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Beyond the Game

“The battle between two living legends… This isn’t your typical look at video games, but these aren’t your typical video game nerds. They’re the best Warcraft III players in the world.”
– William Lee, Cinema Verdict

DVD features rare and exclusive interview with Blizzard entertainment founders!

Vancouver Film Festival * International Film Festival Amsterdam
Margaret Mead Film Festival

“…beautifully contrasts scenes from our mundane world with the colour-saturated, action packed virtual world within the game; the neon-lit internet cafes and media-hyped tournament becoming a jarring hybrid of the two. Beyond the Game is a revealing profile of an unforgiving game and the toll it takes on its all too human players.”
– Willis Wong, Intermidias

Warcraft III is the most popular real-time strategy computer game, thrilling over 2.5 million North Americans and 10 million people worldwide everyday. The game creates an alternate universe, where players challenge each other with a mythically-charged online world of humans, orcs, the undead, knights, and elves.

In Beyond the Game, we meet – in real life and within the game – two of the game’s leading figures, known as Grubby and Sky. Acclaimed filmmaker Jos de Putter tracks these Kasparovs of a new generation and a new game across the world all the way to the world championships in Seattle.

A fascinating, surprising, and genuinely touching portrait, Beyond the Game is a study of, and participation in, the reformation of our communities in the internet age.


Organize, or suggest, a public screening for the film

“Visionary writer-director Vladan Nikolic . . . concerns and motifs [are] vivid and idiosyncratic, designed to intensify a highly contemporary concern about the loss of freedom and power of the individual to secret, manipulative cartels.”
– Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times

“chillingly realistic vision of the future… amazing… nothing but talent.”
– Joe Meyers, Connecticut Post

“a weird reflection of current reality. . . an odd example of artsy obscura . . .an experience not quickly forgotten.”

Zenith at top of its game.”
– Boston Herald

“a high-concept, brave-new-world sci-fi puzzle… echoes futuristic thrillers such as 12 Monkeys and Children of Men… an atmosphere of mounting paranoia that’s grim and chilling.”
– Loren King, Boston Globe

“A visually stunning art-house Blade Runner.”
– Flavorwire

“Smoothly incorporating influences as diverse as Philip K. Dick and Terry Gilliam. . . a low-budget, high-concept mind-teaser, the sort of provocatively ambiguous sci-fier that often can attract a devoted niche audience and inspire repeated viewings. . . deadly serious, if not grimly fatalistic, about the grave new world it depicts.”
– Variety

“a brooding science-fiction trip…Nikolic’s lust for paranoid desperation is powerful, and his way with actors is stunningly graceful.”
– Michael Atkinson, Village Voice

“a trippy, frontal-lobe screwer that plays like the illegitimate spawn of Memento and 12 Monkeys… highly imaginative … slick visuals.”
– Rod Lott, Oklahoma Gazette


“Imaginative sci-fi thriller…conceptual imagination…a talent to watch!”
– Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter

“collision of noir narration and purple paranoia…long on atmosphere…brave-new-world dystopia.”
– New York Times

“rank[s] up there with indie mind-bending powerhouses like Primer and Being John Malkovich… like all great science fiction, Zenith hits us with a powerful series of “what ifs” that take the world as we expect it to be and give it a short, sharp turn on its ear… smart sci-fi… something to add to your must-see list.”
– Apex Magazine

“fuses the trippy paranoia of Philip K. Dick’s novels with canny use of locations that are already a bit post-apocalyptic.”
– Steve Dollar, Wall Street Journal

“a brain-bending 12 Monkeys vibe.”
– Devin O’Leary, Albuquerque Alibi

“works on the knife-edge of what Ridley Scott and company were onto with Blade Runner . . . an impressive and certainly downbeat dystopia built from found locations, insistent hypotheses and studded with superlative acting, termite performances from gifted actors playing paranoids and conspiracists with unbridled glee.”
– Ray Pride, New City Chicago

“entertainingly fast-paced and visceral…impressive…pulp fiction.”
– Will Coviello, Gambit Weekly New Orleans

In a hellish future where human beings have become stupefied by the state of permanent happiness they have been genetically altered to experience, Jack (Peter Scanavino) offers relief via drugs that cause his customers the welcome phenomenon of pain. But when Jack receives a mysterious videotape of his dead father, he sets out to unmask the dangerous conspiracy that has created this dystopian world.

Christmas on Mars: A Fantastical Film Freakout Featuring the Flaming Lips

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“Endearingly ragged…destined for cult status…abetted with homemade-looking but sometimes lyrical effects.”
– Andy Webster, New York Times

Christmas on Mars is great, if only you could understand it…a psychedelic accomplishment that will inevitably gain more favor as it ages…Twilight Zone poetry.”
– Metro Boston

“a moody, somewhat demented trip, albeit one with amateur actors and giant genitalia in astronaut suits.”
– Todd Martens, Los Angeles Times

“It’s basically as weird as you’d hoped.”
– Isaac Butler, New York Magazine

“this mostly black-and-white, dreamlike yuletide fable does possess its own dorky DIY charm, as space-suited men wander around narrow enclosures in various stages of dissociation, Santas commit airlock suicide, and a nurse/mother in a giant lightbulb births a bubble baby.”
– Variety

Legendary rock band the Flaming Lips present Christmas on Mars: A Fantastical Film Freakout Featuring the Flaming Lips, a glorious science fiction film that marks the directorial debut of the Lips’ visionary frontman Wayne Coyne.  Seven years in the making, Christmas on Mars features original music by the Flaming Lips (“The greatest U.S. band today” – The Guardian), with acting performances by all band members, and many others from their Oklahoma City-based team.  Comedian Fred Armisen (Saturday Night Live) and actor Adam Goldberg (Dazed and Confused, Two Days in Paris) also appear, as does performer Steve Burns of the band Steve Burns and the Struggle (who had also appeared in children’s television show Blue’s Clues).  Bradley Beesley and George Salisbury co-directed the movie with Mr. Coyne.

It’s Christmastime, and the colonization of Mars is underway.  However, when an oxygen generator and a gravity control pod malfunction, Major Syrtis (the Lips’ Steven Drozd) and his team (including the Lips’ Michael Ivins) fear the worst.  Syrtis also hallucinates about the birth of a baby, and many other strange things.  Meanwhile, a compassionate alien superbeing (Coyne) arrives, inspiring and helping the isolated astronauts.

Des Moines, Iowa / Columbia, South Carolina / Moline, Illinois / Atlanta, Georgia / Peoria, Illinois / Naperville, Illinois / Nashville, Tennessee / Dallas, Texas / Whitewater, Wisconsin / Lake Geneva, Wisconsin / Orlando, Florida / West Bend, Wisconsin / Omaha, Nebraska / Providence, Rhode Island / Bremen, Indiana / San Francisco, California / St. Pete Beach, Florida / Cleveland, Ohio / Cambridge, Massachusetts / Los Angeles, California / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania / New Orleans, Louisiana / Winnipeg, Manitoba / Ann Arbor, Michigan / Ithaca, New York / Columbus, Ohio / Denver, Colorado / Hot Springs, Arkansas / Santa Barbara, California / Purchase, New York / Minneapolis, Minnesota / Seattle, Washington / Hartford, Connecticut / Buffalo, New York / Kansas City, Missouri / Miami, Florida / Pontiac, Michigan / Chicago, Illinois / Bellingham, Washington / Chico, California / Spartanburg, South Carolina / Missoula, Montana / Urbana-Champaign, Illinois / Athens, Georgia / Boulder, Colorado / Tucson, Arizona / Houston, Texas / Asheville, North Carolina / St Louis, Missouri / Roanoke, Virginia / Brooklyn, New York / Albuquerque, New Mexico / Phoenix, Arizona / Paducah, Kentucky / Portland, Oregon / Tulsa, Oklahoma / Portland, Maine / Jacksonville, Florida / Austin, Texs / San Antonio, Texas / Madison, Wisconsin / Lexington, Kentucky / Grand Rapids, Michigan / Waterville, Maine / Northfield, Minnesota / Chicago, Illinois / Ithaca, New York / London, England / Monticello, New York / Santa Fe, New Mexico / Luton, UK / Springfield, Missouri / Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK / Atlanta, Georgia / Fort Collins, Colorado / Cardiff, Wales / Bern, Switzerland / Tempe, Arizona

Christmas on Mars: A Fantastical Film Freakout Featuring the Flaming Lips. Directed by Wayne Coyne; with Bradley Beesley and George Salisbury. Written by Wayne Coyne.  Starring Steven Drozd, Wayne Coyne, and Michael Ivins, with Kliph Scurlock, J. Michelle Martin-Coyne, Steve Burns, Fred Armisen, Adam Goldberg, Scott Booker.  Produced by Scott Booker, the Flaming Lips, and Warner Brothers Records.  Cinematography by Bradley Beesley.  Edited by George Salisbury.  Original music by the Flaming Lips.  85 mins.  Black and white, with some sequences in color.  Released by Cinema Purgatorio and Warner Brothers Records.

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