Yesterday Was a Lie

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Yesterday Was a Lie
Directed by James Kerwin
Produced by Chase Masterson
Written by James Kerwin
Starring Kipleigh Brown
Chase Masterson
John Newton
Music by Kristopher Carter
Cinematography Jason Cochard
Edited by James Kerwin
Distributed by Entertainment One
Release date
  • January 17, 2008 (2008-01-17) (Park City Film Music Fest.)
  • December 11, 2009 (2009-12-11) (US)[1]
Running time
89 minutes[2]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $200,000[3]

Yesterday Was a Lie is a 2008 neo-noir film written and directed by James Kerwin and starring Kipleigh Brown, Chase Masterson, John Newton, and Mik Scriba. In publicity materials, the film has been described as a combination of science fantasy and film noir.[4]


A hard-drinking female investigator named Hoyle (Kipleigh Brown) sets out to locate a reclusive genius (John Newton) who may be able to distort reality. Instead she finds her life becoming more and more fragmented and surreal. Trusting only her partner (Mik Scriba) and a sexy lounge singer (Chase Masterson), she is shadowed by a dangerous man (Peter Mayhew).[4][5]



Yesterday Was a Lie was in production from August 13 to September 15, 2006.[6] In March 2007, a trailer of the film premièred at San Francisco Wondercon.[7] In August 2007, the film's official blog announced the completion of a test cut of the motion picture.


Festival run

The early cut of the film began a series of film festival screenings on January 17, 2008 at the Park City Film Music Festival, where it received a Director's Choice Award.[8] The film went on to receive Best Feature awards at numerous festivals, including the ShockerFest International Film Festival,[9] as well as a bronze Telly Award and the Best of Show Accolade Award.[10] It was awarded the Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Cinematography trophies at Visionfest,[11] the Best Actress prize (for Brown) at ShockerFest, and the Best Producer prize (for Masterson) at the LA Femme Film Festival.[12]

In early July 2008, San Diego Comic-Con announced that the test cut of Yesterday Was a Lie would be presented as the closing film of its 2008 convention.[13]

In October 2008, the film's official blog announced that a newer cut of the film would be shown at the St. Louis International Film Festival. In December 2008, the Beverly Hills Hi-Def Film Festival announced the new cut of the film would have its theatrical première at the closing night film of its 2009 festival.[14]

Theatrical release
In August 2009, Yesterday Was a Lie was acquired by Entertainment One.[15] According to the film's official blog, a new cut of the movie, featuring an updated soundtrack and other changes, was created for the formal release. Yesterday Was a Lie was released theatrically in the U.S. on December 11, 2009.[16]

Home video
The film was released on DVD on April 6, 2010.[17]


During the film's festival run it received generally positive reviews.[18]

In a review published after the film's U.S. theatrical opening, Variety praised the film's "stunning black-and-white HD cinematography" and "impressively atmospheric tone" and its recreation of the "classical Hollywood [visual] aesthetic". The film's "sultry jazz score" was also singled out for mention. However, the review also criticized the casting of the film—calling the acting "stiff" and "hopelessly amateurish"—as well as the plot, which it described as a "clunky David Lynchian cosmic mystery" leading to "grand (yet underwhelming) revelations about the nature of reality."[19]

Other mainstream reviewers were critical of the film as well. Kevin Thomas in the Los Angeles Times wrote that "The film seems like an atmospheric shampoo commercial in which glamorous models pose in gritty back alleys with fog machines going full force. ... There's lots of talk about the 'interconnected of consciousness' and 'the totality of consciousness' and how those who can plug into it can control reality ... [The] film is hard to connect with and is way too vague to inspire the urge to try to do so."[20] while John Wheeler in LA Weekly wrote that the film's "pitch" was "'a metaphysical noir about a beautiful alcoholic detective searching for the key to understanding nonlinear time'" but commented that the "film can’t hope to live up to that premise, and it doesn’t." It comments that "the film jumps around aimlessly, repeating dialogue and images of Hoyle’s search while using non sequitur discussions of Dalí and Eliot to justify its often impenetrably surreal structure." It praises the film as being in "gorgeous black-and-white and lit by some extremely competent artisans" but concludes that "the film is finally too disjointed and incomprehensible to be enjoyed as much else besides an exercise in style."[21]

Film Threat magazine gave Yesterday four-and-a-half stars and named it one of the 10 best films of the year from the festival circuit.[22] The Epoch Times newspaper,, Ain't It Cool, and KGO resident film critic Dennis Willis also all reviewed the film positively, with Willis calling Yesterday "nothing less than the arrival of a major filmmaker."[23][24][25][26] Author Robert J. Sawyer blogged that the movie was "the most thoughtful and compelling science fiction film of 2009" (a quote subsequently used in press materials).[27] The film received a positive review from The Numbers following its DVD release.[28]

Yesterday Was a Lie has a rating of 83% on the Rotten Tomatoes website.[29]


Yesterday Was a Lie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Yesterday Was a Lie CD cover.jpg
Soundtrack album by Kristopher Carter, Chase Masterson
Released February 15, 2011
Genre Soundtrack
Length 65:22
Label La-La Land Records
Chase Masterson chronology
Yesterday Was a Lie
"Burned with Desire"

In February 2011, La-La Land Records announced the February 15 release of the Kristopher Carter score on CD and digital download, including songs performed by Masterson from the film.[30] The physical CD included two bonus tracks, "Can You Help Me?" and "City Talks", not included in the digital download. The album was well received, with Daniel Schweiger of Film Music Magazine calling it "a top notch indie score in all respects."[31]

Yesterday Was a Lie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
No. Title Length
1. "Dream Time" 5:08
2. "Nice Set" 3:12
3. "Half-Deserted Streets" 1:22
4. "Cat State" 0:59
5. "Trauma Creates Ripples" 3:22
6. "Yesterday Was a Lie" (performed by Chase Masterson) 2:16
7. "Achromatopsia" 2:43
8. "Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major, BWV 1068: II. Air" (composed by Johann Sebastian Bach) 1:42
9. "Backdoor Research" 1:33
10. "6.626 x 10^-34" 3:56
11. "Ajna" 1:51
12. "Fenestra Aeternitatis" 2:24
13. "Synchronicity" 1:32
14. "Aker" 5:09
15. "Distillation" 4:12
16. "Getting a Message Through" 2:04
17. "Why Do You Keep Coming Back Here?" 3:25
18. "Where Do You Start?" (performed by Chase Masterson) 4:36
19. "He Won't Forget You" (performed by Chase Masterson feat. Simon Shapiro) 4:35
20. "Anima in an Elevator" 2:28
21. "Can You Help Me?" (deleted segment from "Aker"; bonus track available on CD only) 1:31
22. "City Talks" (performed by Simon Shapiro; bonus track available on CD only) 4:21


Graphic novel

The film has been adapted into a limited edition graphic novel by artist James Hill, first released as a San Diego Comic-Con Exclusive at 2010's Comic-Con International.[32]

Web series

A seven-episode Yesterday Was a Lie viral web series, based on Nathan Mobley's "Lab Assistant" character from the feature film, debuted on in January 2011, and is also viewable as an Easter egg on the film's official site.[33][34]



  1. ^ "MPAA Classifications and Ratings Administration report". Retrieved 2010-11-22. 
  2. ^ "Laemmle Theatres". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  3. ^ "Official press kit" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  4. ^ a b "Synopsis". Helicon Arts Cooperative. Retrieved 2007-09-08. 
  5. ^ Buchanan, Jason. "AllmovieOverview". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  6. ^ IMDB Business
  7. ^ "A Look Back at WonderCon 2007."
  8. ^ "Park City Music Festival". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  9. ^ "Film Festival World". Film Festival World. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  10. ^ "Accolade Competition". Accolade Competition. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  11. ^ "Visionfest". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  12. ^ "LA Femme Film Festival". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  13. ^ "San Diego Traveler". San Diego Traveler. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  14. ^ "Beverly Hills Hi-Def Film Festival". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  15. ^ "Official blog". Helicon Arts Cooperative. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  16. ^ "Official site". Helicon Arts Cooperative. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  17. ^ "Yesterday Was a Lie: Kipleigh Brown, Chase Masterson, John Newton, Peter Mayhew, James Kerwin: Movies & TV". Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  18. ^ "The Numbers". The Numbers. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  19. ^ Debruge, Peter. "Yesterday Was a Lie" at (December 16, 2009). The review's lede reads in toto:

    Caught somewhere between 1940s film noir and digitally spiffy contempo fare, "Yesterday Was a Lie" toys with time in story and style, putting a hard-boiled dame at the center of a clunky David Lynchian cosmic mystery as the search for a missing notebook leads to grand (yet underwhelming) revelations about the nature of reality. James Kerwin's conceptually ambitious low-budget debut offers stunning black-and-white HD cinematography, a sultry jazz score and a refreshingly high-minded script, but feels hopelessly amateurish in the acting department. Micro theatrical release will come and go unnoticed, though niche auds may find it on DVD.

  20. ^ Thomas, Kevin. "'Yesterday' looks noir, lacks depth" Los Angeles Times, (December 11, 2009)
  21. ^ Wheeler, John "Movie Reviews: Broken Embraces, Paa, A Single Man, Armored", LA Weekly (December 10, 2009)
  22. ^ "Film Threat". Film Threat. 2009-01-09. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  23. ^ Bendel, Joe. "The Epoch Times". The Epoch Times. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  24. ^ "Collider". Collider. 2008-08-19. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  25. ^ "Ain't It Cool News". 2008-04-11. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  26. ^ Willis, Dennis. Flick Nation: 2010 Movie Yearbook, CreateSpace (2009)
  27. ^ "Robert J. Sawyer microblog post, Dec. 11 2009". 2009-12-11. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  28. ^ "The Numbers News". 2010-04-24. 
  29. ^ "Rotten Tomatoes". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  30. ^ "Film Score Monthly". Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  31. ^ "Film Music Magazine". Retrieved 2012-10-09. 
  32. ^ "Comic-Con International". Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  33. ^ "". Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  34. ^ "Official site". Retrieved 2011-02-08. 

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