Friday, January 18, 2008
baby I'm a star
There was this magnet program in H.S. I signed up for it in my sophomore year. I would have to take the bus 45 minutes away to Lake Worth H.S.
but so what, it was a free film- school program.
I'm not even sure why they ended up picking me. Whatever made me think I could shoot films in the first place?. I didn't even own a regular camera. I may have taken maybe 4 pictures in my life and that was on Polaroid film.
I got in though and I took it as a sign of fate.
It's not like in 1986 every kid had access to a video camera. For some reason my parents had one. (I never asked)
So, what we were told to do at the sign up thing was to go shoot a short movie and edit it with some equipment that was made available to us. This was all during my summer mind-you.
I waited until the last week or so and got a few friends together.
One a girl, who's phone number I kept all summer but was afraid to call.
Ah. but the courage a geek can get while holding a movie camera.
and the incredibly creepy but predictable line "I think you're great, would you like to be in my movie?" meaning.. you're hot will you fuck me if i put you in my movie?
It took the entire following school year to find out if I was getting in or not.
I shot the movie with 3 friends, one of them actually was really into movies: acting, directing, writing. I mean, REALLY driven. I didn't understand his desire and took the entire thing as a joke. Not art. To me it was fantasy. Just an easy fun class to get me out of my school. No-one would know me here. Maybe the film thing would get me girls. I mean I did\do everything to impress woman. Doesn't every guy. If they tell you different they are lying.
The film or should I say video was close to 3 minutes and was a horror\kung-fu\music video. I wanted to do a Sixteen Candles type of scene thing. But was told there was to much talking and my script wasn't very funny. So, we scraped that and used my friend Joe's, black belt experience in martial arts. Becca's screaming ability. (not to mention her humongous tits)
I don't know. This was right before the movie Dirty Dancing came out in theaters. ( another story for another time)
We didn't have much to work with for inspiration. Rambo, Soul man, Stand-by Me..those were movies of that time. MTV was playing Micheal Jackson and R.E.M in heavy rotation. It took great effort to find anything cool and different. 120 minutes late night on MTV or Rock Over London late nights on the radio. Or you could just ask Cassie because she seemed to be up on bands and films that I am certain hadn't been invented yet. I kept trying to figure out where she was hiding the Delorean and the Flux Capacitor.
It was my idea to do some camera tricks while running the film backwards. The film editor I was able to use had a reverse on it and by God I was going to use it. We made a few things appear to float and some kung fu flying tricks. I am pretty sure that's what impressed the instructor and got me in the class. Just a note**but I'd say Michel Gondry (eternal sunshine, science of sleep) is one of most brilliant using simple effects in modern feature films. I heard is upcoming film Be Kind Rewind is full of them. He created this one http://youtube.com/watch?v=Xs2IU-jTte8
The class was as awesome as I thought it would be. But I got kicked out. Caught tripping on acid, with a girl in the editing room, and that was the least of what really went on. The instructor would leave for most of the class. Doing God knows what. When he did show up he made us watch his films of naked kids playing at the beach. He had hours of that shit. Looking back though he had some pretty advanced ideas about film and where it was heading. He was right in most cases. He said actors would whisper lines so that you could barely hear them, independent film would become main-stream and computers would be a huge part of it all in the future.
He said all writers were liars. A film-maker can't be a complete liar. Audiences see right through that on screen. Watching something as opposed to reading it. People are more programmed to believe what they read, not what they see. Separate the truth from lies and art from shit.
and this is what