Movies on the brain

posted by Jeff | Sunday, July 10, 2005, 1:09 AM | comments: 0

I've really been an amateur film geek lately. Saw War of The Worlds today, plus picked up two DVD's, going to see Fantastic Four tomorrow. I'll probably blog about all four movies tomorrow night.

The more movies I watch, the more I feel like I need to make one. This need has me questioning a lot about what I do for a living (that's a topic for yet another post), but clearly there's a creative side to me that isn't being satisfied. I've worked professionally now in nearly every form of media... books, magazines, radio, TV and the Internet. Wow, that's weird just to say that. I don't think I really realized that until just now. Anyway, I haven't worked in film. Or cinema or movies, if you will, because frankly actual film is starting to die, no matter what Spielberg says.

I have to bang out 20 pages of something easy to shoot and get a nice short under my belt, no matter how bad it might suck. I'll do it purely for Internet release. Fuck, I've been talking about that for years now and I still haven't done it. I can't get my hands around what the barrier is. It's not money, because I'll be irresponsible and blow cash on the equipment if I feel I have the right script.

A movie can do a lot of things for people, entertain them, and make them feel something, even if it's just for a few moments. Some films leave a lasting impression (Dead Poets Society and Singles did it for me), others just make you appreciate a well-told story (The Big Lebowski, Pulp Fiction). I think that maybe my barrier is that I want to do something right out of the gate that will do either of those things, which is a ridiculously stupid expectation to have.

Certainly one of the things that has always drawn me to video is the toys. I mean, here's something that can satisfy both sides of the brain with something technical and scientific, as well as creative and inspirational.

The first frame of video I ever edited was in 1989 at the local government cable access studio, where I would later work. Editing tape was slow, with the pre-rolling and searching, but it was still satisfying. In 1998 I would run a government studio and have the foresight to go digital before the local TV affiliates would. I also bought a Media 100, my first non-linear editing system. What a liberating feeling that was, to cut video and play it back in real-time without generation loss or anything harmful like that!

Only a year after that I left for the riches of the Internet, but I've tried to keep a hand in it here and there. I actually make a grand or two a year encoding video for the Internet, and like a true geek, I own a version of Avid (Xpress Pro HD, for those that care). I try to keep up and read stuff online and still get DV Magazine for free. The Panasonic DVX100A is an amazing camera I'd love to own. There are also amazing, yet astonishingly simple things like the Fig Rig that make shooting on DV interesting.

I really need to stop talking about this and start doing it.


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