Tag Archives: Pawn Shop Chronicles

Wayne Kramer’s Pawn Shop Chronicles 


If Tales From The Crypt were set in the Deep South with more of a pulp crime vibe, you’d get Wayne Kramer’s Pawn Shop Chronicles, a sweaty, sleazy anthology mixup with one legendary ensemble cast and a deliberative effort to disturb the audience at every turn. Segmented into three zany outings, each one connected to a shady pawn shop run by Vincent D’Onofrio and Chi McBride, by a different specific item each time. In the first it’s a shotgun which passes through a few different meth addled hands, as two strung out junkies (Paul Walker and Lukas Haas) foolishly try to rob their cook/dealer (Norman Reedus, but it could have been anyone because you literally never see his face). This is one grease-ball comedy of errors, as these two morons are way too high to actually get anything done, their feverish efforts culminating in a noisy Mexican standoff, an enjoyable bit especially to see Walker playing way against type. The second story is the most perversely extreme, as we see Matt Dillon and his new bride buying a wedding ring from the very same shop. Suddenly he recognizes another ring that belonged to his missing ex wife and gets all determined to track her down. This leads him to the home of clean cut yuppie Elijah Wood, who of course is anything but innocent and one ups his depraved character in Sin City, no easy task if you’ve seen that film. Speaking of one upping, director Kramer seems to be trying to outdo himself and churn out a story more sickening than the infamous ‘Hansel and Gretel’ sequence in his crime masterpiece Running Scared. While not quite as effective as that, this midsection will make many squirm and have you nervously eyeing both the door and the spot on the seat in front of you where a barf bag should be. The third and silliest tale sees Brendan Fraser as a sad-sack Elvis impersonator who can’t hold down a gig. It’s odd because this sequence is sort of pleasant even, Fraser being his usual affable self makes you feel vaguely comforted after the heinous happenings in the previous Matt Dillon bit. I wish I could rave about this flick, but there’s a few inconsistencies; some of the writing is shallow and disengaged, and in other spots it tries to hard to be shocking, while in Running Scared, for example, that just came organically somehow. However, it’s never short on entertainment value and you certainly won’t forget it anytime soon after. Plus there’s even more actors in the impressive lineup including DJ Qualls, Pell James, Kevin Rankin, Sam Jennings, Matt O Leary, Michael Cudlitz, Ashlee Simpson and Thomas Jane as a mysterious cowboy apparition. The very concept of a southern themed, vaguely horror anthology set around a pawn shop is brilliant though, and this almost seems ripe for an episodic streaming pickup, via Netflix or the like. 

-Nate Hill

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ARTISAN WORKBENCH with RICHARD CARTWRIGHT

Richard Cartwright POWERCAST

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Photograph by Mitchell Haddad

Podcasting Them Softly is proud to be joined with veteran still photographer RICHARD CARTWRIGHT.  Richard has been capturing life still by still for over the last thirty years in the film industry.  Richard has worked on the sets of 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU, CELTIC PRIDE, PLAYING GOD, BANDITS, HEAVYWEIGHTS, HIDALGO, MR. 3000, BATTLE: LOS ANGELOS, MUSIC FROM ANOTHER ROOM, WEDDING CRASHERS, PITCH PERFECT 2 and last but not least, friend of Podcasting Them Softly’s Wayne Kramer’s insanely audacious film, PAWN SHOP CHRONICLES.

Please visit Richard’s website at www.richardcartwright.com to view his extensive credits and see the photos he’s taken!

PTS Presents Filmmaker Wayne Kramer POWERCAST

KramerCast

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Photo Credit: Richard Cartwright http://www.RichardCartwright.com

We are incredibly proud to present a two hour conversation with filmmaker Wayne Kramer where we discuss his fantastic filmography of THE COOLER, RUNNING SCARED, CROSSING OVER and PAWN SHOP CHRONICLES and he briefly teases his next project.  Wayne discussed at length his filmography and talked about his knack for casting amazing ensembles.   Wayne also discusses his love for film scores, particularly that of John Barry and his influences of film noir, 1970’s crime films and the collective work of Brian De Palma.  We would like to thank Wayne for being so gracious with his time.

All of Wayne’s films are available to purchase via Amazon.com, by disc on Netflix’s mailing service, and to rent or own via Amazon Instant Video, Vudu and iTunes.