Sunday, August 22, 2010

So You Want to be An Indie-Filmmaker? Watch what I learn...

Yesterday I posted my Summer To-Do List (aka my version of Film School for Dummies - meaning, me!).  Last night I rented 5 movies as part of my own personal assignment for this weekend:
  • The Swedish film based on the book by Stieg Larsson, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (because I just finished reading his three books which, by the way, are fantastic.  I wanted to see what the original film was like before the American version with Daniel Craig is made - not so much "film school" but pure film student joy)
  • Paranormal Activity - because we it's all the buzz in indie-filmmaking these days.
  • El Mariachi - the famous first movie by Robert Rodriquez, who wrote "Rebel Without a Crew" - one of the many amazing books about making movies on a limited budget but with loads of style.  Not that I'll be making action movies right away, but it's cool to experience his point of view as a writer/director/producer/editor and everything else in between.
  • Reservoir Dogs - Tarantino's first biggie, which I know I should have seen by now.  I'm embarrassed to admit that I still need to see it.
  • the Coen Brothers, Burn After Reading - because again, I haven't seen it yet.  It wasn't their first, and really, I should rent their first, but I usually love these guys & just felt like a good ol' comedy to balance out the action & horror above. 
I enjoyed watching The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and will be seeing the second in the series, The Girl Who Played with Fire at my local indie-cinema next week.  It's dark & depressing material, but dang, that Lisbeth Salander keeps me coming back for more.  She's so bad-ass-autistic-crazy-punk-rock and refuses-to-be-a-victim-cool.

Paranormal Activity is indeed a scary flick, and I was impressed at how this computer-geek put together the whole movie, but ... well, it's no Blair Witch.  That movie kept me from camping out for years.

I watched El Mariachi today with Robert Rodriquez commentary.  He's awesome.  I love his "you wanna make movies?  Get out there and make 'em!" attitude.   I think there should be a film school class where the students just watch his film with commentary & read his book & discuss.  Then they have to make their own action films for under $7000.  That would be an amazing class.

Tonight I plan to watch the other 2 flicks above, although Jen (my sister, co-producer & creative side of our team) has already seen them and I suspect she won't be to interested in watching either.  I may have to watch them on my own tomorrow, after I put in a few hours at my day-job.  I'll let you know what I think and what the next assignments are for this week.

Any suggestions for other movies I should be watching this week?  Please leave your comments below & let me know your thoughts.

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