Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Coming Soon - "The Living Wake"

I'm giving this indie movie a shout-out because I like the look of it and I'm going to be getting a screener of it - so expect a full review in the near future! Though volcanic ash from Iceland may slow things down if it's being sent airmail...

The Living Wake is a dark comedy set in a timeless storybook universe. Self-proclaimed artist and genius, K. Roth Binew, has one day to live.  Binew sets out to hand out invitations to his final party, a living wake. He has enlisted his best and only friend, Mills Joquin, to take him around on a bicycle powered rickshaw. In a final attempt to probe life's deepest mysteries, Binew endures one ridiculous trial after the next.   He concludes his day with a final performance at his living wake. On a makeshift stage in an open field, Binew's friends and enemies gather to witness his madness one final time...

Directors Comments
From the first moment the script hit my hand until my end of days, my life has changed because of The Living Wake.  Through forged friendships and a raw creative force, this little movie has truly taken on a spirit unto itself.

Mike OConnell birthed the concept, Peter Kline harnessed and translated it to the page and I visualized a world where  K. Roth Binew is king.  I envisioned the storybook-like feel taking place in a beautifully isolated environment.  A world that could feel like its own universe yet at the same time strangely familiar.  For me, that place was my home state of Maine. The vibrant fall foliage matched with the rustic architecture of the area fit my vision perfectly. I wanted the film to be funny and sad, but also strikingly beautiful.  Shaping the dramatic and emotional elements of the story to enhance the wit of the script was of utmost importance to me.  K. Roth Binew is such an overwhelming personality that I felt that the audience needed to feel sympathy for him even if they disliked him.
Much of that sympathy came through the wonderful portrayal of Mills Joquin by Jesse Eisenberg.  His impeccable comedic timing and emotional sensibilities combined with Mikes hysterically heroic portrayal of K. Roth Binew enabled this bizarre little world to come to life.  Having these two supremely talented actors leading the way on this amazing journey was a wonderful gift.   --Sol Tryon, March 2010

Mike OConnell (K. Roth Binew) and co-writer with Peter Kline
Mike OConnell is an unforgettable performer who combines cerebral absurdist comedy with a virtuosos mastery of electric guitar. Hailing from Chicago, Mike grew up reading Woody Allens short fiction, as well as listening to cassette tapes of Emo Phillips and Jackie Moms Mabley. For the last eight years, Mike has lived in LA where he has played many of the top clubs and attracted a sizable fan base. Rolling Stone has called Mike the hot comedian to watch. Variety singled Mike out in their 2007 Ten Comics to Watch profile. He has appeared on late nights  Jimmy Kimmel and Craig Ferguson, and Comedy Centrals The World Stands Up. In 2007, Mike developed a series entitled Conrad Besselheimer: The Internet Life Coach for HBOs comedy online site. Mike was cast in Foxs sketch comedy pilot, The Right Now! Show in 2007. He was part of Judd Apatows show: Apatow for Destruction. Mike is co-writing and attached to star in Million Dollar Strong with Todd Phillips (Old School, The Hangover). Mike recently completed four comedy music videos that he wrote and will star in. These are being produced by Will Ferrells company Funny or Die and will air on HBO this summer.  Mike was most recently seen onscreen in Judd Apatows Funny People.
Jesse Eisenberg (Mills Joquin)
Jesse Eisenberg began his career in musical theatre, performing in a variety of shows in New Jersey and New York City. In 2002, at the age of 19, Jesse made his auspicious screen debut in Roger Dodger opposite Campbell Scott. Since then, Jesse has appeared in M. Night Shyamalans The Village, won awards for his role in Noah Baumbachs indie hit, The Squid and the Whale, and appeared opposite Terrance Howard and Richard Gere in The Hunting Party.  Jesses is best known for his starring or supporting roles in The Education of Charlie Banks and Miramaxs  Adventureland, directed by Greg Mottola (Superbad) and a leading role in Reuben Fleischers Zombieland for Columbia.  Jesses 2 additional May releases are Solitary Man opposite Michael Douglas and Susan Sarandon and the Sundance selection, Holy Rollers.  Jesse stars with Justin Timberlake in David Finchers The Social Network (October release).  He was nominated for the 2010 BAFTA Rising Star Award.

Filmmaker Sol Tryon
In 2002, Sol produced his first narrative feature film, Bomb The System, which premiered at the 2003 Tribeca Film Festival and earned him an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best First Feature.  In 2005, Sol worked in Morocco with video artist Shirin Neshat on her first feature film, Women Without Men (Silver Lion Award at Venice Film Festival 2010), and began production on his next two projects, "Weapons" (Executive Producer) and "The Living Wake" (Director/Producer). Weapons premiered in competition and was sold to Lionsgate at Sundance. The Living Wake is Sols directorial debut and premiered at Cinevegas where he received the Red Star Directors Award for originality, creativity and vision. During that time, he also produced Mark Webbers directorial debut film, Explicit Ills, starring Paul Dano, Rosario Dawson, Lou Taylor Pucci and executive produced by Jim Jarmusch. Explicit Ills took several festival trophies, including the Audience Award at SXSW, and was released theatrically in early 2009. Sol has recently produced two documentaries, 2012: Time For Change (featuring Daniel Pinchbeck, Sting, Ellen Page, David Lynch and Gilberto Gil) and Being In The World (Directed by Tao Ruspoli). He is also in pre-production on his next film as director, "Kick The Can". Based on the best selling novel by newsman Jim Lehrer, "Kick The Can" is a coming of age comedy that takes place in Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas during the early 1950's. Sol lives in Brooklyn, NY and is committed to bringing original stories with an artistic vision to audiences around the world.

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