42 STORY HOUSE – THE ULTIMATE INDIE
Many people have been wondering (quietly, to themselves) what does Todd W.
Langen do in his spare time. You know, the guy who was a staff writer on The
Wonder Years and worked on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles scripts. Well, Urban
Cinefile has found out and here it is.
In his spare time – in this case one full year – Todd W. Langen makes the
ultimate indie movie, 42 Story House. It’s the ultimate indie movie because
everything is shot in one location, by one man (Todd, of course) with one
camera. It’s in fact 42 movies, each between 1 and 4 minutes. “The whole idea
was to see what one guy with a camera - and a lifelong love of comedy - could
come up with in a year, creating funny shorts around his house,” says Todd.
As his website explains, this is a low budget independent movie, shot on 3CCD
miniDV tape and available only on DVD.
From the surreal (Foreign Breakfast) to the silly (Egg-icide), the shorts
combine to make an amusing ‘chain movie’ – that’s a movie with a number of links
…. There’s sex, too, with one story about how small appliances are conceived, in
which a washer and a dryer …er … Anyway, the doors close tastefully at the
moment of conception.
"strangely compelling viewing"
In fact, much of his material is surreal; toilet paper rolls that rebel,
rocks that fall out of the sky, and robotic, possibly alien neighbours. But yes,
there are also a couple of fart jokes …. And much more. It’s strangely
compelling viewing: what idiotic gag is he going to come up with next?
Behind the lighthearted sales spiel on his website, Todd’s 42 Story Houses poses
a real challenge to Australian filmmakers: turn DIY filmmaking into a part of
your business plan. Todd spews out ideas – 42 of them – which vary from woeful
to clever, from clunky to funny. Within the concept lies the idea that
filmmaking can be simple and fun – and making 42 short films (or 52 for that
matter) can kick start a whole chain of ideas for bigger, more developed
Published July 12, 2007
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42 Story House
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