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A Bag of Hammers – SXSW 2011 Accepted Film | Spotlight Premiers

A Bag of Hammers - SXSW 2011 Selected Films

“A Bag of Hammers” has been added to the SXSW 2011 Selected Films, and this one seems destined to be a sleeper comedy favorite, if I know the SXSW crowd.

I just like the title of this film. For a number of years now, Jon Stewart’s breadth of material is gift wrapped and delivered by the antics of a segment of this country’s population, and along the way the term “A Bag of Hammers” has become one of my favorites.

In this scenario, politics are completely absent, thankfully, and instead we get to enjoy the logic, or lack thereof, of two young men, Alan (Jason Ritter, “W”, “Parenthood” TV series) and Ben (Jake Sandvig, “Easy A”) and their shenanigans.

“A Bag of Hammers” was written by Brian Crano (who also directs) and Sandvig. According to Crano’s blog, he wanted to write a script revolving around some kind of criminal activity. He just didn’t know what the angle would be until he watched a Travel Channel show on criminals stealing cars from valets (Which show was that? It certainly wasn’t Man vs. Food. There’s no running in that show, except maybe to the men’s room).

And then the light bulb went bright when he was “driving past a cemetery one day, I thought that that would be the perfect place for this scam, because at a funeral no one is paying attention to the valet at all.”

The storyline involves Alan and Ben, who are in the midst of doing a ding-dong-ditch drop off of a Mercedes they stole from Alan’s ex-girlfriend on the day her father was buried. The two manage to kidnap their 12-year old neighbor, Kelsey (Chandler Canterbury), and in the midst of all of that, the “film offers a look at what it means to be a family in the 21st Century.”

Who says a movie’s storyline needs to make perfect sense? The last thing we want is to see all the best parts of the film in its two-minute trailer. There’s no telling where “A Bag of Hammers” is going to take us, but I have a good feeling that it’s going to be a fun ride…in a stolen car. I’m there.

“Bag of Hammers” premiers at the SXSW 2011 Film Festival and Conference. We’ll keep you posted on the potential appearance of Brian Crano and Jake Sandvig.


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