Once upon a time Shawn and I made a feature film. If you’ve been around these parts for awhile you’ve surely heard me mention it. We’ve considered many avenues for distribution and came to the conclusion that mostly we just wanted people to be able to see it. So finally we’ve released it online and you can watch it on vimeo.
This is the final director’s cut which is slightly different from what we showed at our previous screenings. I think it’s the best version of course. I’m really excited to hear what you all think.
We made this film before kickstarter and crowdfunding was a thing so it was completely self-funded. If you like what you see, feel free to leave us a tip on vimeo.
So, without further ado, I present BRAINWASHED LOVE for your viewing pleasure.
This upcoming Saturday is the deadline for the Fantastic Fest Bumper Contest so yesterday Jenn and I completely shot and edited our entry, with lots of help from Shawn. It involved tons of cat wrangling, blood, glitter, and of course, time travel. It was so fun to work on and and really rewarding to start and finish a big project all in one day. Plus our bumper is the coolest.
On top of that, we also shot one of Shawn’s bumper entries, which meant dressing up in some crazy lady Chewbacca costumes and going on a murderous rampage, which is always a good time.
Besides all our bumper making we put some finishing touches on my short film which is so close to being finished I can taste it. It’s been a long process for a little film (it’s only 13 minutes) but also an enlightening one. I’m really happy to have brought this idea to life.
Check back later this week and I’ll share our bumper.
The last week (or 10 days actually) have been crazy. We’ve been attending the Los Angeles Film Fest non-stop, packing in as many films as possible. I can’t reiterate how good it is for me to see so many films. It is the equivalent of flooding my brain with serotonin. Shawn sometimes teases me because I am so determined to see movie after movie, but I love it. It makes me happy and gets my creativity flowing. I love seeing great films and honestly, I do my best thinking during slightly boring movies. There were a few highlights I’ll definitely share with you all.
On top of that, Shawn and I shot a wedding this weekend at a lovely farmhouse. While Shawn is a seasoned pro event photographer, it was a totally new experience for me, and it was sort of awesome. I am pretty pleased with how things went. I definitely enjoyed having a front row seat of everything and license to take photos, it wiped away much of my timidness.
In other news, I’ve been slowly making over our kitchen and I’m finally ready to share. Hooray! There will be a before and after later this week.
I’ve been mulling over this post for a few weeks, trying to think of what films I would populate my favorite movie list with. It is really hard. Not because there aren’t movies that I love so much, but because there are so many, it’s difficult to narrow down into a succinct list. Every movie added opens the door for another equally wonderful film. You want to make a well rounded list; not all of one genre, not all of one style or director.* Even more complicated is the definition of the word favorite. Should the list be examples of superb filmmaking or just the movies that you love more than any other? Like I said, it’s complicated. Nonetheless, I made a list, and I think it is a fairly accurate portrait of my taste. So here it is, in no particular order…**
Sense and Sensibility
I love everything about Sense and Sensibility and could watch it endlessly. It has the perfect combination of romance and heartbreak, stellar acting from some of the best British actors out there, plus beautiful set design and costumes. The story is gripping, even though it is historical. Watching this film makes me feel as if I know these characters and experience their trials right along with them.
Antichrist has the perfect balance of beauty and terror and for this I love it dearly. Willem Dafoe and Charlotte Gainsbourg are impeccable in this feature, in roles that are somewhat of a reversal from the typical. This film is magically shot, with just the right amount of mystery to make the horror work. It also has the ability to make you feel anxiety like no other film I’ve seen.
Shawn might think I’m a little nuts for how much I request to watch True Romance. It just never gets old to me. I know a lot of people have problems with it because of it’s relationship to Badlands, but it really doesn’t take away the fact that True Romance is an intriguing and entertaining movie. The characters range from bizarre to loveable and I enjoy how the story turns from typical romance to ridiculous action. Overall this movie is just fun to watch and I relish all it’s absurd little details.
I grew up watching Poltergeist so it is near and dear to my heart. It is one of those films that has had a lasting effect on my psyche (whether that’s a good thing, I’m not sure) and has molded my tastes as a horror lover. Poltergeist manages to be scary without being heavy handed. It is the simplicity of the haunting, along with the endearing and realistic characters, that makes it so frightening. I’m very worried about the fact that this film is being remade, and am really hoping for the best, rather than the worst.
Wild at Heart
I couldn’t have a complete list without including something from David Lynch, and Wild at Heart fits the bill. While I also have a strong affection for Blue Velvet, the combination of the intensely doomed romance, grotesque characters and strange circumstances in Wild at Heart wins my heart through and through. This is one of the cases where Nicolas Cage’s weirdness is perfect for the part, plus another (extra creepy) appearance by Willem Dafoe.
So there is my list, for now anyway. Five favorite films. I’m sure as soon as I hit publish I will think of one that I should have absolutely included. In fact, I’ve already thought of two honorable mentions that probably should have made it, (but I’m not going to add now): The Craft and All the Real Girls. Although they may or may not have been intentionally left off because I’m too embarrassed to have them on my favorite film list.
So, what are you favorite movies?
*In the process of writing this I’ve already discovered a problem with this list. While I’ve included films that I love, I am missing films representative of a few of my favorite directors, particularly Stanley Kubrick, the Coen Brothers and Roman Polanski. The simple thing to do would just be to add a film by each but I simply cannot choose. I can’t say that I love either The Shining or 2001 more than the other. Nor can I say that I love No Country for Old Men more than Fargo or Raising Arizona. I also cannot say that I love Rosemary’s Baby more than Chinatown. In fact, I love them all, and they should really have their own list in a way (which is what this is, sort of).
**Also I have not included films I’ve written about here before, specifically A Woman Under the Influence, which is just impecable. Also, I would like to include Oslo August 31st and Kill List, but as they are such new films, I feel that they need to settle in before becoming a part of this list, which is eternally subject to change.
This past weekend, though very similar to many others, has changed me, even if just a little. We shot the majority of my short film (which still doesn’t have a title by the way, or I’d tell you) over one day and night. There is still some left to do, some specialty things, but with basically no crew, we covered a lot of ground. Having shot things with more equipment and people in the past, it was freeing to work with only the bare necessities.
The whole thing was exhilarating. For the past month, or even two, I’ve been in a slump. My motivation seemed misplaced, despite my best intentions. Part of this was because I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to make this short. Until the day we started filming, I thought things would fall through. This uncertainty bled into every other thing I did. Yet when we arrived home from the last night of filming, in the early hours of Monday morning, I felt driven. I still do. I’m not quite sure where my path is heading, but I’m charging ahead.
So here is to following through, even when it gets hard in ways that don’t entirely make sense. Here is to blind ambition. Here is to following dreams you’re terrified of following. And most importantly, here is to trusting others’ faith in you and to friends who get on board your wild projects. More so, I could not have done this without Shawn’s constant support and excitement. Not to mention the fact that he shot the whole film for me. So here’s to finding the perfect partner too.