Chuck Steel: Night of the Trampires

Saturday 24 September 2022 by Mike Mort (UK, 2018) 89’ V.O. with Italian subtitles The film is a stop-motion animated action-horror-comedy, written and directed by Mike Mort who also stars the lead role. The film follows the adventures of Chuck Steel, a policeman with a chin the size of a wheelbarrow. He is a rebel, a knucklehead, a nonconformist; a nonsensical man who fights against a horde of vampire-like people who feast on the blood of drunkards. Chuck Steel is a parody of the action films of the 1980s: it is violent, vulgar and politically incorrect to a fault. The film, set in the 1980s, is a disturbing comedy that mocks the good old days when it was ok in a film to call a woman 'nice tits' and use bad words. But the film's greatest irony comes precisely from using these words out of context, making them sound ridiculous. Chuck Steel opens with an epic scene: Steel (voiced by Mort himself) desperately tries to defend his wife, alone against a group of  ninjas. The sequence is a technical marvel of hand-made stop-motion animation: each scene is full of a thousand tiny details. The main scene of the film is when Steel, with a look delving into the past (reminding us of Bruce Willis or Sylvester Stallone in their heyday), sets off on the trail of the homeless vampires addicted to alcohol and blood. They bring us back to another  milestone of the 1980s: the zombies from Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' video. They wait for drunk people outside bars, and the best way to kill them is to drive a wooden stake... into their liver, not their chest! The film was Mike Mort’s feature film debut in 2001 (he is one of the directors of the Shaun The Sheep series). Animortal Studio created for this film 425 puppets to represent hundreds of different characters, and the animation is particularly fluid as they worked at 24 frames per second instead of the standard 12 frames per second. Tim Allen, lead animator for Tim Burton, Aardman productions and Guillermo del Toro's recent Pinocchio, collaborated on the film.

Saturday 24 September 2022 - Cinema Lumiere – Sala Mastroianni, 11 pm

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