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Ashens and the Quest for the Gamechild Review – Non Canon Review

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Okay, I am back. So have been in a bad head space, but better now, at least for this day. It can be day to day. I wanted to re-start this with something I know is more upbeat, before delving back into the exploitation and horror genres, which can be a little less so. I am a late Ashens fan. Say like, 3 years late, but he made me get thru a dark time, last month, when I had a bad ass flu, so having found that much like the AVGN, Ashens used Kickstarter to make a film, but released it publicly, well AVGN made 2 times his budget and will apparently go to selected theatres but still has not panned out. I had to indulge. Plus Chef excellence, the real one, is identical to my uncle Mike…
Poster created by Deviant art creator, CRUSTY DOG

I will soon, post a review of the Cinema Snob movie, I have owned and watched it, over a year ago, but procrastinated it. It was paid for by the snob himself, and is a better fit for this blog, being a giallo style comedy, but well, I forgot. Moving forward, I am a fan or certain internet/youtue/TGWTG critics, so I thought, since they made me at least smile, lets promote them.

1st thing about this film, Ashens is very similar to Simon Pegg, and Guru Larry, is a Nick Frost clone. Ashens used kickstarter and made $73k for his $50k budget, odd that AVGN got $300K plus for his $180K and the basis is a movie around ET for Atari. Ashens also made this free, where AVGN wants to profit on top of his already profit.

The film opens with Ashens trying to find a bootleg of an old fad, only to find he is being offered the real deal, which defeats his purpose. There is a Bond type intro, complete with a Bond type song, and some shitty video game footage and various tat inspired cartoons, and the couch is highlight of course, in a nod to the series.

Ok, we always give caveats, as well as stay spoiler free. So caveat applies here, I am Canadian, so some of the British humour, yes with a u – Canadian don’t you know, is lost on me. We have a lot of exposure to British humour thru our PBS, but much like our southern brothers, it does not always translate well. 7 minutes in, we are introduced to the man, Chef excellence, complete with the theme music, although this excellence, feels and looks like a shitty bootleg, Ashens key market. Jeffery Excellence, a mascot for kids food lines. Uncle Mike needed to be here, again being a ringer, but let’s never mind this. I am not a fan of the casting for Chef Excellence, but it’s only a personal preference.

The plot follows Chef Excellence, pushing Ashens into seeking out his personal holy grail, a game child, a game boy bootleg, that in his youth, was usurped from him by a neighbourhood rival. From there we are driven into a stop motion hell world, telling Stewart, he has to embark on this quest for the game child, or face eternal torture. From there we get Uri Gellar references, at a shitty bar, Carl Sagan or Einstein spoofs, hell everyone wants the game child. So Einstein/Sagan character, has slept with Ashen’s girlfriend, and is also in pursuit of the game child, leading to a test of wits.
Which comes in the form of a game of Space Attack, essentially Crossfire, with little results.

From there we meet Chef Brilliance, excellence’s arch nemesis, whom sells food like products in the style of blaxploitation, and we get excellence’s back story, kind of an anti Monsanto message. There is an autobiographical element to this, and it is self deprecating and pretty funny. There are nods to a lot of popular horror, and exploitation films, but all pay off for the most part. The silver skull reveal, Ashens nemesis, the silver skull, reveal, is impressive, and makes you smile, there is also an Owen Wilson parody character, that is hysterical. He captures the essence so well. There is some parody character masturbation, but it’s all in parody spirit. There is a decent scene involving storm troopers, that is decent enough. The end, wraps it all up nicely, it’s weird, but that’s the source material. In the end, it wraps up well, has some big smile moments and ends on a nice high. Like other lower budgets, the Cinema Snob and the Garbageman, it ends well enough for it’s plot. It’s by no means great, but it makes you smile. Wonder what a big budget would do for this, much like the aforementioned.

B (74%)

PROS: Looks great for it’s budget, has some great characters, some great in jokes if you are a fan, Chef excellence, is a character. We can all identify with the antagonist in this, well most guys. Warwick Davis reveal

CONS: So issues with pacing, a strange sub plot, and let’s face it, we needed a better Chef Excellence, he was too far from the reality.


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