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Operation Avalanche

Matt Johnson
USA 2015 / 94’

What happens when a small group of geeks decide to make a documentary about their own recruitment into the ranks of the CIA in order to make a film about the Apollo 11 Moon landing? Extremely creative and unpredictable young director Matt Johnson (The Dirties) decided to give this a shot by playing the role of a mockdocumentary filmmaker and going back in time to 1969. The main goal was to prove, following the example of Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove, that it was all one big, crafted hoax, and that NASA is actually crawling with Soviet spies. Using found footage, Johnson manipulates images and uses them for his own nefarious purposes. Where is the line between fiction and reality? And what about the American moon landing? And above all, who was Stanley Kubrick really? A capable director deftly manipulates content and form, and disregarding all conventions, provides some wacky entertainment for cineophiles. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, after which Vulture wrote that Operation Avalanche is an act of movie love.

Magdalena Maksimiuk

Matt Johnson

A native of Canada, Matt Johnson is a 30-year-old screenwriter and director who loves improvisation, hidden cameras, and unannounced filming. That was how he shot his online mockumentary Nirvana The Band The Show, as well as his famous feature debut, The Dirties, for which he received numerous awards, including at the festival in Toronto and at Slamdance. His creative work is characterized by its spontaneity and authenticity, and some critics already see in him the next Quentin Tarantino or Kevin Smith.

Selected filmography

2013 The Dirties

2016 Operation Avalanche

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Official site

Cast & Crew

director Matt Johnson
screenplay Matt Johnson, Josh Boles
cinematography Andy Appelle, Jared Raab
editing Curt Lobb
music David Hayman
cast Matt Johnson, Owen Williams, Andy Appelle, Jared Raab, Josh Boles, Ray James, Sharon Belle, Kirsta Madison, Joe J. Thomas, Tom Bolton, Johnny Osmorkrovic, Chris Gonsalves
producer Matthew Miller, Lee Kim, Matt Johnson, Aram Tertzakian, Nick Spicer, Nate Bolotin
production XYZ Films, Resolute Films and Entertainment, Zapruder Films
sales Festival Agency
language English
colouration colour