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Publication: The Stranger
Author: Merriwether, Kent
Date published: May 16, 2012

Last summer, I finished principal photography on my debut feature film, The Killist, about a Starbucks barista and trivia host named Vegas who's also a secret hit man. Vegas's pop-culture-savvy wit and prowess as an assassin are as sharp (and deadly) as the cut of his suit. To say that I was proud of The Killist would be an understatement: For less than $30,000, I produced, scripted, directed, lit, and created the SFX for a motion picture that, in my humble opinion, could stand up to any Hollywood product. People I showed the movie to compared it to Tarantino, Spielberg, and Scorsese. I completely agree. And it is no exaggeration to say that my childhood friend Eddie Blunt, making his big-screen debut as Vegas, is the next Matthew McConaughey. He falls in love with his target-a stripper played by my girlfriend, Deena Thompson. In the tour-de-force third act, Vegas has to decide between being a good company man or telling the whole system to go fuck itself.

Since the Seattle International Film Festival brags about being the biggest film festival in the country, I had high hopes when I submitted the film to SIFF for consideration last November. But then we got a rejection slip from SIFF in the mail, and it's like, what the fuck? I sent an e-mail to The Stranger about how they should do a feature on SIFF's bullshit standards, and they wrote back that they were "actually excited" about SIFF this year because there are "more quality films than usual." That's such complete horseshit I don't even know where to start. When I asked them to review The Killist, they never responded.

After I sent a few more e-mails about it, someone finally wrote back and said I could submit my critique of SIFF "to run in the Public Editor column." I don't read The Stranger every week, so I don't even know what that is (sorry!), but I would just like to point out that SIFF is fucking bullshit if talented filmmakers being compared to Tarantino, Spielberg, and Scorsese aren't being given a fair shot. According to the internet, the opening movie at SIFF is by Lynn Shelton, who must have sucked a lot of dicks at The Stranger because they gave her a Genius Award and they write an article about her every three months, even though no one I know even likes her movies. Also, women are not exactly known for being good directors-get pissed if you want, but it's true.

I tried to read about the other films that made the cut, but it's just a bunch of standard film festival crap about atomic energy is bad and rape in the military is bad. LOL. This mealy-mouthed social consciousness is just overkill. I hate that The Stranger is cheering on this mediocre "We Are the World" crap. If you want to see the real future of film, including my girlfriend, who I swear to god is the next Megan Fox, The Killist will be screening this Friday and Saturday night at the Papa Murphy's in Mountlake Terrace. The manager there actually cares about American cinema.

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BY KENT MERRIWETHER

Independent Filmmaker

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