Back in March, I saw this great film at the Salem Film Festival. The festival focuses on documentaries, and the film is Mole Man, directed by Fiorita, who was in attendance. What I thought I was going to see was a quirky portrait of a 66-year-old man in Western Pennsylvania who has built this labyrinthine complex in the woods behind his parents’ house. And that’s where the film begins – we see Ron salvaging things from abandoned houses, picking through things that got left behind, and piling wood and sinks and bags of clocks on this tiny motorbike and bringing them back to this giant collection. It’s very whimsical, and Ron is a wonderful character. But then the movie unfolds to touch on so many things – autism, family dynamics, economic depression in small town America. Toward the end, it even becomes kind of an adventure film as the characters try to find this mansion Ron keeps describing. If they can locate it, it might help save Ron’s life.
It’s an extraordinary film, making the festival circuit now. I would urge you to seek it out. Fiorita says he’s close to getting a distribution deal for it, and I’ll alert you here on the blog when the news breaks. Fiorita and I discuss the film, and along the way, I discover he has tried stand-up comedy, which makes sense considering his comedic timing as a filmmaker. You can find more info on Facebook and more about Fiorita at www.shoutchorus.com and on Twitter.
Our featured track this week is a chapter from the audiobook of The Shape of Water. The book was written by Daniel Kraus, who is next week’s DoT Podcast guest. This is not a typical tie-in or novelization. Kraus had the original idea that sparked Guillermo del Toro to write the screenplay for the Oscar-winning film. It was something he thought he’d get around to writing eventually, the story of a creature and a human who fall in love in a lab, inspired by the Universal Horror movie, Creature from the Black Lagoon. He got to flesh out the characters in the book, and one of the backstories he tells is about how the heavy, Strickland, plucks the Creature from his home in the Amazon, and how that experience changes him. You can get a feel for that from this chapter, chapter five from part one of the book.
You can listen to and download the podcast from the player below, or subscribe/review on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play. Enjoy!