Film directors are hot

August 9, 2007 at 8:16 am (watch)

    Tonight was the first night of the Sacramento Film and Music Festival. Before the first of two movies–When a Man Falls in the Forest and Commit–there was a reception when I learned that all filmmakers (or at least those who showed up at this particular festival) are under age thirty and really attractive. I’m sure that the fact that they have my dream job (in the idealized version, where you don’t have to put your life savings into a movie and battle for funds, creative control and distribution and write 35 versions of the script and spend a year editing) helps. What’s a little more disconcerting is that there are still so few female directors…

Both movies were good, but Commit especially rekindled my sense of “I want to do this!” For me, movies like Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Nine Lives–movies shot simply, with lots of talking and no special effects–are the ones that I can envision myself making (or wishing I could make) because that’s all I know how to do: point a camera and watch and listen. Commit is 90 minutes long but is made up of only three shots. The actors (it’s basically a two-man show) rehearsed with the director for four months (the lead actress is the writer/director’s wife), and then they shot the movie in three days with a $10,000 budget. Check out the trailer below, and make sure to watch all the way to the end. The movie is dark, but funny and skewed-romantic.

And here’s the preview for When a Man Falls in the Forest. I actually think it sort of mis-represents the movie. With its frantic music, the trailer makes the movie seem lively, and it’s actually about several people operating in a complete daze–they move slow, talk slow, don’t interact with each other and don’t often smile. It had some funny moments but was actually kind of draining to watch.

Keep an eye on the director, Ryan Eslinger. I think he’ll do more good work.


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