Radified News for December, 2000
12.27.00 - Just noticed that the date will soon be 01.01.01. Talk about starting over.
Saw (movie) Chocolat (Miramax) last night with Mom & Sidney, at the Lido theater in Newport Beach. Only one theater there - no giant multiplex like everywhere else. The Lido is very retro. Retro is now in vogue .. or so I hear. Old style building. Even have upstairs balcony, like in old theaters. Love balcony seating .. like at El Capitan on Hollywood blvd. Friends from East coast always wanna go to El Cap when they come out. The Freaks come out at night in Hollywood.
Chocolat stars Juliette Binoche (Blue) & Johnny Depp. Has several Golden Globe nominations, including Best Picture (& actress, & score, & supporting actress). I'm putting it on the Radified Approved list, even tho it's kinda a chick flick. Has anyone else noticed that if a the critics hate a movie, that's a good sign that it rocks?
Mom read the book - loved it. Afterwards we hit a local Newport Beach lounge and had coffee cocktails by a fireplace .. some place with a big, blue marlin mounted on the outside of the bldg, above the entrance doors. We closed the place down.
Saw the trailer for new Spielberg movie: AI (Artificial Intelligence). Can never tell from a trailer if the movie will be any good, but this trailer is totally bitchin'. One of the best I've ever seen. Made my hair stand on end. Wendy hates trailers that give the whole story away. This one told you no details of the story. But if the trailer is any indication, the movie will rock.
Wendy says many Film school students bust on Spielberg, for being so commercial. I don't care what they say, the man knows how to make a movie.
12.24.00 - Wanna wish everybody a merry, happy holiday season. Drive extra safe. For some, holidays are toughest time of year. Daylight is at a premium. Night/day ratio max'ed out. Lotsa dark. Ideal environment for breeding depression .. 'specially if life happens to have probs .. and who's doesn't? It's also when we most miss those we've lost. May your 2001 be filled with fulfilling creativity.
Ripped all my favorite Xmas songs to the hard drive, and made a personal Best of Xmas CD. It rocks.
12.23.00 - Saw Cast Away last night, on the big (giant) screen in Newport Beach. Reminded us of Coppola's Black Stallion in the way there was long/major parts with no dialogue. Not easy to tell a story with no dialogue. Won't spoil anything for you.
The way to pick your seat in a movie theater is to imagine laying the screen down on the floor. Where ever it would end, sit there, up to five rows back - in the middle. That's where you'll be most immersed in the movie.
Also saw previews for Hannibal - the sequel to Silence of the Lambs. Big shoes to fill. Anthony Hopkins is back, but Jody Foster has been replaced. Wendy says SOTL is one of the most shown/viewed/talked about films at Film school. It applies to several different categories. Highly regarded.
12.21.00 - Just returned from Two Bunch. Took Wendy there for a few days of R&R, after the most grueling semester of the program. Two Bunch is a favorite getaway of ours. Been escaping there for years. The movie The Player (with Tim Robbins) was filmed at Two Bunch.
We heard that Intel took over the place for a month this summer for their exec's, and to shoot some commercials. Legend has it that Al Capone hid out there in the late 20's. Didn't do much but soak in the natural hot springs & watch roadrunners run up & down the walkways. We both thought we recognized Suzanne Sommers in the waters this time, but didn't ask.
Winter solstice - shortest day of the year. Saw The Grinch this eve. Heard unflattering reviews, so we weren't expecting much. But we both loved it! Must be big kids at heart. Never really liked Jim Carey much until this movie. Noticed llots of illusions to The Wizard of Oz.
Wendy says that, when a director copies parts of another film, it's called a homage (huh-'mazh) .. in order to elevate a part of the film, and pay respect to an older/famous film/director. A pastiche, on the other hand, is when a director blatantly copies a shot from another film. A pastiche is a post-modern aesthetic that makes fun of another film - in a good way, not mockingly.
She says, "Pastiches are a way to communicate to the post-modern culture." (whatever that means). A homage is usually longer than a pastiche. A homage is usually a scene, whereas a pastiche is usually a single shot, but they can be vice-versa. Supposedly the entire movie Pulp Fiction is a series of pastiches, shots & scenes taken from other films (Tarentino is a film nut).
Wendy was crying at the end of The Grinch - directed by Ron Howard (Opie), who also went to Film school at USC .. for a couple years, anyway. Looking fwd to seeing Cast Away, with Tom Hanks - directed by Robert Zemeckis. RZ is also a graduate of USC Film school. Wendy has classes in the Zemeckis bldg .. built with funds donated by RZ.
Castaway opens Xmas day. Every time the previews come on TV, she puts her fingers in her ears, and talks to herself, saying, "I don't hear this, I'm not watching the previews." When it's done, I say, "Okay, you can look now." =)
12.18.00 - Shout out to Krish, who designed my web site. Just got news that he's been accepted at Columbia Univ (Ivy league, NYC) .. got the fat envelope! Been anxiously anticipating the news for months. Was to huss, Krish.
12.17.00 - Went to USC yesterday to view screening of Lisa's movie - The Love Manifesto - that Wendy shot & edited (16mm). Saw 6 films. Many films had probs w/ the projector. Lisa's broke 3 times. Most films broke at least once. That concludes Wendy's first year of grad school .. at one of, if not the best Film school in the world. Grades should be out soon.
Afterwards, we went with Jan & Frank to a sushi bar in Japantown. Did the same after last screening (Halloween). Started a tradition. Crashed at their place, and went back to USC today to see another class's films.
Stopped at a Producer/Director's house this afternoon. He's looking for an intern to edit a piece titled The Artist & the Shaman. This guy also did Timothy Leary is dead, Roswell & Starry Night (about Van Gogh coming back from the dead). He has Mac G4 system with Final Cut Pro and Media 100. Wendy may commit to editing part of his footage .. he has 13 hours worth.
Wendy already knows Adobe Premiere cold. She's edited not only 8mm films, but also 16mm .. on both a Moviola flatbed & Steenbeck KEM (flatbed). Gonna edit a film next semester on an Avid. So if she also learns Final Cut Pro & Media 100, that's pretty much all the major players in the editing world .. except for maybe Incite.
12.10.00 - Posted Rad praise, containing some encouraging feedback. Also started on the Dogbrother piece.
Screening for Lisa's 16mm film (that Wendy shot & edited) - titled The Love Manifesto - screens at USC this weekend. The semester-from-hell is almost over. Wendy says it's not your typical film. Describes it as rootsy, urban, frenetic - lots of jumps cuts. Jumps cut look like mistakes - added on purpose, for a specific effect.
Totally different from anything she's done before. Both girls are happy with the way it came out. Very personal piece for Lisa. Wendy encouraged her to make a film with significant personal meaning. A window into Lisa's psyche. I'm looking fwd to seeing it. Everyone is invited. Total of six (5-minute) films will be screened.
Linkage to -> News for November, 2000
Linkage to -> News for January, 2001