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« Graduation Ceremony Etiquette | Main | Science Trivia »

June 09, 2006

Film on Friday

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

I've been playing with iMovie, Apple's mom-and-pop film-editing program. After a week of intense study, I've mastered precisely four skills: importing footage, splitting clips, arranging them on the timeline, and importing a sound file. OK, "mastered" may be overstating the case. And dig that zany score! Betcha can't guess who has been messing around with Apple's groove-based sound-editing toy GarageBand too. Danny Elfman, watch out.

Blushing like a shy virgin, I hereby present my very first YouTube.

The money boys back at the studio tell me that my masterpiece still needs trimming and punching-up. But screw them, man. Even if -- OK, sure -- there may be some longeuers, I'm taking a stand for the artist's creative freedom. There are some things you just can't compromise on. Anyway, I encourage my fans to consider this the Director's Cut. The Wife tells me that watching this video was exactly like walking around NYC by my side. I'm not sure she intended her remark as such, but I'm taking it as my first rave review ...

A short list of iMovie skills that elude me: How to fade music out. How to shorten the black bit that comes after the white letters on a title card. And what on earth are those little strobey flashes doing in some of the cuts?

Sigh: time for a visit to the local Apple Store for advice. Still, whatever my beefs with Macs and with Apple's software, I do keep in mind that they enable even the likes of me to have fun with computers. Roger expresses gratitude to a certain Mr. Jobs, reminding me of how much those of us born without the tech gene owe to The House that Steve Built.



posted by Michael at June 9, 2006


Ass kicking work, my man. (Of course, I didn't hear the soundtrack because I don't have speakers on this computer, but still.)

Not only is it entertaining, but this film is a landmark in world cinema! You've converted the garden variety "walking around" film, beloved of aimless film-school students, into a "walking around" film that actually has a point! And jokes! And an axe to grind!

My hat is off.

Posted by: Friedrich von Blowhard on June 9, 2006 11:33 AM

I am nothing if not a flaneur. As far as the audience is concerned, though, I suspect you're right: The axe-to-grind is key.

And that's a great idea: making little videos based on the kinds of bad movies film students make. Next up on my agenda: A film featuring a bunch of film students wondering what to make a film about, and finally deciding to make a film about people just like them sitting around wondering what to make a film about ...

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on June 9, 2006 11:39 AM

I'm available for your next piece. Will work for scale but any nudity must be very integral.

Posted by: Sluggo on June 9, 2006 12:16 PM

Hey, in my films all the nudity will be character-driven! Well, most of the nudity. OK, so here's the deal. You strip a half-dozen times, and I promise to give you the chance to do a couple of seconds of actual acting ...

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on June 9, 2006 1:10 PM

I'll have my people call your people! We'll do lunch!

Posted by: Jonathan on June 9, 2006 2:57 PM

I loved this little sidewalk drama! Almost made me long for the city!

But how did you get all those people to walk in time to the music?

Prairie Mary

Posted by: Prairie Mary on June 9, 2006 3:03 PM

I didn't see one BBQ joint at all...sure are lots of street artists, though.

Snappy little accompaniment, I take it John Williams schedule was full up.

Good first job, Mr. 2B!

Posted by: Cowtown Pattie on June 9, 2006 9:39 PM

Nice music. Points well made. Leave the text up a little longer. My brain isn't what it used to be.

Posted by: Charlton Griffin on June 10, 2006 7:17 AM

Like Bresson I see that you prefer using untrained "models" rather than actors. It works.

I agree, leave the title cards up a little longer.

Posted by: grandcosmo on June 10, 2006 2:54 PM

Great work. Your walk-by comparison is striking and effective.

Posted by: Ryan on June 12, 2006 11:52 AM

That was pretty darn good for a first volley. The backbeat of the soundtrack kind of synchs up with the up/down effect of you walking with the camera.

I've got to learn how to work those dang computers myself at some point.

Posted by: Logical Meme on June 22, 2006 12:08 AM

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