(2010) Writer, Director, Actor, Stunt
Freak: Andrew Thatcher
Should I know
No, you shouldn't, 'cause he's just a normal legitimate
businessman running a professional business, that is,
Well, who is he to
the trained eye?
I'm not sure, 'cause my eyes
Hats off to Andrew Thatcher creator of the "cheesy special effects" in
"no budget independent Action film"
CHARITY HURTS. He really is an
and totally gets it. In his words: "I
pretty much hired every single person who even seemed remotely
interested in being involved"
I only wish I could share this movie with you!
I haven't had this much fun watching something in years.
Here's the trailer . . .
Thanks so much for
sending me your movie. It was surprisingly stylistic
and cinematic. I thoroughly enjoyed it! Anyone
with this much enthusiasm for the genre will no doubt be going
places, and I look forward to seeing your career progress. Also,
I'll be curious to see which path you choose to focus on since you
seem to be a one-man Action Army. I'm writing to share
everything I liked about it and applaud your efforts!
You have an awesome
sense of Drama, Action, and Comedy. The
above-the-line scene was fun and really set the tone. The
ominous music was great and I loved the gunshot in the title. The
acting dog was cute too, but then you burned your first victim right
in front of the dog (implied) . . . this seemed extra cruel!—LOL Why
am I laughing at that? 'Cause I'm an
[Love that you opened and closed the movie with the dog. She
is very sweet.] A nice touch was the homemade flamethrower prop (I
liked how the guy turns to
the camera a little so you can see the design on the backpack.
It's a pretty good mock-up of
the real thing.)
I still can't believe you did all this!
FIRST FIGHT SCENE
Great sound effects and choreography on the 2-schoolsgirls-on-1-guy (you)
fight scene. Loved the unexpectedness of it.
The Action is cheesy in the BEST way and as much fun as early Kung
Fu movies that made me love Action Movies. It really is an
"homage to the old school VHS Action Movies we all grew up with"
as you put it, and reminded me several Action Movies with ass-kicking
SECOND FIGHT SCENE,
In the second chase/fight scene, you two were a little slow to wind it up but even that was funny,
and as the scene gathered steam, it got funnier that you (purposely) look like you were struggling (especially on the jump landings).
Liked the little Rumble In The Bronx shopping cart action.
Love that you have only one person to speak to
at the recruitment meeting! The
lines for this character (who wants to shoot charity workers) are funny. "So, let me get this straight, one more time, I'm not killing
I think he
was having a lot of fun saying them.
That's the single most enjoyable thing about this movie:
that you all are so
obviously having fun making it.
If this character was more
menacing, psycho, and intense/serious, I think it might have been
even funnier. More like the audience would be wondering where
the hell did he
get this guy? I loved that his gun discharges when you get
rid of it! Also, loved the line "I'm not leaving, man,
I'm just getting a bit of fresh air." He was doing a great
job of delivering the lines but he just liked doing it way too much (shaking
my head, so cute). Him being more menacing might have made
"You can't prove it was me" even funnier.
OMG The two-gun scene between you and the guy in the black leather jacket! Some of it is genius. I laughed so hard! The
whole second chase scene is laugh-out-loud funny, the random bounce
off the electrical panel, the separate bench jumps just for the sake
of jumping a bench, the head-bobbling-running-with-the-camera close
up, but especially, the kick to the back of the head. Then, he broke his own neck! You were
(He could hardly keep a straight face when he
looked at you. You kept it together, but I couldn't
help but wonder how many takes you might have had to do because he kept
laughing) It was omigod funny—I was so looking forward to
outtakes . . .)
THE VILLAIN • John Scaglioni
that a rubber weight?! LOL That's what I thought the first time I watched
it, that it was a fake weight, as if the Villain was only pretending to
lift weights. He was a great sport to let you beat pretend to beat the
crap out of him later. I suspected he was
your martial arts instructor
(I confirmed that on your site.
because it came across that he seemed genuinely concerned about not
hurting you, but also because he was so skilled and
precise in his movements. He reminds
He was a great sport to do this and I hope he
enjoyed himself more than he worried about hurting you or you
I really liked the intro. conversation on the
phone, and later, especially
"Only cows and whores need to have things in their mouths all the
time." (LOL He did not just say that!) You have talent, and charisma—judging by how many friends/acquaintances you got to
participate who were obviously
not actors but who were more obviously loving every second of being in the
movie. This worked in the movie's favor. The standout for me was
"Cop" (why did he stop
halfway through his haircut?)
Too funny when he combed only one side of his hair (that's genius
too!). I had the
feeling I had seen him before (at first, I thought he was in
The Square but I couldn't place
CINEMATOGRAPHY, and SPECIAL EFFECTS
Unlike you, I have never made a movie
and I admire you for that!! I thought you did an
excellent job of editing and mixing shots, close-ups, camera
angles, slo mo, and special effects. It was very
entertaining to watch, and there is no question you have a great
eye for placement of the various Action elements for the most
enjoyable viewing experience. You know what you like and how to
put it on film! That is HUGE.
The movie seemed to
have it all. Loved that 5 ninjas showed up but then it seemed like you killed
gnarly kill on the NO SMOKING
sign! The ninjas all die awesomely, and I clapped
at the end of the back-to-back
circle shooting with you and the Cop. Loved
the buddy chemistry between you two; the whole "sidekick" angle.
It was so good, I wanted more. The scene with you two
reminded me of Bad Boys. Loved your delight with
the lines "People
wanna see! People wanna see!" LOL Great
conviction and delivery. I was trying to place that scene but
I couldn't pin down a reference [re-watched Bad Boys
and Bad Boys 2 (what took me so long)] then I thought it
might be Rush Hour 2. [I did see bits of Bad Boys
in the rolling on the floor while shooting and the awesome
shooting using the car's side mirror as a ledge.]
great with the "double fists"
line/bit . . .
Cop grabs a Ninja to use him as a shield and you do that diving shot
Colt M4 Commando,
(did I get the gun right? I had help from
a friend), I loved the blood splatter when you
hit the other
ninja, and the funny way he spasms and twitches on his knees just before he falls.
(I could watch that twitching all day. Must have rewound it 5
times!) About the 7th time when I
watched this scene, I realized at least 3 if not all of the ninjas are
you!!! LMAO That is so awesome! I laughed so hard
(with surprise and delight at your dedication) my chest hurt.
You are going to go places!! Nobody with this much drive and
motivation could help but succeed.
You hit all the best clichés. Of course the Cop has
only "2 days to retirement."
I think the super small knife should have been funnier, maybe
even smaller? but I still laughed (no blood on the knife).
I wasn't sure if
there were specific scenes in
particular you might have been intentionally paying tribute to, but
I definitely saw a little
little Lethal Weapon . . .
GETTING TO THE BIG BOSS
I like how you threw a bunch of
stuff in your path to the Big Boss. Knife toss, rocket
launcher, it was like you wanted to
include everything you could in the movie. Loved that! I couldn't
tell what level martial
artist you might be but your training is evident. When the
"the only way to my boss is through me" "cheat-shots" fight guy
turned his back and started fidgeting, I thought maybe he had
stopped to pee. LOL You had to wonder what was he doing, then he pulled out a
knife. I love the pay off for "What are you gonna do, spank
me?" You even used your belt. [ ;) Transporter ]
expressions are great throughout but especially funny during the
hanging out of the car. Did you laugh just before you fell out?
love that you're having so much fun with it. Loved the firing
off the side mirror! The driver was great too . . .
I also noticed after you fell out of the car and it sped away,
that it quickly turned and came back at you because it was in
a cul de sac! If that was intentional, kudos. If it wasn't,
maybe it was a happy coincidence and you have an innate sense of
funny. You worked in leaping over a car and a big
explosion. All these things matter to the
Freak. Way to
In the next scene, the Boss kills the surviving ninja (also you)
from the team that failed to capture you. You (as that ninja) get
your arm broken, not once but twice. You don't scream either time,
and the first time you still use it to get up off the floor.
Loved the Steven Seagal-ish bone-breaking of this scene. It
sets up the Boss's last ditch effort to 'trap' you in a fake rescue
scenario where you are outnumbered: another Action Movie
classic. The ass-whopping, way-more-men-than-it-seems-should-be
possible, but always mainly one-at-a-time fight.
As you show not
only your fighting skills, but also your stunt abilities and
extensive choreography of multiple fights, it's serious and silly all at the same time.
What is obvious, though, is that it not only took a whole lot of
energy, it must have taken a good bit of practice as well.
Your ensemble of fighters each has their opportunity to show
their skills. You exceed here at getting beat up, but you
keep going, tireless. I couldn't begin to tell you all the
different styles you pay homage to, but I see a little Thai
elbow here and there. The fights have quite a bit of drama
considering the suspension of disbelief is not an option :D.
We disbelieve, but we are loving it anyway. I noticed you
look at the cameraman a few times when fighting as if to check
that he got that scene. She/he deserves a lot of credit as well.
It's amazing to me in this scene, with all that you have done
and how long it must have taken to film, that you keep a sense
of continuity. I love what you choose to show and what you
do not. The pipe death at the end was an inspired bit of
lunacy (couldn't help but think of Universal Soldier:
FUN WITH FIRE AND NINJA
Just how much ass whopping can
one man take or dish out? In true Action Movie form, you
have progressed you way through various weapons and levels of
fighting to face the Big Boss in the finale, including beating
your way through his assistant, who, for the character, is
surprisingly skilled. After he runs away, you face even more
ninjas (with flame throwers) and a couple more henchmen.
Loved the stick through the head and the ninja bowling.
Wished that scene was a little bit longer. Just when we
think you're through, Wilmer Valderrama and John
Belushi show up ;) This is the only tiny thing in the
movie that seemed a little strange to me. This fire work. Did
Belushi talk you into putting it in? It looked cool but
the transition from the assistant running away to that seemed
like it sidetracked the movie just a bit before you got to the
Billy Duke scene.
This scene is made, not only by the lovely ladies, but by the music.
It seemed like the girls were shot without all the men in white
shirts being there and then it was put together. That's kind of
sweet. The dance was nicely done and a welcome break
from the frenzied sound effects and fighting.
Well, so much for the ninja disguise. I
thought they had already killed the last ninja anyway.
I had a hard time understanding the dialogue in the bathroom,
but you swing it into overdrive again as you take out another
whole group of men. Love how you did the
Bruce Li stomp on the
throat kill from Enter The Dragon and the crotch punch from ?
T & A
Just how much ass whopping can
one man take or dish out? In true Action Movie form, you
have progressed you way through hoardes of challengers and then
when the ladies come along, whoops, you have to fight them too.
Working the spanking in was very clever. Never seen that before.
The final fight was really
good. There was a big variety of moves and I liked when you sped
it up at times. It gave it more impact. Too skilled
is what you are to stay small time for long. So, bad ass,
please let me
know what you think of what I wrote.
P.S. If you decide you want to go into stunt work,
(rather than directing or acting) my advice would be to try to
Larnell Stovall. I don't know if you can come to
the States, but he said accepts apprentices based on a tapes
that are sent to
Actionfest 2011, both he and
Michael Jai White's
comment about BREAKING INTO THE
STUNT INDUSTRY was that it was difficult. You
have to pay your dues and then you get noticed for what you've
done. I'd say this movie will get you noticed. Larnell said
he's a voracious researcher and web hunter and looks for
inspiration from multiple sources: He reads comic books, looks
at video games, Animae, and YouTube, and he recommended everyone
to find him on
twitter. He was very
forthcoming with advice and suggested people make a YouTube
video to demonstrate what they can do. He even said they could
email him. I think you've gone way beyond that! Anyone
would be impressed.