“Bad is Bad” full length feature film on Vimeo for FREE Shot on 7D

Not much in life is free these days, but this is and it’s worth your time. Bad is Bad is a pretty good little indie film. I watched not expecting much and thoroughly enjoyed it. Shot well, acting not bad and well directed. I wish the sound was more “hollywood” but that’s me being picky, I just am used to “fuller” sound but it’s far still pretty good! 

I thoroughly recommend downloading it and watching it on your media player on a TV or through internet TV. Watching an almost 100 minute film on a computer sucks to be honest and does it no favours. Watch it on TV and it shines…oh and stick with it. It didn’t grab me immediately but after a little bit I was in! It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea…What is really interesting though is why it’s online for free and is this a wise thing to do rather than try and make money from it…That was the guy’s initial plan but a number of factors meant they decided to make it a calling card instead, that is detailed below…

So here are some words from Director Kent Lamm on why he made the film and why it is available for free on Vimeo. Nice job guys and a great calling card!

 Chris Fornataro and I started writing Bad is Bad in the summer of 2009 with the intent of filming it ourselves and submitting it to film festivals. Since we were (and still are) poor undergrad students, we planned it out so that we could film it for practically nothing, writing in only resources and locations which were at our disposal for free. In the end our total budget was about $6,000, the majority of which was for equipment. We raised this money through part-time jobs and by winning several cash prizes in short film competitions.

We shot on the Canon 7d because it was the quickest, easiest, and (with exchangeable lenses) most versatile camera to shoot with, and the price was reasonable. We purposely did not use much of the super-shallow DOF which DSLR filmmakers so often (over)use. We favored wide shots in the cinematography to give the movie a more austere tone. We also made sure not to fall into the trap of trying to make a Hollywood style movie with zero budget. We played to our strengths: good actors, a good story, and the fact that we could do anything we wanted in the script or on set because no producers were looking over our shoulders. After 18.5 days of shooting, we were wrapped, and once again broke.

After an extremely intense and rushed editing process we started sending it out to film festivals, but were not having any luck. Eventually I realized that my supposed final cut of the movie was too slow, especially in the beginning, and in many scenes the editing was simply not up to par. I went back and overhauled the entire movie with this new cut which is far superior to the old version. 

Now that we had our “final final cut”, we didn’t have the money/patience/desire to try submitting to a bunch of fests again. We didn’t try for distribution because we knew that movies like ours don’t get seen by anyone unless they won awards at Sundance or other monster film fests. Also, since we didn’t have a reputation or big fanbase, and there’s no names attached to the movie, it would be tough to convince many people to pay to watch the movie. 
The producer team
In the end, we figured it was only $6,000 between us, and we’d rather have a lot of people watch the movie than make back a few bucks from iTunes sales. And so far… it’s worked out great for us. In just three weeks we’ve been able to get feedback from people all over the world, most of which has been overwhelmingly positive. Putting the movie online has already led to some new opportunities for us and given us more exposure than we ever could have hoped for from other distribution methods. Using Vimeo and Youtube as free distribution channels for no-budget features is a highly underrated strategy, because if the product is good, it WILL get seen, maybe by someone who will want to pay for your next project!

-Kent Lamm (director, co-writer, producer, and editor of Bad is Bad)

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30 comments

  1. Small tip for Roku Box users click like and the movie will show up in your likes when you start up your Roku Box.

    Philip is right this is a lot more fun to watch on your TV set then computer screen.

    Also for Android and iPhone users if you have a PS3 or XBOX 360 or another media device checkout brings imediashare app brings Vimeo to the big screen.

    http://www.imediashare.tv/

  2. Great job and I think excellent idea in putting out there for free. Had a sick day today, so was looking for something to get into. I agree was a little slow in the beginning and still think there is another 10 minutes if those guys are ruthless! Getting closer to 90mins would be better I think. Great characters and had me wanting to keep watching to see what happened. Interesting problem of vibration coming through the cam with some bumps/ action in the scene and also I didn’t think the sound was all too bad. Some nice use of sound in places actually (esp on this budget!) But who am I to be critical, I don’t have a feature out there. Really nice work!

    1. Matias,

      the trailer looks great. very good actors! i will watch the movie, when it´s out. but subtitles is a pain… you never get to watch the movie. you should try to make an english dubbig – even if it´s bad 🙂 i will try the same with my stuff (out in far future ;)).

  3. Well it Started promising, but then got kinda boring after the plot got stuck in that one house for the rest of the movie, with out any real developments in the second half. Seems the film’s story was stretched out to last an hour an a half. I would have left around 30-40 minutes on the cutting room floor. Way too many unnecessary scenes and long takes.

    The acting was a mixed bag. The two main characters were ok. Dad was making me cringe. The jocks were cool. I really liked the very ending where we go back and see the jocks from the beginning.

    This whole movie really reminded me of “funny games”. There were some obvious very distracting technical issues with vibrations on the floor distorting the picture. That should have really been caught during production.

    Could have also used some more sound design. I never once heard a metallic gun sound, so they felt like plastic.

    1. Whoa, I completely disagree with your entire first 2 paragraphs. For me it was the complete opposite. The beginning was slow and too stretched out, but the house scene was brilliantly engaging. The tension created was amazing and the actor who played the dad was completely believable, especially in the later half. He rarely slipped, much less so than Jessie at least.

      just my opinion!

  4. Every year I work at Sundance, and I liked this better than 75% of what I saw last year. What a great story, it kept reeling me in. This didn’t get into festivals? Screw them. I’d like to go to a festival where real indies like this are screened.

  5. Excellent film. I thought the characters were really well developed and the acting, in my opinion, was very believable.

    There were a few moments at the beginning (minor things) that were a bit distracting (using a dissolve when a hard cut would have been better)but really nothing much of any consequence to criticize. I concur that it’s extremely hard to believe that this did not get accepted to festivals. The first cut of the film must have been inferior because as it stands now the film is better than some of the stuff that gets into festivals.

    Actually, the characters and the dark current of the film reminds me of the Coen brothers early films such as Blood Simple for example.

    Ronen

  6. Excellent job! Considering the fact you’ve only just graduated and you made it in such a short space of time, you’ve done great. I especially love the fact that you are turning your back on the current Hollywood trend of fast cuts and too many angles (how aren’t more people getting tired of this?).

    I think its a great decision to side step the festival route. I’m currently trying to promote a short documentary for festivals (I’ve only just started applications) but it’s such a long, slow and expensive process, that I beginning to realise that making it available for free online might have been a just as good an option.

    (You can watch the trailer here, btw: http://vimeo.com/24275451 🙂

    Anyway, keep up the good work, and I really hope to hear more from you guys in the future.

  7. I had the same spot. Is it really a dead pixel?
    I cleaned the mirror and now it is gone. It looked exactly the same, red on black background and shifting to a brighter color against bright background.

  8. What a talent!…

    And i am sure they did the right choice putting it on vimeo for free!
    Is is so good that i will watch it again with my wife like a REAL cinema cession! maybe tonight!!

    BRAVO!

  9. Thanks so much for all of the feedback people. I just wanted to pipe in and say that we just got a new editing computer, so I’ve been able to go back in and start getting rid of the dead pixel. Already fixed the first 20 minutes, should have the rest done within a week, then I’ll replace the movie with the “fixed” version.

  10. The guys that made Bad is Bad are working on another movie and this time they will be filming with the Canon 60D.

    I ran into one of the crew members on reddit on this post.

    DSLR system on a budget read the comment from ravewickly and then Oh-Good

    http://www.reddit.com/r/photography/comments/m9t01/dslr_system_on_a_budget/

    The Oh-Good did make a posting on reddit and answered some questions.

    I spent two years and $6k making a feature-length thriller/drama which got really good reviews. Then I put it online for free. Enjoy!

    http://www.reddit.com/r/videos/comments/m98v5/i_spent_two_years_and_6k_making_a_featurelength/

  11. Hats off to you too. A great feat to accomplish. Well done.

    Now just two questions for the 2 chaps, what gear do you think would of made production easier, more practical and would that translate into better shots better all round end product?

    Phillip your thoughts?

    Umbrella.

  12. Wow. So intense, it made me take breaks in between. Ok, I had to actually take breaks because of other stuff I had to do, so I could not watch it in one go. The second half was so intense especially when the second guy was alone with the daughter in her room playing truth or dare.

    Respect.

    And it goes to show that despite these minor cosmetic flaws like the occasional shakey camera and the loud ambience sound what the essence of a good movie is. I though it made the movie charming in a way. And honest. I am more and more tired of overproduced perfect shots. I like a good balance, it made the movie more “real”.
    Best
    Michael

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