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Old August 18th, 2006, 02:30 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Carney
A good movie about this is John Cassavetes 'Faces', sort of a loose autobiography of what he went through during his brief time working for a Major.
What? Have you seen it? It's entirely about a marriage in trouble and the couple's individual futile attempts to find happiness elsewhere. There's nothing even remotely movie-related about the story. I suppose you could make an argument that there's some kind of convoluted symbolism going on there, but that's not really Cassavetes' style.

The way the film was produced is another story. Cassavetes' way of working was a reaction to his experiences with Hollywood filmmaking.

Sorry, I know this was very off-topic, but I felt someone should say it.

As for the actual topic of discussion here, I'd agree that the public is to blame for the crap oozing out of Hollywood--bad movies wouldn't be made and distributed if no one paid to see them.

However, I also think it's fair to say that people watch crap because crap is all they know. Most people never get a chance to see anything that isn't at the multiplex. Because film is such an industrialized medium, and the work produced with big $$$ is all that ever gets seen, anything that costs less than $30,000,000 is seen as "inferior." As if $$$ and actual value are always proportionate to one another.

A HUGE chunk of that $$$ goes into marketing. "You must see this movie or risk not participating in Western culture," that sort of thing. How can a little guy, a guy with even a shred of integrity, compete with Happy Meal tie-ins and TV commercials during the Super Bowl?

The studios have us right where they want us. They shovel crap, and we eat it up... because no other food is readily available. So we develop a taste for crap and wrinkle our noses at filet mignon.
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Old August 18th, 2006, 02:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash Greyson
Executives dont know what is good, they only know what they "think" can sell. They almost always choose the safe choice.
They're accountants. Risk Averse. It's not just Hollywood. Wherever Film Accountants gather, there be turkeys.

So, if you've no 'stars', no three-act structure, no easy to understand story arc, no redeeming change in hero,... no cigar.

No new movies, no controversy, no debate, no experiments.

That's how it may seem.

Except that most studios operate a sort of hedge system - funding 10 films in the hope that one rolls. All this filmic 'ballast' seems to be the byproduct of the system that needs to deal with the occasional boat-rocker.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrod Whaley
They shovel crap, and we eat it up... because no other food is readily available. So we develop a taste for crap and wrinkle our noses at filet mignon.
But the wonderful thing is that things are changing: how about Donnie Darko - a sleeper that tipped the DVD industry so hard that Studios are now thinking of the DVD matierial before the film stock is orderd.

"Sell through video" was a dirty cuss when I started out. Now DVD's big-time, and just like 'Broadcast TV' is soon going to be an oxymoron, On-demand movie consumption will drive new markets that will hopefully level the field below 'blockbuster'. We can dream, can't we? ;)

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Old August 18th, 2006, 08:01 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Forman
Steve- It's just too funny, the way you butcher hillbilly! It's yeehaw!
Aparently, it's now "Crested Land Feature William"...HillBilly is derogatory and unacceptable in any company. ;)

Sometimes...I love explosions molded around obvious plots with people who I could see pictures of cheaper by buying a national enquirer. I'm a cinema escapist...I don't want a message or a purpose or some preachy plot telling me that selling guns is bad and war is bad and all of these things I'm already currently aware of by watching the news. I am the target demographic for Dukes of Hazard (didn't go see it based on schedule). I love hollywood tripe! If you don't like what's coming out of hollywood, give them an alternative that will make them money.

I've always been of the opinion that if you're not willing to help fix the problem...you're not allowed to complain. Figure a way to sell them a meaningful and artistic piece of work to make money off the movie going public...I will support you if you personally let me know when it's hitting the theater, but meaningful art is quite frankly not the reason I pay a buttload of money to enter the theater. I want to see expensive cars with models in them being blown up at 150mph while the latest big action star miraculously saves the aforementioned model by pulling her out of the car at the last second unseen by us, but completely expected. A witty phrase that can be repeated over and over until my friends hate me and I've got my $15 worth!
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Old August 18th, 2006, 11:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrod Whaley
What? Have you seen it? It's entirely about a marriage in trouble and the couple's individual futile attempts to find happiness elsewhere. There's nothing even remotely movie-related about the story. I suppose you could make an argument that there's some kind of convoluted symbolism going on there, but that's not really Cassavetes' style.

The way the film was produced is another story. Cassavetes' way of working was a reaction to his experiences with Hollywood filmmaking.

Sorry, I know this was very off-topic, but I felt someone should say it.

As for the actual topic of discussion here, I'd agree that the public is to blame for the crap oozing out of Hollywood--bad movies wouldn't be made and distributed if no one paid to see them.

However, I also think it's fair to say that people watch crap because crap is all they know. Most people never get a chance to see anything that isn't at the multiplex. Because film is such an industrialized medium, and the work produced with big $$$ is all that ever gets seen, anything that costs less than $30,000,000 is seen as "inferior." As if $$$ and actual value are always proportionate to one another.

A HUGE chunk of that $$$ goes into marketing. "You must see this movie or risk not participating in Western culture," that sort of thing. How can a little guy, a guy with even a shred of integrity, compete with Happy Meal tie-ins and TV commercials during the Super Bowl?

The studios have us right where they want us. They shovel crap, and we eat it up... because no other food is readily available. So we develop a taste for crap and wrinkle our noses at filet mignon.

Not only have I seen it, I've read the biography surrounding the 'making' of it.
One of the first films to deal with sexual desire in middle aged women. It was about the people, not the system.
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Old August 19th, 2006, 07:54 AM   #20
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Ok, we all agree hollywood leaves a lot to be desired, but (and it's a big one) the myth is (i say myth cause i don't know if it's true or not) that in everyfilm market (all over da world) locla people preffer hollywood films to every other film (includeing their own countries).
Now this sounds really fake, just liek when hollywood claimed that james bond was the longest running series of movies about one character (they sorta forgot all the 99 black and white wong fei hung movies of honk kong and the tora-son movies of japan (there well over 30 of these))

So hollywood is all about the marketing, just look at snakes on a plane, which by all acounts is just a made for sci-fi channel movie with some big name actors in it.

Heres my one question, why must hollywood portray the star as being tall. look at tom cruse, not a tall guy in real life, always the tallest in the movcies.

Anyway, get a camera make a movie, thats the moral of my ramble
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Old August 19th, 2006, 08:24 AM   #21
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I agree, these debates about hollywood and what they put out don't accomplish anything. I'm making something right now and not carring about hollywood one way or another.
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Old August 19th, 2006, 12:49 PM   #22
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I'd disagree the anti-hollywood debates do nothing. Its important to stir the nest, and if 500 people simply went out and did their own thing youd have 450 rather dissapointing movies. I think debating what sort of structure is and isn't apropriate in a movie is very useful, throwing away all the rules results in a complete mess with no chance of getting back the money spent.

At one point I was wondering if you could could write a script with a roulette wheel, not every word obviously, but have all the basic themes occur by chance. I eventually came to conclusion, and maybe this would be quickly obvious to people with experience, that allthough the result would be a long way from predictable, the story just wouldn't make sense.

In the UK, Snakes on a plane is probably the most hyped film since Blair witch project, and to me that says something fundamental.
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Old August 19th, 2006, 01:02 PM   #23
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really? I was just over there and hurd nothing about it, maybe i missed the hype, or it started after i left. The anit hollywood debate is ok, but on a board liek this it's just ether preaching to the choir, or a repeate of the saem post every month. Just go out and make somehting, make some one else watch it, then you'll see whaere to go from that.
didn't truffaunt say something to the effect that the future of cinema would be a personal cinema.
The biggest thing stoppign people is a)lack of inturest, b)disguragment from every one with an opinion tellign you you'll never make it.

this is somehting i really hate, people who have no idea about nothign say "you can't do that". Gottent o the point where i don't say much of anything about what i'm ganna do or any of my goals.

as for watch out hollywood, even the movie industry it's self started as a fade. D.W griffith was so ashamed of working in the moviews that at first he wouldn't admit to it (people looked down on it) course this did change.

The biggest problem facing non hollywood types is distribution, and don't give me that internet stuff. The internet is not a cure alk, and i personaly only know of one movie that was ever successfully distributed over the net, www.starwreck.com (i think that it) it's a finnish star trek/babylone 5 parodie, and it's free.
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Old August 19th, 2006, 03:13 PM   #24
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Let's get back to the important issue here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Forman
Steve- It's just too funny, the way you butcher hillbilly! It's yeehaw!
"
According to Oxford's Standard English Guide to Hillbillie: Whenever you use a 1969 car to traverse a thirty foot gorge with no bridge available, the "Y" is implied.

BTW: I've never used the term hillbillie towards real people, just to describe Hollywood's interpretation to anybody living on a farm. We had another term for them: neighbor.
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Old August 19th, 2006, 03:22 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Roark
According to Oxford's Standard English Guide to Hillbillie: Whenever you use a 1969 car to traverse a thirty foot gorge with no bridge available, the "Y" is implied.

BTW: I've never used the term hillbillie towards real people, just to describe Hollywood's interpretation to anybody living on a farm. We had another term for them: neighbor.
Well, there you go! You should be using a Funk & Wagnell ;)

As far as using the term hillbilly, you really need to live in some of the real backroads of the south to appreciate it fully. However, I have never wanted to jump anything in a Charger... except Daisy Duke ;)
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Old August 19th, 2006, 04:22 PM   #26
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please, it's redneck for the south, and hillbilly applies to people from okalhoma. Florida has no hills, i know this for a fact, so hillbilly does not apply there :P
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Old August 19th, 2006, 04:27 PM   #27
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Actually, us oldtimers prefer Cracker. Just the oneliner's you can play off of it is great :)
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Old August 19th, 2006, 04:37 PM   #28
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I think every September, MovieMaker puts out an anual 'how to' to get your independent movie noticed, talked about and hopefully distributed. There are lots of smaller companies that specialize in that sort of thing.

If you're into genre movies, there are several 'fest' around the country that cater to them.

As far as StarWreck, very cool, but a distant second to 'Star Trek New Voyages' which has over 30 million downloads to date. They even have a reconstructed set of the originial Enterprise (TOS) to shoot on. So popular, that the set is being used for an original Trek based feature being directed by and acted in by several Trek Alumni from different series.

They are having the big 40th convention out in Las Vegas as we speak.
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Old August 20th, 2006, 08:00 AM   #29
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I agree with both sides of this debate. It that possible?

I have definately agree that what hollywood puts out is often predictable. Many films are just terrible, but still get to play on the big screen. I hated "the Island of Doctor Moreau", it was terrible.

Being a technical person who reads science fiction, I couldn't stand "Stealth" because the technical details were all wrong. The self aware airplane got damaged, and couldn't fly straight, but instead of being unable to point itself in the right direction it zigzagged all over. I have never flown a plane, but I know physics say the faster an object is moving, the harder it is to turn it. A fast moving plane would just keep flying, or falling in the wrong direction. But as far as effects, and eye candy, Stealth looked great, and probbably sold plenty of tickets for hollywood to get what they wanted.

Where I agree with hollywood is that they do know how to make money. Those of us saying we want better movies are a minority. As long as the masses continue to fill the seats in the theaters, hollywood will keep doing what they do. Hollywood sees no reason to change, because they have found a system that works for them. Even bad movies make money because by the time you figure out it's terrible, you've already paid for a ticket!

There will always be room for non hollywood films, but we will always have the disadvantage of not having access to endless money, and big name stars. There's no way around it. I have a few ideas for movies I think would really make people think, and want more, but I know if I make them, they will never get the attention a bad hollywood film would.

I hope I make a little sense.
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Old August 20th, 2006, 12:25 PM   #30
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These debates come up because a post like this pops up every several weeks. It is not bad intentions but rather ignorance and misunderstanding of what "Hollywood" is. People grab on to the thing that makes their own work LOOK inferior, the technology, and assume if they could remove that hurdle that the gates of Hollywood would swing open.

People like to say script is the main thing, or story, or acting, or directing, but in truth it is a combo of everything. The last of which, is the tech. Let's say Spielberg shot Munich on DV... how much would it change? Very little. Now, lets remove the script and replace it with one that isnt as good, or replace the actors with unknowns that worked for scale or for free, or replace Spielberg with a talented kid from one of these forums or...all of the above. Probably a mediocre movie that has trouble attracting major distribution...

The truth of the matter is that low to no budget film making is akin to making a demo CD for a band. Your best bet is to get your talent noticed and get an opportunity to work on a studio funded movie. It is an absolute pipe dream, lightning in a bottle scenario to think you can make a REALLY low-budget movie and get major distro as an unknown. You can count on one hand the successes of such.

Does that mean you should give up? No, but if you want a CAREER in media, you might want to take a different path or balance your creative and technical work.

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