Welcome to Our Mission

A paradigm shift is a different way of looking at things.

Things: the world, creativity, mind, body—

Flesh.
Desire.
Soul.

To see is to peer hard into every scene and locale you pass, to feel it out, for you will find what is…and most importantly…what isn’t there.

For instance, a churchyard. Night. Calm and serene—secure, as one would expect a sacred vessel to be. A statue of the Virgin Mary greets from afar in the garden, basking in the glow of a divine white flood light. She is surrounded by greenery, benches and the architecture that honors Her being. On a bench nearby is a wanderlust teenager who just experienced love for the first time and you can see their racing heart pulse in their eyes. Two lovers make out, using the nearest sanctuary to fall against the wall open their shirts and perform the acts of their lust. But there are corners, nooks and crannies. Nearby, a decaying tree’s thick branch gnarls across the church facade and casts a shadow across a stained glass window. The window is that of a saint knelt in prayer. His eyes are aimed at the looming branch because perched atop it, also knelt on its haunches is a scaly, red-eyed yellow-bellied demon wringing its hands in anticipation while other variants of its brethren lurk about waiting to debauch passerby with their silver tongues and glistening fangs. An exorcism is being performed on the sidewalk, blood gurgling from the mouth as the demon fluids engorge them with pleasure and pain in equal, unbearable measures. And then, in the pale blue moonlight, you stand, realizing the quiet is actually silence, and before you coalesce all the moods of the holy, the damned and the in-between. Look. Feel. Know. What is and what isn’t.

A different way of looking at things is only the start. Where the status quo ends is where our art begins.

Paradigm Shift Productions is a multimedia venture who specializes in genre fare linking a cherished past of tropes, tricks and lore to an exciting, innovative future of challenges, entertainment and stimulation.
We peer into the unnerving realities and fantasies that shape our everyday experiences and fuse them with unique storytelling to reach for an emotional core of understanding. We honor what has come before, for what is not to love? We live in suspense of the creaks that emanate from the insane beings in The Old Dark House, the vampires teasing themselves towards our necks, our inner Boyyyyy shuddering at the voice of The Tall Man and jolting every damn time Kurt Russell tests that second to last blood sample. Our work is a fusion of the two experiences to reach the basest human feelings and while, have a conversation with you.

We invite you on our journey where imagination is limitless and bountiful.

Are you ready?
Are you scared?
Are you aroused?

Time to play.

Revenge Is A Dish: Reviewing MODEL HUNGER

MODEL HUNGER (2016)

MV5BNTkxOTE2NTI5N15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwOTM0NDUyODE@._V1_UY268_CR6,0,182,268_AL_.jpg

A Film By Debbie Rochon

Starring Lynn Lowry and Tiffany Shepis

Runtime: 85 minutes

* * * * *

Beauty is only skin deep until you are cannibalized by a psychotic ex-model for whom beauty is a fleshy delight. Virgin clitorises, curvacious physiques and ample bosoms are all on the menu in the succulent cinematic horror Model Hunger, a film by genre veteran Debbie Rochon where the latter bodies clash with frayed psyches in a tale of objectification, revenge and the female body as meat.

Lynn Lowry (Shivers, Cat People, George: A Zombie Intervention) stars as Ginny, a former pin-up model whose career was derailed for lack of preferred body type. Now aged and clinging to lost dreams, she has found a new way to internalize her bitterness. And when neighbors Debbie (Tiffany Shepis) and Sal move in, their suspicion mounts that Ginny’s behaviors are far more sinister and culinary than they ever imagined.

In the era of “nasty women” rhetoric and utter disparities in standards for women in entertainment, Model Hunger is a timely and gruesomely entertaining offering from the very voices who so rarely are afforded the chance to helm a morsel of compelling horror.  And even with a claustrophobic, gritty Texas Chainsaw Massacre-esque vibe, it is a filmic breath of fresh air that balances social commentary with delivering the goods fans are hungry for.

Let’s speak subtext first. This is a film about beauty–female beauty. To paraphrase another old adage, beauty is in the eyes of the film’s beholders: the men and, interestingly, younger women. They are obsessed with the imaginary female body that is thin, busty and nubile to a fantastical degree, projecting standards on/into women with the willingness to discard what is deemed unacceptable or unattractive in the hopes they will find or possess something more desirable. It is a terrifying conceit to work from because this is sexism and misogyny afflicting women every day. The cat calls on the street, the judgmental undressing with side eyes and the forceful push to improve one’s body for the sake of pleasure when there was nothing truly wrong to begin with.

Ginny’s struggle is an alarming twist on these scenarios. Her mind has spilled over the edge, a jealous monster who sees younger women and yearns for their bodies to the point of torturing and destroying them because the rejection hurled by her grossly cold-sored male boss hit her with a shame that, in this reality, created a force thought of as subpar and must now be reckoned with. Objectification has become a blinder for Ginny. Her body was a superficial feast to be consumed until found distasteful. Now, the feast is hers for the taking because as her argument would be, if she cannot be told to have it, who can? She has neither agency nor dignity left, a tragically convoluted projection of the resulting hatred women can feel from very real humiliation with an added level of insane revenge exacted as a gory garnish.

And gore is good when prepared correctly. Model Hunger understands the recipe well. Effects are spare but potent with bloody mutilations both on full display and in well edited implications. Rochon does not shy away from presenting the side effects of Ginny’s dark side. In fact, they are relished to ironically titillate and mortify right down to a squeamish vaginal peeling/appetizer course that leaves you wide eyed with WHAT THE ACTUAL F**K.  In addition, the aforementioned Texas Chainsaw motif evokes the feeling of being at a grindhouse drive-in, a feeling that makes the proceedings seedier and way more exciting because you feel dirty and naughty for partaking, breathless awaiting the conclusion and needing a cigarette when all is said and done.

Finally, Lynn Lowry, also a horror femme fantastique, gives the performance of her life as Ginny with a Blanche DuBois accent straight out of Streetcar and an alternating persona of a charming senior and ravaged madwoman. Her interactions exhibit incredible range by appearing congenial on the outside while providing us with mad voice-overs that teeter beyond raunchy and cruel as her dark desires creep back to violent life. And when Lynn gets violent, all you need is to look in her eyes (that the camera makes absolutely shine) to know that your suffering is going to be legendary.

Available on DVD through Wild Eye Releasing featuring Director’s Commentary, outtakes and more, Model Hunger is a must see indie horror offering that hopefully spurs more gleefully provocative fare from the creative forces that know, to echo the film’s tagline, revenge IS a dish.

VISITING HOURS Are From 5 to Terror

Throwback Thursday coming at ya for your Women in Horror week: VISITING HOURS from 1982, a divisive horror film that attempts to blend some perspective with the usual screams and gore. In this film’s case, topics include misogyny, domestic and sexual violence. Albeit quite dated, there are some nuggets worth discussing. The film was released to unfortunately little fanfare and was subject to banning in the United Kingdom during the infamous Video Nasty crusade. Available through Scream Factory on a double bill with fellow hidden gem BAD DREAMS (1988), check it out for yourself and wonder, how can we progressively bring back such subject matter in the now without a male director at the helm? Trailer and thoughts below.

There is no shortage of irony in branding Visiting Hours (1982) a Video Nasty. Not only quite tame in comparison to fellow victims of the UK banning spree, here is a slasher film whose main conceit is actually about the suppression of violence, specifically domestic abuse. The proof is in the plot: Deborah Ballin (Lee Grant), a stalwart feminist news anchor, struggles for media visibility of so-called battered women, posing both as a symbol of empowerment and the ultimate threat to The Man, portrayed here as psychopath Colt Hawker (Michael Ironside), whose endgame is to pacify such toughened voices through murder. Hawker’s stalk and slash motif is a sleazy twist on the rote formula with his phallic switchblades, a mother-blaming back story of familial abuse, and, most of all, a camera to photograph his victims in the throes of their demise. Thus, the film’s gaze is not on tantalizing sex scenes or stupid teenagers smoking dope, but on bruises, bloody noses and sweaty brows soaked in fear. It is about exposure, figuratively to the abuse Ballin combats and literally through a killer’s shutter that makes misogynistic violence and feminine pain a twistedly timeless art. By its finale, Visiting Hours is a disquieting picture hampered only by languid pacing and William Shatner doing William Shatner. A few memorable gore effects evidences its place in the Nasty canon, but its censure only ignores that some horror films’ screams of terror can in fact be cries for justice.

 

Hungry For a Tease?

16402481_10207028398663449_4387851346533544728_o

ENTRANCE EXAM is a short horror film about the intertwined politics of private education, identity and monsters. Currently in pre-production, here is a tease of the teaser that is scheming its way to the cameras from behind the cat eye shades of Catherine Deneuve a la THE HUNGER, a queer/punk vampire film from 1983 that is of heavy inspiration to the creator and team.

Watch for updates on ENTRANCE EXAM and our other creative discoveries here.

Throwing You A Bone

Production on AVERSION: Chapter Two, “Canine,” is well underway with original text by Aaron Eischeid and illustrations by Zoe Xanos bleeding to page and soon to bookstores. You’ve been a wonderful audience and deserve a treat: a sneak peek!

A glimpse into the future of the first segment set in past Russia, before all the madness began…

STAY TUNED FOR MORE!

To see more art by Zoe Xanos, follow @pittsfield_ghost on Instagram!

Sweets to the Sweet

Paradigm Shift Productions has screamed its way to a killer close of 2016, with even more howls to come, and we are thrilled beyond compare to welcome a new team member into the family, an amazing woman who is here to help make our 2017 the queerest terror in town!

Welcome OLIVIA SWEETS, our new Publicity Director!

img_20161125_110534300

Read up on her story here and on the About the Paradigm Team page. She will be the face of our marketing and outreach and already has some exciting developments in store.

She speaks basic Japanese and is wildly fluent in innuendo and 90s cartoon theme songs. She is all things dark and glamorous. She also believes in the universal benefits of art. Olivia Sweets is her name and being the Paradigm Shift Publicity Director is her game.

Educated at Ball State University, Olivia is also a dramaturg and theater artist with expertise in history and, using a deep well of knowledge (just ask about the history of red velvet cake, you will get SCHOOLED) to round out a script or performance into an accurate, literary fleshed out breathing being. Paired with a sensibility for the fantastic and forward thinking, she is a woman aimed squarely at the stratosphere of success for herself and peers.

Olivia is our touchstone for outreach, marketing and drive towards the future. Just don’t be surprised if you receive a well-composed pun with any inquiry, because being fiery is inherently a full-time gig.

Eek! A New Review!

Out in Santa Monica, California dwells Pervula. By night, a vampire of lewd, lascivious behavior and by day, a filmmaker/DJ/author who goes by the name Armando D. Munoz.

knifepic

His gonzo short films, music sets inspired by all our favorite horror movies and novels that rival the length and terrors of Stephen King serve as inspiration and entertainment for us at Paradigm Shift. The other day Mr. Munoz took time out of his busy schedule to read AVERSION: A ZINE OF THERAPEUTIC VIGNETTES, Chapter One, “Dummy.” And he flattered us with the following words,

“I just finished the first part of Aversion, a horrific five part anthology zine by author Aaron Eischeid, and it gets my recommendation. This is part of a new class of political horror I’m really into, like The Purge films and my novel Turkey Day, where the fear reflects the day’s most terrifying headlines and reveals the true evil lurking in our world. I’m looking fearfully forward to Chapter 2.”

Thank you, Armando, and yes, we look forward to Chapter 2 too, now in production. For more on Mr. Munoz, check out http://www.eekentertainment.com/ and https://www.youtube.com/user/EekEntertainmentProd and don’t forget to visit our store for your copy of AVERSION!  

GHOSTS OF THE FORBIDDEN Official Teaser

Today is December 1, 2016. World AIDS Day. Decades have passed since we first truly became aware of the ravaging capabilities of the disease, a monster that snatched away the souls of anyone and everyone across the world.

The stories of those ghosts long go untold out of shame, fear and total forgetfulness. As an individual and artist, I became personally invested in those stories through academia, literary/cinematic accounts, oral histories and journeys into cemeteries to spend time with the dead and allow them for once in their lives, albeit now a spiritual one, to speak about themselves and the plague.

Melding the ghosts with a queer haunting of history, a school of thought employed by theorist and activist Juana Maria Rodriguez, Paradigm Shift Productions presents the teaser trailer for GHOSTS OF THE FORBIDDEN, the dark exploration of ghosts within the past, present and future of HIV/AIDS in the queer community.