MSU alumni developing film, plan to shoot in Lansing area

MSU alumni and brothers Brandon and Cameron Laventure are developing a feature film, entitled “The Riverview,” that they are planning to film in Lansing.

“It really started with a short comedic film called ‘Frank the Assassin,’ which was about a gun for hire that’s no good at his job,” said producer Brandon Laventure.

Brandon said “The Riverview” will be a dramatic thriller that addresses the political and social upheavals of the 21st century, such as war on terror, surveillance and resistance.

The film is about Vivian Lewis, who is coerced with an elaborate weave of tactics into helping cover up a crime by a mysterious stranger named Mercedes.

The film’s cinematic influences were gathered from paranoid thrillers in the 1960s and ‘70s.

“We were inspired by our favorite films from the ‘60s and ‘70s during the paranoid neo-noir movement, films like ‘French Connection,’ ‘Marathon Man,’ ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ (and) ‘The Exorcist,’” said Brandon.

The filmmaker’s goal was to include female characters prominently in the film to subvert the stigma in Hollywood that makes serious female characters so unusual.

“The Bechdel Test (is something that) a film can only pass if two female characters, both serious with names, talk to each other about something that isn’t a man, and so many of our favorite films fail this seemingly simple test,” said Brandon. “We set out to fail the reverse Bechdel Test (by including) so many female characters in the film that there are no two serious male characters talking about something that is not a woman.”

Comparative culture and politics junior France Elvie Banda hadn’t heard of the movie, but welcomed the idea of an expanded local film community.

“I haven’t really heard anything about it, but it is a type of genre that I would be interested in,” she said.

The link for the kickstarter can be found here

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