Monday, February 6, 2023

Murder, Anyone? (2023)

Streaming Service: None
Movie Name/Year: Murder, Anyone? (2023)
Genre: Comedy
Length:  1h 21min
Rating: Unrated
Production/Distribution: Red Phoenix Productions, Sandaled Kid Productions, Uncork’d Entertainment
Director: James Cullen Bressack
Writer: Gordon Bressack
Actors: Sally Kirkland, Kristos Andrews, Galadriel Stineman, Maurice LaMarche, Charles M. Howell IV, Carla Collins, Spencer Breslin

IMDb Blurb: Two playwrights, George and Charlie, are tasked with the challenge of creating the next "avant-garde, surrealistic, mind-bending neo-noire thriller". As they write, the story comes to life in real time. However, their own emotions and arguments also begin to manifest on film, creating sharp twists and turns that affect the entire movie. Filled with hilarity and chaos, Murder, Anyone? is a comedic play-within-a-play-within-a-movie that contemplates the complexities of language, art, theater, film and more.

Cat’s Point of View:

When we watched the trailer for Murder, Anyone? I was instantly in love with this concept. Learning that this production was made by James Cullen Bressack (Survive the Game, Fortress, Hot Seat) to honor his father was simply icing on the cake.

We, as audiences, don’t really get to see the process that goes on behind the scenes in the writer’s room, so to speak. Murder, Anyone? gave us a peek at that collaborative creative process, as well as the fun off-the-wall story it created. 

As a writer, this film really resonated with me on several levels. Sometimes characters take on a life of their own in your mind and you just go with the flow. Other times, it’s a lot of trial and error to figure out what makes the most sense for a story. When you write with someone else and have differing opinions, it can be frustrating to come to a compromise that works for the project at hand. Murder, Anyone? wonderfully captured that process and the emotions behind it.

I also adored the cinematography choices switching between black and white and color for the various scenes. That was a stroke of brilliance, marking clearly for the audience what the writers envisioned for their play-that-might-be-a-movie as well as what was going on in the ‘real world.’ 

The narrative for the ‘play,’ itself was a bit over-the-top but in a really fun way. The actors embraced the fact that they were characters in a scene in progress. Some bits felt really hokey and some of the dialogue was a little wonky, but it all seemed to fit and it was still entertaining.

I enjoyed Murder, Anyone? and feel connected to the director's intended message and his love for his father.

Murder, Anyone? Is set for a digital release by Uncork’d Entertainment on February 7th, 2023.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 88%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score –94%
Metascore – None
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 4.5/10

Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 3.5/5

Trust the Dice: Parental Advisory Rating - R

Movie Trailer:

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