Friday, September 28, 2007

Scorsese Sesame Street

Just trying to get all my youtubing done before it's too late....

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Life before Youtube...

Must have suuuucked. Too bad that in just a few short days, I won't have time for youtube or something. But in the meantime...

Monday, September 24, 2007

You gotta watch it with the commercials, just like everyone else

So my favorite show of last year, well, second favorite since LOST woke up halfway through, was HEROES. I'm a total comic nerd at heart and really only stopped collecting when they started making 8-bazillion storylines throughout 20 different comics in order to get us to buy more shit. I distinctly remember being pissed at this brilliant move even when I was like, 14 and it turned me off to comics. However now it's really easy to drop $20 for a big, thick comic book that covers entire storylines. Recently I've read "30 Days of Night," most of "Preacher" and "Mavel Zombies" (in which all the Marvel characters get bit and turn into flesh eating zombies) and I'm smack dab in the middle of "Watchmen," which is on it's way to being a movie. I also whizzed right through the prequel to "Marvel Civil Wars" which was awesome. But, as usual, I digress.

I love the show HEROES and recommended it to everyone. But now that it's out on DVD, everyone seems to kind of hate it. That is to say, everyone who has rented it and didn't watch it week by week, Monday by exciting Monday kind of hates it. And here's where I have to get back to something I've mentioned before: some TV shows need to be watched week by week and not on DVD. Some might call them "water cooler" shows as in, the phenomenon grows because people at work discuss episodes at the ole water cooler. And I think there's something to that. I loved talking SEINFELD with my work friends back in the day. But with HEROES, I feel like you need a week to dream and digest and wonder what's going to happen next.

Don't get me wrong, it's not a "great" show in terms of say, DEADWOOD or SIX FEET UNDER. Those are shows that compel you to watch them in order on DVD. I think THE SOPRANOS is like that too, but I've never seen an episode...sue me. But I will say I totally missed DEADWOOD when it was on HBO and literally ripped through the first season on DVD in one weekend. It's that good.

But shows like HEROES need time to sit with you. Not because they're so overpowering and amazing, but because there's a simple spacial aspect at work. When I was a kid, I could not wait for the next episode of "The A-Team," "Miami Vice," "Robotech," "Manimal" (or whatever). You'd watch em and spend a week re-enacting them or quoting them or dressing like the characters...or whatever. You watch those now on DVD or reruns, and they suuuuck. Sure, they were sucky to begin with, but cultural phenomenon figures into these shows as well. You needed to rush home to see em and then the next day you spend a few minutes bonding with a friend at school or work over the episode, and then waiting all week for the next one. Those are popcorn shows, shows which don't really "deserve" bigtime DVD releases, and HEROES is the same. Here's what I'm saying...

I have a semi co-worker who I really like, but we have nothing in common. She's older, has a bunch of kids, a longtime husband and a house. All things I don't have. We did a kind of entertainment based "dogs sniffing butts" last spring and finally found some common ground: HEROES. We have a great rapport and sought a way to connect on a simple level and TV was an easy concept to agree on. Now for the last three weeks we wonder when it's coming on, what will happen, what we're excited for and then, other people get involved and either like the show too, want to watch it, or think we're dorks. In any case, it's social and it's good. I sure as shit don't need to tell this person about my sex life or my feelings about Barack Obama, but it's sometimes nice to have a friend (or acquaintance) who you can share a pointless, inane TV show with.

So if you watched HEROES on DVD and didn't get it, I'll simply give you this scene from the always amazing film, BEAUTIFUL GIRLS:

Channel 38's showing
Rich Man, Poor Man - all 12 parts.

- No shit?
- Back to back.

Holy shit. Fuck!

364 nights a year I do dick.
The one night I decide to go out...

You gotta tape it for me.

- Can't do it.
- Why not?

You can't tape Rich Man, Poor Man.
You gotta watch it with the
commercials just like everybody else.

That's a good point.

Falcon Eddie.

Man, was there ever a more terrifying
screen villain than Falcon Eddie?

No.- You're gonna watch it?
- Yep.
- All 12 parts?
- Back to back.
It's a tough call. You're a bastard.
Oh, shit...
Don't drink too much punch.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Getting into the Groove

Although I am still dog tired most of the time, things are starting to gel since my last post. I'm mostly caught up on my reading and I don't feel like some bumpkin in my classes any more. Now, I'm really loving my classes. All of them! It feels so good to be in exactly the kinds of classes I've always wanted to be in while studying film. Not to say College of Marin, SRJC and Northridge didn't have their moments, they did. But every one of my classes is really intriguing and I'm having a blast. My fellow MA students are extremely cool too and I'm making friends. Please send money. Oh, wait...that was another letter I need to write. But seriously, I still need a nap. That traffic's killin' me.

Another cool thing is, I'm a TA for one of my instructors. While the prospect of more work isn't too great, it's a slick move to be a TA in the first year of my MA. There's a possibility I could have a paid position by next semester! Right now in my big yellow messenger bag I have 25 essays awaiting my grade. Pretty freaky for me and for them.

Aside from work and school, John and I have been tinkering with our new doc. We shot it in August and rather than be all long winded about it, here's what will be the trailer soon:

I'm aiming for SXSW for the premiere but I'm also planning on submitting to Slamdance if we get done soon enough. I really think this one will be better than STRINGERS as John and I are older and wiser...and we both bought nice cameras. I'm hopefully meeting with an editor this weekend and we can crank it out by the first week of October.

Things are cruising now (sort of) so I hope to blog more often.

Friday, September 14, 2007

How I been rollin'

So last week, I started the MA (Masters) program in Cinema Studies at San Francisco State. I'm loving the classes and for once, I'm really feeling challenged by the work and, more importantly, by the other people in my class. That's not to get down on past classes and teachers, but most college students-in my experience-are lazy morons who are going to school because our stupid society has decided "everyone" should get a college education. Some people don't belong in college. When I first went to college out of High School, I did not belong in college. Maybe I don't now either, I dunno.

Anyway, I've been beyond super busy. It's almost laughable. Here's my schedule on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Pile on top of that the fact I have a ton of reading and usually 3-4 films I need to watch each week. Welcome to my nightmare....

5:30 a.m.
Wake up, shower, check email.

6:00 a.m.
Hit the road

6:15 a.m.-8:30 a.m.
Sit in commute traffic. It's been taking me 2 & 1/2 to 3 hours to get to school each time I go...and San Francisco is like, 50 miles away. Plus it costs $5 to cross the Golden gate Bridge and another $5 for parking so by the time I burn gas with that, I'm down about $60 a day. Why not take the bus? Read on...

9:10 a.m. Classes start. Tuesday is Genres (Westerns in this case), Wednesday I have an undergrad Doc class at 9:10 (I'm also a TA in there) and then an Intro to Grad studies class from 1-4. Thursday I have a 9:10 class in Non-Narrative film.

All my classes are totally great but by the time I get there, my ass hurts and I'm in a bad mood. Luckily I've been feeling sick on wednesdays so I don't have to do what I do Tuesday and Thursday which is...

12:00 noon
Race to my car, and drive to Calistoga to go to work.

Get to work

5:30 or 6:00
Go home. See Erica. See Igby. Kiss the baby. Check email and tell myself over and over that it's not Igby's fault dad can't plan well and he really, really needs a walk. Look at dishes piled in sink. Look at stack of books that have chapters that need to be read so I don't sit in class like a frigging mute. Remember the last 2 meals I've eaten have been in the drivers seat of my car on the 101 freeway.

Try to ignore Jeopardy and do my online reading.

Realize I'm fading fast but have a chapter to read.

I should also point out that I don't sleep well when I "have" to wake up at a certain time. For some reason I always think my alarm will fail. Plus Erica is like, 8 and 1/2 months preggo so she's extremely uncomfortable in bed. She tosses and turns and moans and groans so I now sleep in the other room. Which sucks. It's official: We are roommates.

9:30 or 10:00
Go to sleep and do it all over the next day.

I will say, having Wednesday the way it is is pretty nice. And, I've stayed at my Aunts house one Wednesday and will do it again...she's about ten miles from SF so that's really nice. Today and Monday are also nice but the baby is coming, John and I are still editing our new short doc and I'm lazy by nature.

So, that's where I've been and what I've been doing. Things are hectic right now and I'm trying to find a groove. it's happening, slowly. Oh! I'v also been seeing some great films in SF after class on Wednesday....more on that later. As you can see, I got shit to do....