1 week ago
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Making A Human Killing Machine
The story unfolds in two parts. A very rich woman has had her son taken by the government. She believes he is being held in a top secret location. The place, known as D4, isn't completely unknown though. Some people believe that the place is holding Bigfoots there and breading them for their on purpose. The woman's son has been in trouble with the law because of his drug use, but she doesn't understand why the government would take him. She is worried about him because he is epileptic and doesn't have his meds. She hires retired operative Sloan (Eric Berner) to put a team together and go in to get her son. At the same time this is going on, we also meet Old Man Dalton (Ted LeGarde). His young grandson is also epileptic. After talking to a doctor, he is given some meds to give his grandson, but when they make him very violent. The doctor then tells him that they will take his grandson in order to treat him with a new drug. When Dalton goes to visit his grandson days later though, no one at the office knows what he is talking about. The day he claims to have met the doctor was a day that the office was supposed to be closed, and the doctor doesn't look like the one he met with. Dalton is then tipped that his grandson has been taken to D4, so he heads that way as well. The two stories converge into one as they discover what is going on there.
Like all other movies screened so far, D4 is a low budget film. Shot on a $35,000 budget, the script was written and the movie filmed all within a year. It took another two years before Dickerson got the movie to the point where he wanted it to be. How do I know all this? Dickerson was there with us all and did a quick Q&A after the screening. The story was partly based on his own experience dealing with his own epileptic son and his violent moods when taking drugs to help his condition.
If I can say one thing about D4, it is that it takes its sweet time setting up the story. This isn't a bad thing really though. Things start off with three stories being told. There is the lady trying to hire a merc team, the grandfather trying to do what is best for his grandson, and the mercs coming together and being told what their mission is going to be. It was all pretty easy to follow despite the jumping around of story lines. Something that surprised me was that I was expecting an all out action flick, something in the sci-fi vain. Maybe aliens or something like that based partly on the poster that was hanging outside the screening room. While there is some action sequences, it wasn't the all out action I was expecting. I thought something that kept the movie interesting was the music. There was some nice music that really helped set the mood in this one.
All effects were done by CGI. I could have done without them, but they aren't all the distracting, even if they do stand out somewhat. The effects are limited to gun shots and blood splatter, along with some CGIed sparks. The acting was better. I didn't have anyone that really impressed me, so the acting wasn't great, but it does the job just fine. You can find Clay Broker, Jeff Hime, Jaimee Gray Simon and Mike Ulm. The last name listed is the big guy at the top of the poster.
Dickerson said in the Q&A that he filmed the outside shots in D4 in what he called his parents backyard. The building that the mercs find towards the end of the movie was actually a church that was torn down a few months after filming. I have a hard time calling D4 a horror movie, even if it is making the rounds at horror conventions. I was glad that story came before action. I was happy that the beast they go up against is human. In a way I do wish that the story had set up a bit faster. I wasn't bored, but I was starting to wonder when it would move on from the set up stage. Even though I didn't fall in love with D4, it was well worth the watch. I wouldn't have picked it up otherwise.
3 out of 5 Those are some big muscles!