Wild, Brutal B-Movie: A Prelude to a Re-edit / by Samuel B. Prime

Video Laboratory is back with a teaser for a larger project, the full version of which will be available at a later date. A number of years ago, I invited French filmmaker Jean-Baptiste Leonetti to Los Angeles to screen his debut feature CARRE BLANC (2011) aka WHITE SQUARE at UCLA's James Bridges Theater. While in Los Angeles, he took meetings with various bigwigs, one of whom was veteran actor Michael Douglas. At the time, Douglas was developing a feature-length adaptation of the YA novel Deathwatch (at the time, it was titled THE REACH). Douglas had seen CARRE BLANC and wanted Leonetti to direct THE REACH. The thought of my friend making a movie with Michael Douglas was thoroughly exciting, so we had a few brunch meetings to discuss the project.

During our brunches, we talked about how THE REACH - later retitled BEYOND THE REACH - could be a wild, brutal B-movie or a kind of pop western. In other words, a sleazy, dust-caked cat-and-mouse that - while nothing precisely new (think The Most Dangerous Game) - would be an exemplar of its genre. However, to make a long story short, Leonetti did not have final cut. Changes were made that he did not necessarily approve. As a result, in the truest sense there is no director's cut of BEYOND THE REACH. In its absence, I attempted to create one.

The below video is a comparison of the original BEYOND THE REACH to my own re-edit, simply titled BEYOND. The video showcases the first sixty seconds of each version and highlights BEYOND's comparative economy, genuinely spooky nightmare sequences, and the removal of the female love interest character. Hope you enjoy!

Samuel B. Prime

Founder, LA Ciné Salon