. should encompass With that being said, I have no qualms about saying that¬† Terrance Zdunich as the Devils is the best since Curry. The design of this glorious creature is not one that TRIES to be powerful and sexy but just is. His performance as such was outstanding as well.¬† They actually spoke about the concept of the Devil and almost didn’t go the route that they did, thank you for coming to your senses. Amazing.
Speaking of performances, I have to admit that I was utterly impressed with each and every character. Alexa Vega’s Mick was not even a shadow of Shilo, it was fun to see her less victim and more soul-raping demon. Emilie Autumn’s painted doll character was so creepy and¬† unnerving at point (which was also a fan favorite) that I think for a minute she almost turned me gay (yes, I would have went there, I would have kissed her for information…see the film to get that). Marc Senter was sexy, dangerous, and completely deranged as the Scorpion; played the part to perfection. Shawn Crahan as the Tamer gave the role such a deeply unnerving aspect that I was quickly reminded of why I am such a fan of his work. And I have to say one of my favorite characters, besides Belial, was Dayton Callie who played the ticket-keeper. He pulled and kept everything together in the film and I was excited to see him from one scene to the next. This of course is a short list of characters and actors, you will also find Bill Moseley, Sean Patrick Flanery, Ivan Moody (who performs amazingly during his song), Jessica, Lowndes, Mighty Mike Murga, and still many more.
The soundtrack is so much fun! Not rock like REPO! but more older, darker, camp fire song type like songs. It gives it it’s own soul and personality to differ from REPO! and makes it enjoyable in a whole new arena. I am already playing it in my car. (SPEAKING OF SOUNDTRACK…you may want to keep reading for a special surprise).
As a whole, the film is so much fun. With an amazing cast, extremely talented crew, and the minds of Bousman and Zdunich, this is one film that you have got to see! And let me give you all a tip…when it goes back on the road and you are in the area, DON’T MISS THE LIVE SHOW! I can’t even begin to explain how gracious and intimate these guys are with each and every fan that they meet. And they make it a point to meet each and everyone of those who come up to them. How often do you hear that? Do yourself a favor and don’t miss one of these live viewings. You won’t regret it for one minute and will leave with much more than you could have asked for. For me…Best film I’ve seen in 2012 this far.
Now for the good part. Last night I just so happened to pick up an extra CD soundtrack of THE DEVIL’S CARNIVAL and just so happened to get the signatures of Terrance Zdunich, Darren Bousman, Emilie Autumn, Alexa Vega, and Marc Senter right on the case that I want to give away to one of you! This is a pretty sweet fricken deal if you ask me considering all I need from you guys is for you to enter with a photograph.
Take a photo of yourself (through cell phone, webcam, regular cam, however you would like) holding a sign that must at least include “I AM A SINNER” and “THE DEVIL’S CARNIVAL” written somewhere on them and either tag me in them on FaceBook, send them to me through Twitter, or you can email them to me at DaiGreen@yahoo.com (can’t get into the HNN email right now so please don’t send them there). That’s it! You can dress up in a theme, you can make them creative, or you can just be your plain ol’ awesome self but get those in and at the end, I will be picking one lucky person to receive this rare autographed and numbered copy of the soundtrack!
Contest starts 5/13/2012 and ends 5/27/2012 with the winner being announced on THE DARKEST HOUR PODCAST on the 28th. (You do not have to be listening live to win, you will be emailed shortly after the airing of the show). So with that, good luck all and get those pics in!!!
It is just about time for me to head out and go about my sinners business but I want to thank you all for reading and hope I provided some insight for you to get your asses out and check out the film! I will throw all of the awesome links you need to visit down below so make sure to check ‘em out.
If you enjoyed this column, please share it with your friends. The only way to get real fan perspective alive is to share the things that you feel you connect with from people like me who do it from our hearts. I do this with my own opinions, my own perspectives, and because I care enough to give you guys an honest outlook that I hope you will enjoy and appreciate all of you giving me the time to speak and be heard.
I am a sinner and I thank you all for sticking with me!