The Nature of Independent Film
I can’t get it out of my head. I can’t sleep, I can’t think of anything else other than film and that’s no different from every other day of my life except that these are not the illustrious illusions of a director. These are not the political backdrops of my love of Ayn Rand and my allegiance to George Orwell (Rest in peace good Sir) nor are they the rolling hills and elusive imagery of “Watershipdown” or the beautiful taste of the life and the death of “The Murder of Helen Jewitt”. I see no the light at the end of the tunnel or the great precipice that I have at times feared; just a blankness of an absence of thought and absence of reason and of purpose. This is not what I had been told, what I had been conditioned to expect from my subconscious as I began to achieve my artistic potential. No, these are the convoluted thoughts of a madman. I often awake in the middle of the night, drenched in sweat nearly trembling at the vision I have just witnessed. In the back of my head I am sure that we are near the end. I am sure that these are the last days and that I am one of the last directors that will actually create. Soon it will be a self-reflexive system of videogames begetting films that beget TV shows that beget novellas that beget graphic novels that beget webisodes that are developed into a franchise that will release a new version of the videogame “that started it all” on its 20th anniversary.
I have been wrong all my life, film has a finite existence, the world has a finite existence and we are all about to die; of this I am sure. The terrifying visions that born again Christians fear, pales in comparison to the digital world of mindless and physically implausible stunts, endless romantic comedies with pointless resolutions that are relevant in not even the least capacity and lest we not forget the never-ending children’s saga’s or magical places and whimsical creatures and distressed little girls.
It is clear to me now, my mission, my reason to write, the reason I have a big dick and a keen intellect…I’m supposed to save someone, something…anything I guess, but I have chosen film.
I carry this burden like a dead dog on my back. Your best friend that you refuse to let go off, that your refuse to leave by the side of the road for animal control or the vultures or the urban wannabe vampires to use for their twisted rituals. It is a pointless and tiresome effort that may change absolutely nothing, yet still I try.
I try to convince those of you that have read (or should I say skimmed) 95 of the 180 pages of the latest “filmmaking is so fucking easy I can do it while I’m sucking cock” – book, that more than practicing making films you need an attitude. My attempts to enlighten and educate the lesser of us only results in my excited utterances of passion that take the form of “yes, I think you should quit, because you suck” or my personal favorite … “No, I don’t think you are part of the problem – I think you are the problem. If you died tomorrow everything would be fucking awesome.” But its statements like that that are why I don’t have a lot of filmmaking friends. Not that I mind much; have you spoken to your average independent filmmaker lately?
The ones with the big ideas who can’t tell you who their favorite director is (because they are so many good ones) or what kind of films they want to make (I just want to tell good stories) and lest we not forget the soapboxers who are really passionate about the topic they are making a film about (hmmm… lemme guess…a social issue?) and film is just a means through which to make even more noise about dolphins in the Tuna nets and all that shit. And yes, that is a tragedy…just not the kind of thing you need primes lenses to explain.
Have we completely lost our fucking way? Does anyone remember what it was like before this age of Hollywood dawned on us? Do you remember packing into a movie theater with 5-7 somewhat drunk and rowdy friends to see a Freddy Kruger film…and cheering every time someone got killed. That was fun, harmless in my opinion. And now what do I have? I have the art of killing, the art of dismemberment and the art of torture. Here’s a confession – I’m a pretty big John Carpenter fan. “The Thing” is the fucking shit. That has to be the funniest scary movie I’ve ever seen – it’s the reason I fucking love Kurt “This is going to take cracker-Jack timing, Wang!” Russell. I mean dogs splitting in half, heads sprouting 8 legs and walking away…fuckin’ awesome! How did that become…stick your hand in here and see if I cut it off? Or even better the “yes, I am going to cut your leg off…but I got to do it slowly and tell jokes..c’mon man, you are only going to be tortured to death once, maybe twice in a lifetime…why the fuck are you trying to ruin it by crying and shit?
Am I alone? I must be alone, I must be the only motherfucker in the movie theater that looks at these previews and is like ….oh yeah… I can’t wait to see another Merchant-Ivory production. Wait, lemme guess…it’s like 17th century Europe so we don’t have to think about pesky things like a diverse cast or what the fuck is going on with regular old poor people but we do get guys wearing lots of makeup and urinating in the hallways, Hillary Swank is in it and there is a lot of crying in one part. Sign me up, I’ll bring my fraternity brothers and a bag of weed. Oh wait…another trailer…another Superhero film. Haven’t we run out of superhero’s? We must have run fresh the fuck out of superhero’s if Morton Downey Jr. is a fucking superhero. I mean what the fuck is he going to save you from, sobriety? I mean c’mon! It’s bad enough that the Goddamn Indiana Jones billboards are now plastered all over Los Angeles but now I got Morton Downey Jr. talking about being responsible…yeah, right…and Britney is going put her panties on and stop gettin’ fucked up every night….sure! We’ve obviously exasperated this genre. I mean now we’re back to Indianan Jones. I guess if Johnny Quest and his Dad’s grave robbing antics are too distant of a memory for you (FYI Johnny Quest needs representation cause Hagee says he’s owed royalties) we can always resurrect Indy who’s here to prove that museums have more of a right to a society’s stolen artifacts than the Nazi’s do. So fucking what that he’s marauding around the world decimating other cultures and languages (damn Indy…would it kill you to learn a little Spanish or Farsi or something?) I can only assume that we are smack in the middle of the dawn of the age of old white men kicking the shit out of younger ( and at times ethnic) people. First we had Rocky’s Geritol ass gettin’ back in the ring…and then Rambo showed up to demonstrate that he could still throw explosives at you from his wheelchair. And let us not forget John Mclane’s wisecrackin’ car crashin’ lifestyle (why can’t you chill the fuck out like Burt Reynolds and make some car movies man?) What the fuck is going on? Harrison Ford is like a million years old. He’s got a fuckin’ Tyrannosaurs Rex as a high school class mate for Christ sake! Is he going to fight in this movie? Is he going to run around? I’ll tell you what, I hope he is a lot better shape than he was in Air Force One…man that was an awesome movie! What kind of a self-respecting terrorist can’t beat the shit out of a 70 yr old actor playing a 60 yr old president? I mean who the fuck is left.. Aquaman? Yeah somehow I think the underwater dialogue is going to be a bit of a problem…so is the whole “talking to fish” part. I mean really, do you wanna see Ben Affleck in a pair of tights that make his cock wave at you pretending to swim in a 20K gallon wave pool while we digitally insert sharks and stingrays that say things like “…so, do you still talk to J. Lo?”
You know what.. I hope the end of the world is fucking near…I’ll make fucking Jell-O and break-dance to the soundtrack Gilligan’s Island with a piece of fried chicken in my mouth I’ll be so fucking happy.
I can’t wait for it all to be over. I hope the world ignites in a ball of flames right after I complete the premiere screening of my feature. I can fulfill my livelong desire and also end all my pain and suffering…it’ll be the ultimate pleasure and pain…kind of like dating Melissa Childs only the apocalypse doesn’t wear short skirts and tell lies.
You’re right, I’m being bitter. I should really be more optimistic about filmmaking reality TV shows and the rise of mobile cinema. I just can’t wait to have my greatest piece of filmmaking screened on a cell phone while a guy is taking a shit…now that’s what I call artistic freedom. I’m going to try to be nicer. The next time someone’s less than motivated son tells me he wants to be a filmmaker I’m not going to come back with my standard “…why don’t you concentrate on the little things first… like gettin’ all the piss out of your dick before you put it back in your pants…” no, I’m going to be nice.
Have I mentioned that I’m on the verge of something big…no, I mean BIG