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Old July 28th, 2009, 11:15 AM   #1
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"Expiration Dates" a 48 hour film for Des Moines

This was my 2nd 48 hour film this year. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

genre: comedy
character: Greg or Gretta Calhoun, architact
line of dialogue: "I have three words for you"
prop: a can opener

YouTube - Expiration Dates
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Old July 28th, 2009, 01:36 PM   #2
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That is a VERY funny film, Jeremy! I laughed out loud several times. Funny lines, good acting. Had to laugh at the "three words for you" gag, too.

If you're looking for critique on a technical level I'd have to view it again for that reason alone, because I was enjoying it so much I didn't want to watch with a critical eye. I do remember some blowout when the door opens one time, but that was it.

I will watch it again, but only because it's so entertaining. Great job!

Gotta add something: That first neighbor just cracked me up! :)
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Old July 29th, 2009, 04:54 PM   #3
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I really loved this, I'm with Lorinda in having laughed out loud more than once.

I was worried the eight minute run time would be too much for my taste, but it flies by with the story you told. The only criticisms I'd have are the aforementioned blowout (not so much with Greg, but when Meghan opened the door I thought she was trying to escape a dying Sun), the no-nails technique used to board up the window toward the beginning, and the dolly move when Meghan sits on the couch, only because it popped out at me. Maybe if you'd done the same thing earlier, when the first girlfriend comes in, it would have been less distracting. And if you'd had the space, I might suggest rotating the track forty-five degrees or so, start at the couch, and pull back as they walk in and sit down. I know just less than diddly squat about effective blocking and staging, but I think that would look nicer.

That all pales in face of the comedy, though. Your implementation of the "I have three words for you" requirement was genius! As was Calhoun's hand gesture when he says "arches"; that actor almost steals the whole movie despite his short appearance. The zombie cruft in the tub made me feel for the guy, touching on my plumbing background. You'd swear some of the crap we dig out of shower drains must have come from the undead. The Zombaoke party got me pretty good, too, with the arm gag. Your 28 Days Later nod was cute, though I still haven't seen that movie, and of course you nailed the ending! "Yeah, well, where was I going to go, Detroit?" A poorly thought out plan by Alex and Jen, a picture perfect close for your movie.

I only have one question, was the neighbor she ate supposed to be Norman?
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Old July 29th, 2009, 11:06 PM   #4
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the no-nails technique used to board up the window toward the beginning
I'd forgotten about that but, yes, maybe just starting the nail into the wood would have worked there.
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Originally Posted by Robert Martens View Post
...Calhoun's hand gesture when he says "arches"; that actor almost steals the whole movie despite his short appearance.
Agreed! It left me wanting more, which means it was perfect.
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...was the neighbor she ate supposed to be Norman?
No way! It had to be Greg Calhoun! :)
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Old July 30th, 2009, 10:03 AM   #5
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The only criticisms I'd have are the aforementioned blowout (not so much with Greg, but when Meghan opened the door I thought she was trying to escape a dying Sun), the no-nails technique used to board up the window toward the beginning, and the dolly move when Meghan sits on the couch, only because it popped out at me. Maybe if you'd done the same thing earlier, when the first girlfriend comes in, it would have been less distracting. And if you'd had the space, I might suggest rotating the track forty-five degrees or so, start at the couch, and pull back as they walk in and sit down. I know just less than diddly squat about effective blocking and staging, but I think that would look nicer.
I was having real trouble trying to reduce the amount of blowout. Outside was sunny and inside had barely any light. I blasted it with what we had for lighting, but it didn't help as much as I had hoped. I decided it was probably better to blow out the back ground and see the faces than have to much backlight. All in all it was very tricky and I have much to learn about trying to shoot those types of scenes.

The funny thing about the nails and the board is, I didn't even catch until we were about to turn it in. Than I laughed because there wasn't a darn thing to do about it after the fact except cut it out.

As for the dolly shot, I agree that it's distracting. Most of the shot was cut in the edit for time and I didn't have a stationary of the same thing. It was intended to be a much longer shot so cutting into it didn't work the best. I like your suggestion of pulling away. That's what I did in the scene at the computer as the main character gets up from his desk before he comes upon the party. I think you're right and that would have worked really well in the living room scene. I'll put that in my think tank for next time.

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I only have one question, was the neighbor she ate supposed to be Norman?
It was the neighbor on the left ;)

And one other thing. I think our whole team was in agreement that Greg Calhoun definitely stole the show. He was fantastically funny and had excellent facial expression. The only direction we gave the actor was "you're an architect and you're in love with this house"
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Old August 14th, 2009, 11:30 PM   #6
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the awards are in

We won best make up, best writing, and best actress. It also ended up best of city runner up out of 35 films eligible for judging.
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Old August 15th, 2009, 06:38 PM   #7
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Congratulations, Jeremy! Your team did a wonderful job, I'm glad to see you were recognized for it.
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