cactuses

Cactuses is a 2006 open-source motion picture created by the Arc2 Project, which consisted of twenty-four High School school students and five college students based in Manteca, CA.

This movie is unique in its content, creation, and distribution. It is one of the first feature-length movies to debut on the Internet as a free BitTorrent download.

The movie is available as an authorized and legal download at cactusesmovie.com under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license

The Creation

The Arc2 Project

The Arc2 Project was the "code" name for a special joint collaboration between Pocket Change Productions and Give Every Child a Chance The name "The Arc2 Project" stuck after receiving coverage in the local media.

The concept of the project was to turn the production process of a feature length motion picture into a productive learning experience for a crew made up entirely of students. The students developed skills in digital and computer technology through the fun environment of film production.

The secondary goal was a high-quality production, above expected standards for "student drama".

The Crew

The primary crew consisted of the members of the Arc2 Project, led by Matt Hannon and Rick Rapoza, with significant assistance from Joey Trimmer and Jeremy Meyer Other assistance was provided by businesses as well as the friends and relatives of the Arc2 Project.

Plot

Simon Brodigan (Cliff Chamberlain) gives up on just about every aspect of his life, and just about everyone in his life has given up on him. He passes the time in his unfulfilling life by working an honest part-time job with a not-so-honest scam on the side. Simon cuts corners, runs from responsibility, and definitely doesn't want to be helped.

Eventually, he is estranged from everyone in his life except for one person — an eccentric older woman, Mary Beth (Carmencristina Moreno), from whom he steals while in her employ. She is surprisingly tolerant of Simon's self-destructive behaviour, and her persistent interest in Simon's life eventually gets the better of him. While working for Mary Beth at her cactus shop, Simon finds that his reluctance to improve his life and the relationships that he has seemingly ruined turns to willingness, even eagerness.

Flirting with the concept of ambition, Simon tries to mend some of the wreckage of his past by making up with the father who has disowned him. But, things do not go as planned...

With hopes dashed, Simon believes that he is unable to change and quickly retreats to his old ways. He is tired of hurting the people that he loves. He believes that by pushing everyone away once and for all, they will quit pushing him.

The result is a mistake which has bigger consequences than Simon imagined, and even Mary Beth will have a hard time untangling his untimely mess.

Cast

The lead characters in this film are played by Cliff Chamberlain (Simon) and Carmencristina Moreno (Mary Beth). Cliff is known for his stage acting and his one man play, Paper Dreams and Plastic Promises. Carmencristina Moreno is known primarily for her Mexican-American music. She has also appeared in several movies over the years including The Master Gunfighter, HICKEY & BOGGS, and Deal of the Century.

Initial Screenings

In addition to the unique nature of the creation of this film, the distribution method is one of the first for a first-run, American-made motion-picture.

The movie was distributed for free using BitTorrent technology. This will allowed everyone to download a copy for them self. Of course, with the DivX encoded file reaching almost 1 gigabyte in size, it may not be practical for everyone to download it. Probably because of this, the movie was added to Google Video so it could be viewed without download, or downloaded with a smaller file size.

External links

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