Thursday, October 29, 2009

"Ragtime" and "Lincoln" Reviewed

As you may or may not know, two of my shorts, Ragtime Ballad and The Silver Lincoln, are on IMDB and available to watch, in their entirety. Well, thanks to the internet's large audience of people with apparently nothing better to do, both films have received detailed, fair, and somewhat lengthy reviews.

Ragtime is "a job well done," "surreal and funny," and "worthy of a few chuckles here and there," according to one reviewer. Another praises Jenny Putney as "ravishing," and the Dandy's "snazzy top hat and wicked handlebar mustache," as well as Boa Simon's "astute" cinematography and Brian Andrews' "infectiously jaunty and merry" score, which "hits the jolly spot."

Lincoln is "definitely funny" with an ending that is "anything but funny," leaving the reviewer "torn." The acting and direction is celebrated as "fine." The keen critic also noted that "silver-colored coins are actually made of zinc and aren't particularly valuable."

I'm just curious how these folks managed to stumble on my films, and what could possibly make them want to write a detailed review of a little student film. God bless the internet, I guess!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Boa Simon up for ASC award!

Thanks to his inspired work on La Nina del Desierto, my good friend and cinematographer Boa Simon has been nominated by Chapman University to receive an award from the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC). Very exciting!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Another Sketch

Every craft requires practice. A guitarist needs time to fool around with chords and sounds. An artist usually has a sketchbook, not of complete pieces, but on-the-side musings. A writer will often keep notebooks full of stories that will never be seen.

A filmmaker isn't so lucky - between large, expensive productions, what are we supposed to do to stretch our muscles? Well, the best I can do is squeeze in a short film whenever possible.


This latest addition to my Sketchbook was created while Boa Simon, Jenny Hou and I were waiting for an interviewee to arrive for a recent industrial gig. In the ensuing downtime we pumped out this absurd piece of cinema, and while on medication recovering from strep throat, I edited and sound designed it.

So while they may not be flying us out to Cannes for it, it gave us an opportunity to use shots and sounds we've always wanted to use but never had the opportunity to. The shot above, for example, through the bottom of a bottle, was something I've been wanting to do forever. I even dug up the old schematic I drew for it probably five or six years ago:

Practice!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

DGA and Santa Fe screenings!

On Wednesday La Nina del Desierto premiered at a special screening at the DGA, or Director's Guild of America, in Los Angeles.


It was a really exciting screening, and it was great to see it on the big screen again, projected off real 35mm film this time. The print wasn't actually as nice-looking as when we screened it digitally, which was kind of a bummer. Still, I attribute that to a mis-calibrated theater and not to the print itself.

Santa Fe Film Festival

In other great news, La Nina was accepted to its first festival - the Santa Fe Film Festival, which is appropriate. I'll definitely be attending that. If you want to go too, the festival is December 2nd - 6th.