Hey Micah, What a great film!
You were so right to use this very special actor. He's just an absolute natural, so at ease with the camera, a rare find. The script, idea and filming are all perfect.
Sorry to ask a boring technical question but I'd love to know what equipment you used, particularly for sound. Thanks for such a great film and good luck with the feature. I'm definitely going to Peru!
I was going to say that young Werner Herzog would likely have scoffed at the idea of giving 5700 dollars to someone to tell you how to follow your own vision and that although I greatly admire him and his work, if you wanted to truly adopt his spirit you'd be better off buying the same flight you'll have to buy to Columbia anyway, ignoring the shuttle to the base and having a crazy film making adventure on your own in the Columbian jungle with that 5 grand.
But, then I became acutely aware, sat in my comfortable chair, making nothing but snide comments, that I wouldn't actually have the balls to do that, so I guess however you choose to become a soldier of cinema until you actually enter the battle your just polishing your rifle.
Maybe that's Werner's ulterior motive, to get us to get lost in any jungle we can afford and begin the fight, wherever we are!
Of course, I can't judge wether this is a 'good' film or not without watching it from beginning to end but I applaud anyone who can actually make any film and finish it.
That's a phenomenal achievement. Well done!
There is however something a little troubling about the tone of this article that, like many others here, had the complete reverse affect on me than I think the author wanted.
The power of self belief is a great fuel but it doesn't always get you where you want to go. Hubris corrected by humility and refined by humbleness is how one truly masters a craft. It takes time and a lot of small and large failures to get good at something. If all you see is excellence in your work you will never improve. There appear to have been no challenges faced or lessons learned here. You just did it all awesomely straight away. Hans zimmer - no problem I can do that - boom - don't know what the deal is Hans!
Even if this is true and you are some kind of film savant, it doesn't allow your reader any way in, we need a chink in your armour. I fear you have fallen a little foul of the prevalent idea that to be inspiring you must be epic - flawless. As a storyteller you should know that every hero must fail before succeeding if we are to relate to them fully.
What I hear in this filmmakers article, strangely, isn't a love of film or even much of an understanding of its language and craft, but a sort of flippant disrespect and disregard of the entire medium, its history and everyone involved in it. As I was reading, I kept thinking, why are you even making a film, other than to prove that the entire professional industry are incompetent suckers or charlatans?
So, despite your article, I am genuinely impressed that you and your wife have made a film yourselves and hope it finds an appreciative audience but maybe preach a little more humble, a little more human.
If you want me to follow in your footsteps, swagger a little less.
This is an interesting topic. Not having seen the film in question I can't really comment on what was cut and what wasn't but in a broader sense I would hazard a guess that the motives are less to do with corporate sexual conservatism on the part of the airline but more to do with a cautionary protection of the cultural and religious differences of its passengers. Airlines are by their nature usually crossing international boundaries and with that also comes a crossing of religious and cultural borders which they are likely keen to try and skate across as delicately as possible.
It's an interesting modern conundrum where the drive for inclusivity meets the drive to respect other peoples boundaries. We are as liberal minded people a little stuck in this new territory aren't we. Respect peoples religions and cultural beliefs and at the same time respect peoples sexuality and right to express it. The two are so often at odds. The only way it seems to be able to "work" is to accept that there will always be compromise. I guess that's what acceptance means in its truest form. Should celebrating difference simultaneously also ban peoples right to think differently than each other? It's far from easy and far from back and white. And at 35,000 feet I'm sure the ancient war between sex and religion is best avoided.
And Mike, I agree, getting older means you come to accept greyness in more ways than one. I'll definitely check out the film, (in it's non-airline cut!), sounds interesting.
This is an interesting subject to think about, particularly in regards to Tarantino's work. It's not altogether surprising that he didn't want to talk to Polanski about his unimaginably tragic experience as Tarantino just doesn't come across as that kind of director or writer. I actually can't think of a single moment in Tarantino's films that deals with loss, grief or any kind of down or sad emotion in anything but a fleeting, reactionary way, which is really unusual in Hollywood, almost singular.
I don't see this lack of negative emotional exploration as any kind of creative negative by the way, in fact it's what makes his films something more than the B-movies he's inspired by. He's an entertainer but somewhere I think there is more to all his films and he knows it.
Wether entirely by design or not, he makes you feel something by showing troubling events - hit men, murdering teenagers, the holocaust, slavery, coma patients being raped and not allowing you access to their thoughts or what it means to them. I think a lot of the time he deliberately plays with our complicity as an audience. Wether it's 12 years a slave or Django I think he knows somehow that we go to watch these films to be "entertained" in the broadest sense of the word. The act of watching is never clearcut. Gruesome events sell papers, wether we are horrified by them or not. But in a way perhaps Tarantino doesn't let us off the hook for wanting to rubberneck by saying, look how terrible this is.
While I enjoy his movies they have also all made me slightly uncomfortable and this is a very good thing because it leads to thought about what entertainment actually is. I do hesitate as it sounds like you do also, at the thought of someone who has been mostly known to play at the cartoon like surface of the human condition, dealing with something that feels more raw and real somehow but I'm sure, as always, whatever type of film he's made, it will be more complex and layered than it seems on first viewing and we will be complicit wether we like it or not because we will, of course, still be watching.
Interesting article but I'm a little confused sometimes at your definition of a coincidence.
Peter Parker getting bitten isn't a coincidence it's a random event. Bad luck. A coincidence has to have two elements that are connected or know to each other that meet or interact against the odds. Peter Parker has no connection to the spider, it and he are strangers so their stories interacting are new. It's completely random. A coincidence has to have a random event that triggers a specific event.
Casablanca is a coincidence. Elsa and Rick are intimately know to each other. A random event brings them together and that creates the eerie feeling in them both that it must be fate. I think a lot of the time what your referencing in films, good and bad, is simply good or bad luck, something unusual with high odds.
True coincidence works in film, just as it does in real life, when it creates a feeling of mystery and a sense of fate in the audience but most importantly in the characters, on screen. In "when Harry met Sally", when the two characters first meet, it's not coincidence just random chance but when they bump into each other at the airport years later, it's a coincidence because they are already known to each other and this creates in both of them, internally, a sense of importance, they then meet again, years later in a book store in another coincidence, which leads to them beginning their relationship.
What I'm taking way too long to say is that I think genuine coincidences in films work when they mean something to the characters and they react to them as fate. They take away the need for us and the characters we create to have to decide everything and that leads to a much bigger sense that a path is being presented that must be followed. It's a good way of forcing a character to go against their usual choices, it breaks them out of themselves and hints at a bigger, more mysterious world just as it does in real life.