Eden Log

Release Date: TBA 2009
Limited release

Movie of the Day for Thursday, December 11, 2008
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We have no idea what this chap is doing.

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Some of the sci-fi cinema’s darkest places have a common ancestral home in Europe. Ridley Scott found inspiration for the slickly slimy production design of sci-fi horror classic Alien in the work of Swiss surrealist H.R. Geiger. Years later he found inspiration for Blade Runner’s dark future metropolis in the work of French artist Jean “Moebius” Giraud. This February, a fresh, dark French sci-fi import makes its way to limited screens as Magnet Releasing brings Eden Log to this side of the Atlantic.

The film opens with a naked man awakening in a filthy place he has no recollection of getting himself into. There’s a dead man next to him. He climbs through claustrophobic corridors of a facility abandoned by the mysterious, titular organization as he is haunted by monsters and old technology. The rest is rumored to be a murky, visceral experience light on plot and heavy on style. Judging from its critical reception so far, Eden Log isn’t destined to acquire the kind of cache garnered by higher-caliber dark European fantasies like Delicatessen, but there’s no question that a film this irrepressibly dark will have its following. Shot on handheld cameras in subterranean locations rumored to include an actual sewer, Eden Log is 98 minutes of darkness that have “cult classic” written all over them. Lacking in the kind of plot that will appeal to mainstream sci-fi geeks, it’s a film that holds potential appeal to the same semi-goth hipster crowd that made the vampire and cyberpunk sub-genres so popular in the late ‘80’s/ early ‘90’s.

Second Unit Director on a handful of French movies, this is Franck Vestiel’s first time helming a feature film. Having a picture like this picked-up for domestic distribution by Magnolia Pictures’ shiny, new Magnet Releasing arm, Vestiel has a foot in the door for future projects with an international scope in the highly sought-after US market even if it doesn’t do terribly well here. Having been made on a shoestring budget, Eden Log doesn’t have to look far for the kind of audience it needs to be considered a commercial success. (Russ Bickerstaff/BOP)

Vital statistics for Eden Log
Main Cast Clovis Cornillac, Gabriella Wright, Alexandra Ansidei
Supporting Cast Vimala Pons, Zohar Wexler, Sifan Shao, Arben Bajraktaraj, Abdelkader Dahou, Tony Amoni, Joachim Staaf, Benjamin Baroche, Zakariya Gouram, Asha Sumputh, Nadia-Layla Bettache, Lavinia Birladeanu
Director Franck Vestiel
Screenwriter Pierre Bordage, Franck Vestiel
Distributor Magnolia Pictures
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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