I guess it’s important we all get acquainted. I mean if I expect someone other than Fernando to read my opinions, I should pony up some qualifications. I went to college with Fernando. I like to think I know a bit about everything, or, at least, I strive to. While most of my friends would say my niche is film — mainly anything “old” or “foreign” — I spend most of my time interested in all kinds of pop culture. I just tend to cast a broader net for what I consider topical and hilarious (I’ll be the one in the group making references to “New York Undercover” and “Dream On”).

So, when I’m not making jokes about early ’90s TV, I like to write and direct as much as I can. I mean, I went to school for it. I guess I should do it.

I’ve been writing for a long time. When I got it in my head that I should write a feature film, I seized the day and did it. No matter that I was 12 years old and didn’t know shit about the world…even though that explains why I never got past a flashy opening scene reminiscent of a 12-year-old’s grasp of the gangster genre portrayed in “Miller’s Crossing.”

With dozens of flashy opening scenes under my belt, a notebook full of embarrassing attempts at profound poetry, and the unchecked arrogance of an already accomplished wordsmith, I entered film school ready to prove myself…to myself.

More than being a writer, I had wanted to be a director — a Filmmaker — since I was in the 4th grade. Throughout college, I did my best. Some projects blew into flames at onset, others sputtered into mediocrity. But every mistake yielded a lesson…don’t make shitty movies. By the time I was a senior, I feel like I had an excellent understanding of how to make a good movie, at least in short form. I knew how to work well with actors & crew, plot and pace a movie, and schedule “for a perfect world” (that is to say, assign times when people should arrive and locations should be available, and then pray it all comes together).

The high(er) standards I held myself to informed my criticism of others’ work. I mean I wasn’t making enemies but I wasn’t blowing smoke up any asses either. I have very strong opinions, stubborn ones. The biggest crime a movie or television show can commit is mediocrity; usually aided by rehashed, unoriginal subject matter, or “gahbage” as my friend Alonzo says.

And that’s what I guess I bring to the table, a fine-tuned radar for sensing mediocrity; those unfulfilled goals, character arcs, agendas, and promises that filmmakers unquestionably make with us as we devote hours to giving their stories a chance. Some fail worse than others. And I hope that all of us Dented Cans can share in unveiling the sub-par and finding the awesome in the weeks, months, and years to come.

So, with that, I say hello and let’s get on with this.

  • I will try to post every Friday. We’ll see how that pans out.
  • Next time: my Top 5’s and a revisit to “Dr. Strangelove”
  • Look for my review of “The Dark Knight” on July 18th!
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