Evil Movie Reviews: The Final Moments of Karl Brant
Greetings Evil Geekites! When it comes to movie reviews, we strive to bring you the lowdown on the biggest blockbusters hitting theaters everywhere, but when it comes to a diet of entertaining films, one simply cannot live on big-budget fare alone; that would be the equivalent of trying to survive while only eating food from your local gas station. Sure it’s easily available, but will it leave you satisfied when you’re done? Sometimes when you look past the local movie house, you’ll find something that’s even better than what you’ll pay to see. Such is the case with the subject of today’s Evil Movie Review: The Final Moments of Karl Brant, a 16 minute short film written and directed by M.F. Wilson, which you can watch RIGHT NOW for free at the Nerdist YouTube Channel.
In case the title isn’t a tip-off, the film centers around the demise of one Karl Brant (played by Peter Chekvala). It’s set sometime vaguely in the future; far enough ahead so the world looks more advanced than ours, but not so far ahead that it’s completely unrecognizable. Karl is working on some mysterious project that involves hooking his own brain up directly to a computer. During one of his experiments with the machine, a masked intruder breaks into the home of Karl and his wife Monica (Fay Masterson), then brutally murders Karl with what appears to be a sonic weapon of some sort. The story then shifts to a police interrogation room where two detectives of the Corto Police Department (one played by Jon Skalroff and the other by Janina Gavankar of True Blood and Arrow fame) are interviewing Karl’s business partner, Bennett Ferryman (brought to life by the man who had a monopoly on an entire generation of children’s Saturday mornings, the legendary Paul Reubens of Pee Wee’s Playhouse and possibly one of the greatest movies ever: Pee Wee’s Big Adventure). Bennett is telling them about the project that Karl was working on, a process by which a person’s memories are downloaded to a computer, which could then produce a digital avatar of the person. Karl was hooked up to the machine and in the process of downloading his memories at the time of his death, so Bennett offers to use the downloaded version of Karl to answer some of the Detective’s questions. When the machine is fired up, instead of producing a soul-less avatar, you find out that Karl might have somehow achieved the singularity, creating a fully intelligent digital replica of himself. I don’t want to spill too many details on the plot, so maybe you should just watch it now. Go ahead, we’ll wait for you…
The story brings up questions concerning the definition of life in a world where that life can be created, or in Karl’s case extended, by man-made means. Can you truly murder someone if they continue to live on digitally? Conversely, is it murder if you forcefully deactivate a digital being? Would a digital being suffer death in the same way a human would? Would they be able to feel it? The creation of a digital life form would raise so many philosophical questions and the eventual fate of Karl is something that I could easily see happening in the real world.
So how did I feel about The Final Moments of Karl Brant: I loved it! It is of course a great piece of sci-fi, in that it’s a story dealing with a technology that doesn’t exist in our world, but with a few technological breakthroughs, it could easily be a reality. Aside from the sci-fi aspect, the movie also has a bit of a 40’s detective story feel to it. The world is futuristic but certain elements, like the clothing or the look of the machines, give it a retro feel. If someone turned on a radio, you almost wouldn’t be surprised to hear Tommy Dorsey, Glenn Campbell, or some other Big Band star blaring away. Usually when the future is depicted on film, it’s a sterile and uniform world, free of imperfection, but the world of this film has an organic, lived in feel which lends that much more realism to the environment. You get a full story in the brief running time of the movie, but you’re left wanting more at the end. Watch through the credits though and you’ll see that there may be some more to come regarding the tale of Karl Brant. One can only hope that this is the first glimpse of a universe that will soon appear in a feature-length film or maybe a series. If you’re a fan of science fiction then you should immediately check out The Final Moments of Karl Brant. It offers up an intriguing story that opens the door to so many more storytelling possibilities. That’s all we got for Evil Movie Reviews today, but rest assured your favorite Evil Geeks will be back with more reviews soon!
Click on the button below to check out the Nerdist Channel on YouTube. Be sure to subscribe!
Posted on August 20, 2013, in Evil Movie Reviews, Features, Movies, Reviews and tagged Janina Gavankar, Movies, Nerdist, Paul Reubens, Sci-Fi, The Final Moments of Karl Brant. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.