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Tim Bradstreet

Dark Country on DVD

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As many have suggested, it was about time to begin a thread for those of us that have seen the film.

We would love to know what you think.

 

There is nothing that would have made us more elated than to have had a 3D release of the film but we are very much hoping that will happen in the future along with a director's cut. Only a very lucky few have seen the film the way IT WAS INTENDED TO BE SEEN . . . IN 3D!

THAT'S the complete experience. The same cannot be said of the 2D version.

 

I've seen it both ways and I can tell you that the immersive quality of the effect and the "Friday night at the drive-in" feel that it gives this film is the ultimate experience for this material. 2D will lack the total mood, tone, and vibe, no way around it.

 

We hope to screen the film around the country in it's 3D glory over the coming year. Maybe we'll make it to a town near you.

In the meantime, let's discuss the version we do get to see in the current state of things.

 

Before we get started, I just want to offer my congratulations to Tom.

He did a lot of work here that most of ya's will never know about ;)

 

And DON'T forget - If you want to replace the lame cover that came with your purchase then go to our dedicated Dark Country website and download custom sleeves by me and Dave Allcock!!

Just click the MOTH.

 

Site will be updated soon with some of your own fan art!

 

 

Bloodyface2alt1RF.jpg

 

Hope you enjoy the film.

 

- TB

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We hope to screen the film around the country in it's 3D glory over the coming year. Maybe we'll make it to a town near you.

I've seen it both ways and I can tell you that the immersive quality of the effect and the "Friday night at the drive-in" feel that it gives this film is the ultimate experience for this material.

 

Any chance y'all could acutally show it at a drive-in? There are 2 drive-ins left in Nevada - Reno & Las Vegas - West Wind Theatres. Wonder who their distributor is & if they have 3-D capability. It would be an INCREDIBLE way to see it!

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Any chance y'all could acutally show it at a drive-in? There are 2 drive-ins left in Nevada - Reno & Las Vegas - West Wind Theatres. Wonder who their distributor is & if they have 3-D capability. It would be an INCREDIBLE way to see it!

 

 

I want this!

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WOW! After the long, long wait, I was not dissapointed. Tom did a great job, acting and directing. Tim, nice work on the look. 90% of most films just shoot the subjects, this film added layers of visuals to a lot of the scenes. One of my favorites is when the car is going down the highway and in the foreground is the outlines of branches and shrubs. Not a frame was wasted.

 

What I like about the script is that the story builds. It's not one of those that has to have a action, action, action all the time. Paranoia oozes from the screen. Hell, at one point I was joining the couple pointing fingers, it's that intimate. And for once, (Thanks to Tom, Tim, and the rest of the crew) my blood was running cold. This is the first time in a long time where by the end I was freaking out and getting chills. The last film I saw that did this was probably The Mist. It was kind of nice not shutting the film off and getting ready for bed. I had to sit and take it in.

 

Through-out the film, I really wish they would have went 3-D. A lot of the rear-projection in the car was made for it. Unlike many rear-projection shots in film, it was designed to look great. There's depth and texture, not just something shot on the fly and for cheap. There are bits where it looks a bit off and feels out of place, but I'm willing to bet it's because of the fact that it was shot for 3-D. Over all, you can tell a lot of work and love went into this. The gorge chase by the way, great stuff.

 

I just got done watching it, so my thoughts are all over the place, but I will say this, check it out. It gave me chills and I loved the holy hell out of it. I'm still wrapping my head around the end. Tom, you've got my brain twisted tight with that one, I still can't believe what I saw. Cheers to that. I'll be in line waiting for film #2.

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Okay, I was able to watch the movie this afternoon, but didn't have much time to comment at that time.

The ending made my skin crawl. Creepy, creepy, creepy.

I've had some time to think about what happened in the story and it leaves a lot of questions unanswered. But I think that's a good thing. The creepiness is that it's NOT explainable.

 

I read a few reviews, but not all of them since they start to get redundant. But a couple of reviewers mentioned the music. One didn't like it at all and another just thought it was okay. For me, the use of percussion and strings, especially the pizzicato, worked to build the tension. I'm not a big fan of muted horns, so the other music didn't do much for me. It was merely okay when they were smooching in the hotel room, and it really irritated me when they were digging the hole. Didn't seem to fit in that scene at all, so if there was a reason for that, I'd like to know what it was because I missed it.

 

I liked the use of color, and I want to watch it again tomorrow just to concentrate on that. At one point Dick is talking to Gina and the lighting is pink behind him from the window and then in the next scene everything is the same except the color is blue. For some reason I liked that. I also like the shots of Thomas' eyes in the light reflected from the rearview mirror. Really nice, reminded me of old movies, and MOST actors (I'm thinking about Clooney here, Tim) cannot pull off a scene where you only see there eyes. Those are great shots. The sideways glances at Gina, too. Great. Oh, and I also liked the foreshadowing with the bugs at the beginning.

 

I was surprised by a couple of things. One is by how much Bloodyface talked in that back seat. I didn't expect that at all from the trailer. Also surpised that I didn't actually see Gina get killed. Did I miss something there?

 

Those are my first impressions. I'm looking forward to other folks' comments.

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Timmy, Tom-Tom, I've been a fan of your guy's work for years now. I've loved all the comic covers, and Tom's performances are good and ballsy. With that said...

 

This movie is a fucking gem! If David Lynch weren't with us, I'd swear Tom was channeling him from beyond the grave.

 

I think you guys would agree the film could have used a bit more polish, but its a testament to Tom's directing, Geoff's lighting, Tab's writing, etc that once the movie starting going, that shit just didn't really matter. There are a good many questions left unresolved, but to resolve them would remove the paranoia and take away the Twilight Zone feel of it all. Truly, what we are not told is more unnerving than coming right out and telling us what was going on.

 

Tom, you did an absolutely fantastic job. As a first time director, you made what you wanted and had the balls to actually do it. If you took the exact same story, but put it in the hands of someone else who would just go through the motions, we'd have an average movie. Instead, we get one of the most original looking films in some time. I can only imagine how this will look with a few tweaks and the 3D intact. I hope we'll get that Blu-Ray 3D Director's Cut some day. 3D that isn't just about throwing shit in your face... I hope I'll see that day.

 

Tim, I don't want to sell you short, brother. You've done a fantastic job on the film, and rallying up fan support. I'm proud to have anything to do with this grassroots campaign. I hope this movie will catch on, and then maybe the studio will realize that it missed an opportunity to get some heads turning and try something different.

 

I only hope that the core gang gets back together (Tim, Tom, Geoff) for the next flick.

 

Two Notes:

 

-Tom sure could have used that shovel on the shitty cover. When I first saw the cover, I actually thought how funny it would be if we never see a shovel in the movie...

 

-Oh and Tim... HAH! In a way, Tom DID get fucked up in the movie! Okay, might not have been Tom exactly, so I guess we don't owe eachother any cookies. :rolleyes:

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Heheh, well I had to deflect everyone away from the real deal. Too early to ruin the surprise so my little white lie just hadda be.

TJ or Kristyn accidentally let that close-up image of Bloodyface slide to Arrow or JoBlo and we had to do some fast editing and covering.

Blowing that angle would have ruined a lot of experiences. Hopefully you all won't hold it against me ;)

 

Thanks for the kudos all, makes us feel like we're not crazy.

Can't wait for you all to see it in 3D!

 

Hopefully we'll be announcing a little promotional tour in the not too distant.

And THANK YOU everyone for the incredible support over the last 2 years!!!!

 

 

- TB

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HOLY CRAP! What a ride - truly excellent. A few thoughts after one viewing:

 

Every few scenes I found myself gasping & thinking how amazing that would have just been in 3D. Dammit.

 

I love how the story is told, like a mobius strip. I just pray that people don't try to take the logic apart like the Matrix. It's a trip/dream/nightmare - no need for explanation or deconstruction.

 

The lighting is fantastic - I know the print is dark but there are only a few spots where it's truly distracting. In a dark room, I was able to make a lot of it out.

 

The design is amazing. My husband who is a linear, non-fiction guy got totally sucked in because of the visuals & lighting alone - then of course he started bugging me about the plot. :angry:

 

I loved the music, I am a fan of atonal/dissonant work (love Bartok, Lutoslawski, John Cage, Piazzolla) so I thought it was great. Perfect combo for tingling the nerves while opening a trunk w/ a semi-dead guy. Also loved Bloody Face's muffled heartbeat - the first time it showed up I thought something was wrong w/ my set!

 

I have to admit,

I had an inkling that TJ was Bloody Face

- it's the stance in the poster. But I wasn't too sure.

 

I cracked up when I saw the last sign for Searchlight - Sen. Maj. Leader Harry Reid grew up there so it is a real place. Also loved the reference about Dick being sober & Gina still being good looking - was just joking w/ my boss the other day about that very Churchill line .

 

I have a feeling this flick will have a LONG shelf life. All you folks who worked so hard on this should keep your notes & files well organized 'cause I don't doubt a second chance may come along one day.

 

BRAVO!

 

 

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So two years ago, I'm an actor in New Mexico looking to get connected to cool film projects coming to the area. So there on the New Mexico film website is a listing for "Dark Country". At that point I think only Tim and Tom were the major players on it. I came to RAW to find out how to be a part of the film...and despite failing (due to only 4 speaking roles in the film) I stayed around to hang out with all the cool folks here.

 

After all this time, the movie just finished playing on my DVD player. Pretty cool flick. You can tell it loses a LOT not being in 3D though. :( Beautiful though regardless.

 

One thing bothered me about the film. Who killed his wife? Why would he kill her? Where did he go afterward? Something seemed to be missing.

 

Overall I dig it...and now..."Devil's Commandos"...

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When it came to the end of the flick, I half expected to hear Rod Serling's voice commenting on the circular nightmare Dick is trapped in. Listening to the dialogue between Dick and Gine over the ending credits was a lighthanded way of doing that very thing. Nice.

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I don't know how I could forget, but that car. Whoever picked out that car, my hat's off to you. Every knob, gauge, dial, button just looked cool. Just the look of it made the film that more interesting, where if anyone else would have done it, it would have been some cookie cutter mass processed car we see in every film.

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One thing bothered me about the film. Who killed his wife? Why would he kill her? Where did he go afterward? Something seemed to be missing.

 

I assumed Bloodyface killed her, but at that point its difficult to make sense of what's going on.

 

It seemed like the grave being empty, the rest stop not existing, the wife being dead, all those unanswered questions were what lead Dick to finally snap once he realized that he was Bloodyface.

 

I could be wrong, but everything else just seemed like red herrings to make you think the other way around or just to distract you from what is about to happen (the stranger, the missing flyers). Before Dick and Gina were revealed at the end, I was thinking that he would have been picked up by another couple which would imply that the guy would become the new Bloodyface... but in its own weird way, he wouldn't know about Gina's past if it weren't for him bringing it up earlier and... well, its bloody hard to put to words ;)

 

Oh and Tim, forgot to mention this before. The one poster you did with the silhouette in front of the bright light... I never knew what the hell was going on in it, until that point in the movie. I actually paused to look at the poster just to make sure.

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RE: Gina's death. I think creepy diner guy is behind Gina's killing & Bloody Face was trying to save her - he is, afterall, her husband...

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RE: Gina's death. I think creepy diner guy is behind Gina's killing & Bloody Face was trying to save her - he is, afterall, her husband...

 

For some reason, I think Bloodyface was trying to kill Dick to somehow prevent himself from killing Gina or putting her in a position to die. His grave was empty and the watch was found at Gina's grave.

 

What do we know about Gina's death? She fired off shots at the rest stop, and was found buried there (along with other bodies, I think all female). And what became of the rest stop?

 

I'm still trying to figure out who the Stranger was. Was he a cop? Maybe the creepy guy she mentioned from the strip club? Maybe he represents all the guys from the missing couples reports. Was he supernatural (he did appear outside the diner fairly quickly when Dick and Gina left)?

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I posted these questions (with my personal theories) on IMDB, but something tells me I'll get some better discussion here ;) Just about the only answer we get is who Bloodyface was. Maybe the Triple-T (Tim, Tom, or Tab) can shed some light here.

 

 

Who was the Stranger?

 

We only see him at the diner/gas station and at the end. Was he a cop? The creepy guy Gina mentioned? Gina's killer? Personally, I think he represents the men half of all the missing couples. He does try to warn Dick to stay on the right road, and appears outside the diner super quick when Dick and Gina drive off, implying he could be supernatural.

 

 

What happened to the Rest Stop?

 

Ron Perlman's character mentions the rest stop used to be there 30 years ago, and now appears to be a mass graveyard. Since all the bodies that were uncovered were most likely the missing females (I believe one officer questions why the male bodies are missing), and all the cars are left covered with dust with the keys in the ignitions, I would think all the missing couples ended up here. That doesn't explain why the Rest Stop pretty much disappears. Chalk it up to a "Bermuda Triangle" like area in the desert?

 

Who killed Gina?

 

I would assume Bloodyface. His grave is empty and the watch is found with Gina. What would the motivation be, since Bloodyface turns out to be Dick in some sort of timeloop? Self defense (she did fire off shots, and we remember Dick going a little overboard with that rock)? Bloodyface, in the car, does say to Gina that he never meant to hurt her, though we don't know exactly what that means.

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Hard to say who killed Gina. It could go easily both ways. One question is if it really is Bloodyface who killed her, how did he know about Cheetas? I'm assuming from his reaction at the rest stop that he has really never been there. Plus, at the end there is the shot of the Stranger and the Sheriff, and the Stranger says: I told you to stay on 95. But that in itself is odd, because it could have been a warning. And if it was, why is it that he knows about it and is not stuck in the time-loop?

 

This is the fun part of the film, trying to put it all together, and I think this is a case where no one is wrong. All I know is that in the last 15-20 minutes of the film, there where times I forgot to breath. Deffinatly one of the great film endings.

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Hard to say who killed Gina. It could go easily both ways. One question is if it really is Bloodyface who killed her, how did he know about Cheetas? I'm assuming from his reaction at the rest stop that he has really never been there. Plus, at the end there is the shot of the Stranger and the Sheriff, and the Stranger says: I told you to stay on 95. But that in itself is odd, because it could have been a warning. And if it was, why is it that he knows about it and is not stuck in the time-loop?

 

This is the fun part of the film, trying to put it all together, and I think this is a case where no one is wrong. All I know is that in the last 15-20 minutes of the film, there where times I forgot to breath. Deffinatly one of the great film endings.

 

The Cheetahs thing is weird. Bloodyface wouldn't know about it if it wasn't for Dick questioning Gina about it, which would lead to Dick becoming Bloodyface so he could bring it up, so Dick could question.... I can almost see Tab reading this with a smirk on his face.

 

To me, that's like the Icebox scene in Vertigo. Hitchcock intentionally put a moment in there where he never resolved a question (being that the lady goes into the hotel, but then appears she was never there), and then the viewer, long after seeing the movie, goes to their fridge (icebox) to get a drink, and suddenly thinks "but how did she get out of the hotel with noone seeing her?" Substitute that with the Cheetahs question. I deserve a BIG cookie if that's right! :lol:

 

The Stranger though... I really don't know who he is. Here I thought Bloodyface would be completely unresolved, and yet the Stranger is the most mysterious guy.

 

You're absolutely right, this is the fun part! We're going to be throwing back theories for days.

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Of the handful of reviews I read, the folks who had a complaint about the movie didn't like that there was no resolution or explanation at the end. Some people just like everything to be tied up in a pretty bow. When I've seen similar stories in the past, it's not unusual for it to be explained in one of several ways:

 

-it shows something to make it obvious that the character is trapped in literal Hell; like the Sheriff or the Stranger could have removed their hats to reveal horns or some such thing.

 

-it pulls out to show that the main character is in a coma, in a hospital bandaged from head to toe, and all this is a nightmare playing over again and again in his head.

 

-you see a definite boundary where the characters are out of place and time and trapped in a "twilight zone" place or, as mentioned above, a bermuda triangle in the desert; and everything within is totally different from everything without.

 

It could be any of those things, or none of those things. It's just a cool, creepy story to get immersed in for a while. There was an awful lot of red on the horizon, though. :o

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It could be any of those things, or none of those things. It's just a cool, creepy story to get immersed in for a while. There was an awful lot of red on the horizon, though. :o

 

This is one of the best examples of a movie telling you to come up with your own idea I've seen in a long time.

 

I'm interested to read what everyone else's takes on who the Stranger was. He obviously knows what's going on, but I'm not sure on who he is supposed to be. I'm going to have to give this another watch tonight, just to come up with some more hair brained theories.

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What is the symbolism of the roads...93/95? The flower? Lots of good theories NL. I was thinking about it this morning. Dick wakes up with his new wife, not remembering much of anything. Could it ALL be in his head? The whole movie?

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First, my journey to get my own copy of Dark Country which was nearly as arduous as actually SHOOTING the film!

It all started out harmlessly enough yesterday . . . I picked up my daughter at the theater where my wife works a half hour south, on the way back we stop at Target to pick up a few things for the girl and to get me a copy of DARK COUNTRY.

No Dark Country. Fuck.

 

Oh well, I'll just go to Fry's Wednesday morning after I drop off my daughter at day-care.

I even check on the web, yep, Fry's is carrying Dark Country, no worries. 'Cept for the part where I get to Fry's and I got bupkiss, nada, zero, zilch.

It takes 11 minutes for me to track down an employee to help me, check the computer and confirm that indeed, there are no copies in the store.

So much for confirming via the internet that the store had copies. Websites DO lie! I feel like my innocence has been ripped from me ;)

 

SO, Best Buy is nearby, the worlds WORST Best Buy - by the way, but I say fuckit, it's close and whaddo I have to lose right?

I was SHOCKED. The worlds WORST Best Buy actually expanded and revamped their movie section. It still sucks but it's twice as good as it was. And yep, you guessed it, no Dark Country. Now I'm beginning to wonder how good Sony's distribution actually is cause I'm thinking PATHETIC.

 

Dare I throw caution into the wind and brave the nearby Wallmart? Egad. Toothless Limper (that's what I call them) Purgatory.

Fuckit, I go. To my everlasting chagrin.

 

It's never a good sign when the parking lot itself is a fucking travesty, and I'm telling you, it was a warzone. It looked as if a bomb went off and Mountain Dew exploded and decapitated a garbage truck, like someone delivered a baby in the back of a pick-up truck, wet towels, bloody rags, half eaten bits of food. Christ Allmighty man, it was Post Apocalyptical.

 

I bravely step out of my car and make my way to the front of the building where there sits a middle aged gentleman with no leg, he's got it dangling out of the side of the golf cart he drives. Just sitting there eyeballing everyone as if to say "look at the dried blood and puss littering the end cap of my stub-sock. Holy Catfish.

 

SO I walk in past Stumpy McStares and GODAMMNIT TO HELL, the smiling people greeter has NO FUCKING NOSE! AWWWW C'MON!

At least wear a nose shield or a fake proboscis fer chrissakes! It's just a hole in the dude's face where his nose used to be. I cannot in good conscience describe it further.

 

THAT wasn't it, no, no, not even close. I have to navigate around a lady with her 4 kids screaming and clawing at everything in the vicinity.

The lady herself, late 30's shoots me a look like come over here big boy and fuck me. YIKES. I'm not kidding. The horror of this was doubled by the fact that she was wearing a cut off shirt exposing her midriff which by the way was a BEER BELLY of Slim Pickins proportions, It was LITERALLY HANGING over a gigantic western style salad plate sized belt buckle. I almost passed out.

 

I just set my jaw and continued like it would take an army from hell to keep me from my goal.

Finally I make it to the movie section. I search EVERYWHERE through the new releases and I'm starting to get the feeling that I parachuted behind enemy lines for no reason when out of the corner of my eye I spot the ONE little slot amongst the hundreds which contains a copy of the rarest DVD in San Diego County. I grabbed it and sprinted to the checkout where a dude in a slimy cut-off shirt with his toothless wife CUTS ME OFF to budge in front of me. Thankfully Wallmart has "self" checkout and only a small percentage of their patrons are intelligent enough to actually use them so I made a bee line for that. Boom-pow, I'm out. Past Sir Sneezed Alot, past Stubby Van Killyou, and back to my whimpering vehicle.

I got the fuck out of Dodge with all celerity.

 

Sorry for the long-winded diatribe. EVERY word of it is TRUE. I'm going to write a movie.

 

OK - I LOVE that you guys are wondering about all the seemingly open ended stuff, and enjoy it for what it DOES say anyway.

Do the math, justify it, rationalize it, examine and pick it apart. You're right, there is NO one answer. It's a mystery wrapped in an enigma. That's one of the things I love about it. I will tell you what WE were thinking and what we intended but that's for down the road a piece after more people have had a chance to see it. Then I'll attempt to shed some light, at least from our own perspective. It may help you understand better. But yes, the Lynchian overtones are purposeful. We weren't interested in doing a film that spelled everything out. WE LIKE that it's an enigma, but there are certain things that we tried to do that may make it all fit inside your brain better. To explain it all would be to take away the magic but there will be some nuggets at some point for anyone interested. Glad you are all digging it.

 

Shawn - Tom picked the car. We had it picked out before preproduction started. There was a lot of coverage and time spent in the car and it needed to be a third/fourth character. We didn't want a rearview mirror screwing up our shots and Tom knew about this old car with a mirror and speedometer mounted on the dash. Absolutely AWESOME. It's a Phoenix and it had a sister version called a Seneca. Tom personally had them repainted, Tom, me, and Boyle picked the color. TJ made sure it had some cool mags. It was a complete pain in the ass because we had no time in preproduction. Getting those cars tricked out (there were three of them) took some time and it created some other problems but it was well worth it. We started with the two hero cars and used them both during exteriors. When we moved to the stage were we cut up the third one so we could really get inside it and create some dynamic camera angles. Our awesome Cameraman Howard Smith, created a contraption we christened "The Gene Simmons Dolly" to get that last shot where the camera pulls back through the car, past Bloodyface and out into the Dark Country (see the production diary for photos).

 

It's got it's flaws, hell, we had no money. There are technical issues too. Also stuff that could be tightened in editing.

But we love our imperfect little baby anyway ;)

 

- TB

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- TB

 

Lucky I didn't ask you to find a copy for me - haha. I was gonna say to you last night that you should take a video camera with you and record a Youtube monologue of picking up the DVD, but you've painted such a vivid picture it's not necessary.

 

Andrew

 

 

 

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Besides the rear view mirror, I think what I liked most about the car was that it shifted with buttons. Now, I'm not a car person, so it doesn't mean much, but I never knew such a car looked or worked like that.

 

I'm not sure what symbolism could be about the roads or the flowers... Hmm. We certainly don't know much about Dick (bah-dump), so who's to say he doesn't have a seedy past.

 

Oh and Tim, yeah, that's pretty much Walmart in a nutshell. Although your story just puts my whiny one to shame :mellow:

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Tim - Your Walmart saga is truly Homeric. However, I'm saddened that you didn't record any of it for us - then you coulda posted it here. :lol:

 

Ditto on NL's comment about the button tranny. I may be wrong, but I think Mopar were the only ones to do that back then.

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