Wednesday, August 26, 2009

My First Time Shooting a Film! - Part Three


I intentionally woke up early simply to watch a movie before Ben and Ian woke up, just like I did yesterday with Pulp Fiction. Today's newspaper had a new review of Inglourious Basterds. Albeit, a really negative one. One star. Doesn't matter. I'm going to see it anyway.

Today's movie: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. First time viewing. Quite a fabulous film. The cinematography and the tension of the final scenes especially made this a keeper. I want to be like Clint Eastwood.

For the first hours of the day, we all had nothing to do.

I called Martin to make sure he actually came today. He said he would. Emily arrived and sat around with us. Ben showed her the trailer and a brand new teaser. At around noon, Brendan arrived. We shot his first couple of one-shot scenes immediately. Then we sat around again. We were getting hungry, and Ben kept mentioning a Digiorno pizza he had in the freezer. Seeing as Emily was merely there (she did take pictures, though), she was promoted "crafts lady" and ordered to make the pizza. She didn't. Ben and Brendan tortured her with feet in her face and their legs spread open in her direction. Weird.

At one o'clock, Ian had to leave for a doctor's appointment. Nothing to do. Soon, Martin arrived. He and Ben immediately began ripping on each other. I was a little upset, but then thought, as with Brendan and Aimee, the tension might be a good thing for the movie. We managed to shoot Quent and Martin's first scene together.

Soon, Ben and Brendan went to go pick up Aimee from her house. Nothing to do. While Martin generously made the pizza, I mindlessly walked around the house looking for good camera angles with no one for a reference point. I can't explain just how out of it I was. I did not feel like working at all. I wanted to quit the movie that day.

But then, something kicked in. Suddenly, I was tired to doing nothing. Doing nothing got no one nowhere. I was the director, wasn't I? The filmmaker? Well then, let's make a fucking film! How can I work to this goal now? I can prepare for the next scene! The next scene was a big one, too. Roger revealed his bite to the others and they were running away from him. OK. How will we do it? I immediately drew a map of the den and began blocking every camera placement, every movement, and every single shot I would use. By the time I had this all figured out and ready to go by the time Ben, Brendan, and Aimee arrived. Ian arrived sometime later, but I managed to set him straight, too. This was without a doubt the smoothest stretch of filmmaking we'd done. I was quickly able to get everyone in place and shoot maybe only two takes for every shot. At one point, though, Brendan called me out for being too "Kubrick-y." I can live with that. Ben is really good at tough guy improvisation. He should play the big boss in our next film. Oh, and my character (a nihilistic GameBoy player) knocks Brendan out with the shotgun. And then keeps playing the GameBoy.

After shooting the last shot needed with Brendan, we had finished for the time being. Brendan could finally go to college and we had successfully shot just over half of our movie. Yeah!

Everyone but Ben, Ian, and I left. We cleaned up the area to make it civilized again. We tried to see Inglourious Basterds that night, but couldn't. His dad did take us to dinner and then rent a movie, though. We went to an Italian restaurant. Really good bread. We rented and watched I Love You, Man, which, I must say, felt like a film personally made for me. I loved it. Paul Rudd and Jason Segel were fantastic. I totally could connect with Rudd's lovably unconfident straight arrow. He just wants a friend. I do, too. Except, he's lucky enough to be getting married as well. When will I know that kind of love? Will I ever?

So, that was our fun. My experience gained ranged from learning to deal with people (teenagers) and being comfortable giving orders. I could get used to this.

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