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An evening with John Johnsen

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This is one intriguing piece of documentary filmmaking. John Johnsen (Grendel Films) is a veteran producer/director/cinematographer/videographer of nature films and has taken viewers who generally don't know his name on many excursions into the back country to see the lives and behavior of bears, cougars, elk, and all manner of woodland creatures; all of the recognized, scientifically named and cataloged, academically-approved-of types of fauna. Now, officially in retirement, though, Johnsen has begun stepping out of the "factual parameters" set by scientific orthodoxy and headed off in the "Monsterquest" direction. Collaborating initially with Marlon (M.K.) Davis, the photo analyst who has done so much on the 1967 Patterson-Gimlin Bluff Creek bigfoot film footage, he launched Grendel Films with a documentary short on Davis and his bigfoot work. Then he met a writer-woodsman-Fortean researcher from western Kentucky named Bart Nunnelly and documentary project number two was soon up and going. This time the subject was NOT something anthropologically debatable, but, rather, something just plain WEIRD. Yet this something weird came as anecdotal accounts of strange encounters across parts of the U.S. by average Americans, common folk, who avow doggedly to have seen things that are just NOT supposed to be. We are essentially talking what seem like "were-creatures" here, and entering the realm of Linda Godfrey's books "The Beast of Bray Road" and "Hunting the American Werewolf". Fortean strangeness. We encounter here two folkloric Kentucky "monsters" (neither of which is Bigfoot); the "Spottsville Monster" of Henderson County, which terrorized the Nunnelly family in the 1970s, and the "Beast of the LBL" (Land Between the Lakes), another "something" that has a legend trailing back to the days of Daniel Boone and which may---MAY----have slaughtered a family of campers in Kentucky in the early 1980s. Johnsen's movie features Bart Nunnelly (author of the Amazon-av

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