Series 7: The Contenders Reviews
In an alternate ending included in the DVD release, Dawn and Jeff drop their weapons and flee the theater, but are surrounded by angry fans, displeased at the anticlimactic conclusion of the standoff, and are beaten savagely before they can escape. Jeff again wakes up in a hospital as the new reigning Contender.
Writer/Director Daniel Minahan's childhood friend, Dawn Lagarto, is given a "Special Thanks" credit. He originally wrote the story using her name for the main character, but, when it came time to start filming, the producers had legal concerns regarding the use of a real person's name. However, actress Brooke Smith felt an affinity for the name and wanted to retain it for her character. Minahan called the real Dawn Lagarto and got her blessing to use the name.
The idea for this project came to Daniel Minahan after working as a TV producer and being fascinated by reality shows. Minahan pitched the fake reality show concept to a network executive as an actual series in 1998. The first round of notes came back from the executive. "Can it be more sexy and less violent?"
Minahan credits Videodrome, Westworld, and Rollerball as primary influences.
man this is such a brilliant movie 2 watch, it is such a cult classics movie 2 watch, I think that this is such an underrated movie 2 watch its got a fantastic cast throughout this movie...... it is such a fantastic movie 2 watch, it is such an unpredictable movie 2 watch, it is such a brilliant movie 2 watch with a fantastic cast throughout this movie.....
it also benefits from toned down yet reasonably graphic violence and suspense, thanks in no part to its absorbing, faux-reality show style that makes the suspense as fun as any straightforward realist narrative.
it uses these techniques to craft a fun, darkly comic and ultimately devastating look at our obsession with and desensitization to media violence and growing apathy towards the welfare of others for a few ratings
you've probably never heard of this movie, but its definitely worth discovering. it matches BR on almost every level.
If the acting had been better and the "twist" hadn't been so foreseeable as to make it pathetic, this would have been a 2-and-a-half star film. As it stands, the fantastic final line of the "film" is all that saves this otherwise droll mess.
Well worth a rental.