Thursday, September 29, 2011
This reminded me of a conversation we had in class about all crew members knowing exactly what their job is and being in charge of a certain aspect. Clearly, the person in charge of chyron was either incompetent or there was actually something wrong electronically with the system, but it reminds us all about the importance of specialization. Sure, everybody needs to know how to do certain basics in different aspects of a production, but people also need to be very closely involved with their assigned position, and know how to instantly troubleshoot any problems that may arise, so that something like this never happens (even though this is a studio production, the lesson still applies.)
Toy story 3 the third final Toy Story made to date directed by Lee Unkrich is a film about Andy (John Morris) who is now 17 and ready to head off to college, His mother (Laurie Metcalf) tells him that he has to decide what he wants to do with his old toys, and Andy decides to keep them in the attic, except for Woody (Tom Hanks), who he is planning to take to school. However in the rush of packing Andy gets distracted and forgets about the toys. His mother, thinking that Andy does not have any use for the toys accidentally donates them to the Sunnyside Daycare, leaving Woody, Buzz (Tim Allen) all of the other toys to figure out how this will impact their future. At first life at the daycare seems like it will be happy and carefree, but soon they learn the truth. The toys are abused by an evil bear named Lots (Ned Beatty). The toys soon realized they must figure out a way to get back home to Andy. Will they make it out alive, you will just have to go and get the movie to see.
King Kong (1933)The Wizard of Oz (1939) "The Adventures of Spin and Marty" (1955)The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)Cool Hand Luke (1967)"Scooby Doo, Where Are You!" (1969)
"Happy Days" (1974)"Buck Rogers in the 25th Century" (1979)The Evil Dead (1981)Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)The Adventures of André and Wally B. (1984)Ernest Goes to Camp (1987)My Neighbor Totoro (1988)Tin Toy (1988)Parenthood (1989)Jurassic Park (1993)Toy Story (1995)A Bug's Life (1998)Toy Story 2 (1999)Monsters, Inc. (2001)Finding Nemo (2003)The Incredibles (2004)Cars (2006)WALL·E (2008)
Anyway, I rented it! I watched the trailer while I waited for the film to load. The trailer is a tiny (said with a high pitched voice) little piece of the obnoxiousness displayed on screen when watching the film.
A warning to any who feel it now necessary to go out buy the film and watch it six or seven hundred times in your basement with the lights off. IT IS HIGHLY HIGHLY DISTURBING!! If you plan on watching this film I recommend doing being fully prepared for extreme sexual content and incredible violence all rolled into one!
Now, what I really wanted to blog about for this movie is the Psychological references and points this film makes. Specifically conditioned learning. During the film our "humble narrator" goes about his usual routine of selfish pillaging. From the beginning we see the world through Alex's (the main antagonist and "humble narrator") eyes. To him there was no law no order just living for himself and ruling over all. By the end we see though the world's perspective viewing of Alex's character as he changes and how the world still sees him no differently than they should have in the first place. In order for society or the "government" to change Alex's character they had to put him through a medical technique which made it completely unbearable for him to be comfortable in his own skin and upon several encounters when he returns to reality he encounters inadvertently all the things he had now been psychologically trained to avoid. Thus, making his new life a living hell. His true character prevailed in the end to going back to the way he always was before. Only this time he is protected to a degree by the government.
All in all it was an awesome film I highly recommend it!
Sunday, September 25, 2011
5 Annoying Trends That Make Every Movie Look the Same
- Movies that are color-coded by genre
- The excessive use of orange and teal tones
- Time ramping use in action films
- Faking the look of a documentary
- Using 3D in a way that degrades the quality of the film
This behind the scenes special shows a lot of the props and devices used to create creatures in movies over the last century. It has fantastic interviews from directors and make up artists from recent movies such as The Chronicles of Narnia and Grindhouse.
One of the best examples of combining real effects and CG is shown in the movie The Mist that was made a couple years ago. To get the desired tentacle effects they used real objects on green screen, then overlayed the textures in CG.
They didn't have a large budget, so the tentacles aren't amazing looking, but I think straight CG would have been much harder to make convincing.
Pilobolus is my favorite dance company of all time. They got their start in Dartmouth College in 1971 as a Contemporary Dance Company and from there they blossomed into a world renowned dance company preforming at events like the Academy awards, Late night with Conan, America's got Talent, ect. The video above is just one small example of the American Dance Companies style. In the Commercial Pilobolus is Advertising the Hyundai Santa Fe where the dancers contort their bodies and play around with shadow and perspective to illustrate some activities that range from the opera to camping. Finally at the closing shot we see Pilobolus transform into the Santa Fe as the narrator chimes in the background "The all new Hyundai Santa Fe, flexible, agile, for whatever shape life takes". Telling the Audience that the Santa Fe meets every single one of our needs whether it be going to a fancy event or getting dirty in nature. I mean the art directors really came up with a cool concept for this one but adding Pilobolus to the mix is what really made this commercial.
Whatever Pilobolus touches turns to gold, and for good reason. They just take dancing to a whole new level that I have never seen before. Every move they make is calculated, yet organic and pure. They use every inch of their bodies to dance it gets to a point where even the contraction of their muscles becomes a part of the choreographic story. It really is a joy to watch them.
But these guys are from just being Dance Company that occasionally works on commercials, they are expanding their company and working on music videos now. Making there debut in OK GO's new music video "All is Not Lost".
For those of you feeling too lazy to read the article, I'll summarize it for you.
The five main claims are
5. Movies are color coded (color corrected) by genre
4. Everything else is teal and orange
3. Ramping (everything slows down, then speeds up)
2. Faking the documentary look, even when it isn't a documentary
1. 3D that makes the movie look worse
And the thing is, I can agree with all of these claims. Of course, saying every single movie ever made falls into one of these trends is a bit of an exaggeration, but there is still a lot of truth to it with more recent films. The article provides stills and poster images that clearly prove their points. These are all claims I've overheard in movie theaters, except the claims about the color correction--which the general audience normally doesn't think about.
Just figured I'd pass on this article, the link is posted below.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Yes Man, directed by Peyton Reed, is about a man named Carl Allen (Jim Carrey), who is down on his luck, when he decides to go to a self-improvement seminar. The lecture is about different opportunities that present themselves to different people and the exercise requires that no matter what options are available, good or bad, the response should be “yes”. After going to the seminar he challenges himself to say "yes" to everything. Carl's world is turned upside down by the power of "yes" he finally sees that things are changing when he meets a girl named Allison (Zooey Deschanel) who has a lot of hobbies including photography while running, singing in Munchausen by Proxy, to name a few. The word yes seems to be making Carl's life go in the right directing until Allison finds out about it and that’s when things get interesting. You'll just have to go out and watch this film to and see what happens next.
Billy Jack (1971), Alien (1979), Body Heat (1981), "G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero" (1983), The Goonies (1985), The Witches of Eastwick (1987), Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994), Mortal Kombat (1995), The Cable Guy (1996), Space Jam (1996), Michael (1996), Titanic (1997), Lost in Space (1998), Deep Impact (1998), The Matrix (1999), Dogma (1999), Gladiator (2000), Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001), May (2002), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), The Core (2003), The Cat in the Hat (2003), Saw (2004), The Day After Tomorrow (2004), Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004),
AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004), The Matador (2005), Alone in the Dark (2005), Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005), Batman Begins (2005), Flightplan (2005), Doom (2005), Saw II (2005), King Kong (2005), Superman Returns (2006), Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006), Perfect Stranger (2007), Spider-Man 3 (2007), 1408 (2007), Transformers (2007), I Am Legend (2007), Rambo (2008)
Recently He has been writing and honestly as big of a fan as I am for him as a director, I can comfortably say I enjoy his writing more. The director of Devil (John Eric Dowdle) interoperated M. Night Shyamalan's writing perfectly and it was very pleasing. I hope that they'll continue calibrating so I can enjoy more of what they produce. It's actually a really good movie; ranked number 37 in my favorite movies list.
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Monday, September 19, 2011
I understand that it is incredible popular and that millions of people watch it bringing in billions of dollars of revenue, but I still have issues with it. The problem is two fold: One, it is not reality and two, it is cheap entertainment.
Reality shows are not at all real. If it were, no one would watch. People will watch a show about a family with 18 kids or a bunch of twenty year olds in a house on Jersey Shore, but no one wants to watch a show about real people, a family of four with a minivan for example. Even shows that supposedly present some aspect of real life are fake. "Teen Mom's" for example is about teen mothers trying to make ends meet. But each of them are paid $60,000 per season, so all of them are pretty well of compared to most teen moms in America, in which three out of ten end up on welfare within a year of their child's birth. Of course this is nothing compared to The Situation from "Jersey Shore" who makes $30,000 per episode. These are the shows that are not completely planned out and they are still fake. Shows like "The Bachelor" and "Survivor" are even more fake because all the drama is created by a producer.
Reality shows are also cheap entertainment. Not in the monetary sense of the word, since billions are spent on creating it, but in the quality of it's production. There is no "real" story. There was no writer crafting a tale. There is not the same level of character development or story progress as in traditional shows. There is no plot. Reality shows are just feats of editing that make boring things seem to have dramatic and climatic moments.
There has been a rise and fall of the creation of Reality TV. I think most of that has to do with the fact that networks follow what is hot and reality is on the downward trend now. I just hope that soon we will be back to the time when stories and plots are what fill primetime television.
Sunday, September 18, 2011
he also did a dubbing of the first harry potter movie and called it wizard people, its pretty strange but i thought it was funny he constantly goes off into weird tangents but its great
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u981JhkK46o&t=6s embeding for this was disabled
Brad's pretty funny I think he's worth checking out
A couple years back Chanel created this film for its most famous perfumes anniversary, Chanel No. 5. Its starring Audrey Tautou the star of the famous french movie Amelie( totally awesome movie you should check it out if you ever have time). I love Chanel as a brand, they are always finding new ways to reinvent themselves and stand out from the multiplicity of fashion houses. This short film is just an example of one of the ways they do that. What makes this short film so great for me is just the attention to detail throughout the entire story, from the lighting, clothing, knickknacks on the table, to the mosaic on the floor at the end, the whole thing is just elegant and beautiful and really encompasses the essence of Chanel.
Reading this article, I found out that the re-release was to promote another re-release...of The Lion King on Blu-Ray. This turned out to be a much more successful marketing strategy than predicted, grossing almost 2 times what was estimated, surpassing all other new releases this weekend. That is pretty unlucky for the highly anticipated "Drive" with Ryan Gosling.
This all got me thinking about marketing strategies like this one, so I "liked" The Lion King on Facebook and saw all of the promoting they had been doing there, posting pictures and statuses about the re-release and its wonderous 3d magic. "Pre-order your Blu-Ray today!" the website shouts at me...Gee, I just might. That's right cooperate America...you got me. And all it took was the re-release of the highest-grossing animated film of all time.
For example, in the opening scene a relatively routine ordinance disposal mission slowly unravels until it goes completely bad.
After watching this scene, The Hurt Locker establishes the danger the characters are truely in and able to subsequently bring the viewer to the same stress levels, same adrenaline, even if all the build up is for nothing.
In this scene two of the main characters clear a building. Same build up but without a violent ending.
I believe Katherine Bigelow does this in an attempt to show the audience how in combat the level of stress and adrenaline the soldiers experience. The movie also shows how this can affect everyone differently. For example one of the main characters develops PTSD and can't handle the stress. One of the other main characters is an adrenaline junkie. While although he mostly is quite and keeps to himself, on the inside, he is yearning for the unparalleled adrenaline rush of being at war. After returning home at towards the very end of the movie there is a scene where the character is in the super market, staring at a seemingly never ending line of cereals. The elevator-esq music cuts to a guitar riff showing the soldier back overseas on yet another tour because he is addicted. Katherine Bigelow uses the camera, editing, music, plot, and characters all to effectively evoke the emotion she wants her audience to feel.
DLNA is built in software that enables electronic devices to connect to each other over a wireless home network. This includes connecting your phone to your tv or your computer to another computer etc. Basically devices recognize each other and can communicate without installing confusing, annoying software that takes HOURS to figure out how to use.
Because it saves massive amounts of TIME! With DLNA you no longer have to burn videos and music to DVDs for them to play on your television and home theatre!
- You can stream movies from your computer to any television in your house
- Transfer movies or music to a PS3 or Xbox directly; NO software, dvds or cables needed
- View pictures on your television off a phone or camera/camcorder instantly
Keep in mind that you'll have to enable the security settings on these devices or other people will have just as "easy access" to certain content stored on your electronics.
So look for the DNLA Certified logo on electronics before you buy them from now on and have fun saving lots of time, while sharing digital media with your friends and family!
DNLA main website for more info Digital Living Network Alliance
A friend of mine recently posted this on facebook, and at first glance it seemed to me just another random video, but as I started to watch it, I realized that it clearly was something more. To me, this video just shows moments that make up the human experience, and serves as a reminder that no matter how different we all are, we all do certain things that connect us all, whether it's making the bed, taking a drag on a cigarette, or putting on a bra (ok, maybe not EVERYONE does that, but you get my point). What's more, the way this is editing is phenomenal. The way it cuts from the guy throwing up a sheet to put on a bed to the kids in the playground throwing up a parachute, and the shot of the car about to his another car that switches quickly to clinking glasses, and the shot of the math problem that switches to a surgery that switches to tic tac toe. Long story short, I was amazed by this video.
"What if life was really like that, where nobody lied?"
And just now it's hitting me, that's the purpose of the film. To make people stop and think about if the world actually could not lie. And it's a valid point. People say all the time, "I wish people just didn't lie." And this movie is pretty spot on about portraying that. But it raises another question, if it was socially accepted to not lie, rather, if lying did not exist at all, would we even care about the horrible bluntness of harsh statements?
So I guess I've been shown an important point, Even comedies have the capability to present deep thought-provoking topics to the general public, that not only makes them laugh, but also makes them think.
Saturday, September 17, 2011
Any message that is sent has to be received and acted upon by other humans. That means, to be received effectively, you have to code your message to the way we humans are programmed. Following the circle model from the inside out, rather than the outside in, allows messages to resonate with a viewer's powerful emotional core. This model, called the "golden circle," affects not only marketing messages and advertising, but really all communication in general. What makes Pixar the unstoppable storytelling force it is? What makes almost every corporate training video boring beyond reason? In all honesty, the answer depends on an endless number of variables. Still, a great deal of it comes from the golden circle model.
Underneath of every message communicated, there are whats, hows, and whys. It is up to us as filmmakers to make sure our messages start at the center. With a solid "why," messages break through the noise, and into our consciousness. Without a "why," our messages just become noise themselves.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
Whip It directed by Drew Barrymore, is a movie about a girl, Bliss (Ellen Page), from a small town, Bodeen, Texas. She feels like her life is going nowhere until one day while she is out shopping with her uptight pageant addicted mother she notices a flyer on the store's counter about the roller derby in Austin, Texas. Bliss and her best friend, Pash (Alia Shawkat), decide to go check it out. They meet Maggie Mayhem (Kristen Wiig) and she introduces them to the world of roller derby. Bliss instantly falls in love with the sport and the story continues as she follows a different path and begins to make new discoveries about herself.
This is a really great movie because I really enjoyed the actresses' performances in this movie and the fact that it was Drew Barrymore's first time directing. She made the movie very unique and it definitely drew me into the plot.
The Wizard of Oz (1939),2001: A Space Odyssey (1968),"Family Feud" (1976),Slap Shot (1977), Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977),Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983), 'Crocodile' Dundee (1986),"The Oprah Winfrey Show" (1986), Fight Club (1999),Spider-Man 3 (2007)
Monday, September 12, 2011
Here is the scene:
As the scene ends Tom Hanks' character begins to cry historically, if the music bed were not there to direct the emotion of the scene, the concept of a grown man crying that hard over a lost toy, is quite silly. Knowing the circumstances it's not meant to be funny. Thus, the epic, emotional music piece. Family Guy actually mocked the scene and made it funny by making the famous reference of "Wilson!" and then adding a bit of comic reality coming from a cartoon volleyball. Notice there is no music bed.
Here's that video:
Oh, easy stupid comedy... On the oposite spectrum; a serious situation that shouldn't be funny is Something like the "WOW freak out kid". If this person were really this way or not is entirely debatable. I understand the boy was on Tosh.0 and made sure to stress that he was just acting. On the realistic side of things Human's can act animalistic and freak out the way he did, if I had a mental break down and freaked out about anything (especially being at his age) and it were filmed and posted on the internet by my Justine-Beiber-look-alike little brother I'd probably tell the world it was fake too so that Some day I could look forward to a normal social life in the near future. Aside from that rant, The concept of Asperger's syndrome, is a very serious issue that obviously can hurt himself and others. The reality is sad but the video is terribly funny.
here is that video:
The point is that music can change the entire mood of a film just like the setting of a terrible concept can make it funny.
So after all the time and money spent by production companies creating security measures and user UN-friendly blu ray movies, a possible shift in mainstream media may finally go in the right direction.
Techies like me, who rip dvd's to our computers for instant streaming purposes, have been breaking the law for years now only because the major companies in industry refuse to adapt to technology. The Digital Millenium Copyright Act was possibly the most short sighted idea in media today. If I remember correctly I think it only took 2 weeks for someone in Taiwan to crack blu ray technology and sell the software by mail, so maybe film companies should just offer what digital media users do ALREADY and save themselves the money of hiring lawyers to prosecute everyone.
So anyway, the newest idea by mainstream companies is to offer digital media that can be converted to multiple devices under the same account...was it REALLY so hard??
It's called Ultra Violet and it promises to allow users the ability to buy movies, tv shows etc. and be able to watch them on more than just a dvd player. I'd be shocked if it offers what techies have already been doing, but it's got the backing of the biggest players in the industry such as Sony, Lionsgate, Paramount and Fox.
It's set to launch THIS fall, so we'll see if it actuallty delivers what the b.s. digital copy dvd's failed to provide.
Here's the website link for further investigation UltraViolet
Sunday, September 11, 2011
The new fall season for TV is quickly approaching and I’m counting down the days. I recently read this article: http://www.timescolonist.com/entertainment/Fall+television+preview+season+full+laughs+screams+fairy+tales/5384733/story.html
Which gave brief summaries on some of the new shows coming out this season. While there’s nothing that absolutely stands out to me I know that I’m looking forward to New Girl starring Zooey Deschanel, who has never disappointed me and I especially became a huge fan after (500) Days of Summer.
Another new show I’m looking forward to is Up All Night. Being a huge Will Arnett fan I was more than disappointed in his sitcom last year Running Wilde. I think that pairing him up with Christina Applegate is going to be much better.
I also can’t wait for my NBC Thursday nights to come back. Especially Community and Parks and Recreation which keep getting better and better with each episode.
John Goodman will definitely be an interesting addition to the show. Fortunately I only have a little more than a week to find out.
Guillermo del Toro has to be one of my favorite directors/producers of all time and he has a new movie out in theaters (Don't be Afraid of the Dark) so I thought it would be kind of cool to watch an Interview of the man behind some of the greatest horror films in the industry. The man is absolutely GENIUS. Here’s his IMDB page so you can check out some of his movies : http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0868219/
My personal favorites are The Orphanage and Pans Labyrinth. He does some really cool stuff with his special effects and even in a day and age where everything can be done digitally a lot of his effects are crafted by hand. (which I think is totally awesome)
Heres also the trailer to his new movie, ENJOY!:
Over the summer I was interning at a video production company called VideoLink Inc. in Boston. What that company did was all types of things involving satellite cameras. One of the weeks I was there I learned that we were going to go on a shoot for the Soup, a comedy show starring Joel McHale, who also stars on Community. Here's a Condensed Soup clip. I couldn't find the one from the week I was on, so here's a different one.
Pixar has long been a source of animated entertainment, which has most likely shaped all of us in some way or another. Dreamworks and Pixar both are renowned for some of the best animation of humans, and other characters ranging from robots, insects, every type of animal imaginable, even mythological creatures.
When I was still in high school, debating whether or not to choose a major in animation or live action, I looked a lot at the similarities and differences between live action film and animation. While animation is now entirely digital and created from computers, whereas live action is shot using real people on a set/location, there are some similarities.
Live action is frequently used in animated films, where someone hooked up to a motion tracking system performs the actions of the character, and the motions are recorded and used to create the motions of the character. On the other hand, animation is frequently used in live action movies to create the backdrops and special effects that would otherwise be impossible to achieve.
Through both styles, the same basic concepts are held constant, where every shot is thoroughly thought through, every line and every motion is carefully planned by teams and teams of crew members.
But besides making some deep concepts more "kid friendly," what is the purpose of choosing animation over live action? Because as far as I've noticed, almost all animated films (except stop-motion shorts) are comedies. Any thoughts?
This past weekend I saw the new film Apollo 18. It was a good movie, a great idea, good acting (crapy ending), but the most interesting thing was that throughout the entire movie, both before and after, it pretended that it was an actual collection of leaked footage from the government. This seems to be a phenomena that has taken hold since the Blair Witch Project. Thriller movies pretending to be based on true events.
This is different than a Mocumentary. A mocumentary is a fiction film that presents itself as a documentary, they are usually a satire or a parody, and almost always comedic. The new trend of thriller films that present themselves as fact are serious or scary. Films like Paranormal Activity and Cloverfield are filmed in such a way as to appear to be raw footage. Apollo 18 uses this technique as well, as if the footage we are seeing was originally filmed by those in the movie. Some films take this a little to far. The Fourth Kind is a film about an alien abduction and the film makers made it seem as if it were real. they even went through the trouble of have two lead actresses, one as the "Real" women in "Historical" footage, and another to be the actress playing the "real" woman in the dramatizations. They faked news releases and created a website of facts so that if you looked into the film it would seem true. They even went as far as to not credit the actress who played the "Real" women in the historical footage, to make her seem like a real person.
This new take on thrillers is an interesting trend. I believe that this way of marketing and presenting a story makes more people want to see it. Inside every viewer is a little part of them that wants movies to be true. So if the film presents itself as true, it makes it more interesting and gives it an edge. I feel that in the near future we will see many more films that are completely fictitious but present themselves as factual, simply because it sells.
Saturday, September 10, 2011
The romance comedy Juno hit the theaters in 2007 and was a great film. This film was different because the writer Diablo Cody, who changed careers and became a writer after working as a stripper; came up with this new idea that put a spotlight on teen pregnancy. The film was written in the style I was able to relate to because I could connect with the slang she used to carry out her characters opinions.
The cast that was chosen for this film, Juno (played by Ellen Page) and Paulie Bleaker (played by Michael Cera), as well as Vanessa (played by Jennifer Garner) and Mark (played by Jason Bateman) brought the screenplay to life as they all gave realistic portrayals of their on screen characters. I do not think I could see any other actor play these parts like they did.
Some References: "Thunderbirds" (1965), Suspiria (1977),"PicturePages" (1984), The Goonies (1985), So I Married an Axe Murderer (1993), "My So-Called Life" (1994), The Blair Witch Project (1999), The Bone Collector (1999), Coyote Ugly (2000), Faust (2000), Battle Royale (2000), The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)
Juno MacGuff: You should've gone to China, you know, 'cause I hear they give away babies like free iPods. You know, they pretty much just put them in those t-shirt guns and shoot them out at sporting events.
Juno MacGuff: I think I'm in love with you.
Paulie Bleeker: You mean as friends?
Juno MacGuff: No... I mean for real. 'Cause you're, like, the coolest person I've ever met, and you don't even have to try, you know...
Paulie Bleeker: I try really hard, actually.
Bren: When you move out I'm getting two Weimaraners!
Juno MacGuff: WHOA DREAM BIG!
Bren: Oh, go fly a kite!
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
I really enjoyed all the Sony Dreams short films. I thought they all had a very high production value. The next video, Intolerable, does the opposite of the last video and does not really leave you with a clear idea about what is going on. Sometimes it's also best to leave the viewer guessing instead of the script providing the twist or ending.