Friday, November 25, 2005

I kinda forgot about my film school media journals. Here's a double dose:

Week 4 – 2002.10.31
Two years ago, I wore my Silent Bob costume (Kevin Smith again—can you forgive me, Anthony?) for Halloween at the casino where I was a dealer. Everyone thought I was dressed as a bum. It was heartening to wear it among a bunch of movie geeks and have them ALL get it.
Completely irrelevant to the topic, but it done me heart proud.
The subject was brought up repeatedly in the documentary of whether or not “true” film noir still exists. I think “true” film noir was, as you said, a product of a time and place. The depression, the war, and the influx of German directors all came together to signify a certain era in filmmaking, kind of the way you can look at action films with a Hong Kong influence and know you’re watching the 90s.
Even though “true” film noir (last time I’ll use that phrase, I promise) is gone, the genre has evolved and continues to thrive. There are the obvious superficial trappings—the wet pavement, the trenchcoats, the shadows through the blinds—but deeper than that, there are the thematic elements that have become so commonplace we don’t even recognize it. How many movies these days have a heart-rending betrayal as their major plot twist? Film noir, at heart, is about horrible people doing horrible things to each other. In these cynical times, that still resonates deeply.
Hey, Kevin Smith wears a trenchcoat. Does that make Clerks film noir?

After a class on Canadian film financing...
Week 5 – 2002.11.7
This was one of those reality-check classes that scares the crap out of me. It’s all very well to fantasize about how cool it would be to be a big time director, but we need kicks in the ass like this to remind us of the business end of it all, and how intimidating it is.
This was also one of those classes that remind me that I’m not from here. I suppose I’m going to have to learn what the American financing process is like.
The trouble is, I’m a big fan of the renegade method--of guys like Robert Rodriguez being a medical guinea pig to make El Mariachi, or for that matter, George Lucas paying for the new Star Wars movies pretty much out of his own pocket, making them possibly the most expensive indie films in history.
Tempting as that route is (I hate business-type stuff) I know I’ll have to suck it up and learn to play the financing game. I guess I’ll even learn about CanCon

Copyright 2004 Rich Bowen

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