Friday, 6 September 2013

Sleepless part 1

Partially, because one of my teeth is acting up (my teeth always hurt a little bit, one way or another, especially if I eat veal), or partially because I have been watching movies in which people are unable to sleep, I can't sleep. This is unfamiliar territory for me, who usually passes out around ten and dreams full throttle until at least five if not half to seven. But a hotel bed, outlandish silences, biorhythm slightly off kilter and a heavy dinner (had to try EVERYTHING) have me up at two. General is cross, because of course he can't sleep if I am not sleeping. My otherwise gentle snoring is his "the world is alright" sound. 

I am being haunted by the idea of a no-budget movie that also stars a location (like a city .. or a building in my case. Like a castle.. With a museum in it.. ).. I have never done a project of that magnitude before, mainly because it is probably not possible to do it completely alone. From how I perceive it, if you are going to make a full fledged movie, you need at least three things: a face an audience can't stop staring at, one that will make everything else in the background seem important ... A simply, relatable, but an inviting, original story with a little bit of a sexy or perky twist ... And a certain amount of focus. 

Haunted, I say, because I think I know almost exactly of the kind of movies I would want to make (and working on Redeeming Isobel had me getting very close to writing a logical, consecutive stage play, so that's similar..) I have already done a music video. I have a camera. I can edit. I know almost exactly what sort of scenes I would take (using the approach I appreciate in my fond-of low or no-budgets or movies that actually appear to be such, because they are a peephole into a very intimate happenstance (I am thinking The Station Agent, although that movie is based mainly on the overwhelming performances of the actors). 

So what would the story be? Not "Isobel", that one is a judgmental drama. I don't want that. I would want something that would also appeal to universal audience, as aiming at a Slovene audience would be like aiming to shoot your own knee. (As pleasant as it would be productive.. ) Right now I really want to go out and go to the bar and walk around, exploring as the heroes and heroines of Lost in translation and Dual do, but of course a) General would never allow me to walk alone at night and b) I am at a spa. There is nothing to explore, the bar is closed and people would be spooked if they met me. ... So that is certainly something I would want in my story. Night shots, especially moving ones, with lots of false light, are very appealing.

There would have to be a girl.. Not a surrogate for the audience and not exactly a heroine .. But I don't know who or what just yet. Somehow I would prefer to make a silent movie or a movie in which you don't really understand what is being said (like a new language?) .... hm.... than Slovene language, which isn't really all that listenable. I know that it would have to be a little bit adventurous and would want to involve at least one form of Snufkin, because the scenes where a wild child comes to meet the heroes of civilization, usually at the edge of the forest, and they are as close as siblings as they are as lovers, is present in almost all of my stories..

So... What. A crime? A mystery? A survey? A road? This, right here, right now, is the perfect place and time to write a timeless screenplay. A beginning of a great idea. Tremulous, probably, as all things I take on involve a whole lot of passion … but really fun nonetheless.


I wonder if I would ever want to rent a digital camera as opposed to shooting everything via Marki... Though the scenes I have noticed being done just so appeal to me. But I am not sure if that is because I just happen to really love Marki. 

The plan was to write dad's autobiography this winter... I still plan to do that, even though he is fighting me (and mum is kind of jealous). I have been reading three different bios these past few weeks. One written about an admired man, another about a disdained man and the third about a bad man who did good stuff. As Fidi would say it:" You don't need to be good to be great." As experimental winter projects go, I still insist it is a good idea. 

But as beauty projects go.. Summer stuff, but perhaps even a little bit of winter idyllic... 


Okay, think. 
It's 3:3o.
Which movies do I like, considering the way they are done?
Station Agent
Lost in Translation
Looking for Richard
Miami Vice

Which movies, done the same way, I hate?
Before Midnight

What do I love most about that kind of footage? Faces. Scenery. Details. Close-ups. Partially blurred frame. Light. The fact that the music and acting speak instead of the dialogue. 

There is a notion that I would find difficult to put in a book, although I really want to. It involves pretty much all of the things I wrote about (ranted about) this past hour. It would make for pretty much an amazing movie. But it is ambitious. I am not sure ambitious (and in a way hence expensive) is a good idea for a first movie, which would almost certainly never screen anywhere, yet alone pay back in any kind, shape or form. 

That's the spirit. 

The first step (of about fifty thousand of them) of making a movie, part two.

There are big pluses and big minuses about casting Ape as the lead. Big pluses are: she is mesmerizingly handsome. She appears to be of thoroughly mixed nationalities. She wouldn't have to be paid the extent of our non-existing budget. She would be perfect for the role I have in mind.
Minuses: she is busy. She is far away. She is dark skinned and the retarded population of my country and this continent are subconsciously vary of non Caucasian features and wouldn't necessarily relate ... Thought that also makes for a big plus. Considering the story. My next choice would be Ivory Flame, but that's just because she is ginger and very pretty. I have no idea how she would act.

I am thinking of the exact scenes from movies that I think are unique (and exactly what I would want): in Scott's Robin Hood, there is a moment, shot almost entirely in deep dusk, when the men are planting the seed. The music is perfect and the whole shot is just excellent. In Eat Pray Love, in the beginning, the lead char is having fight with her BF and she's making the bed and the air is full of dust. I liked that a lot.

I would need a stronger computer, because mine edits movies extremely slowly. But whatever. You don't go into stories like these thinking what you could do only if ... You make gems with what you got. Of course we would certainly need a better mike and original score. And not to divorce, because projects like that take A LOT out of people ...

And fuck me, but I think I really will have to go to the dentist (even though I said I will never do that again ... Like labor, I guess?), because this is getting annoying ... First thing Monday, then. 

Where was I?
Oh, right. Budget. 
Many starter movies, that come through and people grow fond of (which I imagine is 50% of movies, other half being movies with messages) are very cute and intimate - and then the second ones are done with more money and not so cute and so intimate. I don't know if it has taken me 35 years to realize I want to be a movie maker, but it is something I have never tried, so let's try. 

I also know that by making a movie, I could make a great movie ABOUT making a movie. So, two movies. Especially if we drove around from set to set. Which we would. 

That would make for one heck of a road trip. If I had any kind of budget. But a camera and a car are a very good start.

To test this, I would have to shoot a couple of scenes that would fit in the whole later on, but would also stand alone and it would show if the idea works IRL at all? ... 

It helps if you have twenty-five years of experience is a photographer beforehand. You own the understanding (and ultimately taming) of light is almost half the victory.

Okay. So, the scene that I would shoot for the Lakmus test (not Litmus, how I've been mistakenly saying it for the past decades. Thanks, Drej, for remedying that one.) would be this:

Sitting somewhere very pretty, under a tree or some trek stop or outside a very quaint cottage pub or something, our heroine would see that the alternative to the Snufkin character would emerge from a country road or forest path to come join her. She would grin and wave and he would do the same. The chemistry between them would be hard to define, as there would be some sexual attraction, but almost none of the desire for a consistent relationship. They would simply be in tune, two otherwise completely different people. 
       They would eat or drink something of simply move on. Preferably, it would start as a sunny day and then get rainy. Thought I have a hard time making rainy cheerful. I would have to learn that.
       Anyways. They would continue on their road together for a short while. At some point, they would gravitate towards an abandoned house, a very nice old house, very small and on a very romantic location. This house would mean something to the heroine. (Probably, for working purposes, called Mireille or mire or Mi - no pun intended, Tove. Or Tove, fuck it. ). By looking at her face or their exchanged glances, you would begin to suspect this is where she or her parents were born or something. They would descent/climb to it and start to search it. Though slowly. It's possible that even at the broken door frame, especially if it started to rain by then, they would pouse and made out for a long while. 
         But Mireille would start to go through the ruin methodically, even at times flashbacking or something, to the forlorn objects. She would less search and more remember items. Except this one shard from a broken pot. She would pick that up and as Snufkin-alternative would join her, she would produce a small pouch with similar shard, put them out on a broken old table and arrange them. We would see that, although originating from completely different objects, different ages and different uses, slowly and surely the things she collects on her travels are coming together into one complete sense.