of all Mr. ???, Hunky_Ares is not a valid AOL account
name. Second, why don't you start your own website and
reveal your secret identity and take the time to answer
those kinds of questions? Not that I believe you have
directed so much as a home video of your dog taking
glad you brough this back up. Perhaps I need to restate
my purpose here. This isn't a film employment website,
nor is it a script reading service. The folks that visit
here are movie fans, just like me. If a filmmaker or
a screenwriter has what I consider to be a rational
question -- which is most of them -- I do my best to
answer them honestly. Otherwise, I'm simply a participant
in the ongoing movie discussions. I have no doubt that
in my own tiny little way, by just consistently being
here and trying to be truthful, I have done more for
the legitimate, sincere, striving, upcoming filmmakers
that have visited this site than you ever have, Mr.
a fellow director, I was very interested to what you
have to say... but when I came to this site I was unpleasantly
surprised. Ok, listen... you have people who are genuinely
interested in you... and let's face it... you're not
marvelously well known... and to be so god damn rude
in your response to some questions asked... I must wonder
why you feel the need? I mean someone asks you for help
with their project... asked kindly might I add and you
accuse him of presuming that you will do it... read
the email carefully... and I wanna know why you don't
show more appreciation that people have actually bothered
to email you... AND don't say I'm not a well-known director
cos you might just eat the dust if you find out who
actually wrote this!
not my job to help other people get into the film business.
Just dealing with my own career has been more than sufficient.
Anybody that thinks that someone on the internet is
going to help them crash the film business needs to
wake up. And if you don't like the way the questions
are answered here at Beckerfilms, Mr. ???, then don't
come here. And I don't care if you are the living resurrection
of John Ford.
Indeed, welcome Anthony. Your skills as a scintillating
conversationalist have turned this place into a veritable
Algonquin Round Table. With such droll banter as "faget
pigeon fucker" and "Becker Babies" you
really bring credibility to this humble message board.
aside, I saw The Others today and it was the first film
I saw all summer that I liked. I also saw a film on
your list called The Red Shoes and I loved it. How did
the director do the effect of her jumping into the slippers
and the shoes themselves around her ankles? Stop motion?
now, leave Anthony alone. And yes, I believe it was
stop-motion animation that magically put the red shoes
on her. Moira Shearer is pretty incredible, yes? Now
you need to see "Black Narcissus," which I
like even more, also by Powell and Pressburger.
point you make about "My Man Godfrey." It
had been a while since I saw it on AMC, and I totally
forgot about the "twist" ending -- probably
because, now that I think about it, it was disappointing
-- indeed, what a cop-out that such a charming, wise,
attractive, marriageable man of course couldn't *really*
be "poor." I haven't seen "Holiday,"
even though I liked "Bringing Up Baby," which
was also Hepburn/Grant (what true stars! so entertaining
in comedy or drama! such presence! very cool. . .).
I might quibble with you a bit about "Philadelphia
Story" again being rich girl hooks up w/poor boy,
because "Tracy"(Hepburn) winds up with her
ex-husband (Grant), who, as I recall, was also (of course)
a rich guy, even though she was being pursued by "Mike"
(James Stewart), who was, I guess, "middle-class"
I think this discussion kind of links in with the "Sierra
Madre" discussion (I haven't seen that one yet),
for one reason: we're talking about the really charismatic
stars of the past -- Hepburn, Grant, Bogart, also adding
lots including Spencer Tracy, James Cagney, Carole Lombard,
William Powell (probably why I remembered the "positive"
aspects of "My Man Godfrey" -- he was so urbane,
suave but smart-aleck), etc. In discussions of films,
we usually focus on which titles are best, or directors,
but I don't know if we've talked about actors from the
30s, 40s & 50s lately.
like listing some of your favorite actors and actresses
of this period, and some of the reasons why? I know
this could be a huge topic, but it does seem to fit
in to the current discussion. And it could also launch
the "corollary" discussion: why are so many
of today's "stars" (Cruise, Roberts, Ryan,
Crowe, etc.) so god-awful bland, charisma-less and one-dimensional
in comparison? They're "stars, not actors"
have a great one,
really a standard, sort of mundane, list, which I just
gave, but here goes again: Bogart, Cagney, Robinson,
Bette Davis, Katharine Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn, Kirk
Douglas, Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Gregory Peck,
Gary Cooper, Dorothy McGuire, John Wayne, Marlene Dietrich,
James Stewart, Myrna Loy, Mary Astor, Clark Gable, Vivian
Leigh, Maureen O'Hara, Maureen O'Sullivan, Carole Lombard,
Marlon Brando, Anthony Quinn, Shirley MacLaine, Montgomery
Clift, Marylin Monroe, Jack Nicholson, George C. Scott,
Peter O'Toole (as Groucho said, "A double-phallic
name"), Alec Guinness, William Holden, Robert Ryan,
Ingrid Bergman, Sidney Poitier, Richard Widmark, Henry
Fonda, Teresa Wright, Robert Duvall, Dustin Hoffman,
Al Pacino, I can't think of anyone else contemporary.
there a minimum on what production assistants make now,
is it by the hour or by the gig? How the hell do you
get a job being a PA anyway?
always got paid by the day, no matter how long it ran,
and getting the gig was always based on knowing someone,
like the producer, the production manager, one of the
assistant directors, or the coordinator.
to reinforce what you already know: for the love of
God, do not see "Planet of the Apes." I went
to see it at an entertainment industry screening with
a group known for laughing derisively at bad films,
so it's like a "Mystery Science Theatre 3000"
experience to watch crap with them. Well, not only was
there snickering throughout, but hissing -- actual *hissing*
-- at the end. Dang, that was fun.
spare you any other details about that incompetency-fest
from Mr. Burton because I have respect for you and the
other readers of this site.
a film I did like, mainly for its seemingly realistic
dialogue and acting: "crazy/beautiful." Sadly,
the plot was totally melodramatic, your typical "poor
little rich girl hooks up with noble guy living in poverty
but trying to better himself," a plot that sucked
when it was used in "Titanic" and 800 other
movies. The only time I liked this plot was in one of
its original appearances, in a movie I caught on cable
called "My Man Godfrey."
Beast" was really intense and well-acted. That
one, I might even recommend.
well, and keep the faith,
problem with "My Man Godfrey" is that he's
really a millionaire himself out slumming, which is
revealed at the end, because, God forbid, a rich girl
should actually marry a poor guy. A better version,
I think, is "Holiday" with Katharine Hepburn
and Cary Grant, where he's engaged to the wrong rich
sister, and has to realize that he really likes the
nutty sister, Hepburn, they keep locked up. The whole
team, including writer Philip Barry, screenwriter Donald
Ogden Stewart, and director George Cukor, all reunited
two years later to do "The Philadelphia Story,"
which is yet another variation on that same theme.
did he go nuts? Think about what hell he went through
..... He's dirt poor begging for money from other Americans,
then he finds himself woking his ass off under dangerous
conditions, then becoming fat cat rich. Its not that
hard to imagine what could push him over the edge. He
wasn't that stable to begin with."
Wait a sec - is that "Sierra Madre" she's
referring to, or the filming of "Hammer?"
put in my own two cents' worth on "Sierra Madre,"
though. I thought that Bogart was pretty believable,
since it was established early in the film that he was
pretty much a low-life - not just down on his luck,
but a dangerous character from the start.
reminds me, though, of a story I've heard often, that
in the early 50's, Huston wanted to film "The Man
Who Would Be King" with Bogart and Clark Gable,
but it never came together until 20 years later, with
Connery and Caine. You hear stories like that a lot
- films or dream casts that never worked out. I for
one would have loved to have seen W. C. Fields as the
Wizard of Oz (supposedly he was offered the role) or
Cary Grant in the early 50's as James Bond (supposedly
Fleming wanted him to appear in a movie version of "Casino
Royale" that never came to fruition.) Any never-produced
movie or cast that you would have liked to have seen?
- your exchanges with "Tony" Bortolussi are
about the funniest thing I've read since "Mr. Fat
Dick" a few years ago.
I agree, I think Bogart's character is established from
early on as having a slightly psycho side. He does throw
a glass of water in little Bobby Blake's face, which
is a rather intense, psycho thing to do to an eight-year
old. Also, he and Tim Holt beat the piss out of Barton
MacLane, who admittedly deserves it, but still. Regarding
films that never were, Cary Grant as James Bond in "Casino
Royale," if it was shot as written, would have
been great. I'm saddened that Joseph Von Sternberg never
got to finish "I, Claudius" with Charles Laughton,
who was perfect for the part.
your screenplays - you promised to put them back online
for download... could you please do it (or ask Shirley
to do so)? I would love to read them as I don´t
like to read them online...
are correct, you did ask and we did say we do it, or,
at least I said that Shirley would consider doing it.
Oh, Shirley, will you please put the zip.file versions
back up when you have a chance? Thanks.
My bad - I actually forgot all about it. Sorry about
that. I'll try to have them up within 24 hours.
you're Becker Films, then who's Panoramic Pictures?
you like to know? Beckerfilms is the website, Panoramic
Pictures is my production company, okay?
that is definitly the first time I have ever heard anyone
disparage Bogart in Treasure of the Sierra madre. That
film is perfection. Why did he go nuts? Think about
what hell he went through before all the work they went
through just to dig up that stuff? He's dirt poor begging
for money from other Americans, then he finds himself
woking his ass off under dangerous conditions, then
becoming fat cat rich. Its not that hard to imagine
what could push him over the edge. He wasn't that stable
to begin with.
What she said.
are you going to post your review of A.I. I've been
dying to read it. also your review on that piece of
shit Planet of the Apes.
would entail me having to see those films, and that
kind of aggravation I don't need. I don't like Spielberg's
"good" movies, I'm sure as hell not running
out to one no one likes. As to "Planet of the Apes,"
since I happen to love the original, and wasn't even
willing to go with the many sequels, I'm sure not going
for the remake. Let's face it, Tim Burton isn't even
in the same league as Franklin Schaffner, nor is Marky
Mark to Charlton Heston, nor Danny Elfman to Jerry Goldsmith,
on and on. As opposed to seeing that film, I can accomplish
the same thing by repeatedly sticking myself with a
past weekend I finally saw TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE
for the first time. Despite being a classic, I was sort
of disappointed. Sure, there were some classic moments
and Walter Huston's performance was absolutely awesome
but I wasn't convinced by Bogarts transition into paranoia.
It seemed rushed. Wanting to give Bogart the benefit
of the doubt, I was wondering what you know about the
editor Owen Marks? Is it possible he editted some scenes
out that may have damaged Bogarts performance?
in there. The coffee's on the way.
Also saw MY FAVORITE YEAR again after 15 years. I think
the best line is Peter O'Tooles panicked admission,
"I'm not an actor, I'm a MOVIE STAR!!!!"
I think "The Treasure of the Seirra Madre"
is terrific and Bogart is really great in it, as is
Walter Huston. I don't know a thing about the editor,
but it never seemed badly cut to me. Honestly, I don't
see how anyone could be disappointed in a awesome film
like "Treasure" compared to the crap coming
out these days. But, different strokes for different
would like some movie writing tips from you. Any that
you have to give. I'm an actor, singer, song writer,
and model and I have so many new ideas and commercials
and just everything.
friend of minds down in LA give me your site add...
also need a good LA agent because I really desire to
be an Underwear Model and do some commercials to pay
the bills while I write.
some of my info. and what I've done so far. I hope that
you can find the time to help me.
up all the good work and congrats on all your success.
You So Very Much for all of your time and for listening,
that all you want? What do I get out of this? I'll tell
you what, you teach yourself how to write, go get yourself
an agent, star in an underwear commercial, then write
back and tell us all how it went.
To Mr. Becker,
more worthwhile topics, I remember a while ago someone
put forth the opinion that Bruce Lee was one of the
most charismatic personalities to ever hit the screen.
I was wondering which actors would get the nod from
some of the others gathered here.
have to say Yul Brenner and Lauren Bacall myself.
discussed Yul Brynner with Anthony Quinn, who directed
him in "The Buccaneer." Quinn wasn't impressed
and referred to him as a "poseur," which I
found amusing. But I agree with you, Dan, I think he
had tons of charisma and screen magnetism. As a kid
I loved "Taras Bulba." Lauren Bacall certainly
had "it" when she was young, although I don't
think she hung onto it as she got older. There used
to be, however, long rosters of actors with charisma,
like: James Cagney, Bette Davis, Katherine Hepburn,
Audrey Hepburn, Edward G. Robinson, Humphrey Bogart,
Boris Karloff, Gary Cooper, Gregory Peck, Burt Lancaster,
Jean Simmons, Kirk Douglas, Spencer Tracy, Cary Grant,
on and on.
wondering if you've seen "The Caveman's Valentine",
and if so, what you think of it. I found it to be one
of the finest movies that I've seen in quite a while.
I thought that it might also be a movie that you'd like,
because it actually had a really good story and script.
It might be a little long for your tastes, but who knows.
thanks for your time, Josh. And let me know what you
think of "The Caveman's Valentine".
never heard of that film. I'm starting to feel like
a visitor from another planet. Greetings Earthlings.
Should the film make itself available, I'll certainly
of Teddy Rosevelt, the film I'm currently making is
a documentary on the Sasquatch phenomena. In my research
on the subject, I've come across a good many interesting
old stories that relate to the mystery. One I found
most provocative directly deals with Rosevelt. Did you
know that he believed in reality of Bigfoot? In fact,
he recounted, in his book "The Wilderness Hunter",
a story that was related to him by an unrefined, old
trapper by the name of Bauman, who claimed to have been
stalked, and I
found this most interesting. Thought you might find
it thought-provoking too, what with your interest in
TR and the fact that you're movin' to Sasquatch country!
a good one.
Teddy was a true naturalist and spent a lot of the time
in the woods. Of course, back in those days many of
the naturalists also shot the creatures they studied,
but that just made them easier to observe. In regard
to the guy's statement about his partner being killed
by "something that walked on two legs, and smelled
of a foul odor" up in north-western Idaho in the
early 1800's, that sounds like a description of most
of the men up there.
I want say how much i like your articles, your scripts
and your reviews. I am your fan from the time (years
ago) I catch LUNATICS in TV. I did know who was you,
but I knew now. That is, only for say you have a fan
here in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
the way, Happy Birthday!
(i promise questions next time)
Give my best to everyone in Argentina.
you. That does clear up my DVD worries.
stumbled across this little anecdote from D.M...loosely
reminded me of the bit in Winds of Fate which i coincidentally
just read-- when the guy hides out and reads A.K.
upon a time in the dead of winter in the Dakota territory,
Theodore Roosevelt took off in a makeshift boat down
the Little Missouri River in pursuit of a couple of
thieves who had stolen his prized rowboat. After several
days on the river, he caught up and got the draw on
them with his trusty Winchester, at which point they
surrendered. Then Roosevelt set off in a borrowed wagon
to haul the thieves cross-country to justice. They headed
across the snow-covered wastes of the Badlands to the
railhead at Dickinson, and Roosevelt walked the whole
way, the entire 40 miles. It was an astonishing feat,
what might be called a defining moment in Roosevelt's
eventful life. But what makes it especially memorable
is that during that time, he managed to read all of
Anna Karenina. I often think of that when I hear people
say that they haven't time to read." --David McCullough
I didn't use that incident, you ought to read my script
"Teddy Roosevelt in the Bad Lands," which
is all about TR at that time. One of my favorite books,
which was of great help in writing the script, is David
McCullough's book "Mornings on Horseback,"
about the life of young TR. David McCullough's new book,
"John Adams," is really terrific, too, and
I'm about 300 pages in.
Just wanted to say that I really loved your scipts of
"Cleveland Smith", and "Delirious".
I wish Cleveland was made into a movie. I think Bruce
would have done a great job on it. I do have a question
though. What do you think of Tom Hanks movies? And if
you saw,"Cast Away", what did you think about
P.S. This is to that person that talked about Bruce
in Running Time. You can't forget about the other cast,they
also did a GREAT job. Jeremy Roberts,Anita Barone,even
that bum dude in the alleyway.
trying to think of a Tom Hanks film I liked . . . "Apollo
13," "Splash," and . . . I can't think
of any others. No, I haven't seen "Castaway."
That bum dude in the alley, by the way, is Jules Desjarlais.
comment: RUNNING TIME is one of the coolest indie films
I've ever seen. And Bruce's performance in it is his
best performance ever. Thanks for making the movie!
Both Bruce and I had a great time making the film.
off, I want to say that I really enjoy your work. I
thought Running Time was a brilliant film, both in its
concept and execution, and I enjoyed Lunatics as well.
Also, I really appreciate the fact that you take time
to interact with your fans and answer their questions
on this website. It's a noble thing to do, and I only
wish that more of my favorite directors would do that.
a film student about to graduate, one of the things
that scares me is what everybody (including most of
my instructors) have been saying: that the chances of
anyone making it in Hollywood are extremely slim, next
to nothing. Now, I realize that my Film degree will
hardly mean anything when it comes to finding a job
in the industry, and I think that I'm being realistic
by thinking that I won't get to direct anytime soon.
My question is - what chance would a fresh-out-of-film-school
schmoe like me have of finding even a low-level position
such as PA or a camera loader to begin with? Or an assistant
editor? From what I understand, the competition is extremely
high, no matter which part of the field you're trying
to get into... And also, do you think television an
easier medium to break into than feature films, or is
it just as difficult?
don't want to be a bummer, but all film-related jobs
-- features or TV -- are very difficult to get. And
you're correct, a film degree means nothing. If you
don't have some kind of plan and think you'll just work
your way up the ladder to director, you'll never direct.
There is no ladder and there's no working your way up.
I think you're better of making independent films elsewhere,
but you must do what you must do. I wish you all the
luck in the world.
I have to ask such a dumb question but I am a clueless
DVD shopper. What, if anything, is the difference between
widescreen and letterboxed? Does it depend on what format
the film was originally filmed? If you answer this question
I promise I will buy one of your DVDs.
a rational question. Widescreen is how the film was
shot and letterbox is the format it's being shown in.
All films before 1953 were shot at a ratio of 1.35:1,
which is rather square and very similar to a TV screen,
which is why old movies don't need any letterboxing.
Most films shot since 1953 have been in the widescreen
ratio of 1.85:1, meaning the picture is 1.85 wide to
1 tall, or nearly 2:1. The really widescreen films are
shot at 2.35:1, which is also referred to as 'scope,
which is short for Cinemascope. Either way, it won't
fit on a TV screen unless they only give you part of
the frame, known as "pan and scan," or they
have to put in the letterbox framing.
read your review of "The Passion of Ayn Rand"
and saw that "The Fountainhead" was on your
list of favorite movies. I was wondering if you have
read any of her books. I've read the Fountainhead and
really liked it, even though one in every three pages
is the preaching of her philosophies. Also, a friend
of mine is majoring in architecture and told me that
Roark in the Fountainhead is loosely based on Frank
Lloyd Wright. What do you think of her books?
read "The Fountainhead" and "Anthem"
as a teen and enjoyed them very much. I like King Vidor's
film of "The Fountainhead," too. When I was
about 18, I
got about 500 pages into "Atlas Shrugged"
and literally threw the book across the room in disgust,
and subsequently never finished it. Ayn Rand was sort
of like an intellectual kid's writer.
BIG o'l Jerk.I am writing to say that I jest had your
baby and wanna know when are you going to start paying
and get it.
you any relation to Michael J. Becker from California?
Are you related to Mia Farrow?
was reading your answer about blacks winning oscars
and noticed you missed one. Cuba Gooding Jr. for that
silly show me the money movie. That at least takes you
up to the second hand.
I forgot Cuba. That's because I've done such an excellent
job of putting "Jerry Maguire" right out of
my head. The story of a nice agent; it's like a story
about friendly mosquitoes.
was directed to your site by an acquaintence. I've read
over your commentary, reviews, and list of favorites.
understand that you prefer, personally, to work from
original material. I would like to know what you feel
a screen writer who chooses to adapt a work from anonther
medium owes the original source (novel, play, etc).
ask this because you fault, in your reviews, Verhoven
in his production of "Starship Troopers" for
failing to address the sheeplike nature of the people
in accecpting the fascist rules of the government. The
rule by elite and special privilige to the warrior class
was a part and parcel of Heinlein's philosophy. Verhoven
accurately portrayed the intent of the novel. The movie
was still intestinal fiber, but it was true to the original
intent of the source.
list "Bambi" as a movie you actively liked.
It bears as much resemblance to Saltzen's young adult
novel as Demi Moore's "The Scarlet Letter"
does to Hawthorne's morality play. "Bambi; a Life
in the Forest" is a complex, challenging, and layered
work of fiction. Disney used the name and trivialized
there a point at which you think the screen writer should
caveat the work with the words "loosely derived"
or "I haven't read this book" but I want to
use the title to sell my screenplay?
have no problem with the adaptation of books, plays
or stories to movies, I just can't bear anymore remakes
or sequels. As to what fidelity is owed to the original
source material is up to those doing the adaptation.
The book of "The Bridge on the River Kwai"
is very different than the movie made from it, and I
think the movie is quite a bit better. In "Hud,"
the brilliant film version of Larry McMurtry's book
"Horseman Pass By," the crucial role played
by Patricia Neal (who won a well-deserved Oscar) was
originally a black woman in the book, but in 1963 they
couldn't have gotten away with the flirtatious nature
of the relationship, so, to stay true to the material,
they changed it. Also, I think you need to reread my
review of "Starship Troopers" because I did
not pick on the aspect of the story you point out, I
simply said there was a bigger metephor to play into
that wasn't taken advantage of. In Heinlein's book they
certainly didn't spend most of the story shooting 9mm
bullets at the bugs. I never read the original "Bambi,"
but, as far as Disney animated films go, it's the best
and I can easily live without all the others (except
"Jungle Book," which I love, and is certainly
a bastardization of Kipling's book, but nothing in the
book is as good as Phil Harris and Louis Prima scat
thoroughly agree with your response to Fan X on sci-fi;
sooner or later, someone ought to be able to do something
with one or more of the classics, especially with the
wonders of CGI now. I myself am hoping someone will
one day film Zelazny's "Nine Princes in Amber,"
or one of his other works - even "Damnation Alley"
would make a good movie (and of course I'm not counting
the George Peppard version of that, even though I did
like the post-apocalyptic multi-colored sky.)
I just wanted to give you and all the Becker-groupies
out there a heads-up. I see that "Mosquito"
is airing on the USA channel at 4:00 AM EDT this coming
Saturday night/Sunday morning. I caught the last 30
minutes of it once, but I'm guessing you had already
been killed off by then. Josh bares it all for the camera
- is TV ready?
reminiscences about this film?
see . . . My buddy Gary Jones asked me to be in the
film, and I said yes. He then said, "Oh, you'll
have to be naked in one scene." I said, "Gary,
I'm not doing any nude scenes. I'm 35 years old and
I haven't been working out lately." Gary said,
"Oh, okay," and I thought the issue was settled.
I showed up the day of shooting at an old factory in
Detroit, which was their sound stage, and everybody
on the crew -- all of whom I knew -- said as the passed
by, "I can't believe you're doing a nude scene,"
and I kept saying, "No, Gary says I won't be nude,"
and each of them went "huh" and walked away.
Finally, Gary came walking up and I said, "Everyone
still thinks this is a nude scene." Gary nodded,
"It is." I couldn't believe it, "But
you said I didn't have to." Gary shrugged, "You
do," and walked away. They hired the girl for the
scene from a topless bar and she couldn't act at all,
thus most of the scene was ultimately cut out. I spent
8 hours naked on top of this woman in a tent in the
middle of a stage humping and rolling around, trying
not to have occur what generally occurs in this sort
of situation. She also had the sharpest hip bones I've
ever encountered. At the end of 8 hours I had the worst
headache of my life.
does a line producer do?
line producer actually produces the picture. They are
there, on the line, so to speak, dealing with the day-to-day
minute-to-minute issues. It's what the production manager
used to be, but now they're just stuck in the office,
which is where the line producer is generally found,
do so few comedies win Oscars? Oscar nominations? Please
answer quickly. Bail me out of this Cinema Appreciation
people don't take comedy seriously. Even though George
Bernard Shaw said that, "Dying is easy, comedy
is hard," most people don't think comedy is that
big of a deal. The only comedies to win "Best Picture"
are: "It Happened One Night" (1934) and "Annie
came across your website and all I can say is that I
am so happy someone actually agrees with me on some
of the crappiest movies ever made! I am a film major
at The College Of New Jerseygoing into my 2nd year and
I just wanted to tell you that I really admire your
work, keep at it and I hope to see many more Josh Becker
Yeah, there's no shortage of crappy movies around. My
one real amusement now with movies is hearing people
sound disappointed when something like "Planet
of the Apes" isn't any good. Awwww . . .
about selling a collection of those shorts on VHS? You
know it's very cruel for all of you guys to go on and
on about those shorts and for them to be out of our
not a distributor. I suppose if someone wanted to distribute
the films they'd contact one of us.
Cynthia E. Jones
about the "bastards." I was wondering how
you feel about true-crime type serial killer movies,
I.E. "Ed Gein," which just came out on video,
executive produced by and starring Steve Railsback.
Now, you may recall Mr. Gein as one of the most heinous
and disgusting serial killers of all time, who inspired
several films, not the least of which being "Psycho,"
(an extremely tame version of what he did) a more accurate
and terrifying version being "Silence of the Lambs."
(And, lest we forget, "Skinner," and the former
bio-pic, "Deranged.") So, my question is,
is it better to tell the story because it's something
we can learn from, or should we just leave the poor
bastards alone? I mean, if someone comes out with a
bio-pic of the kids from Columbine, is that in bad taste?
And is Gein okay to glorify because it happened in 1957?
Curious...Will the Dahmer picture be coming soon?
just think that there's better, more interesting, and
more edifying subject matter out there for stories.
Every other show on Discovery and TLC is about serial
killers and forensic science. Our culture is idolizing
serial killers simply because they found a way to rise
above the hoi poloi. It bores me. And "Silence
of the Lambs" bores me. I like "Psycho,"
but maybe because it's so far from the real thing.
is a great place. I'm getting ready to move there too.
Don't be fooled though, you'll get plenty of mist\rain
in Medford, too. Just light for OR.
the essay on shorts. I think there's an almost melancholy
feeling of days that were easier and simpler for filmmakers
who started out making shorts.
essay prompted me to dig out two shorts that I made
8 years ago. I was shocked when I realized I was enjoying
them more than the feature I've just completed. Did
making a short after 2 features help you concentrate
on making a good little movie ("Running Time")?
ask because I've completed an indi feature and am half
way through shooting (in Oregon) my second, no budget,
self financed, feature film. Maybe making a short is
a good way to wipe away the sometimes clouded feelings
of confusion that can come to light when considering
how to best finish a movie. A short film is nothing
but telling a story as quickly and clearly as possible.
Sometimes, on a feature, the sheer volume of footage
can bog good ideas down.
think your essay is gonna drive me to taking a stab
at making a good short again. Sounds like a good way
to get back to the uninhibited attitude we all had when
just trying to make good movies...not good movies that
what I mean? Have a good one.
letter. I'm glad you liked the essay. My problem is
I'm perfectly happy with my newest feature, "Hammer,"
I just can't get anyone to do anything. It's a tad distressing.
has it right. And for history buffs...
to Safire's New Political Dictionary, this is "a
pseudo-Latin phrase meaning 'don't let the bastards
grind you down'. Small signs and plaques carrying this
message have appeared in U.S. business offices and army
posts for at least a generation, since General "Vinegar
Joe" Stilwell used it as his motto in World War
II. Carborundum is a trademark for silicon carbide,
a leading commercial grinding substance...In politics,
the motto was popularized by 1964 Republican nominee
Senator Barry Goldwater, who hung the sign in his office."
(--from Safire's New Political Dictionary, p. 353)
Bite my head off.
I lived in for five years and it is a wonderful place,
if you can handle the rain.
not very rainy down near Medford; the weather's quite
temperate most of the time there.
only matters if you value their opinion."
"Don't let the bastards get you down." has
a nice ring to it."
the modern abbreviated translation: "Bite my ass."
hear there's a guy in Seattle who raised forty million
dollars to make War of the Worlds independently. So
I guess if he can do it who knows what else is possible.
well, I'm going to move Oregon and everybody in the
film business can bite my ass. And that asshole in Seattle
can bite my ass, too, because we don't need anymore
remakes, certainly not by independents.
Dear Josh and August,
we really want Hollywood to make more Sci fi out of
the classics? Look at what they did to The Positronic
Man (Bicentennial Man).
it better to at least begin with good material, then
to never have it all?
translate "illegitmi non carborundum" i tried
ref. at yahoo and your site was offered.
did take Latin in college, but I have no idea what that
sentence means. Anybody else have a suggestion?
have seen the phrase translated as, "Don't let
the bastards grind you down."