Reviews and comment from the Demon Crew - creative writers at De Montfort University, Leicester.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

The Monochrome Spy

A mysterious man walked onto the stage in front of the screen at the Phoenix Cinema, and introduced his latest work. It was obvious that he was both nervous and excited as he thanked everyone for attending. Then the screen flickered. 

What followed was an all-action, satirical spy film set in 1964. This tongue-in-cheek nod to the famous television series' of the 1960's, had all the expected genre conventions: a narcissistic Bond-esque protagonist named Guy Boulton, a Soviet villain, a murder-mystery, a beautifully oblivious female called Elizabeth Landers; and the omniscient American organisation controlling the entire thing - named, rather aptly, Control. 

It ran for an impressive 1 hour 11 minutes, after which three men took to the stage for a discussion. They introduced themselves as Dick Fiddy, Tim Meadows, and Paul Gosling, the creator of the project. The discussion that followed revealed that Gosling aimed to make his movie emulate the black and white 35mm shows, such as The Saint and Dangerman. 

The Monochrome Spy had been an idea for 8 years, filmed entirely in Leicester with a budget of £1300 and all of the constraints that one would expect. And it was, at least in my opinion, a raging success. It was amusing without being insulting, engaging without being tedious; and the acting talent was far beyond any expectations I had when learning that it was an independent film.

The event ended with a quote from Fiddy regarding the secret of scriptwriting: "Bottom to chair, pen to paper!"

Hayleigh Lynch

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