Nearing the end of the 1980′s, in a time when bizarro-hounds and unsuspecting browsers could rent a VHS copy of Andrew Jordan and Barry Gillis’ homemade horror opus in video stores across North America, the THINGS creators found themselves bored once again. However, the experience of filming an entire feature on consumer Super 8 cameras had rendered them fatigued and getting another 90min project off the ground seemed like a daunting task. Although inspired, Jordan and Gillis, with help from many of the THINGS crew members, began work on an investor reel for a feature titled EVIL ISLAND (above).
Immediately, a raucous voice-over kicks in with that familiar jarring THINGS-atitude which guides the viewer through what EVIL ISLAND’s story might be like given the desired $1,000,000 budget. EVIL ISLAND stars Barry J. Gillis as Barry J. Gillis, an Alcatraz escapee who left the woman of his dreams behind (?) – and now he’s back (??). Assuming then that Barry must fight off some evil force to escape…EVIL ISLAND! Some Casio high-hats now occupy the shrill high-end and then we burst into some wicked bedroom analog delay pedal action – something we’ll examine more thoroughly in the weeks to come. And this is how it ends… For better or worse, EVIL ISLAND was never made into a feature and following the completion of this reel, Gillis began work on his subsequent film WICKED WORLD, which wasn’t completed until 2009. WICKED WORLD is available on Amazon Instant Video for those who are curious.
This reel and more can be found on the upcoming July 12th release of THINGS. With this “On The Road To THINGS” series we hope to expose some of the extras which will be included on the disc and pay tribute to the weird and wonderful world of Jordan/Gillis.
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