Sunday, May 31, 2009

48 Hr. Film Project San Diego




Greetings All,

We've just moved to a new place today and the internet is kind of janky, so it'll be a short post. Some interesting news today from the 48 Hour Film Project. San Diego will be one of the cities hosting the competition in August. The 48 hr. Film Project is a competition where entrants are given a genre, character, prop and line of dialogue, then have 48 hours to write, shoot, edit, and score the movie. The best film in the city competition moves onto the global contest and a chance to be screened at Cannes. Its a fun idea and a great teaching lesson for filmmakers to think outside the box in a time crunch. We're planning to do it this year and are excited to see how imaginative we can get under such intense pressure. That's about it for tonight. Cross your fingers, take a shot of Bourbon and prepare yourself for the Mongolian battlefield that is Monday.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Up..


I'm really not one for cartoons but Pixar has just released their new animated flick Up and as always, it is quickly becoming a critical darling. Variety has pointed out that its already grossed $21.4 million and climbing. It'll be interesting to see if this movie becomes a classic on the level of Nemo and Wall-E.


Anyways, it's been a busy weekend. We just finished shooting the Thread Show and we'll be editing to the wee hours. Have a great night!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Film out..

The Film Outfilm festival is in full swing here in San Diego. This festival is showcasing the diverse, artistic LGBT-themed movies out there that are all too often overlooked my the mainstream industry. So take some time this weekend and stop by the North Park Birch Theater to see some great movies like the one below

Thursday, May 28, 2009

He's back....

and we are not sure if its a good thing....





Regardless if the film is good or not...we will probably be in line to see Coppolla's latest effort Tetro. Anyway....we took a break from editing tonight to meet with actors for our next shoot this weekend to and checkout some films for inspiration. Have a good night and we will talk to you soon.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Editing..


Not much going on here today. We're busy editing footage for the Che Bella commercial. This shop had a breathtaking range of exotic flowers, and the colors really pop on our camera, so its a very appropriate setting to see the color depth of our Canon XHA1. Anyways, we have a lot of work to do this weekend: planning for a commercial shoot as well as moving-whew! But for now we are going to focus on the project at hand and get some well needed rest. Have a good night :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Jay Bennett..

Over the weekend multi-instrumentalist Jay Bennett died in his sleep. He was just 45. Bennett formally of Wilco, had also worked with Titanic Love Affair, and Blues Traveler. Bennett and Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy formed turbulent collaboration which was highlighted in Sam Jones film I Am Trying to Break Your Heart: A Film About Wilco. According to a statement released on Bennett's myspace page, he "was dismayed that some people may have formed a narrow perception of him via the “documentary,” all who truly knew him understood that with most entertainment media, editing is usually constructed for dramatic effect and presents only a small part of a larger, more complex reality." Whatever the case may be, the conflicts between Tweedy and Bennett in the documentary made for good cinema, and provided insight into the inner workings of a band during the recording process. Regardless if you like Wilco's or Bennett's solo music, Bennett was a genius and will be missed. Along with Bennett's solo work, besure to check out, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart: A Film About Wilco.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Video Artists





Happy Memorial Day,

We hope everyone has a great day spending time with friends and family, and that we all take a few moments to think about the history of this day.

On of the highlights of our LA trip this weekend was a visit to the Getty Center. Not only did we get to see some exciting art (Van Gogh, Matisse, Caravaggio), the Getty has exceptional books on art. One we were particularly interested in was entitled California Video: Artists and History . The book gives a telling account of the rise of So Cal avant-garde video artistry into the mainstreams of fine art.

We don't discuss video art that much on this site, but it is becoming a huge part of the Modern Art scene. Many artists are realizing the vast range of possibilities available in creating strong messages and imagery through video art.

I remember visiting the NY MOMA last year, and there were a few outrageous videos on display. One video was of a naked women on an empty beach spinning a barbed wire hula hoop around her hips. The clip played in slow-motion so you could see the barbs ripping small pieces of her flesh. I left the room feeling pretty disturbed and confused, which I think might have been the effect they were going for. Here are a few other video's we saw that day (we were especially mystifed by the woman and the milk container video). Anyways, the California Video book was part of 2008 exhibition and you can see below some highlights from the exhibition:

Sunday, May 24, 2009

T4


During this LA trip we’ve probably walked about 700% percent more than we normally do. It’s been a continuous cycle of lugging camera equipment down streets, and climbing museums stairs. So last night we decided to give our feet a rest, and went to see T4 at the Santa Monica Promenade. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in, since the movie has had some mixed reviews . But we were actually surprised- It was good! Not Dark Night good, but it was exciting and kept our interest the whole way through. The special effects are amazing, and director McG was very creative in his POV for actions scenes. Instead of just showing a copter crash, McG puts you in the front seat of the copter as it gets banged and flipped by the giant machines. It also helped that the theater we were in had top of the line digital audio and video that made every crash rumble our seats.

There were some cons. The dialogue is awful, and there is no humor in the movie at all. But the main problem is the lack of character development. I counted at least three characters who were completely pointless, including his wife ( Bryce Dallas Howard ) who basically does nothing but look wide-eyed, clutching her pregnant belly and saying corny lines. John Connor spends the entire movie barking orders and looking savage, and we never get to know anything personal about him. T4 is just a fun special effects movie that doesn’t give you any characters to love, but its still worth checking out, if just for the action sequences.

We’re off to check out LACMA. Have a fun Sunday!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Making a movie with 2 bucks and a candy wrapper

Well not quite...but Marc Price, has become the darling of Cannes for making a zombie movie with $70. Yes, that's right. He made a film that not only was accepted into Cannes, but has distributors fighting over it like rabid dogs, for only $70 bucks. You can read the story here. It's great inspiration for all filmmakers out there with little or no money but a cool idea and high hopes. Meanwhile as you can see from the pic of our lavish hotel room (kidding), we are out in lovely Los Angeles on a work/holiday trip. When we're done working, we plan to explore some musuems and scour Samy's camera for some cool gear. Have a great Saturday :)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sherlock Holmes

this could be good....




Yes its directed by Guy Ritchie who hasn't made a good film in years but this looks pretty good, and appears to have some of the stylistic touches that his films are known for. We can wait to check it out. Here is a behind the scenes look.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Inglourious Basterds


So the reviews are slowly streaming in for Tarantino's much ballyhooed new film Inglourius Basterds

People have been talking about this movie for years now. The scalping! The accents! The Brad Pitts! Frankly, I'm a little tired of the endless chatter and am ready to see the movie for myself and make an informed opinion. But since we have three more months to wait before the movie is officially released, I'll just have to make do with the next best thing-critic reviews from the Cannes Film Festival. The movie has just made its debut there this week. As of today, there are conflicting reviews coming in. Some complimentary, some not so much. Whichever reviews Tarantino decides to read, it'll be interesting to see if he makes any significant changes to the film before its August release date. Until then we'll just have to sit on our hands and wait to see how it turns out (or scour the internet for a bootleg copy-just kidding!)

Read here, where Tarantino describes his reasoning for creating a World War II film.


Gutennacht!

the Road

Back in 2006 Cormac McCarthy wrote the environmental themed post apocalyptic thriller titled the Road. The Road earned McCarthy the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and other literary awards. The film started shooting in Febuary 2008 and was originally planned to be released in November of the same year but "the studio decided that the film would benefit from a longer post-production process and a less crowded release calendar." Regardless of their reasons, early screening of the film have resulted in great reviews. According to Esquire magazine's Tom Chiarella, its "a brilliantly directed adaptation of a beloved novel, a delicate and anachronistically loving look at the immodest and brutish end of us all. You want them to get there, you want them to get there, you want them to get there — and yet you do not want it, any of it, to end". We can hardly wait till October 2009 to see it.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Oy


Hey everyone,

Hope you survived Monday with all your dignity and at least some of your teeth. We've had a very busy day working on projects, on top of our normal 9-5 gigs, so not much to post today. However we did find an interesting site related to the Cannes Film Festival. The blog author, Chris Jones is a filmmaker who had a short film accepted into Cannes. He does a lot to debunk the myths related to how impenetrable the Cannes social scene. He is doing a lot of blogging from the Festival, so its nice to see someone relatively "normal" enjoying Cannes. On that subject, check out some current footage from the 2009 Cannes Film Festival.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Festival


filming, originally uploaded by Filmm.

Good evening everyone,

We hope you've had a good weekend....right now are busy editing the footage we shot at the North Park Festival of the Arts. The festival was a lot of fun. We hope you were able to check it out.

Anyway enjoy your last few moments of the weekend..

Saturday, May 16, 2009

its been a busy week


What's up everyone....we've been busy planning for a couple of film shoots coming up the next couple of weeks...one of which is documenting the North Park Festival of the Arts. The event in the North Park neighborhood in San Diego features live music, arts and crafts, and a variety of other activities. Should be a good time.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Nine

The trailer for the new Daniel Day Lewis' musical Nine just came out and is setting the interwebs abuzz.



I'm not sure what to think of it yet. It looks very well made, albeit a bit too Chicago-slick. And there aren't really any scenes of Daniel Day Lewis testing out his octaves. But WOW, there sure is a harem of gorgeous, top-notch Hollywood actresses in this movie. Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Marion Cotillard, Kate Hudson, Sophia Loren, etc. They all look fantastic, and very Fellini-esque. No matter my misgivings, it is still a musical thus I am required by nature to trek to the theater and squeal with delight at the silver screen for a couple of hours. You can definitely expect a post movie review from me once this comes out. Ciao for tonight!

Scorcese and Sinatra

Some interesting news out of the film world today. It looks like Martin Scorcese is set to direct a biopic about Frank Sinatra. Universal has been busier than a one-legged man at a tap dancing contest trying to acquire the rights to Sinatra's life story, and has brought in Martin to direct it. Scorcese sounds like the perfect fit for this project. Some of his signature movies are set in the world of the 1950's Italian mafia, a constituent that glorifed Frank Sinatra and had some dubious ties with the singer (although apparently this biopic will not address those long-standing rumours). Sinatra's music and sensibility can be detected in a lot of Scorcese's work, so I think that he can be trusted to tell the story with a style and brutality that would suit Sinatra's rough/sauve persona. The screenplay is being written by Phil Alden Robinson , the writer of Field of Dreams and Sum of all Fears. So if everything goes as planned at Universal, we'll be posting an awesome trailer for the upcoming Scorcese directed Sinatra movie, in a year or two.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

"I'm writing a screenplay"



Greetings..

Okay, so it kind of bothers me that "writing a screenplay" has become such a cliched endeavor, that it is mocked as some sort of hipster-ruse to appear all artsy and deep. Everyone and their mother is writing a screenplay these days, even Michael Scott. So what does that mean when you really are serious about writing a screenplay, and not just some schmuck looking for approval at the coffeehouse? Well, I figure that you a)create a deadline and actually finish your screenplay on time (so I'm already counted out), and b)submit it to agents, consultants and contests.

And speaking of contests, one of the biggest ones of the year is coming up. Final Draft's Big Break contest is accepting submissions until June 1st. This is a very popular one that pretty much ensures all the finalists will have their scripts read by someone in the industry. So if you already have a completed screenplay or are close to finishing one, I'd wrap it up ASAP, so you can submit to Big Break and hopefully get yours :)

P.S. I found this really cool blog by an established screenwriter named Billy Mernit. His blog has some great tips for creating characters, pitfalls to avoid, etc. You can never get enough of that type of help. Especially from someone who obviously knows what he's talking about.

Anywho, hump day is almost upon. Sleep well and good luck tomorrow!

Monday, May 11, 2009

New Tripod



Happy Monday,

We hope you had a productive Monday and didn't get too overwhelmed by the monstrous pile of emails simmering in your computer this morning. We're pretty excited because we just bought a very important piece of equipment, the Davis Sanford Provista Airlift Tripod. It is a professional quality tripod that will instantly improve the quality of our productions. So far we've been using just your basic video camera tripod, which really isn't built to support the heavy Canon xha1. And we got an especially good deal, because it came with a kit that includes a 3 wheel dolly! Pretty neat. So now we have a great tripod that has all the bells and whistles and will keep us from having one of these mishaps

Ciao for tonight!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Star Trek movie review


Aaw, Happy Mother's Day. I hope everyone handed their moms a pretty bouquet of flowers and a big wet one on the cheek today. After all, they are probably the most important people of all. Mom's are nature's way of securing everyone a personal cheerleader through life. And speaking of Mom's we saw a very important one this weekend when we watched the new Star Trek movie. Yes, as you can see in the photo, that is Winona Ryder playing Spock's mother. She has a small but very integral role in the movie that sets a lot of the action into motion.

We went to see the new Star Trek film last friday. I was anxious to see it since the Peter Travers review was good. The movie didn't disappoint. From the very beginning when you see what happens to Kirks father, to the episodes showing a pre-teen Spock and Kirk rebel in their unique ways, you learn so much about what shaped the characters and their behavior. And the movie has an awesome version of the future. It's a quirky, over-the top futuristic world that still has remnants of current times scattered about. Skyscrapers in farmtown Iowa. 1960's muscles cars being chased by flying robotic cops..Pretty cool. All in all we thought it was a fun film, that felt fresh and inclusive. Everyone seems to agree.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Metul on Metul...

Hey everyone....sorry for the delay in posts...we have been busy planning for our film shoot on Sunday and watching movies....So to make good on our promise, we wanted to tell you about Anvil!The story of Anvil.

The Anvil documentary was directed by one time roadie for Anvil and screenwriter of the Steven Spielberg directed film the Terminal, Sacha Gervasi. The documentary is a real life version of This is Spinal Tap. The film follows the band through the struggles of the a European tour filled with various mishaps while its members still question the reason they still haven't found success after playing for over 30 years. The movie is filled with both hilarious and often cringe worthy moments that exemplify perseverance and the human spirit. Unfortunately the film doesn't have a wide release but it may be playing at an independent theatre near you. We saw the film in San Diego on Thursday. The band actually showed up to play a set after the midnight showing this past weekend. I wish we would have seen that.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Ridley Scott Commercial

Interesting new Nicole Kidman commercial from Ridley Scott, the director of Aliens, Gladiator, and G.I. Jane (snicker).

I'll be honest with you..I don't really get the commercial. It just makes no sense. Why is she unzipping her dress? What is the little girl (from Slumdog Millionaire) doing in her bedroom? What is the joke I'm not getting that they're giggling at? That seems to be the consensus in the internet community. However, it is very beautifully filmed, and Ridley Scott has provided us with so many treasured films in his career, I guess we can forgive him this one commercial slip-up ;)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Cinco De Mayo!

So instead of going out to drink some cervezas tonight for Cinco De Mayo we stayed in and messed with Photofunia.

Check it out!

Anyway earlier today C met with a client and we have another commercial shoot coming up in a couple weeks and we put together our project plan for the summer. Lots of new projects coming up! Btw, we are going to checkout Anvil! The story of Anvil this week. We will let you know what we think.

Monday, May 4, 2009

May the 4th be with you!

Happy Star Wars day! Yes, today is the unofficial Star Wars holiday. Today thousands of die-hard fans polished their glossy white storm troopers helmets, clicked on their plastic "light sabers" and paraded down city streets and mall strips in celebration of this most holy of holy days. I believe the evolution of this holiday spun from the dreaded pun in the title of this blog. Star Wars fans were sitting at their computers thinking "Wait minute-May the Fourth sounds a lot like May the Force..lets sanction this!" Either way its cool, and you always can get a kick out of Star Wars fans-they're so creative with their costumes! And on that note here's a funny clip of Triumph the Insult Dog taking some good-hearted digs at those lovable Star Wars fans!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

So its Sunday...

Hey everyone,

Tonight C and I uploaded the footage that we shot today have been editing it a bit. Here is a short clip that we are working on. More to come..

Saturday, May 2, 2009

So happy its Saturday...

So tomorrow we are going to be shooting some more footage for our experimental Balboa Park short during the Healing Arts Festival. The short we are working on has an abstract narrative and relies on visuals and sound used in non-naturalistic ways to convey story. We should be posting some footage this week.