Game Reviews for PC, PS2, X-Box, Playstation, CCGs, Pen and Paper Role Playing and Table Top Games, plus Movies, DVDs, and Anime!

     " ...felt like I was mugged…but without the novelty or entertainment of having a gun shoved in my face. "

      Title: The Man Between by James Ernest

      Format: DVD Movie Comedy

      Reviewing Monkey: Prof. Bobo

      The Hype: Agent Bob Smith for the most part leads a very exciting life. It seems that whenever he is not saving the world from some maniac bent on its destruction he is either fighting with bad guys or engaging in gunfights or fast car chases. But what happens when this secret agent's between missions? This is subject of the short film.. The Man Between

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Story and Acting: The basis of the story of this short thirty minute film is the stuff that happens to secret agent Bob Smith between missions or what he's doing when he's not out chasing bad guys and getting the girl. There are some funny moments in here as he's either on the phone trying to figure out why his shoe is not equipped with a phone or when he is being held by an evil minion's henchman and they are discussing the way that they have killed some of their opponents (I used a chess piece.. a pawn actually). The rest is just a jumble of short scenes and images that are either just not funny or plain annoying. Oh and the cast? It's pretty much a cast of nobody's with no experience. There are a few people who are in it that are in the gaming community (even James Ernest who directed the film makes a cameo as James.. yes the British agent.) 0 out of 5

      Visuals and Directing: Okay, the good news is that some of the visuals and locations that were used in the movie are breathtaking and awe inspiring…though don't be expecting shots of the majestic mountains or rolling plains but there are some good location shots of such places like London, New York, San Francisco and, my favorite, shots of the Las Vegas Strip. Even though the movie was shot with a Mini-DV camera and, as the website says, is "rife with audio problems, unsteady camera work, and a glaring lack of plot or characterization". Which, let me assure you, is grounds enough that you probably don't want to run out and buy this film. 1 out of 5

      DVD Extras: The only extras that are in the film are a wide screen format of the film, a 30 second trailer, and a deleted scene, which was the best of the bunch that features Phil Foglio (Yes, the artist behind What's New and other ventures such as XXXenophile). This extra scene was indeed funny and did make me laugh, which was a welcome relief from the cheap canned laughs that were forced upon me in the rest of this short film. 1 out of 5

      Value vs. Price: Here is where the monkey was completely angered. You see James Ernest is a head of a company called Cheapass Games that makes high quality games for very little money. Now imagine, if you will, that you had to go out and buy a cheaply made film that was only funny the one time and you paid $16.95 for it. 16.95?!!?! I can go out to the local Blockbuster or Best Buy or whatever and buy high end film for the same amount or LESS than that! I mean come on! There are even some independent films that are out there that can be had for less than this and are at least TWICE as good than this pile of crap. Sorry folks, if I actually had to PAY to get this movie.. I would have felt like I was mugged…but without the novelty or entertainment of having a gun shoved in my face. 0 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       A joke that should have only taken 10 minutes to create and even less time to watch stretches out to a painful 30 minutes and just makes me want to scream.

      The Good: One funny extra deleted scene with Phil Foglio.

      The Bad: Everything else. I mean come now you could have put in some type of added car chase, gunfight… SOMETHING exciting.

      The Overall Ugly: The really unsteady camera work and shoddy shots that are throughout the film. It makes Blair Witch Project looked as if it was shot with a steady cam rig!

      What it's Worth: Well I suppose you could use it as a drink coaster.

Copyright © Game Monkey Press, Game Monkeys Magazine. All Rights Reserved.
Game Monkeys(tm) 1999 Game Monkey Press