Tag Archives: Interview

Who Made Who? An Interview with Iiris Härmä on A.I.

16 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

* Playing during Doxa Documentary Film Festival, from June 18 to 26. Tickets to an online screening can be purchased here. For information, please visit their faq.

Finnish filmmaker Iiris Härmä is perhaps best known for her documentaries exploring cultural identity. Her first work, End of the Line, is a sociological film about old men losing work at a bus factory and having nowhere else to go. It was developed in a time when globalization was making waves; the shift of where work can be done cheaper displaced many people. The ripple effect is disconcerting. Her degrees in Ethnology and Cultural Studies helps pinpoint topics of humanitarian interest. When she graduated with a diploma on film studies from the New School University in NY, the sky’s the limit for what she liked to explore in the cinematic medium–or rather, on what we learn from her discourses.

Her latest work Who Made Who? examines where artificial intelligence technology is currently headed. After her own experiences with it, namely in dealing with automated bank services through the phone, it got her curiosity going. She said another encounter was at a seminar in 2015 at Helsinki, where Michael Laakasuoed talked about the moralities of AI; it was an eye-opening experience. She talked about her inspiration in an interview with the Finnish Institute, and I’m fairly sure she took a lot more out of making this documentary than we as viewers did, as newcomers to a future not everyone is prepared for.

Essentially, this documentary examines the relationship between humans and technology. It’s not too different from Hi. A.I., a film I looked at some months ago (review link here) which dealt with similar themes. I was reminded of how robots can help keep some seniors occupied than the other one concerning Charles attempting to have a meaningful conversation with Harmony; a couple they were not.

Continue reading

On Why We Want to Believe with Jason Hewlett, JoBlo.com & Vancouver Paranormal

14 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

To make a mark in the paranormal pop culture scene requires a schtick network television and mainstream movies rarely want to play up. We Want to Believe is not so much about exploring the wilds of Supernatural British Columbia than Super, natural as it’s actually marketed. Instead, it’s to reveal to enthusiasts of such occult-type television programming a web series can hold a viewer’s attention much better in a shorter, digestible format!

The show’s genesis came from Jason Hewlett, who originally thought of making an audio podcast after spending a few years with the Vancouver Paranormal Society (VPS). He has his own show, works for the Kamloops Daily News covering local crime and is a voice on Radio NL 610 AM before bringing his skills to the group. All it took was believing there was something under the bed as a child and finding something weird–perhaps druidic–on a hike once at Shuswap Lake later in his years.

Continue reading

On Aliens, UFOs & Proximity with Eric Demusey

9 May

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Arrives on VOD
May 15, 2020

DVD Release
July 7, 2020

Eric Demusey is a Los Angeles based filmmaker making his directorial debut with a young adult sci-fi drama Proximity. As part of the creative team who made the fantastic intro title sequences you see on Stranger Things, Game of Thrones and Tron Legacy, his experience showed he was ready for the next step. Plus, his passion is not limited to special effects work which gave him his start. Nearly everyone working in this industry has a story to tell.

null

Instead of focusing on getting people to believe in UFOs, this movie explores the lasting effects of those who have been abducted and experimented upon for unknown reasons–hence the title. In this tale set in today’s trying times, this creator does not rewrite Fire in the Sky.

I was reminded of this story because of the introduction–where loggers in Alaska are whisked away by a UFO and the trauma we witness is far worse. Fast forward a few years later and change the setting from the boonies to a metropolis, Issac (Ryan Masson) gets his moment with an alien encounter, and tries to figure out what this all means. What he deals with has less to do with horror and more with trauma management.

When considering this movie was made on a budget, Demusey has to be creative in how to make those special effects shots work without overspending. For fans of FX films and UFOs, this movie has a lot of detail to love, and I spoke to him courtesy of Shout! Factory.

Continue reading

Kickstarting OMG! Horror & Interviewing Tone Rodriguez!

17 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

OMG! Is an upcoming horror anthology set to arrive on Kickstarter at the end of April. This series will be published by indie Aequitas Comics and Editor-in-chief Tone Rodriguez would have been championing this baby at a lot more conventions if only the world is not in lockdown. Fortunately, he was able to get a start at shows like Fan Expo Vancouver.

The Emerald City Comic Convention ashcan teaser edition has been “cancelled” and appropriately enough, is selling online for those wanting an advance teaser.

This series differs from others such that it draws from urban legends from all around the world, and leaves the finer details up to the imaginations of the writers and artists. The talent pool is huge, and Rodriguez hinted at having not only well-established talents but also newcomers contributing. I had the opportunity to chat with him briefly about this when he was in Canada, and correspond further to see what the plans are given the current situation that’s affecting many an industry.

Continue reading