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The Can't Stop the Serenity event was great fun. There was a terrific turnout, and it's always fun to rewatch Serenity. It was especially nice to meet ashesngolddust (who was sporting a terrific Kaylee look) and see estellye again. Good times!

The Charlotte Browncoats also were fortunate enough to get one of the few complete rough cuts of the forthcoming Firefly/Serenity fan charity project Browncoats: Redemption to show at the event. Of course, since it was a rough cut, the film was not polished. It still needed sound editing, as well as the addition of the final musical score and special effects, for example. But we could get a very good idea of how the finished product will look.

Keeping in mind that Browncoats: Redemption is a fan film made solely by volunteers for the love of the story and the cause of charity, I found it to be quite impressive.

Here are some spoiler-free reasons why:
1. Writing. The characters are clearly drawn and interesting, and they speak in the English/Mandarin/frontier Whedonspeak patois that all Browncoats know well.
2. Plot. Not only is there conflict, but the film manages to throw in a surprise here and there.
3. Canon. The action deals directly with the believable repercussions of what happened at the end of Serenity. It moves the larger story of the 'verse forward by building directly on what we already know.
4. Setting. The film has an impressive array of location shots. The frontier town sequences are especially atmospheric.
5. In-jokes. There are plenty of nods to Firefly/Serenity fans, but there are also fun moments for fans of other science fiction texts. One of the last lines, a gift to Trek lovers everywhere, got some of the biggest laughs of the evening.
6. Cameos. If you don't want to know about the special someones who show up in the film, don't click this:

I counted five special cameo appearances in the film, but there may have been more. Here's who I spotted:
- Sonny Rhodes, the blues artist who sings "The Ballad of Serenity" in the opening sequence of the Firefly series
- Michael Fairman, reprising his role of Adelei Niska from Firefly
- Adam Baldwin, in a role that may or may not be Jayne Cobb
- Yan and Rafael Feldman, reprising their roles of Mingo and Fanty from Serenity
- The Bedlam Bards, performing their music in a sequence in the frontier saloon "The Loon"

Proceeds from the DVD sales of the film will be divided equally and donated to Equality Now, Kids Need to Read, The Dyslexia Foundation, The Al Wooten Jr. Heritage Center, and the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation.

Here's the latest trailer for the film:

"Someone ever tries to kill you, you try to kill 'em right back! Wife or no, you are no one's property to be tossed aside. You got the right same as anyone to live and try to kill people."
- from "Our Mrs. Reynolds," Firefly


( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 28th, 2010 10:42 pm (UTC)
Oh, cool, this looks great! I've loved the Star Trek and LotR fan films I've seen.
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:38 pm (UTC)
I've loved the Star Trek and LotR fan films I've seen.

Me, too! I think this one holds its own against the best of them. If you see it, I hope you enjoy it, too!

Jun. 28th, 2010 11:28 pm (UTC)
Well said about Redemption! I agree with all your points. I am looking forward to seeing the polished version eventually, too.

It was soooo good to see you! :D
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:39 pm (UTC)
It was great to see you! *hugs*

I'm so glad you agree about the film. I'm with you: I definitely want to see the finished version now.
Jun. 28th, 2010 11:29 pm (UTC)
Awesome!!! Thanks for the head's up!
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:40 pm (UTC)
My pleasure!
Jun. 29th, 2010 03:48 am (UTC)
I agree on all points as well, and am looking forward to seeing the finished film.

It was so great to spend the day with you both and hope to have the pleasure again before too much longer!
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:43 pm (UTC)
I agree: I hope we get another chance to meet up soon! It was great getting to hang out with you.

And I'm with you: I definitely plan to watch the finished version of the film now. Three cheers for Browncoats!
Jun. 29th, 2010 12:52 pm (UTC)
I want a film from the point of view of those guys with the blue hands...
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:45 pm (UTC)
I bet it would make for a fascinating movie, but by the end every audience member would be in a fetal position, rocking back and forth and mumbling...

Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course.
Jun. 29th, 2010 08:45 pm (UTC)
It would be a great date movie -- two by two, hands of blue...
Jun. 29th, 2010 12:52 pm (UTC)
I play Captain Matthews. Thanks for such a great review of our project!
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:51 pm (UTC)
Hi there! Thank you for a terrific film. I was curious about it previously (after hearing about it on The Signal podcast), but now that I've seen the rough cut, I must get the final version on DVD!

I was particularly drawn in by the chemistry among the main characters; the viewer feels like they are a real crew who have served time together and know each other's strengths and weaknesses well. Of course, that makes the revelations about your character all the more effective and powerful! Seriously, congratulations to you and everyone involved. You've done something for a good cause - and done it extremely well. :)
Jun. 29th, 2010 06:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jun. 29th, 2010 03:21 pm (UTC)
I'll only be happy if this film opens with Zoe waking up and finding Wash taking a shower.

Did I mention I was not terribly pleased with Serenity?
Jun. 29th, 2010 05:54 pm (UTC)
Ha! Are you sure that you don't want Bob Newhart to be in bed beside her? :)
Abbie [wordpress.com]
Jun. 29th, 2010 08:34 pm (UTC)
Interesting. Ent arresting. Or perhaps inner resting. (I don't know.) It's neat how they got some cameos in there.

...She's got it where it counts.
Jun. 30th, 2010 04:20 pm (UTC)
Ha! Very clever.

*mentally pictures police officers trying to fit an Ent into their squad car*

...She's got it where it counts.

I'm going to laugh!
Abbie [wordpress.com]
Jul. 1st, 2010 03:53 am (UTC)
Handcuffing an Ent. Shoving it in the back of a squad car. Taking it downtown. Interrogating it. Keeping it overnight. There is much racial profiling involved.

One day you'll be driving up to your house, and you'll see the flashing lights of a cop car... and you'll know what's going on across the way. That one Ent has been profiled.
Jul. 9th, 2010 09:26 pm (UTC)
Nooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!! *shakes fist in slow motion*
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )

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