735388, RE: you asked...(long read)|
Posted by obsidianchrysalis, Sun Jul-07-19 11:58 PM
>As a kid, I would snatch up Friday's issue of the paper and
>read the movie reviews. My mom got me one of Leonard Maltin's
>books and I read it cover-to-cover. Even before 1994 I would
>go to local video stores and just browse for hours. I'd watch
>Siskel and Ebert religiously growing up. I was a latchkey kid
>so I'd watch an insane amount of cable until my mom came home.
>Early to mid 1990s made for cable offerings were really
>formative for me. I remember taking film appreciation class
>for adults held in the evenings at my elementary school and I
>showed a scene from Little Buddha and from John Woo's The
>Killer. I was the only kid there and I couldn't have been more
>than 11 or 12.
>Rodriguez/Tarantino changed everything. What I was doing as a
>kid just out of pure enjoyment now was 'cool' and I started
>reading books about directors and world cinema and seeking
>films from all over the world. I'd watch TCM pretty
>I didn't end up studying film in college until it was almost
>too late. I chose history as a major and was largely
>ambivalent toward that. It wasn't until I burnt out mid-way
>through school and returning from a year away that I focused
>on film and theater courses. Despite not having a great film
>program I loved the few classes I took. I took an intro to
>film, a class on sequels and remakes (this was long before
>most films were either sequels or remakes) and a class on
>theatrical set design, and another on lighting design due to
>my interest in cinematography.
>I ended up spending a term as the lighting designer for a
>two-woman show which was incredibly stressful and but probably
>one of the highlights of my college career. I learned a shit
>ton from the two film classes I took and got exposed to ton of
>films and filmmakers (I first saw "In the Mood for Love" in
>the intro class).
After learning a great deal about film in college, were you able to still enjoy movies? Or did knowing the ins and outs even deepen your pleasure watching movies / TV?
>I worked in a now defunct independent movie theater chain
>post-college selling popcorn and junior mints. This was when
>Lost in Translation came out and during the wave of
>studio-'indies' of the early 2000s. We would also show
>Bollywood films because we have such a strong Indian
>I became a projectionist and did that for a couple of years
>(this was right before digital) and my boss had a collection
>of some of the rarest prints in existence. He'd sell shit to
>Tarantino and others and run an exploitation double-feature
>once a month. Sometimes he'd cue something up for us and the
>crew would get drunk and watch original prints of Lady
>Terminator, Coffy, Texas Chainsaw Massacre (with Spanish
>subtitles), Pieces, old Porn loops and other classics. It was
>basically our own little 42nd street.
>A coworker and I became came good friends and we'd try to
>share stuff that we thought the other would like or hadn't
>heard of or would blow each other's minds. Every weekend we'd
>each choose a bunch of stuff to watch. He put me on to a bunch
>of 80s comedies and horror and I put him on to a bunch of
>stuff from around the world and exploitation and classic
Most of my friends in college were movie nerds to some degree so we would at some point during the weekend watch movies and then break them down. One friend in particular was really into indie movies - Linklater, Malick, and some other obscure directors. That was cool to get not only watch some great films but have someone to exchange thoughts.
>I spent a ton of time on this board back then before agenda
>posting and fuckery ruined it. Longo, B. Worm, Ricky, Mr.
>Mech's all-caps typing ass and King Friday were here and there
>was a real sense of knowledge and community and diversity in
>interest and opinion. I learned so much here during this
>period and was proud to be part of the community that was this
>board then. It's truly a shame what happened to it.
>This was also back when when movie message boards like AICN
>and CHUD were huge before right before all this shit got
>co-opted and movie fandom descended into utter toxicity (not
>that that shit wasn't problematic and exclusionary from jump
>street). But I learned a lot from the message board era of
Yeah, I miss those days alot. Granted, back in the time you're mentioning, 10, 12 years ago, we were just happy to talk about film or TV and soak up one another's opinions and viewpoints. We were probably just happy to know we weren't the only people into obscure, off the beaten path entertainment.
At some point we partly aged out of the years when we had hours and hours of free time to watch film and dissect them here. And then like you said some posters tried to become personalities and the in-depth discussions became less frequent.
I wish the boards somehow captured a younger generation of posters, posters who are really into film who have a fresh take on things. I always thought the best part of the boards were the wide variety of posters and that some mainstays remained but new posters floated in to recharge the discussions.
>I got invited to go to the Sundance Filmmakers Lab in 2005 as
>a crew member and spent a month on the mountain as a boom
>operator/crew member and we'd just work with young filmmakers
>workshopping their first pieces. I was fortunate enough to
>work on this wacky New Zealander named Taika Waititi's first
>feature film at the Labs, where he was workshopping 'Eagle vs.
>Shark'. Met someone there at the labs who lived in NY and
>cancelled my trip to teach English in Japan and moved to her
>hometown of NYC. Put out the feelers and got a hit for a
>location PA intern on a little indy that didn't even get a
>release. I was sleeping on a hardwood floor in a sleeping bag
>working 70-80 hrs a week for free and couldn't have been
>Ended up continuing with locations for a couple of years
>during the height of NY's production resurgence. There were so
>many productions in the city at the time and we were, at least
>at first, given carte blanche. Our office did TV most of the
>year and a film during the hiatus. Locations is hard,
>thankless work and the higher I rose and the larger projects
>I worked on, the more I hated it. Plus, the idea of being a
>UPM or a line producer or some shit was the last thing I
>wanted to do. I learned a bunch, dispelled a bunch of notions
>about what actually happens in production, got to work with
>and meet a lot of really cool people and saw more of NY than
>many people do in a lifetime. Would never go back but wouldn't
>trade those years for anything.
>So yeah, I've been a lover a film my whole life. I've been
>very fortunate to be self-taught, formally taught and have
>worked in film. I've also been very fortunate to come up both
>pre and post internet and have lived through an era of fandom
>and pop culture that won't exist again in its fashion.
You mentioned that you wouldn't go back to NY so I take that as a sign you decided to transition into another line of work. Are you still a filmmaker?