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Saturday
May282011

When Suicide Notes and Moviemaking Collide

“Suicide Note” is the 28th creative writing prompt in one of Heck Yeah’s 30-day Tumblr challenges, so I decided to use it since it’s a little late for me to be working on the next and last Johnny Depp King Dong post for this month.....I’ll try to do that tomorrow.

Today’s writing prompt is a little tough for me to use for blogging because I have no interest in writing a fake suicide note just for the sake of writing one. I mean if one is going to be written, shouldn’t a suicide go along with it? I’m just sayin’.....! The topic is such a downer that I was a little hesitant to use this prompt and considered checking out one of the other writing prompts until I realized that there is a way to turn this thing around for something good and useful.

In an attempt to take a more enjoyable route to highlighting the subject, here are a few short movie ideas that I came up with based on the “Suicide Note” topic. They might be made next month, when I try to tackle Slamdance’s $99 special category as a way to experiment with different genres and story lines all on digital video. I welcome you all to pick one that you would be interested in watching if I were to develop the concept/idea into a script and then make the movie.

Suicide Note Movie #1 (drama)
A man contemplating suicide spends hours trying to figure out how to write the perfect suicide note. His concern for adhering to some form of unspoken suicide note etiquette causes him to explore the impact that words have on others by using different mediums including notepads, social networking websites, cell phones and video.

Suicide Note Movie #2 (comedy/satire)
A quack therapist trying to advertise a self-help program produces an infomercial on how to write a suicide note effectively. He gives audiences members, who are his potential customers, tips on the right words to use and what types of suicide notes to write depending on the circumstances surrounding the person’s decision to commit suicide.

Suicide Note Movie #3 (drama or action, maybe?)
During her first day on the job, a suicide hotline (or 911) operator gets introduced to more than she can handle while trying to prevent a caller from killing herself or himself. Attempts to help the caller sends this employee and a detective on one city-wide search that causes them to question their career choices, purpose in life and their own mental and emotional stability.

After having come up with these three movie ideas in like the last 15 minutes, I just reminded myself that coming up with movies are easy......making them and bringing them to the screen (whether that be the big screen, small screen, cell phone screen, etc.) is the hard part.

Which one of these movies would YOU watch?

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Friday
May272011

Flashback Friday #2 and the Greatest Movie Ever Sold

One of the writing challenges from Heck Yeah's Tumblr blog has a prompt for today on the topic of "A Favorite Beverage." SoBe Lifewater has been among my top beverage choices for a little while but whenever I get around to checking out Morgan Spurlock's (director of "Super Size Me") new movie, "POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold," I'll probably start drinking more Pomegranate juice within the next month or so....or I will at least try it!

Spurlock explores product placement and advertising in the movie industry but the way he went about making "The Greatest Movie Ever Sold" has some questioning whether this is some sort of satire to make fund of these types of marketing deals in Hollywood or if he is trying to show how anything can be bought at the right price. Sometimes, you can get a point across without actually demonstrating it, which brings us to two previous posts that are like complete opposites of each other when it comes down to showing too much or too little.

The Erotic Nature of Stuck
A movie scene can be sexy, intimate and romantic all without actually showing the physical act of sex. It is a point that is covered in the "Erotic Nature of Stuck" post, so you are welcome to read it and add your two cents.

X-Rated Myths of the Chemically Brainwashed
While the movie "Stuck" does not show much in terms of people getting it on in the bedroom...or in the case of "Stuck"....the jail cell, it seems that other movies have no problem with showing a lot of graphic acts, whether that be sex or violence but some moviegoers tend to have misconceptions about what X-Rated means and what films are placed in that category....it's not always as simple as you may think!

Here are my questions for you: What is YOUR favorite beverage?

Also,

Does adding advertisements in the form of product placement in a movie about product placement such as "POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold" turn you off from wanting to watch it or do you think that it is appropriate because of the film's subject matter?

Oh, and here is the movie trailer for "POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold" if you never saw it or want to find out more about the premise of this new release. Enjoy!

A portion of this post was inspired by Two Hands and a Roadmap.

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Thursday
May262011

On Expectations of Short & Feature Length Films (GBE 2 - wk1)

I remember when "Titanic" came out and a lot of people who went to see it were complaining about it's three-hour long running time. One complaint in particular came from a friend who did not like this movie. Today, the complaint got me thinking about the way that short films are often given a bad rep at film festivals, among many filmmakers, film industry experts and even movie fans.

A lot of people treat short films like they are unimportant or some type of neglected second cousin of the feature film club. The disappointment from a feature length movie like "Titanic" or action films such as "Transformers" usually arise when they do not meet the expectations that movie goers had when they decided to visit the theater and watch it based on its movie trailer.

It is not unusual for a movie goer to feel like time was wasted that they cannot get back....two hours is a lot of time out of someone's life that is used to watch a film, so it should be good or at the very least....entertaining, right? This is an issue where short films should be given the benefit of the doubt because they are useful forms of entertainment that do not take two hours to watch.

Many short films are under 10 minutes in length, so whether they are exceptional pieces of cinematic art like some of the Oscar nominated short films...or whether they are bland...or whether they are bad....short length movies do not have to meet the same level of expectations that feature length films do.

More than one dozen short films can be watched in the same time that one views "The Lord of the Rings" (this is not to say that LOTR falls into the same category of "Transformers" because LOTR is a good movie!) so even if movie fans come across a short film that they do not like, there wasn't that much time wasted in watching it because the average person usually spends the same amount of time in the bathroom. In fact, you could watch a short film while you are using the bathroom and get it done and over with....unless of course, you spend the bathroom time reading a book!

This post was written for the topic of "Expectations" in the new Group Blogging Experience (GBE 2). Also, I want to thank Alana at Writercize for letting me know about this blogging project!

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