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Final Wager

USA 2024
produced by
Scott Hamm Duenas, Kipp Tribble, Kenny Yates, Brad Kerr (executive), Bobby Patel (executive) for Toni Nycole Productions, MRP Entertainment, KAYJ Entertainment
directed by Kenny Yates
starring Scott Hamm Duenas, Fernanda Romero, Jennifer Daley, Trevor Penick, Michael Madsen, Gwendolyn Fuller Mukes, Tom Arnold, Cevin Middleton, Julian Fletcher, Constance Parng, Marysia Irena, Kipp Tribble, Eric Charles Jorgenson, Matt Washington, Patrick Tompkins
written by Jerry Artukovich, music by Wesley Hughes

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Half a year ago, Chance (Scott Hamm Duenas) has quit gambling, and he has sworn it would be for good, also because his girlfriend, lovely sports bar owner Lisa (Fernanda Romero) has threatened to leave him otherwise. But then, just before Christmas, Chance receives news that his foster mother (Gwendolun Fuller Mukes) is to be evicted from her nursing home if she's unable to pay her outstanding bills, coming up to no less than $64,000, money that she doesn't have, that Chance doesn't have, but that the nursing home director (Tom Arnold) needs on the quick. Now for Chance, there's only one way to get money on the quick, even if his gamblers anonymous counsilor Wilt (Michael Madsen) advises against it and suggestsfor him to add up all the losses he has made over the years gambling as a sort of deterrent. Chance does just that, and stumbles across a curious fact, in his nine years of gambling he has never ever lost a single bet on Christmas Day, and conveniently Christmas Day's tomorrow. So the next day, Chance starts betting on sports games in the morning, and soon enough finds himself on a winning streak, one that due to certain limits on the betting app, just isn't moving quick enough to make all the money before tonight, so he tries to talk things over with his bookie's agent Ty (Trevor Penick) while hiding the fact he's betting again from Lisa, while spending of all places the whole day in her bar. But then, when Chance has almost reached his goal, Ty pulls a fast one on him, and suddenly he's in high debt with his as of yet faceless bookie - who turns out to be the very person whom he would have at least expected it to be ...

 

Now the idea of making gambling the central piece of a Christmas miracle feels instinctively wrong (at least to a non-gambler like myself), but that said, Final Wager has turned out to be a rather sweet film, one that's a blend of romantic comedy and comedy of deceit and errors, and that works due to a well structured script and well fleshed out characters, and tieing most of the film down to mainly one location actually works for the film rather than against it. And a very competent cast bringing their characters across in a relatable way only helps making this a rather enjoyable watch.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
Luana Ribeira, Rudy Barrow and Rami Hilmi
special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

Amazon

Amazon UK

Vimeo

 

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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