Scorching the Retinas – Rondo – worthy of the title of American Grindhouse? A Cult Gem or merely another forgettable Indy Feature? – CultMetalFlix

The films finale is, not surprisingly, claret soaked unflinching in its glory and deliciously slow in its delivery or one could say “execution”. A fitting end which is glaringly OTT, vicious and wicked (not to mention up there with the original Robocop for the effective use of squibs, and a great many of them!) making for a feature one won’t soon forget and will be talking about for months to follow. A spin on the traditional revenge thriller, Rondo offers a great deal to enjoy and proves it’s not what you show it’s how you depict it, how you nestle the ‘atrocity’ within the story and the flair with which you pad it with. Showcasing family core values and morals Rondo is a movie one might possibly imagine seeing on a Disney roster, but obviously never will. But best of all the hype is deserved, Rondo is the real deal! And the gaunlet has been thrown – Beat his Tarantino!!”


RONDO is “Fresh…Genius…perverse” Says Wicked Channel

Trying to figure this film out is like trying to find a penny in the bottom of the ocean…This is one of those films that if think you know where things are heading you would be so wrong. To claim this film fits a genre would be cheating it. This film is a fresh concept. There is no way you can deny this film is not genius in the way it paints itself. ..If you want a taste of the perverse, this film offers a different taste. – WickedChannel

RONDO is, “Viciously Entertaining…destined for cult status!” says AlienBee

A viciously entertaining slice of cinematic pie from Drew Barnhard that’s a hybrid of revenge-thriller and dark comedy all rolled into this wild and crazy neo-noir, pulpy watch that’s destined for cult status. The story has some twists to it and the characters were all interesting and fun to follow – some more than others. This unique movie definitely has a grindhouse and exploitation vibe to it because it doesn’t get any better than watching a beautiful woman in her sexy lingerie spray villains down with a machine gun. Something else that stands out about Rondo is that every single one of the victims in this movie die painfully which means there’s lots of blood plus some cool music to go along with it. Holy hell this was a fun roller coaster ride! Go ahead and put this one on your watch list because you are in for a treat! – AlienBee

Rondo is: “A Tarantino-esque clusterfuck of a movie…supersmart, ultrapolished sexy-sardonic pulp-trash noir”

A Tarantino-esque clusterfuck of a movie, constantly wrong-footing the viewer with its unpredictable turns of events. Noir remains its core, but this is a very smart piece of modern pulp, always offsetting its torrid transgressiveness with a deep streak of black humour. The credits’ classically curlicued calligraphy (with the faux-formal addition of the definite article to designations like ‘producer’ and ‘director’), the dry, estranging narration, and the slyly extravagant orchestral score from Ryan Franks and Scott Nickoley, license the viewer never to take all the bludgeoning, bloody outrage and exploitation on screen too seriously, but instead just to enjoy the wild, rollicking ride, while savouring cinematographer John Bourbonais’ exquisite framing and editor Lionel Footstander’s fluid intercutting of scenes.” – ProjectedFigures

BLOOD PARADISE Reviews from Cinequest

Reporting from the recently ended Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose, HorrorBuzz says this of our July Release, BLOOD PARADISE:

Humorous as it is beautiful…Blood Paradise at times felt Hitchcock-ian with use of POV shots, initially unassuming murderers, and suspenseful moments heightened by sharp interruptions of violins, only instead of a platinum blonde, this movie’s muse was a striking redhead. The dreamy-ness to the film and the landscape choice also reminded me of Ingmar Bergman’s, Persona, the chic-ness of the costuming added to this as well. If Bergman had gotten more into horror his film might have looked something like Blood Paradise: female-centric, a love letter to the Swedish countryside, and lots of use of reds and whites like in Cries and Whispers. one pretty creepy experience…If you appreciate 70’s-styled frank violence, nudity, and wide shots or if you like films with dark humor, mentally unstable killers, or cabin-in-the-woods settings, then there will most likely be something for you to enjoy about Patrick von Barkenberg’s and Andréa Winter’s Blood Paradise.

And from  The Mercury News

“Try this gonzo horror- thriller… it’s undeniably sexy, weird and entertaining.”


“RONDO is an exciting, darkly comedic revenge thriller” – The Rotting Zombie

“Rondo is a revenge thriller I have been watching quite a few movies lately that pay homage to the exploitation films of the 70’s. With Rondo you have a film which does just that, but which decides to pay tribute whilst keeping the trappings of modern day filmmaking…creates a feeling of moving art with scenes seeming choreographed in interesting ways. This over the top mayhem is where Rondo is at its exploitation film aping best, where it becomes most obvious, especially with what characters are wearing…Rondo is an exciting, darkly comedic revenge thriller that doesn’t fail to switch things up and go to unexpected places in its 90 minute run time. It weaves exploitation with arthouse making for something that visually is very arresting and which in its over the top comically shocking manner became something that was entertaining to watch. TheRottingZombie

“Genre fans are sure to enjoy” Rondo says SearchMyTrash

Rondo most certainly is a film that’s not easy to forget as it explores the evil depths of the human soul in a very stylish, sometimes even humorous way, with some extra-helpings of violence attached to it. And what makes this film more than just cheap exploitation is its excellent imagery that never lets blatant realism get in the way of its rather beautifully composed tableaus. Also despite its subject matter that spells sex and violence in bold letters, the film, though explicit enough, avoids mere sensationalism, instead trusts the strength of its narration. And add to that a very solid cast and you’ve got yourself a rather unusual little thriller, one which certainly enough isn’t for everyone but which genre fans are sure to enjoy.” – SearchMyTrash

HK Film Calls RONDO, “Cinematic gold…sexy, but in a “I feel so dirty” kind of way.”

“Indy filmmaker Drew Barnhardt has written a doozy of a weird-but-fun script and directed the heck out of it by spinning his low budget into cinematic gold that looks as sharp and visually interesting as most movies you’ll see on the big or small screen. And he has the kind of cast to work with in which there is no weak link…It’s sexy but in a “I feel so dirty” kind of way, and then comes the violence and extreme gore and nail-biting suspense which Barnhardt stages like a seasoned pro, pulling off several whiplash-inducing plot twists that yank the rug right out from under us.  I also kept thinking that the oddball dialogue, quirky characters (especially the irredeemably vile villains), and off-kilter situations which quickly escalate into nerve-wracking peril for the protagonists were a lot like what might happen if Quentin Tarantino and Dean Koontz got peanut butter on each other’s chocolate and vice versa.  As good as RONDO has been up till then–and it’s been very, very good–it’s during the last five or ten minutes when several dozen well-placed squibs give us that warm, fuzzy feeling that all’s right with the world. ” – HKFilmNews

Happy Memorial Day from Artsploitation Films

Happy Memorial Day from Artsploitation Films

Screen Shot courtesy of MOLLY

Drew Barnhardt, Director of RONDO, answers the question, “WHY ARTSPLOITATION?”

In the recent Interview with RONDO director, Drew Barnhardt, he’s asked the question,

What makes Artsploitation Films a good choice for RONDO?

Drew Barnhardt – “It’s right there in the name: Artsploitation. I wanted to make a flick that was aimed at late night audiences that also happened to be aggressively cinema-literate. The film uses some recognizable exploitation beats but, I feel, it is done with a bit of high style. A combination of so-called “high style” and “low style” is always interesting to me. I suppose it’s what you get when you’re doing an exploitation style movie but filtered through my own warped perspective and my love of folks like Luis Bunuel and Stanley Kubrick, among others. Artsploitation Films were one of the first to see this, recognize this in the flick and reach out. They had the balls to get behind it. And for that I am forever grateful.”