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Great World of Sound


     

SYNOPSIS

 

QUOTES

 
 




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Martin (Pat Healy) is an uncomplicated southern guy with a resume that includes experience at a few small town radio stations, doing mostly engineering work. Unemployed, he responds to an ad in the paper for a company called Great World of Sound, that’s setting up shop in a generic office park. After his interview, he’s invited to attend a Saturday seminar explaining what the job entails. There he meets larger than life Clarence (Kene Holliday)—the two hit it off right away.

At the seminar, an articulate but somewhat slimy man named Shank (John Baker) explains that the seminar participants have been selected out of a field of 80 applicants to be A&R executives for GWS, seeking out new, untapped musical talent. GWS will put out a record for these artists—all they ask for is a financial commitment from them up front to show that they’re serious, and to allay the costs of studio recording time and marketing. After all, GWS is an independent record company working on a budget. Shank and his cohort then talk about how much money the producers stand to make, and as if to prove it, dials into his bank account, letting the room hear his $13,000+ balance. Martin is suspicious, but Clarence believes that this is a whole new way of looking at the world, and if they sign someone that hits it big, they’ll hit it big with them. Martin, who likes the idea of helping new artists, agrees to sign on.

Clarence and Martin soon start auditioning acts as a team, all of them very, very bad. While Martin has a hard time disguising his displeasure, Clarence is a natural: he enthusiastically encourages those who audition, while Martin trips over explaining the financial commitment the company will need from the artists. When a skeptical neophyte producer admits at a staff meeting that he thought they were only supposed to sign “the good ones,” Shank compares GWS to a university: in order to support the “best and the brightest,” universities must admit a lot of mediocre students.

Clarence and Martin soon prove to be among the best of the GWS crew, so the company sends them on the road to audition musicians responding to ads in other cities. Armed with the dubious gold records that Shank has displayed in the sparse GWS offices, the two men hit the road, holding musical auditions in cheap hotel rooms. This is where things start going downhill—first they find that GWS has booked the two of them into a motel room with only one bed. Later they are sent on a business trip with one-way plane tickets, only to find that GWS hasn’t booked them flights back home. And worst of all they soon learn that some are the artists that they’ve signed are having less than favorable experiences in the recording studio.

As the veneer falls away from GWS, Clarence and Martin have no choice but to reconcile the excitement and escape that their new jobs have provided them with reality. Have they become scam artists? Or are they victims of the scam themselves?

PRODUCTION TEAM

DIRECTED BY CRAIG ZOBEL
WRITTEN BY GEORGE SMITH
CRAIG ZOBEL
PRODUCERS MELISSA PALMER
DAVID GORDON GREEN
RICHARD WRIGHT
CRAIG ZOBEL
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER DANIELA TAPLIN LUNDBERG
MATT CHAPMAN
MIKE CHAPMAN
CO-PRODUCER SOPHIA LIN
ASSOCIATE PRODUCERS STEVEN HOLTZMAN
ADAM PAROO
CINEMATOGRAPHER ADAM STONE
PRODUCTION DESIGNER RICHARD WRIGHT
EDITORS TIM STREETO
JANE RIZZO
MUSIC DAVID WINGO

CAST

MARTIN PAT HEALY
LAYTON ROBERT LONGSTREET
PAM REBECCA MADER
GWS SALESMAN 1 ALAN NELSON
GWS SALESMAN 2 SCOTT REYNOLDS
WALTER CARVER JOHNS
HENRY BARLOW JACOBS
CLARENCE KENE HOLLIDAY
SHANK JOHN BAKER
LAYTON'S ASST. ROGER ZOBEL
BILL MARK SCARBORO
KYNDRA MAHARI CONSTON
MR. KENT WILLIE J. STRATFORD, JR.
FRANK MICHAEL HARDING
FRED TIM PARATI
LORNA DONNA SCOTT
AIRLINE EMPLOYEE COLLETTE WOLFE
HOTEL MANAGER BRYAN HANSON
GLORIA TRICIA PAOLUCCIO
AIRLINE CLERK EMILY BOUTON

 

“A MINUS. A terrific, funny, sad movie.” – Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

“**** BRILLIANTLY ORIGINAL. A terrific performance by Kene Holliday” – John Anderson, Newsday

“Subtle, funny and touching, with a striking downbeat authenticity. Director Craig Zobel is the real thing.” – A.O. Scott, New York Times

“TERRIFIC! A gripping, bittersweet fable with a scene that MIGHT BE THE SHOW-STOPPING MOMENT IN ANY AMERICAN FILM I’VE SEE THIS YEAR. Kene Holliday is a revelation.” – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

“IT IS THUS FAR THE BEST AMERICAN FILM OF 2007. A tasteful, measured, compassionate, and honest x-ray of American mores that evokes Robert Altman’s early ‘70’s directorial prime.” – Bruce Bennett, New York Sun

“***** ONE OF THE FINEST INDEPENDENT FILMS OF 2007. Fascinating and hilarious.” – Dan Dunn, NY Metro

“**** AN EXTRAORDINARY FILM. One of the most impressive and promising feature debuts since Richard Linklater”s ‘Slacker’” – Ken Fox, TV Guide

“A smartly scripted, terrifically well-acted discovery.” – Scott Foundas, LA Weekly

“A TANGY AND SARDONIC ENTERTAINMENT.” – Richard Brody, The New Yorker

“Funny, warmly acted, superbly crafted and resolutely free of cliché.” – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

“It feels like a throwback in the best possible way.” – Manohla Darghis, New York Times

“A FULL MEAL OF A FEATURE. If there’s any justice, it should move plenty of viewers.” – Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York

“Rough and raw in all the right places, it brought back memories of Sundance’s truly indie roots.” – David Fear, Time Out New York

“Staggeringly mature and involving. One of Sundance’s hidden treasures.” – Eric Kohn, New York Press

“SMART, FUNNY, VITAL AND TOUGH. It isn’t just a great story; it’s a great reminder of how amazing independent cinema can be.” – James Rocchi, Cinematical

 
Date for DVD release subject to change.