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Lo-fi sc-fi 'This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy' excels on a shoestring

Lo-fi sc-fi 'This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy' excels on a shoestring
Daniel Pujol, from left, Tansy Hayden, Christian Nicholson and Sez Niederer in the movie "This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy." (Parade Deck Films)

With an affection for nerd culture that is inversely proportional to its budget, this lo-fi sci-fi comedy is destined for laugh-filled late-night viewing. "This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy" pays homage to favorites like "Doctor Who" and "Battlestar Galactica" while looking like it cost less than a cosplay effort to make.

Serious fan Jeffrey (Daniel Pujol) drags his friends Tom (cowriter and director Christian Nicolson) and Gavin (Lewis Roscoe) to a science-fiction convention. There, they get far more than their passes offer when they're sucked into an alternate universe that looks just like a black-and-white B movie set in space, where they're the heroes who have to fight intergalactic supervillain Lord Froth (Joseph Wycoff) alongside heroine Emmanor (Sez Niederer).

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Fans of the silliness of "Mystery Science Theater 3000" and "Galaxy Quest" will find that Nicolson and his co-writer Andrew Beszant are on their wavelength with this inventive New Zealand film.

"This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder" revels in its geekery and has fun with its low budget, using hand mixers and potato mashers in lieu of expensive effects and props. Studios are spending hundreds of millions on their sci-fi films, but Nicolson proves that isn't necessary to make a movie that will transport genre lovers into its world.

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‘This Giant Papier-Mâché Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy’

Not rated

Running time: I hour, 39 minutes

Playing: Arena Cinelounge Sunset, Hollywood; Laemmle Music Hall, Beverly Hills

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