BLOOD, BOOBS & BEAST (John Paul Kinhart, U.S.). 74 minutes. Saturday (May 3), noon. NFB Mediatheque. Rating: NN
Don Dohler makes low-budget SF and horror epics out of his Baltimore home. He’s influenced makeup whiz Tom Savini, Alias and Lost creator J.J. Abrams and inspired artists R. Crumb and Art Speigelman. The clips of his movies look like typical backyard crap, but some people think he’s got something. Others turn up to laugh at the ineptitude.
Documentarian John Paul Kinhart follows Dohler through his latest opus, Dead Hunt, and its problems with an unsecured location, no-show actors and a director, partner Joe Ripple, who has to go to his day job. We get a good look at Dohler on the set and discussing his history and personal life, while family, friends and admirers fill us in further.
He’s an unlikely exploitation filmmaker, a quiet family man without a trace of showbiz. While we learn what got him into film, we never find out what it is about movies and moviemaking that he likes and why, or why he picked exploitation when he’s not a genre fan and isn’t comfortable shooting nudity.
Similarly, we discover only a little about his work methods and nothing about how he picked up his skills.
Dohler and Ripple are likeable guys with interesting stories, but the movie leaves too many questions unanswered.
OVER THE TOP FEST 2008 continues to May 4. For ticket info, venues and complete lineup, see listings.