Dick Figures: The Movie is a 2013 independent animated comedy adventure film, written, produced, directed by and starring Ed Skudder and Zack Keller, produced by the small-business Six Point Harness animation studio and distributed by Mondo Media. It is Mondo's first animated feature-length production and Six Point Harness' first original feature film. The film was released for rent and purchase on September 17, 2013 on digital download and streaming services including iTunes, Google Play, Vudu and "Yekra", an all-new movie watching site for indie films. The film was then released a week later on iTunes in the UK, Ireland, Australia & New Zealand.
The film was split into 12 different chapters and published onto YouTube by Mondo. $313,411 was raised through the mass-funding platform, Kickstarter from 5,616 backers (including Warren Graff, Fred Seibert, Gundarr creators Corey McDaniel & Ted Wilson, amongst others) through May 31 to July 16, 2012, out of originally a $250,000 goal, breaking the record for the most funded animation project through the site, until it was surpassed by Blur Studio's The Goon (an upcoming computer-animated adaptation to Eric Powell's graphic novel series of the same name) on November 2012. Dick Figures The Movie successfully had a theatrical debut at the Buffer Festival in Toronto on November 9, 2013 and it is now to meet it's first commercial release for DVD and Blu-ray in the United States on December 3, 2013.
Plot[edit | edit source]
A meteor speeds towards Earth while numerous characters of the series are dropped off a bus for elementary school with Blue getting off last (and he is also the new kid). After Blue accidentally walks onto the 5th Graders' playground, Broseph, the leader of the 5th Graders, has them beat up Blue. They are interrupted by the arrival of the meteor which crashes into Broseph, killing him. In the crater, Blue finds that the meteor is Red. The 5th Graders attempt to beat him up, but he successfully defeats them with supernatural skill. Blue promises Red that no matter what happens, he will always be Red's best friend. Red responds, "I know, 'cause I'M AWESOME!"
Throughout their life in elementary school up to college graduation, Red becomes a bad friend to Blue, hanging out with girls more than he hangs out with Blue, partying, and nearly failing in his studies whereas Blue remains loyal and sticks to his school work. Red (barely) graduates with an undeclared major and a minor in flip cup; Blue with an 'advanced joystick theory' major and minor in 'cynical studies'.
Sometime later, Red and Blue are living together as roommates in their apartment, Blue is in a relationship with his girlfriend Pink, and Red remains unchanged in his crude behavior (not cleaning the apartment, leaving food to waste, not paying the rent, etc.). When Pink's birthday is fast approaching, Blue lies to Pink about getting her the best birthday gift ever, but really hasn't gotten her anything. Red suggests that they go see the Raccoon (Papa-san) at his pawn shop for a gift to get Pink.
Meeting with the Raccoon, he tells them a story of when he lived in ancient Japan. His village fell under attack from a demon ninja army led by Lord Takagami, who sought to control all of Japan. Papa-san left to fight them with the Sword of Destiny, however, he went into a rage after seeing his wife devoured by a large flying octopus monster, Ocho Muerte. He slaughtered the demon army and defeated Takagami, but not before Takagami shattered the Sword and scattered the pieces, promising that his soul and the souls of his army would haunt it forever. After the battle, Papa-san realized that he destroyed all of Japan while in a rage, and he was banished by his kinsmen, never to return. If Blue finds the Sword and returns it to him, he will give Blue the perfect gift for Pink. Blue reluctantly accepts the quest after being called a 'pussy' by Red and the Raccoon.
Hitching a ride on a booze cruise, Red and Blue arrive in Japan, meeting with the Raccoon's son, Son-san. After Blue lies to him that they are not getting the Sword for Papa-san, they are directed towards a mountain, only to discover the hilt of the Sword and a large map with the locations of the other pieces (the blade and a jewel). Their retrieval of the hilt awakens Takagami and his ninjas, who give chase. The duo escapes out to sea on a rowboat, and they eventually end up in the middle of nowhere during an approaching storm. Red questions Blue's reason for doing the quest for Pink (as he doesn't know what real 'love' means), and reveals that the reason for beating up the 5th graders back when they first met was to impress Pink and the girls. Blue fights with him, angrily stating that their friendship is over. Just then, lightning strikes their boat and a large wave sweeps them away. Meanwhile, Pink becomes increasingly worried about Blue's disappearance after calling him several times (his phone having been lost in the ocean).
Blue wakes up to discover that he and Red have washed ashore on a paradise island, which Red sets fire to while trying to tan. They are rescued in a plane by alcoholic British pilot Captain Crookygrin, who was an old friend of their landlord Mr. Dingleberry back in World War II, and has been sent to stop them from finding the Sword of Destiny. Luckily, Crookygrin has alcohol blindness, and cannot recognize them from pictures. They fly to Paris, France, but are suddenly attacked by Takagami's ninjas in jetpacks. Blue fends them off with the plane's machine gun, however they crash, with Crookygrin being mortally injured. They are told to find the blade of the Sword at 'le Tour Eiffel' (the Eiffel Tower), and head into a restaurant where they find their friend Lord Tourettes playing accordion to the diners. Outside, Mr. Dingleberry directs the French police to follow them, and it is revealed that he is taking orders from Takagami, who promised a reward for his help; he kills Dingleberry ("You'll be seeing your friend Crookygrin, SOONER THAN YOU THINK!"). The French police discover the three friends inside the restaurant and chase them to the Eiffel Tower, where Blue unites the hilt with the blade while Lord Tourettes distracts the police with a lullaby. Red and Blue return back to their hometown in America to find the jewel that goes with the blade, according to a letter given to them by Crookygrin.
Pink's birthday party has started, and Red abandons Blue to go partying, much to Blue's frustration. Blue decides to finish the quest alone, only to be captured by Takagami and taken to a the nearby mountain/volcano where the jewel rests. Takagami reunites the jewel with the Sword, and has Blue thrown into the lava. Red and Papa-san arrive in the knick of time to save Blue and seize the Sword; a battle ensues with Red and Blue fighting the ninjas while the Raccoon fights Takagami with the Sword of Destiny. Cutting off his mask, Papa-san discovers that Takagami is really his father, Father-san. When asked by his son why he became evil and started killing people, Father-san replies that it was to avenge every person that ever died. The Raccoon points out the obvious that just by killing more people, there are more people to avenge, to which Father-san says it's a job he could do forever. Raccoon beheads him, and his remains fall into the lava, but his head emerges, morphing into Ocho Muerte, who heads off to attack their town.
As Blue, Red, and Papa-san arrive at Pink's party, Ocho Muerte (Father-san) devours the Raccoon and is about to eat Pink too, but not before Blue rescues her with the Sword. Blue hangs over a ledge with Red holding him and the Sword, but is faced with a difficult choice of dropping the Sword (or Blue in his imagination). He drops the Sword into Ocho Muerte's mouth, which kills him in an explosion of light.
As the dust settles, Red apologizes to Blue for being a bad friend, as he has never had a real friend before, and promises to change (if only a little). They find Papa-san alive, as well as his wife Mama-san. He reveals that he sent Blue and Red on the quest ultimately to rescue his wife. In return for Blue's bravery, Mama-san gives Blue and Pink the lotus flower that Papa-san once gave to her, blessing their love for each other.
When Red and Blue remark on their quest, Red ends with a line he said earlier differently, "I always knew we could pull it off, 'cause WE'RE AWESOME!"
Cast[edit | edit source]
- Zack Keller as Blue, Narrator, Shaw, Japanese Guy, Trollz0r
- Ed Skudder as Red, Raccoon, Cpt. Crookygrin, Mr. Dingleberry, Additional Voices
- Shea Logsdon as Pink
- Eric Bauza as Lord Takagami
- Ben Tuller as Lord Tourettes
- Lauren Kay Sokolov as Stacy
- Mike Nassar as Broseph
- Chad Quandt as Chad-Gendarmerie
- Nick Ainsworth as Umbrella salesman
- Nick Keller as Party-goers
- John Dusenberry as Ghetto Cutter
- Brock Gallagher as Bully and Dock Worker #2
- Ashley Shelhon as Global Rescue Services operator
- Rob DenBleyker and Dave McElfatrick as the dock guards
- David Haley as Dock Worker #1, French Father, Cumulonimbus Ninja
- Brendan Haines as Steve, TNT Boat Foreman, Dead Ninja
- Tom "TomSka" Ridgewell as French Cop
- Lynn Wang as Japanese Girls
Production[edit | edit source]
The movie was originally set to be a 40-minute long special, according to the "stretch goals" announced for the Kickstarter campaign, but the film was changed into a length of 73 minutes and was also made available for public access, possibly due to Mondo's involvement in the film.
Kickstarter backers David Haley, Brendan Haines, Rob DenBleyker, Dave McElfatrick, Thomas "TomSka" Ridgewell, and Ashley Shelhon were given an animated appearance and actual voice role in the film for their $2,500 pledge contributions. Animator, Arin "Egoraptor" Hanson and YouTube comedian, Shane Dawson were negotiated to have a voice role in the movie, but somehow couldn't make it.
A book called The Art of Dick Figures The Movie was written and published by Skudder and Keller onto Amazon.com, in both paperback and Kindle versions. The book depicts some concepts, designs, storyboards and pre-production information of the movie.
Reception[edit | edit source]
Dick Figures The Movie received very positive reviews from critics. The film has currently gained a rating of 7.1 on IMDb, and is heavily praised by both series' fans and newcomers.
Mark Bell from Filmthreat.com gave the film a positive review, and said "Overall, though, I adored Dick Figures: The Movie. It may appear to be as simple an animation as you can get, but it is perfectly executed and extremely entertaining."
John Blabber from Bubbleblabber.com gave the film a positive review with a score of 8 out of 10, while saying "This first entry in the series is a strong and valiant effort by some of the most respected animators in the business. However, it’s just that…a movie WRITTEN by animators."
Chapters[edit | edit source]
From September 17 to November 26, 12 chapters of the film were released on Mondo Media's (the distributors of the film) YouTube channel available for users who couldn't afford to pay for the movie.