Monday, August 3, 2015

The Ballad Of Jeffrey (2015) - Independent Movie Review and Interview With Leopold Vincent Medley


An experiment to cure cancer?? Hmmm..If only the world was that fortunate. A young and impressionable kid has his heart in the right place, but sometimes good intentions get intoxicated..literally.. You see, Jeffery may come off to you as a science geek, but the chemicals he experiments with will transform him into something you will be sorry you ever messed with. After being doubted and bullied non-stop, Jeffrey decides to take a sip of his little magic potion which transforms him into a deranged killer. Talk about revenge of the nerd LOL! 



When I watched The Ballad Of Jeffrey, the story line itself brought back moments of Old School Horror Deja Vu for me. It is interesting to see what becomes of socially awkward Jeffrey.  And truthfully, the character had something so special about him that you can't help but want to see him develop more. Leopold Vincent Medley has a talent and passion which will take him places in the Film Industry. With The Ballad Of Jeffrey, I liked the story line. I just want to see more character progression and development which is definitely where the potential lies. I had the pleasure of interviewing Leopold Vincent Medley.


1) How did you get into film making at such a young age? What inspired you?

The first moment I became interested in film is when I was 6 years old and I saw ET. It deeply affected me. When ET was dying, I was crushed. I started literally screaming and crying out loud. My mom comforted me by saying "honey, it's just a movie." Not to me, it wasn't. To me it was real! To my six year old self these characters were real people, whom I really cared about. This was fascinating to me. Think about what a film really is, just a series of thousands and thousands of still pictures projected at 24fps. That's all it is. From the age of six I was so mesmerized that just a set of still images could evoke such a reaction from me. From that point on I've just been watching as many movies as I could get my grubby little hands on. Naturally it didn't take me long before I started shooting films of my own, when my dad bought me a camera for my tenth birthday. 

2) Can you name some movies that you did and what they are about?

The Ballad of Jeffrey was my first real feature. Before that I've done lots of shorts, the best one probably being "Spirits" which was about two brothers with a haunted bathroom. Most of the films I've made have now become sort of time capsules for me, documenting my past homes, friends, and interests. It's almost as if my childhood is being captured on film, which is a really weird thing.

3) I see you are passionate about the Horror genre. What is it that you like about Horror so much?

I like the horror genre a lot, that is true. It all goes back to my much younger days. My twin brother and I did a lot of exploring, roaming around, and mischief making. We hiked through forests, swam in rivers, and fished in lakes. We were a lot like Tom Sawyer in a way, just making trouble, exploring, and growing up. As little kids we really believed in aliens, ghosts, and the chupacabra. I remember sneaking into abandoned homes that were rumored to be haunted and hunting for ghosts, or using night-vision cameras to search for the chupacabra, or reading up about extra-terrestrials at our local library. For me, what horror is all about is this sort of whimsical, youthful abandon that all things are possible. Watching a good horror film takes us back to our old days where there was still mystery in the universe, before sophistication ruined any sort of fun. The horror genre is the only place where we can still believe, if only for 80 minutes or so, that aliens, ghosts, and monsters still exist. It's fun, and I love it. 

4) What are your thoughts regarding Horror movies of back then to the modern ones today?

Horror movies today are in a tough place. Don't get me wrong, great horror movies are still being made, but they aren't getting the recognition or distribution that they deserve. A man I recently met named Terry Hass released a sublime film called "Invasion Of The Undead" and it went almost completely unnoticed. Same with Brett Piper's 2009 "Muckman", which is undoubtedly one the best horror films ever and almost no one has seen it. Horror films just seem to not be getting the same amount of exposure that they used to get, and I blame that on modern distribution. Horror films used to be perfect for drive in theaters and VHS tapes, now they're perfect for the torrent sites, where they can quickly become forgotten. It's sad. 

5) Is there anything that you would like to see in the future of Horror Cinema? 

Well, to me, horror films are unanimous with pushing the boundaries and being wild and scary rides. But these days it seems like most horror films just don't have any balls. There's so much PG13 "found footage" crap at the theaters that's made only for rich teenyboppers to go waste their parents money on. That's not what horror is to me. It should provoke, it should disturb, it should thrill. It shouldn't be so mellow. I'd like to see horror films in the future grow a pair and take some damn risks, instead of playing it so safe all the time. Some filmmakers are still making movies like this today, but they aren't getting half as much exposure or respect as they deserve. 

6) Now that we know of your devotion to Horror, can you please fill us in on future projects of yours?

I'm always working on something new. On September 5th I am releasing a new feature called "Class One Apparition" about two kooky friends who start a paranormal investigation business. It's got a lot of comedy and even romance in it. I think it's gonna be really good. This is actually the first time I'm officially announcing this, so I hope everyone checks it out (for free, as always!) on September 5th, this year. I'm really passionate about film making and I have a lot to learn. The Ballad of Jeffrey isn't that great, which I think is a good thing. A mentor of mine named Taylor Gahm told me that if somebody is ever too proud of their work, they're doing something wrong. Make mistakes. Screw up. Get better.