Good Company is a 2002 horror brickfilm by Nick Maniatis about a man, Marlow, who tries to unravel a mystery when he is sent to find an outpost manager who has gone missing. It is based on the novella by Joseph Conrad. It was an entry to the ShootinBricks.com Horror Animation Contest and won in four of the judging categories; the most wins of any entrant. in 2003, Maniatis released a director's cut known as Good Company: Redux with three minutes of additional footage.
Good Company is considered to be a landmark, influential brickfilm for its more complex and unusual approach to storytelling, unlike other brickfilms of the time.
A doctor speaks with a patient, Marlow, who has suffered some sort of traumatic incident. Marlow is let out of the hospital and returns to work. He is assigned by his company to investigate a mining outpost that has suddenly become economically unstable under the management of Kurtz, who is usually a managerial genius but is now not making communication. Marlow is sent to a distribution station where the general manager will have a car for him to drive to the outpost.
At the distribution station, the manager tells Marlow the car is not ready and invites him to speak with the mechanic across the road. The mechanic tells him it is in bad shape at the hands of the previous owner, Kurtz, and that he is waiting for more parts to come in, but Marlow notices an abundance of parts in the garage. The manager explains that he never actually met Kurtz and only spoke to him through Kurtz's foreman, with Kurtz spending his time in the mines. Since the foreman has disappeared, Marlow speculates that he might be the one running the place, and the foreman wonders if Kurtz will move up to running distribution stations and usurp him.
When the car is ready, the manager says that the company asked him to accompany Marlow in order to inquire about the employees. That night, during the long drive, Marlow thinks he sees a light by the side of the road and stops. He finds a note from "Steve" informing him that there is fuel in the boot of the car for them to use. After they fill up the car, they hear noises coming from bushes, and the manager is shot. Marlow continues the journey alone until he finds a man in the road. The man is Steve, and he tells Marlow that Kurtz planned the shooting to scare him off. Steve asks for a lift to the outpost.
When they reach the outpost, Steve tells Marlow to find Kurtz in the mines. He explains about Kurtz hiring outcasts and criminals, and leaves before he is found out for helping Marlow. Marlow enters the mines and sees dead bodies strewn around. He finds a photo and a letter addressed to him from Kurtz. Kurtz says he knew Marlow would come looking for him and that is not far away now, and the letter tells Marlow to look at the photo of Kurtz and Steve to jog his memory. Marlow looks at the photo, seeing in it himself standing next to Steve.
- Nick Maniatis - Marlow
- Stefan van Zwam - Doctor
- Sunny Cheung - Executive
- Chris Kellahan - Bus Driver
- Ray Ducette - Distribution Station Manager
- Nate Burr - Mechanic, Steve
Good Company was a winner in the ShootinBricks.com Horror Animation Contest in the judging categories Most Original Story, Best Sound Effects, Best Set Design and Entrants' Choice. It was also nominated in the category of Scariest Scene but lost to BIRDS by Andreas Feix.
|2002||Horror Animation Contest||Scariest Scene||Nominated|
|Most Original Story||Won|
|Best Sound Effects||Won|
|Best Set Design||Won|
|Plast Awards||Best Actor||Won|
Good Company: Redux
The original version of Good Company was edited to be 10 minutes long in order to not go over the maximum time limit for the Horror Animation Contest. In January 2003, Maniatis released Good Company: Redux, adding three minutes of additional footage that had been filmed. It adds a scene in which Marlow is angry at the mechanic for keeping the car in for a week, and additional sequences during Marlow and the manager's drive. Its most major difference is in the ending, in which Marlow ventures further into the mines and does not find a letter from Kurtz.
- Good Company on YouTube
- Archived list of Horror Animation Contest entries
- Good Company release thread
- Nick Maniatis' diary from during production
- Notes about the film
- Results of the Horror Animation Contest
- Maniatis discusses his award wins on his website
- The Plast Awards hosted on TitanPictures.com
- Plast Awards results thread
- Good Company: Redux release thread