We lost a great one today. Harold Ramis made us laugh and laugh. Comedy in any form is difficult to do well and to do it well in movie format shows a true gift. Weather writing, directing, acting etc he was great at all of it. Ghostbusters, Caddyshack and Groundhog Day are comedy movie legends! To be associated with all three is truly incredible. Other movies involving Ramis include Stripes, Analyze This, Animal House, Ghostbusters 2 and many many other recognizable flicks!
My personal favorite of these is Groundhog Day. It’s arguably my favorite romantic comedy ever made. Such a great mix of comedy, drama and romance. Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell made for very good chemistry on the screen. Her character was such a sweetheart and Bill’s such a turd and they balanced so well. And we can’t forget Harold’s roll as the doctor that check’s out Bill Murray’s claims of reliving the same day over and over again. He even gets credit as co-writer of this classic!
Harold Ramis may not be with us anymore but his personality and humor will be with us as we are blessed to have these movies to enjoy for years to come. His efforts were not for nothing. Thank you for the laughs Harold. We are forever grateful.
The resume of the filmmaker is not like that of most occupations. Most industries want to know your education level. They want to know how long you’ve worked in that particular field even more then they care about the quality of the work. They just want to know you’re knowledgeable and can do it. But in the filmmaking business it’s all about what you’ve done. Your body of work is all that matters.
Working for free isn’t always the most intriguing thing. Sometimes duty calls where a non-profit or a cause presents itself and it’s enough to make one willing to offer hours of work at no cost. But in the filmmaking world there can be great value in working for free! I’ve done my share of free work dating back to when I was beardless. I still do some projects on a volunteer basis. My latest volunteer project can be seen here!
Volunteer filmmaking allows for the filmmaker to continue getting better at what they do in every way.
2) FREEDOM TO EXPLORE
Volunteer gigs are often vague when it comes to the clients intake. They are often happy getting a promo or plug at no cost to them. This allows you as a filmmaker to try new things and explore new avenues. Take some creative freedom and see what you can do!
3) LARGER PORTFOLIO
Obviously the more movies produced the more you will grow your resume and help yourself gain large gigs down the road!
4) CAN LEAD TO PAID WORK
It’s all about networking while working. Doing projects on a volunteer case can lead to paid gigs simply by word of mouth for those you’ve worked with for free. It has for me and will for you too!
I highly recommend listening to this podcast by my friend Mark Sieverkropp entitled Project Success. In it he talks about the value of doing projects, or volunteering no matter what career you choose to take on or potentially take on! Also check out his new book by the same title here!
This promo video is for Thrive, a young adults ministry based in Gig Harbor, WA. It was made with the help of Nate Ward and Rebekah Parkhurst. Nate and I shot the footage. I edited the video and Rebekah wrote the music and made the end graphic. It was shown at a fundraiser for Thrive the beginning of February 2014. It was a great thrill for me to have the opportunity to have a professional musician score my video. I’m not sure I can go back to buying tracks!
I came into this movie with decent expectations and they were met. The Place Beyond the Pines is a very unique story revolving around fathers and sons and stretches multiple generations. Director/writer Derek Cianfrance takes the subject of the fatherless in great twists and turns down a heart wrenched road.
Luke, played by Ryan Gosling, is a motorcycle stunt rider turned bank robber. Avery, played by Bradley Cooper, is a young cop with ambitions of becoming more. Their lives clash and change the lives of their families forever. Eva Mendes, Ray Liotta and others round out a very well placed cast!
What I love about this movie is how different it is. (SPOILER ALERT) It’s rare to find a movie not called Psycho that kills off a big name part way through without any apologies. At one point they jump ahead 15 years which is very hard to do in any story. But they fill the gaps well and what transpires is superb. This story is defiantly one of a kind.
Let us know what you think of The Place Beyond the Pines! Comment below or hit me up on twitter @filmmakerdoc
One of the greatest aspects of the DVD/Blu-ray era has been the inclusion of Director’s Cut’s (DC). Sometime’s a director has a different vision for their project then the movie producers have. And of course, most of the time whoever has the money gets the most say. In some cases it’s an extended story that could help the movie or it can be an entirely different story all together. I’ll share with you two of my favorite scenarios of each.
First is Dances with Wolves: Director’s Cut. This Oscar Winning film was lengthy in its original theatrical release running at 181 minutes. When Kevin Costner‘s Director’s Cut was released it rounded out at 236 minutes. This extra 55 minutes pulls the story together so well! I can’t even watch the original release anymore because so much is missing. I’ll talk more about this film in a future post because it ranks as one of my favorites ever. I highly recommend the DC.
Then there is the case of telling a completely different story. Payback had a different story then the director/writer Brian Helgeland intended. Producer and star of the movie Mel Gibson agreed with fellow producers that the movie would be better going in a different direction. Helgeland disagreed and stepped down as director midway through the shooting of the film. Some years later his Director’s Cut was released with his vision intact. Each version has a look that’s different then the other. The difference is so big that Kris Kristofferson‘s character isn’t even in the DC! Two different stories, two solid flicks!
It’s so great that we now can enjoy multiple versions of a story seen from different perspectives. What are some of your favorite Director’s Cuts ???Let us know!!
Judging by the trailer, Grudge Match seemed to be a movie dedicated to boxing classic films Rocky and Raging Bull and those films respective stars Sylvester Stallone and Robert DeNiro. Funny throwbacks such as Stallone looking to punch a side of beef in a butcher shop (like in Rocky) was a funny take for fans of these classic films. Kevin Hart and Alan Arkin‘s funny banter seemed like the makings of a fun movie. Not so.
Selling this movie as a comedy, it turns out most of the story is built around drama. And more drama. And more drama. Then they tried to slip some jokes in that fell flat and hard. Hart’s character, a boxing promoter, was forced. The character was completely unnecessary and only seemed to exist for comedy re leaf but very little funny came from him. Kim Basinger played the former lover of both Stallone and DeNiro. Another unnecessary character and subplot. The one bright spot was Jon Bernthal‘s performance as DeNiro’s estranged son but you’ll likely miss it falling asleep before his character is introduced.
I know the hard work that goes into making a movie. I hate throwing anyone’s project under the bus. Why not invest the time and solid cast into something worthwhile?
I’m a die hard Duck Dynasty fan! I love the outdoors. I love Jesus and I love the Robertson family and all they stand for. So when A&E chose to suspend Phil Robertson for the words he used in a GQ article regarding homosexuality I was upset to say the least! Then I took a step back and thought about things a bit more rationally. Here are a few things I have considered in the last 14 hours since I first heard the news of Phil’s suspension.
1) A&E deserves some credit for airing a show many networks would never consider. They allow the family to be themselves. They end almost every show with a family prayer time. They don’t edit out Phil saying “Jesus” in all the prayers. They just aired a Christmas special that centered around the family doing a traditional nativity play at their church. They have aired Phil and others use scripture during many episodes. I have and will continue to applaud A&E for this, and it has obviously paid off for them with incredible ratings.
2) We don’t know exactly what’s going on behind closed doors at A&E. We don’t know what kind of pressure or bullying may be going on by those who don’t like opinions that don’t fit their lifestyle.
3) The Robertson family was doing just fine even before Duck Dynasty hit the air. God has their back and He will use this for His glory!
So in closing, is putting up a fight the best way to show our love for people? John 13:35 says “Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”There’s a time and a place to put up a fight for what’s right. But this is a great time to show our love for one another. Fight the good fight.
The firsts in life can be great. This was for me. My good friend Tobias Christopher and I wrote this short silent film one evening and shot it soon after. We used the only camera either of us had at the time which was my Kodak Playsport. It worked just fine for what we needed to do. I directed and produced. Tobias edited using Adobe Premiere 4.0. Jessica Stults did great as our leading lady. We got a few more of our friends involved and made it happen.