Update (7th June): My review of Iron Sky is here.
Update (1st June): Despite what I’ve said much further below about boycotting the film if Revolver did not instigate a more general release (and in my opinion – they still haven’t), I caved in and rented the film on iTunes. It’s by far one of the very best films I’ve seen this year – it’s funny, the FX are gorgeous, the cinematography is fantastic and all round a hugely enjoyable film. It’s utterly batshit insane and madder than a box of donkeys in the month of May, but I absolutely loved it. I’ll post a more in-depth review later. Oh why couldn’t have Revolver sorted out the screening process properly? This is a film that screams to be seen on the big screen, with a huge tub of popcorn, and diabetes-inducing super large soft drink.
Update (30th May): While I have given up hope of ever seeing this film in the cinema, I will at least give Revolver some credit for allowing people to rent Iron Sky on iTunes in the UK at the same time as purchasing it. All too often film distributors operate a buy-rental window on this platform which means that unless you’re willing to buy the film (usually only in SD too) first, you’ll have to wait a week or two before it can be rented.
Update (23rd May): Oh, I give up. Following on from the last update, the filmmakers claim that Revolver has bowed to pressure and is extending the run providing demand is there. This is partly true. Revolver claim that it’s being shown nationally. Partly true – but the two cinema chains they quote I’ve never heard of before. As for the likes of Odeon (big national chain I *have* heard of), Cineworld, Vue, etc. and indies such as The Ambassadors Group – who the heck knows? Revolver won’t change the release data of the Blu-Ray/DVD release – which is going to hack off larger chains. Revolver claim that independents won’t mind. What a bloody farce this has become. I give up. I feel like slapping some money directly into the filmmakers hands and asking for a Blu-Ray copy as to avoid ever having to pay Revolver for it.
Update (21st May): Well, Revolver have now announced (on Facebook – groan) that they are extending the cinema release – but it’s still only available at a limited number of cinemas. So fat lot of good that’ll do unless they start working with the chains and regional independents to get more screenings at a greater variety of cinemas. It’s a start, mind. Let’s see how this works out.
Update: It was only a matter of time before somebody did a Downfall parody of this sorry situation..
Update: The more I watch Troll VFX’s showreel at www.trollvfx.com, the more I get angry with Revolver because of their unwillingness to give this film a nation wide general release in cinemas. The VFX work alone screams big screen!
Update (20th May): Welcome new visitors! It seems Operation Talk-To-Your-Cinema is the second stage (since clearly Revolver don’t want to hear from people demanding access to a theatrical screening given the problem highlighted below). My local, Ambassadors Cinemas (Woking), should be getting an email or phone call soon to ask them what, if anything, they could do to help arrange screenings there.
On the official Iron Sky blog, director Timo Vuorensola lets us all know that the distributor, Revolver Entertainment Group, are only going to release the film in UK cinemas for one day only.
He suggests the following:
STEP 1: CONTACT Revolver Entertainment, and tell them what you think of their plans to release Iron Sky for just one day to cinemas in UK. Please email to email@example.com.
Oh dear. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. Attempts to email Revolver result in the awful:
The error that the other server returned was: 550 550 5.7.1 Message rejected as spam by Content Filtering. (state 17).
REALLY? Here’s an independent result from a mail server that’s configured to check RBL lists, SPF records and DKIM – in short, it’s a spam checker extraordinaire:
SpamAssassin Score: -0.801
Message is NOT marked as spam
So it makes me think that Revolver are doing keyword filtering on all incoming mail. Which is bloody stupid – they publish a list of email addresses on their web site (covered with Iron Sky banners, etc.) – or at least did when I last looked before their web server was returning Internal Server Errors.
If they’re not filtering mail by keywords and it’s because their mail server isn’t coping with everybody asking them to extend the release or that they’ve somehow misconfigured the mail server – the SMTP banner is misleading at any rate. They should perhaps look for a better email hosting provider if that’s the case.
STEP 2: LET THEM KNOW what you think also on their Facebook page – www.fb.com/ironskyuk – and on their Twitter feed – @ironskyuk
Their Twitter feed is mere PR – they don’t attempt to engage AT ALL. Who knows if Revolver are even bothering to read anything sent to them.
STEP 3: DEMAND to see Iron Sky in your local film theaters. Go to www.ironsky.net/demand and place your Demand.
Done. But in real terms – what effect is this going to have on Revolver, really?
STEP 4: SPREAD THE WORD and machinate your friends to join the campaign also. Share this link everywhere on the Internet; let’s make sure Revolver hears your voice.
Yep – indeed.
I know it’s expensive to distribute movies to cinemas. I can appreciate the difficulty in film distribution and marketing. But to have made a film (note the word film – emphasised) using high quality kit and for a limited number of people to be able to watch it in the cinema and it not being a bloody film festival is .. stupid.
On the other hand, the filmmakers should now have learnt not to do deals with distribution companies that don’t distribute properly. That’s the job. To distribute. While I have a HD TV, the experience of watching a film as intended is not the same as going down to the local cinema (except no bloody mobile phones being pulled out and tinkered with during the movie, or people nearby offering free commentaries about their life).
As a consequence: if Revolver does not extend distribution of Iron Sky to cinemas – nationally – not necessarily by the time next week comes around, but at least a few weeks or a month later – then I’m not going to watch this film – or any other film that Revolver distributes (which is a shame – I wanted to watch Werner Herzog’s Into the Abyss as his documentary series, which leads up to this film, on Channel 4 about prisoners was excellent). I won’t rent their stuff. I won’t buy their stuff. I won’t (not that I would anyway – remember I used to work in film for 6 years) pirate their stuff.
That said: do you know how much of an impact me boycotting Iron Sky will have on sales figures? To paraphrase a Mr. Prossor from HHGTTG – none at all. Only if others did the same might it have some impact. But one person? Never. At least I won’t have to bother with cinema -> home entertainment windows, etc
Distribute Iron Sky as it was intended, Revolver. And sort out your bloody email problems.