My good friend Matt, who you might know as deadandimmortal, is currently working on a webseries called “Coffee Talk,” about two gay college friends discussing intimate guy things. They just put up a casting call for their next episode, and I highly recommend any of my male Chicago-based followers - especially if they are gay - to audition!
They are looking for actors to play:
[BLAKE]: Male, gay, college student, mid 20s, a fun-loving club boy and gym rat
[RILEY]: Male, gay, college student, mid 20s, sensitive, intellectual, likes to read and study
Click here to learn more, and please reblog!
I’m starting a movie club (for real this time). Here’s the general idea that will be expanded upon once things get goin’:
Message me if you’re interested in participating, and feel free to reblog this. I’m thinking of starting at the top of February.
thesunsareonfire asked: Hmm I can see that but I disagree about the gimmick part. They say that romantic relationships with AIs is statistically rare in the world of "Her." And their relationship does change dramatically. At first he uses her as a tool like just having her organize emails. It's the connection they share and how he sees her as more than that which develops her persona. She grows to care for his genuine happiness rather than just his satisfaction. To me, that's not a shallow or synthetic dynamic.
If the cast had been more than a handful of people who I came away not knowing anything about, and had *shown* me rather than simply stated in a passing dialog that romance with AIs are rare, then maybe I would have believed it. I see it as similar to someone in our current world maintaining a relationship with a Real Doll (btw, I found Lars and the Real Girl pretty moving, and it’s kinda the same story) or a character in a Dating Sim game, so I believe that aspect of the story. I just want to be shown instead of told, as is the point of movies.
More to the point of Theodore and Samantha’s relationship, though, is that it’s based on Samantha being absolutely, completely lovable, vibrant, and virginal, and the fact that Theodore is majorly bummin’ out about his “break up”. This character dynamic was created specifically to facilitate their romance, like any character setup, but I just found it so easy and boring. I mean, they start flirting within two minutes of movietime. And I think it’s b.s. that we can’t track Samantha’s character growth; we are so obsessed with visualizers that there is no way in the future we wouldn’t be able to look at a computer and watch our AI data-mine its own personality. There’s no way! That’s too fascinating a concept to not create some visualizer for. So I found her character to be lazy, because she becomes brilliant in nanoseconds yet doesn’t stand up for herself when Theodore emotionally shuts her out. She learns laughter and heartache and orgasms, but is never given the screentime to talk about how she learns or functions - we have to trust that she simply just does.
Also, the main female human characters in this movie are made out to be emotionally predatory and/or desperately sad. But Samantha, she is a blank slate for Theodore’s needs, shaped by his interactions with her and unlimited access to knowledge. Theodore doesn’t deserve someone like that. Theodore needs a therapist.
Maybe this idea was just too big for me to think it made an effective movie? I think it would have made a better mini-series, but that shit’s too BBC for American audiences.
thesunsareonfire asked: I personally loved "Her." I think its about how we as people never truly feel complete until we are lucky enough to meet someone who we believe we can share intimacy with. The brilliance of the film depends on that idea and the character of Samantha is not just a gimmick. She represents the different avenues that people will choose to be able to connect with others. And their relationship isn't bland. It's an entirely believable arc depicting the reality of relationships. In my opinion anyway.
I think Her wanted to be about all of that - and I went into it thinking that that’s what it was going to be - but for such a wordy movie, nobody actually said anything that challenged one another. Samantha IS a gimmick. She is a female AI whose first boot-up mechanism is to personally fit herself to her male owner’s needs, and she spends the entire movie supporting the character who most needed somebody to say, “You can do better than this.” I’m not saying this is an inherently bad plot structure, though I really resent that the cyborg/android/AI/sexbot/programmed parent is alwaysalwaysalways female - I just regret that Theodore never actually changes, for better or for worse. That is why this movie is wholly unrelatable and unbelievable to me. Blade Runner showed me greater depth in technology and romance than Her did.
However, I totally respect that others feel differently, and I wanna continue talking about it.
hellopalespider asked: I came across this tumbler by chance and not even sure how active it still is (new to tumbler myself). I'm someone who suffers to an chronic illness that most people do not know anything about other than it was a punch line for a TV show. I want to make a documentary to enlighten people but know nothing about film. I don't even have a camera. Advice as to how and where to start? Someone recommended renting equipment or partnering up with someone who's done this, but where to find them? Thank you
I’m not actively writing about movies these days, but I’m still here :) Thanks for hittin’ me up!
The best way to start is to outline your documentary - write your mission statement, the story you want to tell, and why. That’s called your “pitch.” It doesn’t need to be particularly detailed, but it does need to be compelling, because that’s how you’ll get your crew (and the rest of the production) together.
Once your pitch is ready, make some flyers advertizing your need for a documentary crew - particularly a cameraperson with equipment - with a brief description of your pitch and your e-mail address. If you want to make sure the people who end up contacting you are serious, very clearly state on the flyer, “send me your resume and examples of your work”. If your area has an arts college nearby that has a video or film program, you can contact that department’s student services office and ask if you can tack up some flyers in their department commons. Save some extra flyers for leaving in local hangouts, like coffee shops, media and art stores.
If you don’t want to physically flyer places - or especially if you do, and want to be extra-thorough - you can post your flyer on craigslist, or any of your local papers’ online personals and job offer sections.
Once you start hearing back from people locally, you’ll hopefully be able to find someone with documentary experience who comes with their own camera equipment (bonus if they have boom mics and/or lavaliers) and knows a little bit about editing and producing.
If you’d like a bare-bones checklist of the equipment you absolutely will need to get started:
Lights are a bonus, but not entirely necessary for a first-timer.
From there, you can go into pre-production, which will mean fleshing out your entire documentary into the story you want to tell from beginning to end. Then, you’ll need to figure out your starter budget - this is for things like transportation, feeding your subjects and crew (VERY IMPORTANT), any equipment maintenance or rental fees, etc.
The money you use to get the project started will disappear pretty quickly, so make sure you keep an eye on your funds. Crowdsourcing on IndieGoGo or Kickstarter is a great way to gather money, but you will also need to pay attention to things like incentives for your investors (promotional art, shirts, personalized thank-you videos, etc.) and you will need to prove that all that money is going to your project, which will require a more meticulous budget. Finding a producer - someone who will handle the business and logistics aspects of your project - would be a major plus.
Once you have your story and your budget, find your interview subjects. If the documentary is about you and living with your chronic illness, you’ll have to plan the documentary around your daily schedule. Otherwise, posting flyers and online ads for subjects will hopefully yield a wide response. Find doctors and therapists who research or work with your illness to speak about the subject - you will need people of authority to both explain nature of the illness as well as strengthen the conviction of your story. Schedule interviews and make sure you are able to get in, set up very quickly, interview, and get out in a timely and respectful manner. Don’t forget to plan for breaks and meals.
Editing often starts after the first interview is shot, and can be done as you continue shooting. If there is nobody on your crew who can edit, you will need to find someone who can - often for pay, or at least barter. Remember your budget and hire people wisely. Keep in very close contact with all members of your crew, especially the editor, and always ask to see the dailies (what was shot that day, unedited) and rough cuts (unfinished edits) before you commit to a final edit.
Once the project is finished, it’s up to you what to do with it. You can post it online (Vimeo is a great host site), you can submit it to local film fests, you can host your own screenings… sky’s the limit! But try not to live in the future - be in the moment with your project so you don’t overlook anything or lose sight of your mission.
Making a documentary takes a lot of time and organization, and in between having to manage people as well as equipment, you’ll definitely run into complications and make mistakes. That’s just part of the process - and as the project leader, you will be the one to set the tone, so don’t ever take your anxieties out on your cast and crew. Give yourself breathing room when things get stressful so you can focus, and be honest with your team when you need help or a break. You CAN do this, and while it won’t always be super-fun, it seems that you’re really into making a worthwhile project - and that is what matters the most.
Feel free to contact me if you have any more questions, and keep in touch! GOOD LUCK!!