Death has many faces. Death is often a frightening, intimidating concept. Death is the destroyer of worlds. And, in the film “A Grim Becoming”, Death is named Magoo. Of course, this is no laughing matter to Death, who is not familiar with earthly animation.
|A promotional banner for“A Grim Becoming”, courtesy of the film’s website.|
The film “A Grim Becoming” is a dark comedy set mostly in the fictional town of Metzburgh, New York, with some scenes set in Buffalo, New York. Overall, the premise for this film is so ingenious that one can’t help but wonder why it hasn’t been made already. The film explores how someone becomes a grim reaper, what their powers are, the politics of life after death, and how death manifests itself in our world. It follows a young architectural executive, Raphael Stockford (Brandyn T. Williams), as he is granted the powers of a Grim Reaper. This poses a great problem though, because he really doesn’t want to kill anyone. In this film, the Grim Reapers are employees of Death (Michael Sciabarrasi). Death is a ghastly gentleman dressed in Victorian garb with an ever-present cigar. He takes his job quite seriously, and is not to be toyed with. Nonetheless, he often finds the oddities of everyday human life quite comical. Raphael is coming to Metzburgh from his hometown of Buffalo to take care of final affairs for his nephew, who has just passed away, leaving behind a scarred girlfriend and a saddened family. However, the family is quite out of its gourd with their own problems and quirks. Add to this ever present mix Raphael’s office life, which is an absolute nightmare, and the other guests at his hotel, who are just having a devil of a time trying to get laid. Throw in a zombie, the truth about the JFK assassination, and pot smoking Angels.
You may be asking at this point, “Isn’t this too much for one film?” Absolutely not! The film is quite well-made by DefTone Pictures Studios, Inc., which is based in Hamburg, New York. In fact, the film, directed by Adam Steigert, is on the level of some of the smaller films made in Hollywood. The premier took place at the historic Hamburg Palace Theater in Hamburg, New York, and there was a question-and-answer period afterwards. The love that the filmmakers have for the film shows through in droves. All of the movie was filmed in Buffalo, New York, by local acting talent and a local production crew. With museums, historic landmarks, a vibrant comic book scene, and excellent independent filmmakers, Buffalo has great potential as an art town. The film clearly shows as an independent flick, but the quality is superb. The film manages to tackle the philosophy surrounding death as well as excellent humor at the same time. The film is terribly funny! The film manages to draw on the hip vibe of current day pop culture in a way that a bigger, Hollywood-made film is not able to genuinely capture. You feel like you are friends with the characters in this film. You don’t just feel for them, but you feel like you could BE them! The acting is wonderful, the sets are spot on, and the character development is genius. A local community came together to create this masterpiece!
I will admit that when I went to see this film, I had had correspondence with Brandyn T. Williams, Michael Sciabarrasi, and Adam Steigert. However, attending the premier with them has cemented a friendship among local businessmen. Local businessmen who are, indeed, awesome people on the personal level. On a personal level, I, Alec Frazier, appreciated the film tremendously. My business is a disability rights firm called Autistic Reality. Autistic Reality has also come out with a book, a literature review called Without Fear: The First Autistic Superhero. A big part of our firm’s business is appreciating realistic standards, as opposed to irrational expectations or setting the bar too low, or too high. We also have a healthy ideal of what fun should be. Fun should not be afraid to be politically incorrect, and should play to the human element in us all. In our mind, fun should be awesome, enjoyable, intelligent, and worthwhile. It should be awesome in that it fills you with wonder. It should be enjoyable in that it fills you with joy. It should be intelligent in that it makes you think. It should be worthwhile in that it should be worth having. My firm, Autistic Reality, would full heartedly like to endorse “A Grim Becoming” as meeting our criteria of awesome, enjoyable, intelligent, and worthwhile fun! We give this film our highest recommendations! We also would like to give the best of endorsements to Brandyn T. Williams, DefTone Pictures Studios Inc., and the Hamburg Palace Theater. This movie has just become an annual Halloween tradition in my house. Buy a copy! You will be glad you did!
This blog posting is both the personal opinion of Alec Frazier, and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!