The Target List — Our Latest Critical Review

By Rehan Abbasi

Highly Entertaining!

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Directed by Andrew Arguello and MJ Palo, The Target List is a 2021 short action film produced by Mad Wife Productions. With Palo and John Reizer lending their writing credits to the endeavor, the film stars Jessica Culaciati, Dan Bailey and Naomi Plasterer.

Running at a brisk length of ten minutes, The Target List charts the journey of survival of a couple of scientists who have just invented a miracle cure for cancer. With large-scale implications of such cutting edge research becoming evident, particularly for big pharma who would see a hit to their profits if such a drug found its way to the masses, an assassin is dispatched to get rid of the scientists to doom their research forever. However, fate, it seems, has other plans as two of the scientists manage to escape. With their life and research on the line, the two scientists will do everything they can to survive and thwart the plans of the evil conglomerate that is conspiring to prevent the medicine from getting into the hands of the public.

The first thing noticeable about the whole production is that the casting is damn near perfect with every character fully embracing the outlandish narrative and what the script expects them to do. Jessica Culaciati is terrific as Donna while Dan Bailey as Bruno also manages to impress. Combining witty commentary with a constant threat to life, script writers Palo and Reizer develop a narrative that is funny and charming while losing none of the thrill and danger in the process. Developing Big Pharma as the overarching bad guy out to stop a cancer cure might be considered dumb in the real world. However, the power of the creative talent in the screenwriters is visible in the fact that they manage to take this very outlandish idea and transform it into a ten minute action film that will satisfy even the most ardent of action fans.

Another great aspect about the movie is its crisp cinematography. Andrew Arguello manages to capture the action well, using shaky cam to a minimum. Not only is the lighting properly done but the colors and hues give the whole film an expensive look. This will undoubtedly help with the marketing of the short to the masses. In addition, the sound editors behind the project also deserve a special shoutout. Kudos to the sound and stunt team for making the gunfights and knife play look and feel authentic and interesting. The pulsating soundtrack, in particular, adds to the tension during tense moments.

The only gripe that I have with the film is that some setpieces need a bit of polishing over in regards to the CGI. The subpar CGI is most noticeable in bullet holes and in the burning car. While this may be due to the limited budget, the subpar CGI in no way distracts from what is, in essence, a terrifically entertaining film. However, if this particular aspect were improved, an already appealing film would become even better.

Tightly paced and full of action and thrills, The Target List is a potent short film that manages to squeeze so much into its short running time. While some special effects shots do require a bit of polishing over, the creative talent and technical prowess evident in the production cannot be dismissed. At its core, The Target List embraces its outlandish idea wholeheartedly and moves to have terrific fun with its premise. With both the cast and the crew seemingly having a good time, the film is thus a win for everyone involved in its making.

Available to rent or buy on several streaming platforms, The Target List gets eight out of ten stars from this reviewer.


Can you spare eleven minutes?

Watch The Target List pilot movie on Amazon for $3.99 and help us produce the full feature film. We want to wake up the world! Please rate and review the movie on the IMDB Page and the Amazon platform after watching the production.

–Dr. Reizer



The Target List Pilot Movie — Also Available On:



Meet the Cast and Directors of The Target List Pilot Movie

Over the next few months, I will be publishing the individual interviews conducted with some of the main characters from The Target List pilot movie that will be released on Amazon Prime in late July or early August 2021.

The movie is now in post-production, where the sound design, music score, and VFX enhancements are being incorporated into the film. I have viewed the Director’s cut of the movie and was very impressed with how well everything turned out.

I have included the cast and directors’ biographies below so readers here can become acquainted with these personalities:

Andrew Arguello (Cinematographer, Director, Editor)

Andrew Arguello was born in Reno, Nevada. After High School, Andrew went on to work for the Walt Disney Company. After his time at Disney Andrew started his own production company Reno Tahoe Graphics specializing in commercial cinematography. Four years after starting RTG Andrew started Mad Wife Productions a film production company specializing in creating Feature films, Short Films, Proof of Concepts, and TV shows.

MJ Palo (Director, Producer, Writer)

MJ is an award-winning screenwriter, director, and producer. MJ earned a Ph.D. degree in cell and molecular biology from the University of Reno and soon after found her passion in screenwriting and filmmaking. MJ started River Rose Productions in 2019 and is a co-founder of Mad Wife Productions. MJ is best known for the feature film Baby Money, short films Mommy’s Pickles and Breakfast, and award-winning web series Capture Narcos, No Virtue, and  Black Eyes. MJ is a co-writer of The Target List.

John Reizer (Executive Producer and Writer)

John is a writer, producer, and practicing chiropractic physician. John is a former associate professor of clinical sciences at Sherman College of Chiropractic in Spartanburg, South Carolina. John has written several short novellas. His most recent works are, Plandemic, The Visitors, Aftermath, False Memory, The Homecoming, Frequency, and The Target List. John is best known for the short film The Target List and web series No Virtue. John is a co-writer of The Target List.

Jessica Culaciati (Executive Producer) (Donna)

Jessica is an actress best known for  Weeds (2010)Tumor & Gooch (2011)Wasted (2006), and Alleged (2010). Jessica plays the character Donna in The Target List and is also an Executive Producer of the film.

Jude Ault (Clyde)

Jude is an actor best known for The Target List.

Rob Russo (Mike)

Rob is an actor best known for The Target List.

Charlie Manoukian (Shane)

Charlie is an actor best known for The Target ListInheritance (XXVI)Sirens (I) (2019), and Flip Cup (2017).

Dan Bailey (Bruno)

Dan is an actor and producer best known for Borders (II) (2020)No VirtueBatman: The Enemy Within (2017)Enemy of the People (2020).

Holly Lorge (Rachel)

Holly is an actress best known for Murder, She Wrote (1989)Fast Food (I) (2000)The Ashes of Brush Flats (2014), and 3 Tickets to Paradise (2021).

Jean Irvin (Female Scientist)

Jean is an actress best know for The Target List.

Cody Wyatt (Male Scientist)

Cody is an actor best known for Werewolf WorldThe Target List#NoMore (2019), and 10 Syllables (2019).

Nick Josten (News Reporter)

Nick is an actor best known for No VirtueThe Target ListFilm Something (2020), and Three Clicks.

Naomi Plasterer (Female Reporter)

Naomi is an actress best known for No Tomorrow (2019)The Target ListThree Clicks, and Feliz NaviDAD (2020).

Lukas Silva (Male Reporter)

Lukas is an actor best known for No VirtueBlack EyesWellhollow, and The Target List.

The Target List Movie – Cast Announcement

Dr. John Reizer

First, let me give a quick update on the serious presidential business in America. I have not seen any signs of martial law being implemented in the United States as of this writing. The Internet is still working, and I continue to monitor the situation by checking with my sources. I will immediately report to readers any new developments if and when they become available.


The Target List is an action-thriller feature screenplay written by MJ Palo and John Reizer and is based on the novel, The Target List, by John Reizer.

The Pilot Movie is a shorter version of the full feature screenplay written by MJ Palo and John Reizer.

Directed by — Andrew Arguello and MJ Palo

Executive Producer — John Reizer

Producer — MJ Palo

Co-Executive Producers — Ryan Bishop, David R. Davis, Lisa Hakes, James Richardson, and Robyn Richardson

Cinematographer — Andrew Arguello

Editor — Andrew Arguello

Written by — MJ Palo and John Reizer

Special thanks — Louise Neufeld


The Talented Cast Members:

DonnaJessica Culaciati

ClydeJude Ault

ShaneCharlie Manoukian

BrunoDan Bailey

Mike — Robb Russo

RachelHolly Lorge

Assistant – Cody Wyatt

Voiceover – Nick Josten

Female ReporterNaomi Plasterer

Male Reporter – Lukas Silva

Female ScientistJean Irvin

In association with River Rose Productions, Mad Wife Productions has announced that The Target List movie will begin filming on April 10, 2021.

The Target List movie will be released in the summer of 2021 on Amazon Prime and other viewing platforms.

The Target List is a high-energy, fast-paced medical-action-thriller feature screenplay that uniquely combines the exciting elements and drama found in the hit films COMA and JACK REACHER.

It has a strong female protagonist and a cast of intriguing characters that provide nonstop action, dramatic effect, and the ability to drive the storyline towards a twist-ending. The Target List deals with the subject of cancer eradication and will be embraced by a broad audience that will instantly resonate with the many emotional elements associated with society’s ongoing battle to maintain health in the ever-increasing presence of new diseases.

The limited-location and limited-character setting allow a low-budget production. However, The Target List still belongs to the multi-million-dollar Hollywood action niche that is always looking for the next blockbuster and takes the audience on a 90-minute emotional and entertaining journey that leaves them yearning for a sequel.


We are continuing our fundraising efforts for the movie. The movie production companies bringing this film to life have generously invested money into this project and have asked me to help them out by promoting a fundraiser to offset production expenses.

Donation Perks:
Anyone donating $50 will receive an electronic copy of the book.

Anyone donating $100 or more will receive an electronic copy of the book, Thank You film credit, and a private link to screen The Target List online.

Anyone donating $200.00 or more will receive an electronic copy of the book, co-executive producer credit, and a private link to screen The Target List online.

Use of all donations:
We have already secured the necessary funding to execute this project and are looking for extra help to offset miscellaneous production expenses. All donations will be used exclusively for the production of the movie.




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