Tuesday 13 April 2010

Name The Film! Screenshot Competition.

Look at the screenshots, figure out what films they are and email me your answers. The winner gets a couple of DVD's and a film related book or two. First person to get them right wins! Good luck!

Email your answers to this address!

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Monday 12 April 2010

You're So Lucky!

A friend of mine just got cast in a great TV role. It's potentially a 'breakthrough' role; the type every young actress dreams of. And someone said to her, "you're so lucky that you got that role!". I don't like it when people say that. It's like "you're so lucky you know what you want to do with your life," - it doesn't make that much sense and totally negates all the bad-luck, un-luck, pot-luck and mind-fuck of the past how ever many years of struggle and perseverance. When you don't make it, people don't see it as bad luck, they just think you're not talented enough. But when you make it, well done - you're lucky.

My actress friend - where does the luck begin and end? Is she lucky because at 12 she decided to dedicate herself to acting? Is she lucky because after years of hustling and trying and failing she still kept going? Is she lucky because she has an agent? Is she lucky because whilst her no good agent was doing nothing she went out and hunted down the opportunity? Is she lucky because she had spent years learning and perfecting her trade? Is she lucky because she surrounded herself with good people and had the strength of character to cut away from the bad? Is she lucky because she decided she wanted more from her life than a job for life that made her miserable? Is she lucky because she did whatever jobs she had to do to keep herself in a position to audition each and every day? Where does this luck begin and end and at what point do we give her the credit? Surely it couldn't be that she's actually wonderful or talented or worthy or hard-working?

Care to share?

What is the actual greatest thing of all time?

The answer is, of course, the opening credits of BAYWATCH.

Haven't seen this in years!

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Sunday 11 April 2010

Film Critics Suck.

Film critics suck. I think the least qualified person to review a film is a film critic. Some grumpy, middle aged man who sits probably somewhere around two thirds back in the cinema and close to the isle. When I pick up the newspapers I see devastation, depression and the feeling that life is no longer worth living - and this is from the film reviews section alone. At that point, I normally go to the front page for some lighter disasters.

Films are an art, a source of entertainment. They either make you feel fulfilled, or they don't. I think it's great that people have opinions, and share them - but the authoritative tone of most 'professional' reviews is ridiculous. There has been a lot of talk recently about the future of film criticism, for example this New York Times article and this article in the UK's Guardian, the latter article being full of intellectual pretension, which is exactly the problem. Maybe it's time for a revolution. My idea for the revolution is this: no more film critics.

An interesting fact: When you are making a film; say you're making a two minute short film about bacon; and you're filming it in your house. As soon as you finish it - there'll be some friend, or a neighbour, or some guy called bill_horny86 from Toronto, who will tell you it sucks. And they'll do it in such an expertly authoritative way, you'll believe them. You'll feel crap about your work. All because somebody who can't do what you do shit all over it. Well, this begins in grassroots, zero-budget filmmaking and it carries on up. A bunch of people put $200million together to make a movie, and one guy who writes for The Daily Mail is deemed suitable to tell a lot of readers (or not, with The Daily Mail) that it is terrible and not worth seeing.

A lot of my favorite films are the obvious ones, like Shawshank Redemption. But there are also films I love that have been trashed by the press - The Moguls, Duets, Meet Dave, Hollywood Ending, etc. Sure, you may think they suck - but that's the whole point, who is to say? Films are an art form - different people respond to different things. I think 'Beautiful Girls' is a work of art, true genius, my Brother thinks it's awful. Who is right? Who knows. Certainly, it'd be wrong for my Brother to write a review for a big publication saying "This is awful - avoid!"

It's different with blogs. With blogs - you know the writer's agenda. For example, if I was to write "Clash Of The Titans is terrible, don't watch it!" you will know it's coming from the point of view of a Billy Wilder obsessive; someone who values Chaplin smiling awkwardly at a girl more than a military plane smashing into a robot, or whatever. But with the big film critics - they talk in this God-like tone to the masses, and I think it's ridiculous.

The moment a film really gets you is when a character reacts in a way you didn't expect, and you relate in the moment to it, or it's about when a perfectly written line comes out of the mouth of a perfectly cast actor who by sheer luck was able to nail it perfectly; it's about that feeling you get when the musical score elevates you to the point where you feel you may actually be hovering. No critic can ever know when you or I are going to get those moments. And if we miss one of them because a critic said, "the film is average, give it a miss," then something is very wrong. And that's the whole point - whether a film is technically proficient or "cohesive" or whatever a writer says -- nobody can ever know when or how or where you'll respond personally to a film. Film reviews have very little use.

IDEA: I am going to start a new magazine called REVIEW REVIEW. We will review film reviews. See how they like it. We'll let you know whether a review is worth reading, or whether you should wait for the tweet.

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Saturday 10 April 2010

That Woman.

That woman, you know the one, the one who arrives 14 minutes into a film, sits down -- and then begins to whisper to the person next to her. Although, it's not a whisper, it's drowning out the dialogue. And you hear that horrible creepy sound of her lips from the row behind you - it's like she's trying to slurp and juice up saliva and lick her lips as she talks drivel to the friend next to her. It's anything but quiet, and it's fu*cking annoying.

Should these types of cinemagoers be dealt with by:

a) Extermination.

b) A $5000 fine.

c) Extermination and a $5000 fine.

Let me know.

Care to share?