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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Evan Glodell, Tyler Dawson and Jessie Wiseman
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
Evan Glodell
MPAA RATING
Rated R
RUNNING TIME
106 Mins.
DISTRIBUTED BY
Oscilloscope Laboratories
DVD EXTRAS
Behind the Scenes of Bellflower - featuring interviews with cast and crew, on set footage, and more
- Medusa Rundown - an in-depth look at the hand-built car
- Outtakes from the set
- Original theatrical trailer
 "Bellflower" Review 
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Aiden (Tyler Dawson) and Woodrow (Evan Glodell) are best friends and California transplants from Wisconsin with wild ass dreams, a Mad Max obsession and a determination to build a flamethrower symbolizing their post-Apocalyptic fantasies and nihilistic daydreams lived out in their suped up car called "Medusa."

Woodrow meets Milly (Jessie Wiseman) in a cricket-eating context and the two taking a road trip to Texas on their very first date and the relationship of two equally free-spirited individuals seems made in nuclear heaven. Of course, nothing quite works out as planned and eventually the spark explodes and the connection between Woodrow and Milly evaporates as the universe built upon aimless rage gets fueled by a bad break-up and Woodrow's inability to control the universe that is erupting around him.

An ultra-indie from writer/director/editor/co-star Evan Glodell, Bellflower is the kind of film that a Tarantino would create if he were just starting out with $20,000 in his pocket and a few talented buddies. Bellflower is the kind of film that makes it difficult for other ultra-indie directors, a film that proves you can make a kick-ass flick on an incredibly modest budget and end up with an entertaining, involving and occasionally terrifying film that leaves a lasting impression.

Glodell is a cinematic voice to be reckoned with, even if his focus does occasionally wander. Like Tarantino, even when Glodell's film loses a bit of focus it's so vividly directed and compelling that you can't help but keep your eyes glued to the screen. To give too much away about how the film resolves would be unjust, but suffice it to say that Glodell shows us just when we've started to get distracted that he's known what he's been doing all along.

Glodell is just as convincing as an actor, embodying Woodrow's insecurity and passion and fury with occasional moments of tenderness tossed in. As the story comes to involve yet another young woman, Courtney (Rebekah Brandes), Glodell layers the character even as the explosions internally and externally intensify. Tyler Dawson and Jessie Wiseman excel, as well, driving home the point that a low-budget indie can succeed wildly when the fundamentals of filmmaking and casting are tended to and a talented cast is recruited.

D.P. Joel Hodge gives the film an over-saturated look that fits both the storyline and the film's budgetary constraints perfectly.

Bellflower has just been released on DVD by Oscilloscope Laboratories, with a packing befitting an obviously up-and-coming writer/director who we'll be hearing from again in the near future for sure.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic  
    The Official Rating Guideline
    • A+ to A: 4 Stars                
    • A- to B+: 3.5 Stars            
    • B: 3 Stars                         
    • B- to C+: 2.5 Stars           
    • C: 2 Stars
    • C- to D+: 1.5 Stars
    • D: 1 Star
    • D-: .5 Star
    • F: Zero Stars

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