Tuesday, November 16, 2004

amazon.com Wants To Hurt You

All week (since yesterday) I've been listening to a lot of Dinosaur Jr. Where You Been, so I'm in a very 1993 mood. What does this mean? It means that I'm totally excited about megabass, SuperNintendo has the best games around, and my car is the latest model fresh off the lot and is totally awesome.

amazon.com has a new movie up today, and it deals with my second favorite movie theme, "ripping off Wong Kar-Wai." I highly recommend watching this movie on amazon if you never went to film school, because it is like a crash course in every film class I ever had. Take a bad idea, no, really bad, and stretch it out into a five minute short, and mimic the style of your favorite director or just the last movie you saw, and then make me watch it. Then yell FUCK YOU at me a bunch of times and pee in my mouth to get rid of the taste of your movie.

Let me give you a real life example: in F/V 400, each member of the class was instructed on the first day to come up with a short treatment for a ten minute synch-sound film (that just means it can have talking, wild-sound would basically be a silent film with overdubbed music or monologues or something, but you don't record the sound at the time that you record the image track) and then everyone in the class would read everyone else's treatment and people would form four or five groups based on their favorite treatments (each group would then delegate its responsibilities so that each group would be made up of a director, cinematographer, producer, etc for the whole semester). The first treatment I read described what could only be re-described as the worst afterschool special ever imagined. This guy is at a party, having a WILD time, with the sound of a HEARTBEAT in the background, and the next thing you know he wakes up in a white room. The only thing in the room is a desk and a chair (both white) and a blank book (white) and a quill and ink pot (red ink! like blood!) With nothing else to do, the man sits down and begins to write out the story of his life, which we see in a series of flashbacks. He remembers the good times: birthday party. Then he remembers the bad times: (these are for real) the time he got his girlfriend pregnant, and the time he killed his best friend in a drunk-driving accident. At the very end, he remembers this girl he saw at an airport that he never spoke to, but just the smiles that they exchanged in passing was a memory to last a lifetime. Then it turns out he overdosed on drugs at the party and is dead and he goes to heaven.

NOW, if you think that is bad, let me really drive home the point that only talentless fuckwads take any kind of art classes, but especially film. First of all, the treatment only got better when the kid talked about how this was a really important idea for him, WHICH HE HAD BEEN WORKING ON FOR A YEAR, and that he was GREATLY INDEBTED TO JACOB'S LADDER FOR INSPIRATION. This idea should have taken him five and a half minutes, and he shouldn't have thanked the creators of Jacob's Ladder but rather apologized to them. Fine. Okay. You're still with me? THIS WAS ONE OF THE TREATMENTS THAT GOT PICKED AS BEING IN THE TOP FOUR OF THE CLASS. Also, one day in class, when we had all split into our groups for "group meetings," I overheard this same fucking asshole say "It's movies like Magnolia that just really give me hope that film still has a future." Too bad that kid is dead now. One day his brain just stopped working because, seriously, what was the point?



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