Saturday, December 18, 2010

Movie Review: Black Swan



This film explored female power issues and female sexuality in a successful and fresh way. The acting was great, and I think Mila Kunis actually had the most difficult role to pull off - holding ground in such a real, whole, human manner in the midst of such a dramatically overwraught environment.

People call the film melodramatic - but I do think the acting is on point. Natalie plays a character that's very true - a self serious, sheltered, weak and classically feminine character - whose sense of self is being ripped open. What I think is more accurate is that the film is ridiculous. It's so ridiculous in so many moments.

But Aronofsky is always very successful in making you feel powerful negative emotion - especially anxiety (Pi and Requiem!).

He also made a genre film - of psychological thriller - but I do think that while the audience always had some fun and excitement - they were lost in moments when it was too ridiculous (stabbing in the face?) some of it just seemed random and meaningless piled on top of everything. But the majority of this film is needed and successful when put together to create the world, feelings, and character he set out to create.

I think his depiction of female desire, struggle, and sense of self are fresh, innovative, and something special.

When you leave the film you might not feel - oh I enjoyed that! Oh that's my favorite! But rather, a feeling that you were impacted, made to experience specific emotion. And that final moment is true camp ridiculous - almost reminded me of the crazy smiling faces in the Black Hole Sun video.


PS
I like this unrelated video:

Thursday, December 02, 2010

This video of NIN performing in 1990 is amazing! Such a dorky young angsty music genius! Ugh the early 90s were such an unbelievable time for new music. Drool.

NIN Live @ 930 Club, 7.11.90 (Three songs) from Nine Inch Nails on Vimeo.



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A Comprehensive glossary of gifs: link

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I really like Nicki Minaj.
As for Kanye's new album, I really liked the video for it as posted earlier, and a lot of the sound of the songs - but the lyrics are awful. He is trying to be harder on this album, when the truth is the kid is totally harmless and grew up nice and neat. He has nothing to bitch about other than his fragile ego. He is truly brilliantly creative, but he doesn't have to be gangsta or tough, he shouldn't even try. So many stupid phrases that make him sound like a whiney baby who's probably a nightmare to date - ruin otherwise good sounding songs. Prior albums are better. He should stop bitching and moaning about stupid things, and I really don't want to hear about his sex life anymore.

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And finally- a little gem I discovered while looking for restaurants near my parents' house:
Q Thai T's restaurant reviews
this review is my favorite - for a sushi place:
"THIS PLACE IS A REAL PIECE OF SHIT,

GHETTO ASS JAPANESE WANNABE'S

THROWING FOOD AROUND INTO PEOPLE"S FACING LIKE WE TRASH CAN'S OR SOME SHIT. WTF?????"

-
and pub 199 which is the cheap lobster place near my house:
"I see LOTSSSSA people , writing LOTSAAAAA SHIT ABOUT THE DEAD ANIMALS ON THE WALLS AND HOW THIS PLACE LOOKS LIKE A DEAD ANIMAL MUSEUM, AND HOW IT"S DUMB CROWDED AND HOW ITS IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE AND HOW ITS SO FAR AND SHIT.

They are all right."

nice work Q

On Being a Woman and Getting What You Want

I just watched Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, and then found the main actress Noomi Rapace fascinating and watched an interview of her by Charlie Rose. She described her character as being something women want to see, and that she is great because she doesn't take shit from anybody and she gets what she wants. I agree, but the character has been victim of so much horror, I want to think about who the woman is who simply gets what she wants in the world. Who is the empowered woman who is neither victim nor vigilante?

One major obstacle women have to face, is that in order to succeed, there are certain people who can't find you threatening. I like to say exactly how I feel and what I want. It is my gut instinct that my when wants are reasonable and honest, they must be human and justified. I usually think carefully my motivations and desires, and feel that a person can clearly determine right from wrong. When there's a gray area, even then you can usually decipher exactly what is gray about it - and you can take in such a situation with its complexities. Either way - one knows when they are being good or bad - the sad cruel ones are those who choose bad and lie to themselves that it's good. That's at the heart of evil.

So, I often feel I know when I'm doing the right thing, so I want to go out and do it. But this isn't so easy. There are many individuals in society who are fearful and threatened by all sorts of odd things. Such individuals are usually bad communicators. They adore rules more than compassion, and have poor logic. These individuals often get in the way of people, themselves or others, achieving reasonable goals. These people are often in positions of power, and even more frequently just underneath the most powerful.

So that's a bit about getting what you want and the natural obstacles therein.

Back to being a woman.

Women have endless mythologies surrounding them that color their reception first and foremost by others. It's always surprising when a woman does something strong or competent, as though it is an anomaly. As though it's special for a woman to be a fully functioning human being beyond stereotype. Wow - a woman director, a woman computer technician, a woman police officer ... a woman anything other than teacher, nurse - you get it.

In order to be heard - just normally heard and listened to - in many situations, a woman must diffuse notions that she is threatening, and she must remind those she confronts that she is a fully capable human being. For some lesbians or masculine women, the butchy thing pays off. She may be taken seriously because she is like a man, and non threatening inasmuch as she is one of the guys. In some situations she is dismissed for being unattractive. So let's take attractive, feminine women. The attractive feminine woman is well received because she is attractive and that's just plain appealing. Such a woman can get attention. Such a woman has the opportunity to meet more people, get more phone numbers, open more doors of opportunity. However, it is assumed such a woman does not posses much beyond her looks, and therefore is incompetent, or only serves sexual purposes.

The opening of doors is great - but how does one get what they want when inside?

That's the magic of the modern woman who gets what she wants. There are beautiful women who succeed in real, socially relevant ways. There's no one way, and some women fight this fabulously, and it's never easy.
Sometimes you can be who you are and say what you want to say and still get what you want - but that's when you're of the company of good people who aren't threatened. A woman getting what she wants is like a man getting what he wants - as long as she can fight her first battle with everyone she meets.

That battle is the battle of perception. Sometimes it's fun to be a wolf in sheep's clothing, but often times it gets tiring when you already know you're a damn wolf.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Please Vote for my video!

Hi friends,

I made a comedy video years ago, randomly entered it into a youtube contest, and now it's one of 25 finalists!
It's the "Time Warner Cable Short Film Contest" in association with IFC on Youtube, and if I win - I get to go to the Sundance Film Festival!!!

This would be so damn awesome.
If you would be so kind as to vote for my video:

ANYBODY with a GMAIL ACCOUNT can vote! A Gmail account login can be used to login to Youtube.
You can vote ONCE PER DAY if you are really generous and loving. ***

CLICK HERE
http://www.youtube.com/timewarnercable

Select "THINK DIFFERENT" and press the THUMBS UP!
(to log in, click "log in", at the top right of the page, you can use your gmail to login)

Thank you!
- Heather

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CREDITS FOR THE VIDEO "Think Different"
Written/Directed by Heather Fink
Featuring Kevin Allison as Mr. Anderson
with Rob Lathan, Ed Mundy, Dan Fontaine, Julia Segal, and Heather Fink.

Producer: Ben Joseph; Camera: Paul Rondeau; Editor: Ed Mundy
PAs: Evan Silverstein, Stephen Fagen

Monday, November 08, 2010


Right now, everything is exploding and dinosaurs are terrorizing my streets.
If it was a lizard or a contained fire, I could fight it.
I don't have the ability to stop neither dinosaur nor explosion.
The best thing I can do is go on living.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

and btw

for every rap video that scared white people
think about how damn scary white people must have seemed in every episode of the lawrence welk show



The material possession I most covet right now is a pair of Swedish Hasbeens (the Jodphur, in black with natural wood) BUT no matter where I look they are 300-450 dollars. There's no way around it. HEY THAT'S TOO MUCH MONEY! Hey hey hey hey wtf hey stop being so expensive stop stop stop hey!!! UGH THEY AREN'T LISTENING. What do I want with shoes that can't listen anyway. Nevermind I'll just wear my reebocks.


I saw the Social Network. It's a fine movie, better than I expected. So far the most genius movies I've seen this year are Fair Game, Social Network, and Inception. All 3 are so solid, they are too be enjoyed, no way around it.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

sometimes the moment you are put into a new world
meeting someone new
its so un erasable
so intensely meaningful
you cant change it
and you cant leave the whole world because you already connected to this person
(we actually unlearn the natural inclination to connect after being burned)
and its the web of connections that holds our bodies up from the sea of death
if you kill yourself, you murder all the connective webs that tie
between you and those who know you
and today if you cant see yourself mattering much
that's because today just isn't tomorrow
you don't know tomorrow
do not go gentle into that good night

Friday, October 29, 2010

I really like Kanye's film "Runaway"

watch it and make it big click here - it's a half hour and a it's really great video to chill out with

I thought it was a beautiful piece of visual art and worked so well with the music. I love the color, movement, and choice of shots. Ballet has also rarely been so f'ing cool.



Its one flaw is Kanye's dialogue - he's not a great actor BUT he is good when performing on camera when he is moving or singing.

Enjoy.

Monday, October 25, 2010

NEW VIDEO: Secrets

Hi everyone,

I haven't put any of my newer films online because I can't if I plan to submit them to festivals. So I thought I should make something I can share with everyone! So here's a new one - with a Jewish theme this time.

"SECRETS"

Gabby hides a shameful secret from her Jewish mother.

CREDITS
Alison Rich as Gabby
Kera as Mom

WRITTEN/DIRECTED BY
Heather Fink

CAMERA
Jarreau Carrillo

EDITOR
Adam Weiss

LIGHTS/SOUND
Chris Corbishley

SOUND MIX
Weston Fonger

Dude! It's Baby Tummy Oil

PARTY ON!



there were also these dogs that got put in Halloween costumies. It was very distressing for this woman and her mummy dawg:

I took both of those photos above with my camera phone - that means I WAS THERE!


Did you read Rob Delaney's great article about Comedy in Vice? It's a must read.

Frikkin look at this video:! Kids do all this crazy stuff all the damn time.


BRAGGING:
Did I tell you about this and that cool stuff I did? The internet is for that, right? I have been to the rooftop of the new James Hotel for a fancy book party for Palo Alto, and the owner or manager or whoever he said he was (who was also an Eddie Izzard not in drag lookalike) offered me to visit one of the hotel's penthouse suites! I said - "uh, that sounds like you are asking me to have sex with you." He replied - "Oh, well I am" EWWWW! NOT PROFESSIONAL NOT PROFESSIONAL. DO NOT WANT.

Hmm, what other awesome stuff have I been so awesomely doing? I went to some cool CMJ shows and scored a badge from performer/friend Baratunde. We hit up the artist's lounge and got FREE STUFF. I LOVE FREE STUFF. Free food is the best kind of food. Free drinks is the best drink I like to drink. Free stuff is the best kind of stuff I want to have. I have cool cmj 2010 bags now! And YOUTUBE TUBE SOCKS. I live the life. Of note - meeting Nada Surf at a free show at a soho art gallery (because that's what happens in NYC!) and catching some of Rooftop Vigilantes who were so great live. Then I decided CMJ was kind of lame and went to bed instead of meeting Claudia at Brooklyn Bowl WHERE LORD KANYE SHOWED UP! Uff. Kanye!!! He can't help it but be cool and make great music in spite of his complete inability to not let douchebags fall out of his mouth when he talks. The man is a damn artist in all senses. I'd have liked to see that performance.

Let's see, anything else really awesome?
OF COURSE.
I also saw Mike Leigh's "Another Year" at the NY Film Festival and got to see the director and cast speak about it. The film is a deeply felt portrait of desperation. Well done, don't love it because it didn't reach me in a special place, but nonetheless well done, and that Mike Leigh has got something to say. And the acting is top notch.

And recently I checked into FourSquare at FourSquare HQ! They gave me a cookie and a tshirt. That really happened and the cookie was really good.

There's definitely all this really great stuff to say, photos from my camera phone that could be posted and I could check in and let everybody know all this really cool shit, but I gotta go do all this other great stuff because I'm great!
2010!
USA!
RAWWRRRWRAWWER WHO MOVED MY METHAMPHETAMINES
ardf .239hn!
hrnnnn

ah. found them.
good night.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Personal Update, Oct 2010 - my filmmaking and my father

Classes end next Monday, and starting November 1st to January 18th, we shoot each other's films, a new one each week. We work for each other as crew, from cameraman to sound, and we each write and direct our own short film. Shoots are roughly 5 days each, and 12-14 hour days are fairly common.

At school they are saying it's normal right now, just before the big 2nd year production period starts, for students to fall apart and go crazy. The way we are taught to make films in NYU's Grad Film program is not simply by the technical skills and tools to make them, but they do what they can to agitate the artist out of us students. They don't try and shape you into a mold or one kind of voice. They try to stimulate your unique ability to tell your story the way you tell stories. People search inside themselves. They spend a lot of money. They have big casts and crews, and a lot of big decisions to make. This is filmmaking as an action - it's characteristically high stakes at every turn.

On a level I know it's high stakes and I have a lot of work to do to make my film. But on another level it's not high stakes at all. I love the good (not perfect) script I've written, and I have good actors and crew behind it. Everything isn't figured out yet, but I have no reason to believe that it won't be. I'll be making choices, and I do care very much what the choices are. But I don't feel like panicking. I don't feel like shit's so hard or intense. I'm making a film. People keep forgetting that. I'm not spending a shit ton of money though it's not cheap at all. I'm not using a fancy camera, unless you count that it's HD.

I am getting to shoot a script, and collaborate creative entities, and let my creative spirit come to life. That's what I get to do, while people sit at desks typing for the maintenance of their 401k, or serve beer to a douchebag and pour bleach down a bar sink. A lot of people hate their jobs. They like other things about their lives, but they don't love what they do. I get to make films right now. Thank you student loans, I may regret this later. But today, this year at least - I'm making my film. This might be one of the most satisfying things I do in my life. Maybe I'll be a great director and make big budget films. But today I scrape together to make this work, every turn under my complete meagerly budgeted control - without a studio telling me what to do. It will probably never be quite like this again.

This is intense, but it's intensely good, and in its midst, lies the rest of my life.

I am hurt very deeply by the trauma my family is going through after my dad's stroke. Right now is a harder period than my family has faced. He is progressing physically in regaining previously parylized parts of his body, but mentally he has become irrational, and we are dealing with that. The most precious thing he has to lose is his personality, sense of self, identity. I know I've lost my dad in certain ways, but I hope I haven't lost him - who he is - all together, and it takes a lot of positive thinking to believe there's hope that these elements of his being have maintained their integrity. Everything about my family has been compromised.

I just want my parents to be able to grow old together and be able to have a life. I pray that they have more than just dealing with this stroke for the rest of their years. I want them to be able to live and have more happiness before their lives end. I don't want this to be it for them. They are trying very hard, and I hope at the end of the day there will eventually be some reward.

Before the stroke my dad was a health nut, exercised, didn't drink or smoke, and took lots of vitamins, though high blood pressure did him in and caused the stroke. He told everyone he was going to live until 100. I don't know how it's all going to end with him, and I wonder if I get married, will he walk me down the isle? Do I even care about that happening? I just hope that if it does happen, he'll understand what's going on. That's what I need more than anything. Please don't take that away from us.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Stop all the clocks

Today there is a funeral for a legendary professor in my film program, Bill Reilly. And in the comedy community we recently lost Greg Giraldo. Here is a favorite poem of mine, to be read and thought at all great deaths, and also at the death of a relationship.

Poem by W. H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.


It's a perfect expression of love.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

a quick sonic post

4 excellent albums:

UNO


Single "Helicopter" off Deerhunter's new album "Halcyon Digest"

DOS
New Sufjan: The Age of Adz (Sufjan is ALWAYS good!)

TRES
Maximum Balloon new album "Maximum Balloon" - a really great up beat album
this video features the single "Tiger"



QUATRO
Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' free 5 track sampler of their music from the movie "The Social Network" is also lovely. Download here.

Don and Peggy, season 4, episode 7



In a season that's gotten more beautiful in every frame - lighting, design, color, and with more expertly developed characters than ever before. This was my favorite moment of the whole series.

Friday, September 24, 2010

From one Democrat to another.



I am really beyond sick of the modern liberal.

Everybody knows right wing conservatives are crazy and scary. Whatever. People are afraid of things and draw crazy conclusions and like to manipulate religion to create hate. This sucks, and it's created centries of bad guys. At least we know the enemy. Republicans are predictable and pestilent.


But the modern liberal is just nausiating.
It's absolutely obnoxious the way people talk today with a assumption that all people must share their viewpoint. I feel that there's a complete lack of clarity in the formation of liberal viewpoints, and a sad level of "following" that's dangerous to progressive ideals. Modern liberals are so in love with ideas, they are out of touch with human realities. There seems to be a closed minded narrow path of thinking which doesn't allow for true understanding. People want to stand for something, and defend ideas so badly, they don't even exactly know what the ideas are. They are fed fear and hate and respond like lab rats.

This is the most fundamental lesson of the WTC mosque "thing."

I don't support the WTC "Islamic Center."
for example.

On any given day I will hear some liberal kid spout their mouth off about how they are alarmed at the hate and anti-Islamic sentiment as though anyone who opposes this center is assumed to be some lunatic who hates brown people.

First of all, I don't care for Islam. I don't care for Christianity either. I don't care for these sexist oppressive institutions which inspire fear, hate, and madness rather than unity and peace. They are greater monsters because they claim to be agents of peace and love, when the only sources of peace and love I've ever known to be true are in the hearts of individuals. Secular religions by nature, divide and demonize others.


It was a hostile move intended to "open dialogue" about Islam fears among people. "Open dialogue" is the biggest bullshit nonsense rhetoric and people are eating it up. "This conversation had to happen." Really? "conversation"? Because all I witness are a bunch of screaming, angry, incoherent assholes making absurd signs and spewing irrational messages. The WTC mosque is causing the evil pink ooze from the sewars to bubble up, feeding of people's hate and frustration, and then Vigo will come and we are going to have to bring the Statue of Liberty to stop it all and make things right (see Ghostbusters 2 please).

It was immensely refreshing to see Jon Stewart's response to have a march to restore sanity and sensibility. The very idea that the rally will only go till 3 "because we have a sitter" is the perfect sentiment needed now. People need to stop screaming and start living.

The people behind the Islamic Center are not peaceful, progressive individuals who will do anything to enhance the civil rights of Muslim Americans. They are just starting shit. Progress does not come from fucking with people. Progress does not come from fucking with Sept 11 and politicizing it when there are very real victims and very real graves. It's just not sensible.

How do you think anyone even learned that the Islamic Center would be near the WTC anyway? How would people know if it's really just an empty factory? BECAUSE THE PEOPLE BEHIND IT TOLD THE PRESS. They are doing this to arouse anger. They are starting a fight. They are upsetting their people - saying to Muslim people - "Hey look at all these people who hate you!" THAT'S NOT HOW YOU PROGRESS. That's not how you heal as a nation and move forward. It's not healthy for Muslim communities to be thrown into this shit. It's hostile, immature, and caustic.

Fighting can be healthy, but at this point the American people are wrapped up in something toxic and poisonous.

We need to LIVE. We need to be human to each other. Muslim people need to integrate themselves as individuals in our culture. Art needs to be created. Intelligent discourse and expression. That is the key. Speakers like Martin Luther King. Not violence. Wake up, because your liberal empathy is being pimped out.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

In film school, you can't guard yourself so well anymore.

Irritatingly you are artists, every day. You don't come to work and sit down at a desk. You sit in rooms and look at each other and share the things inside you.
And there better be something inside you.

Some things should hide.
Some things are too explosive, unpleasant, or even perverse.
Correction, things don't have to hide.
But it's healthy to have some control over where they go.

And in film school, your ability to choose isn't always there.
Usually for better,
but sometimes it's distracting.
To look in the mirror all the time and see more than lines and colors.
All the time.

Exhausting.

Privileged.
Most people seem to envy this.

People want to feel.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Gas Mask

One lesson I have learned from the summer of my dad's stroke, is how intensely self-centered modern city life can be. I never realized before how the every day common elements of single life in the city are so luxurious.

Normality amongst modern adults in New York City is to live an existence that is perpetually free. We do what we want, when we want, where we want. We have private apartments and rooms and personal space. We float between personal engagements, work, and activity, guided by our own exploration and desires. We complain of jobs that don't fulfill our deepest levels of being. We are surrounded by choices, magnificent or putrid.

On friday night of fashion week, I had peppermint tea in the lobby of the Mercer hotel as Heidi Klum hung out with her friends, Karl Lagerfeld walked by, and one of Kanye's posse talked to my friend. And this was not so out of the ordinary.

There's nothing wrong with this world. I'm not judging it and calling it superficial or materialistic. The fact that our culture produces beautiful materials is incredible. Our culture allows for achievement in the tiniest threads.

My peers are chasing after cool, feeling constantly insatiated, and obsessing over ambitions and life's direction - so dominated by the chase that they often don't see the beauty in its freedom. Now I see this, and I didn't before. I have always understood privilege and luxury - but -

The fact that we are so free, on so many levels, with so many directions to go, so much space, so much of life dedicated to the self- to personal needs - is truly overwhelming.

I returned to New York City after taking care of my family for the summer, and not having my own apartment for so long - as I had previously shared a barely private, tiny space to save money. My room is so spacious and private, I don't entirely feel at home, or like this space is mine. I can't believe I have so much freedom to go and do and be whatever I want whenever I want. This is not something that my family has anymore. It all seems so luxurious.

It's truly incredible what has become normal in modern times.

And if I feel guilty, vapid, selfish, I do have one recourse:
the gas mask.

One cannot put a gas mask on another, until they have secured their own first.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Personal Update, Almost End of Summer 2010

People ask me how my dad is doing after his stroke and how was my family doing, and for most of the summer, the answer was terribly.
There were moments of something sweet or interesting - but mostly it's been just plain devastating, and often, it seemed like pure hell.

Dad came home 2 1/2 weeks ago and the first 2 weeks were the worst and hardest part yet. It's a fulltime job caring for him as he can't do everything for himself, and he's faced with living in a world that isn't made for him in his wheelchair or his inability to speak. We had to try and figure out how to be nurses and give medicines and take care of all dad's needs. Every tiny desire became impossible, dad was so frustrated, and he couldn't communicate what he wanted or needed so everyone was just really angry, upset, and exhausted. Dad's physical therapy at the rehab center focused on his basic movements and needs, but not so much on how he can really live outside the center. We've been pushed to our limits every single day, and mom is also trying to manage a stressful fulltime job.

But this week things were getting better. Specifically today. A physical therapist comes into the home and shows us how dad can do more things for himself, and how we can help him move around more easily, and we have figured out how to adjust the house better for every day life - and it's starting to pay off. It's been more calm the past couple of days, and the happy moments were more frequent.

Today seemed like the first good day. Sure it had it's share of regular major obstacles and frustrations - but we have become used to big obstacles. We felt most happy because dad has more strength and balance in his physical therapy, and we don't think he's too far from being able to walk with a cane, at least with our help. We have figured out how to manage more things, the house is better set up, and dad is learning to calm down and give us a break here and there. He really wants to do all the things he used to do. Him not doing the things he used to do has been one of our major obstacles - we've had phones shut off because we couldn't figure out how to log into the phone account, broken things, things we couldn't find, confusion over bills and taxes, etc ...

Today we wanted to move some of my furniture out of the garage where it's been all summer and into the van - but the garage door wouldn't open! The mechanism was broken, and the garage was so full of chaos and junk it seemed impossible to get someone in there to fix it or troubleshoot. Mom and I were inside the garage trying to pull on the door and press the button at the same time - and all of the sudden we got it up a bit, and then we saw feet under the door! Dad wheeled himself outside and was trying to help from the other side! He was laughing so hard when we saw him there. It was a pretty good moment. He laughed almost as much as when he tried to help empty the clean dishwasher, and picked up the whole basket of silverware and dumped it into the drawer. He looked at me and laughed his ass off, and later mom told me he used to do this before the stroke.

We frequently have dad participate in things, ask him for his input, and his insight is often what we need - there are so many mysteries to solve. We had to remove the seats from the van, and dad had to help us solve that mystery too. He can't just do it for us or tell us how, and it wasn't obvious either. We have to work together with him and figure out the puzzles of what he is trying to tell us and what we are trying to do. These things come up on a regular basis, and dad feels really good when we can figure things out with him - he communicates with gestures and sounds, and can say yes and no.

And dad loves mom's hugs and attention and was so excited mom sent him an email that said "I love you." He checks his emails all the time, though he can't write them yet. He reads well.

Anyhow, I'll be moving back into the city soon, and the idea of moving without dad is one of the things that has made me cry the most. In the last 11 years, me and dad have moved my apartments together - and I counted - this will be my 9th move in 11 years! I've only lived in one apartment for more than a year and it was my favorite one on Delancey Street. Moving is normally our bonding time. I am a daddy's girl and we do lots of heavy strong work together, and he builds things custom for my apartments, we assemble furniture together, he helps me hang shelves and things like that. Then we go eat something healthy because my mom and sister don't like that hippie food. He worked so hard and I appreciated it so much, but he knows that now, he earned us working hard for him too - and sometimes he feels very happy and moved by how we all work together. It's sad for both of us, but I hope maybe next year. It's unfortunate that elevator apartments in nyc aren't affordable, it would be nice if he could visit me or be there during the move.

I accept by now that dad won't help me move me this year, but it was something I thought about since the day of his stroke, that I wasn't ready to lose my dad or these things that we do together.

I'm going to get my life back soon. It's been less important and I'm certainly in the position where I could spare a couple months and give them where they were needed most. But - this experience has made every little personal indulgence seem a luxury, and the minutia of ordinary days will be deeply appreciated upon return. I wonder what my life will be this year. I wonder what my social life, my school life, my creative life, my home life will turn into.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

HUP HOLLAND HUP

On Sunday you can see the Dutch and Spanish battle it out to win the World Cup! I'm Dutch. Mom was born and raised. So Hup Holland Hup.

Do you know why the Dutch wear Orange (oranje voetbal!)?
- Because the original King of the Netherlands is King William of Orange - the kingdom once included Benelux and Spain ... so the orange color of Holland once included Spain as part of it's kingdom - and I'm pretty sure that William guy led a revolt against Spain to become an independent kingdom - and now they have to battle each other! omg

-------------------
My favorite song of the past month:
The National - England
(song doesnt start till about 50 seconds in)


My very favorite thing I found in the web recently:
James Franco's appearance on GH.

MOVIES
The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus
Terry Gilliam's latest and Heath Ledger's last. It's a mighty fine work, and something you don't see from film making much anymore. It's got the cosmically imaginitive more common in 80s films like Never Ending Story - really willing to go out on a weird limb, play, and not concern itself with being grounded whatsoever. Today's fantasy genre is dominated by the Lord of the Rings/Harry Potter/Narnia kind of stuff and this is very different. You see the creativity and heavily directed production design combined with the powers of CGI and I think Gilliam uses the digital effects tastefully (ie the opposite of the piece of cinematic trash called "Transformers") - the only other director who I think masters the creative use of digital effects similarly is Jeunet (Amelie, earlier work of City of Lost Children could be compared with Gilliam's Brazil). This is another film with unnecessarily antiquated gender roles so it doesn't score well there. And there are some sloppy moments so it's not a flawless piece of work - but you can easily get past that and marvel at the fantasy. You won't walk away from it saying it's totally amazing. But it's really something special, and makes me so happy to experience - the film wakens the childlike creativity inside.
Of note - young actress Lily Cole - so unusual looking, absolutely beautiful, fascinating on screen.


Invictus
I had no idea how great this movie would be from the ads. It's actually the historical story of Nelson Mandela and his involvement with the South African Rugby team's World Cup victory in his first year of presidency. It's a perfectly made film and one of the best sports films I've seen. Well acted, well executed, and you learn something along the way.

Toy Story 3
Underwhelming, nothing special, perfectly good for families, not worth going to as an adult without kids. It's no Ratatouille! I love that movie.

Oh Dear
There is a thing called Phantasmagoria: The Visions of Lewis Carroll. It's written and directed by Marilyn Manson. If this is a good thing, color me suprised!

Mike Patton + my favorite Michael Jackson song = I wish I was there.

No modern male singers, especially not in modern music, are better than Mike Patton (who also enjoys making weird vocal experiments!)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Comedian Lost

In recent weeks, I haven't been able to pay much attention to my own life. I don't want a gold medal, but it's a matter of fact that I have been giving up some of my life for my family lately. I'm not mad at them for this, I wouldn't have it any other way - I want to do this and be here. It's hard to declare this without sounding dramatic and like I'm complaining - let's just make it very clear that I'm not.

But I am feeling something partly related to this experience, and partly related to the isolation that preceded my father's stroke - a month in europe, and the past year in grad school.

My first standup show was for my 3rd grade class, and my first character performances were daily characters of the day in my 2nd grade class (all I remember is that I was a California Raisin on Mondays). Life: gut feelings, the totality of my experiences - told me that being a comedian and storyteller is the life for me, and so I pursue that end.

You have to constantly put yourself out there to get ahead in comedy (and in much of the media world) unless you get really lucky and randomly discovered - but that's not the sort of thing anyone worthwhile should count on. I'd been putting myself out there in every way I could manage for years now, though I always made room for living (all artists must be more than just artists or they have nothing to express!). Grad school started less than a year ago, and in taking it seriously, I put a lot of things to the side.

And here I am, the next summer after performing on Comedy Death Ray and Sweet - two of the absolute best comedy shows in LA and NYC - and I feel like the comedy world has already started moving past me. If I go to a party I may know everybody, but sometimes the crop of performers and administrators/business folk is so fresh and new it's overwhelming. I have the NYC comedy scene deeply and richly woven into my personal history. It's been a part of my life for the past 15 years now, as I started visiting NYC around 1996 in high school. I always had something to aspire to, grip onto, target with lasers and say - there - that's where I need to be - that's the mountain I need to climb. But the mountain is changing.

And so I don't think I can approach a comedy career that way anymore. I have been ok with doing less comedy since day one of Grad Film School. The reason I did standup in the first place was because I wanted to be a comedy tv or film writer. I never really wanted to tour the country and perform at Chuckle Huts - though performing in other cities is a ton of fun - I just don't see standup as a sustainable career - or at least not an end. A means to an end.

So it definitely made me feel like crap when I got a cold hard no recently when asking to book a show at UCB NY. I've gotten no's before. Failure and rejection are inherent parts of comedy (you have to have to take risks to find the good stuff) - but just in this moment I felt - man, these people don't even know me anymore. They don't know my history here. They don't know how I embrace this community, and have invited its members to take part in the things that I create. Things move quickly, and I don't have a grip in this world anymore.

I may have comedy friends, famous connections, and folks who have noticed what I do along the way - but I'm not a headliner, not a seat filler, and not a cold hard Yes, yet. It seems the achievements of my past can't be rebuilt, piled up, or built higher higher, high enough. But I do feel good about what I am capable of. I feel great about it in fact. I really like what I do when I do standup. I really like what I can do when I do original sketches or characters. I know the shows I do go well - but they certainly haven't gotten me far yet. They have brought me unforgettable moments, so props to that.

At the end of the day I have to make something great, that's always been true. It's going to take true patience, and being ok with driving in the slow lane to get where I'm going as people pass me by. As long as I get there in the end, because if I don't, I will have to redefine who I am as a human being.

I am a comedian.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

June 2010 Update

I got rid of my NYC apartment once my first year of film school ended on May 8th and on May 9th, I flew to Europe. Spent two weeks at the Cannes Film Festival, then traveled for 2 weeks in Italy and the french riviera. While I was there I partied with (next to) Lindsay Lohan, lost my ATM card and washed dishes for food in St Tropez, walked in the snow in the Alps, ate snails, tanned myself on fabulous beaches, and got back together with my boyfriend Adam over email. My dad picked me up from the airport on Tuesday June 8th. I made dinner for my family with a special soup mix that has been discontinued in the US but I found it in Switzerland and bought 9 packages. My dutch mom used to make this soup all the time so it was a missed taste of childhood. The next day I spent time with my parents at home. Dad was going on and on about politics and I told him to cut it out. He was also making renovations on the house and moving lots of things around. I said I love you and drove into the city to meet Adam for Brooke's birthday at Tine's apartment in the Danish House. The Danish House is a house for Danish artists living in America and Tine is a classmate of mine in film school.

I met Adam at the Outback steakhouse where I was having a beer. We walked over together and were enjoying drinks and potluck food. I was excited to see everyone and share stories from the trip.

At 8:30pm my mom and dad sat down to dinner and a movie and my dad had a strange look in his eyes and my mom knew something was wrong. She asked my sister to call 911 while she tried to attend to my dad. My sister called 911, and my mom and sister thought dad was having a heart attack. My sister followed my parents in the ambulance and called me at 9pm. My dad had a stroke due to his high blood pressure. I lost it and was hysterically upset and confused. They said my dad had a stroke and Adam and I took a cab to my car which I parked in Williamsburg, and he drove me to the hospital.

He was operated on immediately. The hospital was impressive. It was the night before my 29th birthday and I was in the hospital where I was born. The grand piano, water fountain, marble, and nice landscaping made us all feel like he was in the right hands. They operated immediately, and my dad was paralyzed on the right side of his body and could not speak. He was very out of it and confused and nothing was clear. We did not know the extent of the brain damage.

After about 6 days he was moved to a rehabilitation center which is only 5 miles away from my family house. He could now be out of bed in a wheelchair, and will be in daily therapy to learn to walk and speak again. We do not know if it will take months or years, but he has a lot of good signs that it will happen. He understands most of what's going on, he just can't communicate back to us yet beyond gestures and facial expressions. Every day he makes some kind of progress. He's very strong and extremely motivated to rehabilitate. The rehab center allows visitors, has decent food, and an outdoor area he can go to. He eats in a dining room with other people instead of at his bed. He is being rehabilitated to do every little thing for himself again. It's not going to happen quickly. It will take time, patience, hard work, and positive attitude. Soon my family will learn more about how we can help him too.

When I came home from europe, I didn't have a lease to worry about or a summer job. At least for the summer, I am taking over my dad's responsibilities, and spending the day with him at the hospital while my mom is at work.

My life for now involves spending the day with dad at the rehab center, and readjusting to suburban life. I'll be playing detective work figuring out how to pay the bills, how to garden, how to take out the trash, go food shopping, do the dishes, maintain the cars. I took the car for an oil change today. Just that simple thing is something that a city slicker like me hasn't done in a DECADE! I sat with dad at lunch and chatted with the other patients at his table. Dad is the youngest one there at 67, and he looks even younger because he's such a health nut. An 81 year old woman named Marge had a stroke too and she was very chatty. She loved the food there and was happy not to have to make it herself. Marge is feisty with a sense of humor and I think I'll enjoy having lunches with her at the table. Another couple asked if I was my dad's wife. I don't think they could see very well, the man thought my dad was about 45. This was a compliment to dad, who had shaved off his mustache 2 weeks ago for the first time in my entire life because he decided it would make him look younger.

I'm currently trying to figure out the damn remote control for the Dish Network system that my parents recently switched to because it's cheaper than cable and they barely watch tv anyways. I'd really like to find my camera battery charger so I can share photos from Europe. I'm also doing lots of healthy cooking for mom and me. Today it was grilled portobellos and yesterday there was baked chicken with apples, and I figured out a really tasty yogurt salad dressing: plain fat free yogurt, lemon juice, mustard, plus herbs (chives and parsley, but any are good).

And my neck hurts.

From now on I'll be visiting with dad during the day, and playing dad around the house during the weekdays. On weekends I'll be visiting NYC and friends elsewhere. There will be a lot of time in the car and a lot of driving, though I much prefer the subway.
If someone asks "How is your Dad doing?" The true answer is bad. This really sucks and it's sad and really really difficult. But how he's doing doesn't matter. The fact that there's a lot of love in my family matters, and the fact that he will do better and he will rehabilitate matters but he's not there YET. So he's not doing well just yet. There are plenty of little blessings like the fact that he can swallow and has a very strong left half of his body, seems to remember and understand, and laughs and has a sense of humor.

My time away from home with friends also matters a lot. I need to keep my soul healthy and happy and keep growing as always. I want that and of course dad and mom want that too.

Soon I'll spend some time on my films this summer, getting them out to festivals, shooting new shorts AND I intend to keep up with standup, who knows a place to perform in Morris County? Eventually things will need to be hilarious. Like this:

Morning Prayer with Skott and Behr - Black Francis from Tim and Eric on Vimeo.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hey there,

Back from Europe, but a lot has happened.
There has also been a difficult family emergency.

I'll return to write here soon.

Thanks
- Heather

Sunday, May 23, 2010

and now i,m in another part of the earth

on a weird italian computer

near cinque terra on the top of a mountain in a hostel! but it,s a very nice one

still hoping to get to holland

had a really lovely last evening in cannes, my classmate the moviestar james franco took us out at part of his crew and we got to go to all of the fun parties including something kind of amazing in cap d,antibes then partied till the sun came up with famous people who will never remember me but i,ll remember them and it was fun watching lohan break the law, paris hilton act like a fun frat boy (in a good way) calling for a round of shots in a fancy black tie dress, and benicio del toro sit around being cool. ps james and his peoples who i dont know if they want to be anonymous are very very nice and down to earth two thumbs up

ack
i cant properly express myself with this keyboard
all the typing comes out like i,m a perpetual tourist
i know i can make an exclamation point!

have had some great adventures but alas it,s not all roses and lindsey lohan
for example the french people
boo
(sorry to the good ones)

ok, if you,re curious whats up dude just google cinque terre and then you,ll perhaps understand although i,m not sure the internet knows enough about whats going on over here

me neither
ciao

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Cannes Report: Fair Game

Just saw Doug Liman's Fair Game starring Naomi Watts and Sean Penn. It was truly spectacular in every way. Expertly shot, performed, written, scored - every damn thing. Serious Oscar contention for cast and crew.

My senior thesis as a philosophy major asserted (if I'm going to oversimplify) that one can create a greater critical self analysis - an essential process for any oppressed group to become liberated - via expression - for example in film (my example was with comedy). WHICH IS SO TRUE IN THIS FILM.

I quit a career in politics in 2005 after Bush won his election for the second time.
Were I to continue to pursue this career I would have most likely been a sheep, shepharded in law school, formed into a beaten down cog in a machine (Yale or Harvard lawyers fair better in the "make a difference" realms due to their inherent power and positioning).

I've always wanted to smack people in the face with the truth about who women are and what we are capable of - and I want to see it properly depicted in the voice of the people - how we talk about ourselves and others - and so I want to see it properly depicted in film - whether it be simple fun comedy or a serious dramatic piece. I believe film is the medium for change and giving voice to women with personality and strength who are not heard or seen. I want to show depictions of strong women as they are - and I truly believe that if I can make films that show this, it will change how women are percieved and treated. I also believe I could accomplish this personally by achieving career excellence in a male dominated field such as film directing. SO aside from wanting to make some damn good comedies - this is my life's goal.

After seeing Fair Game by Doug Liman - I see an extremely effective film that has given voice to people who were silenced - It can make a bigger impact than those who try to make a difference in politics and are silenced. Speaking up is exactly what films can do. Fair Game is excellent and I look forward to the impact it makes. Thank goodness for Valerie Plame's story it was placed in competent hands.

It's also a pleasure to watch!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cannes Report number next

Saw Tanner Hall - a film made largely by women ( headed by writer/director team Francesca Gregorini and Tatiana von Furstenberg), and it's damn excellent in many ways, so I'm sad that the script fell short in certain moments taking away from a film with huge potential. Either way I think it will be successful and enjoyed by a variety of audiences. The acting and general shot direction is fantastic. The characters are real and complex, and one of the most wonderful portrayals of teen girls I've seen in film. The problems lie in some cheesy moments - the evil mom and the end for example - just really really didn't work. Solid acting performances came out of each and every cast member - from Chris Kattan (which suprised me) to Amy Sedaris and Tom Everett Scott (I'm already a big fan). Especially impressive were the teen performances from Rooney Mara and Amy Ferguson. Those two absolutely blew me away!

Almost saw Blue Valentine - hugely buzzed about with packed screenings - starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams with music by Grizzly Bear (and ps - been loving Blue Valentine producer Lynette Howell on the panel circuit - Lynette if you read this, I'll work for you any day!) BUT I wasn't up for the emotion at the moment - word is it's incredibly moving and sad. Hopefully I have one more chance to see it before Cannes end.

Catching Fair Game bright and early in the morning!

Arrrggg! I love me some movies.

Other stuff
- Saw Stephen Frears speak - interesting tidbit about his directing style - he picks actors he loves first and gives them a lot of freedom. Doesn't hold rehearsals ahead of shooting and feels he must respond to the moment and the set in the space, then rehearses there before going for takes
- Was selected for a short film competition so I got a free Flip Cam! Shot the short today and uploading it tomorrow - wish me luck cause the prize could pay for this trip. And I'm feeling guilty about the euros that been droppin so ... if you like me, knock on wood for me please!
- Going to help location scout in Italy next week!!! Going to Cinque Terre and the Alps. I'm so excited and extra excited to find affordable adventures.
- My final week in Europe will most likely be with friends in Majorca in Spain. Yes I'm doing it all on the cheap!
- Probably won't be able to visit family in Holland but spoke with the Holland Film Commission while here and intend to shoot something in Holland next summer.

Cannes Report

Hey dudes,

Here's the reason I'm in Cannes:
- I have a short film on the Short Film Corner
- To learn the market - Cannes is the most important international film market, and I'm learning quite a bit about the business of movies, and the most valuable bits about how you can actually sell your blood sweat and tears at the end of the day.
- To make contacts with those who could fund my blood sweat and tears, or those who could contribute blood or sweat to my existing pile.

And I'm also here for adventures, and to see films. Here are the films I've seen - (so far the dominant themes of the market at Iraq war, bad economy, 3D, and there's LOTS of puppy films):
- Police Dog Dreams - a Japanese film about a little girl and her dog and their dreams to be a police dog team. F'ING AWESOME. I have the poster. and it is AWESOME.

HERE IS THE TRAILER!
- a 3D presentation from Korea with robots and dinosaurs. the robots outshine the dinosaurs by far. 3D offerings are EVERYWHERE. audiences - get ready for your eyes to be exposed to this comeback technology from the 80s and let your mind explode with extra dimension (I think it's just a trend that will last 2 years max!)
- Main Street - great cast (Ellen Burstyn, Orlando Bloom to name a few) but we left after 30 mins into the film. BAD EDITING. TERRIBLE EDITING. Shots were misused, it should have started way later in the first scene, the opening montage was boring and repetetive. Could be great if it was edited properly
- Every Day - Liev Schreiber, Helen Hunt, Carla Gugino. Bad writing. Liev not right in this part (though a good actor), and Helen Hunt's hair was overdone which was a weird and mal-fitting choice. Left after 30 mins
- Company Men - Great film, Academy Contender - Ben Affleck, Tommy Lee Jones, Chris Cooper. Strong acting, good story - VERY UNINTENTIONALLY SEXIST - Women were never portrayed in relevant roles, in real life women are executives and there were none. We should have seen a female lead along with the men, also there was a token black role - cheesy and the black dude isn't as real a character as the white leads. And the one female business woman had to get naked which wasn't necessary and that actress should have had to do that to tell this story. HOWEVER it was a moving, scary examination of corporate downsizing and layoffs. Ben Affleck's story ark was so extremely true to life, and this will strike a real nerve with those of us deeply afraid of the impact of this economy.
- Tamara Drewe - A really fun film made by Stephen Frears who knows what he's doing. The end is hokey, but otherwise it's great fun and will do well. Great ensemble cast.
- Of Gods and Men (Des Hommes Et Des Dieux) - French film about monks in a monastery in Algeria facing up against violent terrorists while trying to support the village they inhabit. We saw this one on the proper red carpet last night! So fun. The film is absolutely beautiful and moved me to tears. Very well acted. Loved those old men monks! Was so moving to see the actors and director receive a long standing ovation at the end of the film. The most brilliant scene is at the dinner table where we spend time with each character as we experience quiet moments with each as they evoke their viewpoint and experience. One criticism is the overuse of the technique to stay on shots a long time - he should cut a lot of shots shorter (even though its clearly a style choice) because it is being overused, and he will lose the audience and they will be bored or their minds will wander. He needs to keep the long shots in the important moments we need to feel most, and cut some landscape shots, etc because its taking away from the film! It's quite a moving experience a la Schindler's list (but very different style wise from that film)

Other happenings:
- got to see a panel with Doug Liman! He's such a competent director, I admire him so much! Hope to catch Fair Game. Will write about what he had to say about fair game - and the fact that he DP's many of his own films! - later
- Stephen Baldwin is poking around. I think his kids made short films here
- Saw Javier Bardem walk into his press conference!
- Visited Grasse. Got rained on :(
- So far the highest scoring films in the festival are Mike Leigh's Another Year - and 2nd highest is the film I saw, Of Gods and Men. Biutiful by Innaritu and with Bardem scored very very low! Worst score so far is yakuza film Outrage by Kitano- and Kiarostami's film with Juliette Binoche got mixed reviews.

Ok bye now.

Friday, May 14, 2010

I wanted to take a break from movie business and learning the ins and outs of the film market for a moment and watch a movie at this Cannes Film Festival. I'm really interested in seeing some of the films that will premiere in the Lumiere (that's the glamorous theatre) - especially Stephen Frears and Doug Liman's new films. Also interested in seeing Woody Allen's, Inarritu (sp?) and Mike Leigh's. Couple of other films playing on the market look good like Blue Valentine (I will try to see that) and The Kids are Alright (I missed that cause I was being important for a minute).

Up until 5:30 today I hadn't seen any films in Cannes yet. (The Fantastic Mr Fox on the plane was Fantastic. It's Complicated and Crazy Heart were 'eh') At 5:10pm I was charged 5 Euros and 60 cents for a glass of perrier in the Hotel Gray du'Albion.

AND AT 5:30 I SAW:
National Lampoon: Dirty Movie

Yep.




oh you want a review?
ok. you.
It's actually got a lot of hilarious moments - surprising. Love everything Chris Meloni ever does. I think he could make Mein Kompf funny. The film is good, aside from the part where they degrade women beyond being funny, and beyond the way the other groups of people they make fun of are degraded. Each group that's made fun of is addressed and questioned, but the degradation of women is never questioned for a second, making it even more offensive. I especially love their depiction of an all male film crew ... etc. A movie like this you'd say, "yeah but it offends everyone!" it does - and it is totally funny yes - I recommend it as the PERFECT thing to play at parties - easy to get while drinking. There's some priceless whacky moments. And it's a really cheap movie, which I think audiences will notice and won't care. Still I'd like not to be sucker punched by sexist comedies all the damn time. It would make me happy not to be! The tits in the movie don't help and could definitely be removed (people stopped laughing during those parts and it slows the pace of the film), as well as calling the dumb blondes "sweety" errrr anyhow - there are some priceless fun moments and it has it's place in your dvd player when you want a stupid funny movie. Will kill in frat houses and belongs at parties. Viva La France.

PS - NYC comedians Livia Scott and Todd Levin were in the movie! And I've seen the seller of the film Mystery Team advertise their movie, so that's fun to see familiar faces on the poster. And ... hmm other comedy news. Seen Andy Serkis cast in a couple new comedies, and something with Isla Fisher, and something with ... I forget, time to eat a baguette. AU REVIOREE

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

no time

only time for trying to finish an edit of my film and then feeling badly about self - note to people: filmmaking, probably many creative processes, involves LOTS and LOTS of beating yourself up about not being where you want to be yet. Just sayin!

Leaving for Cannes on Sunday!! YEAH

A couple things:
Something we did in camera class

Lighting Exercise from Jessica dela Merced on Vimeo.

A girl bored with her life turns to her imagination...and Lady Gaga

Starring Heather Fink
Sexy BG dancers: Ryan Johnson, Greg Lemaire, and Charles Rogers
Director and Camera Op- Jess dela Merced
DP- Ed Barnes
Crew- Janelli's 2nd section woot woot!

Shot on super 16mm film



These are fundies


Marina Abromovich lady makes people cry by looking at them in a museum. Oh these crazy modern times!

LEARN SOMETHING


A great job opportunity!

Hunter S Thompson really hated contracts.

OK THAT'S ALL I HAVE TIME FOR RIGHT NOW SORRY.

PS you can see a screening of my 7 min comedy short film: Saving Mr Whiskers - starring Will Hines, Eli Newell, Ann Carr, GL Douglas, Madison (my niece), and Tiger the cat.

There will be screenings of the 1st year films in NYU's Grad Film program on Thursday May 6 from 3pm-9pm, and Friday 11am - 5pm.

Mine will be showing during the 7:30pm block.
Thursday May 6
@ NYU Tisch Building
721 Broadway @ corner of Waverly (between 4th and 8th streets)
room 109 (ground floor)

SUBWAYS: NR to 8th Street, 6 to Astor Place; ACE or BDFV to W4th
Street parking is often available after 6pm.

Friday, April 23, 2010

I'm sitting on the floor

with my computer
because I'm emptying out this whackhouse apartment I've been living in all year. It's a bit floody and ick. Yesterday Obama HAD to give some speech on my block at Cooper(Pooper?) Union and so the block was closed off and it needlessly interfered with my moving process. Isn't it fun how politics are nothing but speeches and press junkets and nonsense? Yes it's very fun for excited young leaders of tomorrow, and excited olds who grabbed up their new suits for today and got chances to pretend things are important and urgenter than usual. Putting up baracades and talking on walkie talkies and making different lines for different people. WITNESS THINE IMPORTANCE!

Anyways. Just finishing up my first year of grad film. Editing the current project, which is a lovely process of self hate and fucking "fuck!"s yelled at footages or others who arent present, tickled by moments of oooh that's nice.

I'm not saying too much here - just been tired and not blogminded lately.

But I'll show you some things:
- Maniki
- Top Grossing Restaurants
- Green Bay Packers Green and Gold Men's Striped Gamebibs

Thursday, April 08, 2010

its happening its happening

shooting my short film tomorrow!

this is the most effort and planning I've ever put into anything I've written/directed to date!

argegehghhghghgh

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Movie Reviews: Greenberg, Precious, The Informant!, A Serious Man, The Hurt Locker, Julie and Julia

Greenberg
- Actress Greta Gerwig was OUTSTANDING in this. She should be nominated next year for her performance.
- Ben Stiller plays a character who is hateable, but it's all very real, and comes around full circle to the end.
- The end moment is ok, not going to satisfy a lot of viewers. I get the idea that director Noah Baumbach has become a masterful storyteller, but has not yet mastered the art of the ending. In some ways it works. Not a big deal enough to ruin the movie.
- I really appreciate what is being explored in Stiller's character. Sometimes we are jerks. It takes him time to open his mind to the reality of his flaws.
- This film has achieved the rare ability to be very truthful in its portrayal of certain relationships and human vulnerabilities.

Precious
- Really well directed, the shots were all interesting, the casting was strong, and the acting was as good as it could be
BUT
- the writing is pretty average stuff. I CANT STAND when writers exploit situations like rape, drugs, violence, and abuse to force drama into a story. Precious could have just been poor and fat and you could have still had an amazing story.
- I'm not saying those topics shouldn't be explored in film; but that's just it, exploring them is ok, exploiting them because you can't write without forced shock value, it just isn't talent.

A Serious Man
- It's about a man alienated by the absurdity of the outside world
- My next film is about a man alienated by the absurdity of the outside world
So that was helpful to see. The way the Coen brothers handled it was masterful as usual. There was something I didn't love about it even though it's a well done film. I think it was the performance of the main actor. I'm exploring a similar character in my film and have cast Will Hines as the lead. I must say I like what Will is doing with the role much more! I must also say I didn't see this movie till after I wrote the script, and what happens in it is much different. We shoot April 9-11!

The Informant!
- Soderbergh. Hmm. Interesting director. This movie has the cheekyness of Oceans movies and is really tongue in cheek. Cheeks. Very stylized and poppy. Liked it, didn't love it.
- It's a good story and really inventive how he approached a true story almost like a superhero movie.
- My favorite thing is the use of the main character's thoughts. Often times voiceover is a lazy choice when something should be shown instead of told - but here it's a great layer, especially because the thoughts don't always lineup with the viewer's experience.
- Matt Damon does a good job. He's proven to be a pretty solid performer. Extremely versatile, easy to cast.
- Lots of comedian parts: Scott Adsit, Patton Oswalt, Joel McHale, Paul F Tompkins
- Ann Cusack has the same voice as Joan Cusack
- The real thing: Read about the topic of the movie - Mark Whitacre - totally insane! Read this part. (it's a spoiler for the movie though)

The Hurt Locker
- Thought it was well done. Well Shot, the best thing about it is the perspective - the idea of being addicted to war. Making a statement that some people want to fight. Some people like it.
- But it wasn't the best movie of 2009 for me, though it was way better than Avatar. To me, the best movie was The Messenger, also about the current war.

Julie and Julia
- Would have preferred to see just the life story of Julia Child. God I love her, always did. I love Julia Child because I love cooking, but also because she is one of the most delightful characters this world has ever seen.
- The Julie story is about a girl who blogs about cooking all of Julia's recipes and then gets a book deal. It's annoying to see her story because she's not portrayed as particularly likable or interesting. In fact, Julie's character - however close to the real Julie or not - has it all come to her so easily. She seems bland, spoiled, and it's not really rewarding to see her win at the end and get the movie/book deal that we are now watching. I'm not sure if it's because the real person is this way, or the portrayal is this way. Either way - isn't it damn annoying when people get book deals from coming up with some half-brained blog idea? I love my success stories to come from hard work. I like Larry Flynt's success story better than this one.
- It is interesting to see "blogging" treated realistically in a movie. Sign of the times. Often times movies don't know how to handle social realities such as the small details of life especially when it involves technology and internet use.
- I still give it mad props for showing how delightful Julia Child and french cooking are. I'm also really interested in the book "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" the first real gourmet handbook for the American housewife.
- The real Julia/Julia blog.
- Julia Child

She was 6'2".
She had a really funny voice
She was full of joy
She was funny
She had more bravado in the kitchen than anyone who was ever on tv, and could handle a chicken carcass like nobody's business
She made magical things and influenced modern food culture in very big ways

It looks different now

This blog. Nothin spectacular, but I had to make it ok up in here. FOR ALL THE READERS!

Nah, this blog has occasional perusers these days. But it had its day. Boy oh boy did it have it's day. Back in those days, being a blogger or having a blog was worth having a conversation about. These days it seems to be more of a functional tool.

Or at least this one is. I'm about to write some movie reviews! Watch out.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

this blog is a visual graveyard

Started in 2004, it's been around 6 years now.

This new "Echo" thing you might be seeing is because my old commenting system haloscan no longer exists.

The banner is old, the colors are drab. Sorry people this isn't a visually rich experience. I'd like it to be prettier but haven't had the time.

The time will come soon, it's just barely professional.



This guy is working on building me a better thing.

And here's a photo of me from my high school graduation:

I'm on the right.

Movie Review: Avatar

It sucked and here's why:

- It should have been a kids movie and been consistent with that tone. That means no using the word "bitch" all the time (they are also probably not going to be saying it that way in the future) and NO SEX SCENE WTF!
- The characters were cartoonish - the bad guys where cheesy as hell - WHICH WORKS IN A KIDS MOVIE! - take Small Soldiers for example - great kids movie, cheesy bad guy totally works.
COME ON JAMES CAMERON - You made my favorite action movies of all time - Terminator 1 and 2 - that dialogue was adult, sophistocated when it needed to be, and dealt with the "future" appropriately. It was a great script. This was more expensive and terribly written, terribly acted. The Terminator movies were well acted. So honestly what the hell was Cameron thinking. UNOBTAINIUM???? That's what it's called? Right.
I even liked Titanic.
- Yes, it was "enjoyable" but so was Ratatouille and that was well written with strong acting and solid voice over performance.

Ferngully was a better movie when it comes to rainforest love stories.

And killing all those US soldiers during wartime? And it's being embraced by American families? Um ... ok.

And about me?
I'm totally exhausted, must rejuvenate.

- We go into production period for our next shoots on Friday so that means that from now till April 11th I'm shooting films!

- Then we have a month to edit. (Till May)

- I'm also moving out of my crappy apartment by May 1st.

- And on May 9th I'm going to the Cannes Film Festival, and will be in Europe till June 8th when I'll be visiting friends and family.

AND THEN WHO KNOWS WHAT AFTER THAT! I'll have my stuff stored at my parents' house in the meantime. Hoping for a summer job before the next semester starts up. Maybe I'll work on a movie somewheres?

Things I'm addicted to right now:
- the snooze button. I go for 5 more minutes OVER and OVEr
- Chocolate - I think it's really an addiciton. Every day there's an intense craving and I feed it. I don't think it's a problem but I do find it odd to have such an intense craving on a regular basis.

Knowledges - random links I've been hanging on to for you.

If you'd like to hear a great perspective on life and have your heart warmed - watch the bottom video from Rogert Ebert on Oprah in this post.

Alexander McQueen's last collection

spectacular.

Crazy statue about justice with a map of a concentration camp. Unexpected from such a statue.

Deniro on Acting

"The talent is in the choice" - Adler

NY's Fashion Week runway shows music playlists.


These are burgers wrapped in bacon and cheese with hot dogs sticking out of them. They take the pain away.

Pattern is Movement "Light of the World" mp3

Tim and Eric Awesome show came back

OFFICIAL TIM AND ERIC AWESOME SHOW, GREAT JOB! SEASON CINCO PROMO! from Tim and Eric on Vimeo.
WISH I HAD TIME TO WATCH IT :( they are my heroes.


Hey, want more stupidity?
Here:

What's up with that puppy, right?

- awesome list of sad heartbreaky songs
- a pretty crazy story about a woman who had sex with her brother - unlike any story I've heard before ... glad I don't have a brother?
- Priceless video of James Brown drunk

Saturday, February 20, 2010

NEW VIDEO: Tito Santana Documentary 5 minute teaser cut


DVD cover by Shayna Kulik of Pattern Pulp

Hi everybody!

I filmed a documentary this winter about my hometown hero Tito Santana - AKA Señor Solis

Señor Solis 5 minute teaser from leatherfink on Vimeo.

Thank you Tito Santana, my hometown of Roxbury NJ, EMS Principal Nittel, and everyone involved.



(click here to watch it in a bigger size.)

This may be online for a limited time so watch now :)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

David Bowie you're amazing!
my heart is heavier than an elephant
what a dream to be so heavy
and still adorable
stomping flat feet
doesnt eat meat
love them leafs

Monday, February 08, 2010

An overwhelming amount of items found inside the internet, all good.



Sara Benincasa wrote about how I spent a night at the Plaza with her and Mandy Stadtmiller for a story. It was a truly wonderful experience. I wasn't supposed to post about it before. But Sara did, so ... we'll see if someone tells me to take it down :)

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When will society accept that all straight guys aren't schlubs who trudge around in a testosterone haze, resenting their overbearing girlfriends? Some of us enjoy being emasculated; it's actually sort of relaxing after centuries of oppressing everyone all the time.

From this well written superbowl recap via gawker.

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Sean Patton is a local comedian, friend, and sincerely talented dude! Check him out on Fallon:


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Please give your money and support to the Boner Center.
The John H. Boner Community Center - your community center - serves Indianapolis' near Eastside. Every contribution supports the center's work by providing the financial resources needed to help continue individuals move towards self reliance and encourages people to an improved quality of life!

By providing its many services and programs, the John H. Boner Community Center is a vital element to the quality of life of its residents. Without your support, the Boner Center cannot exist.


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CNN takes on "the G Spot"

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A super cool video Ted Talk about making sounds visual via their natural vibration patterns.

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Rare Photos of famous people. A very random, fun list.

George Clooney

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Katheryn Bigelow GO GET EM TIGER

Kathryn Bigelow became the first-ever female winner of the Directors' Guild of America (DGA) award for best direction in a feature film.


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Arcade Fire's incredible fusion of web and film for Black Mirror, they did something incredibly impressive with the web before for Neon Bible.

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Ratatouille is one of the best films I've seen. So completely fun and well executed, great story. I'm not so into seeing animated disney features. Now I get it.

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My friend Raphael Bob-Waskberg showed me how he's even MORE talented than I knew before after I saw his play the Mike and Morgan show. His writing was phenomenal - mark my words - this man can write extremely well, and anyone who gives him money, like a movie studio, will be rewarded. RBW is a comedy writer/performer best known for his group Olde English.

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I don't care if Die Antwoord is South Africa's Ali G and a joke, the songs are fun and they look great. Also, props to the Dutch language, and I heard them playing the Ninja song at some trendy sceney dance night. Cory Kennedy and entourage was also there so we experienced a Nylon magazine photoshoot come to life. That was after having dinner at the Waverly Inn, a notch on the New Yorker belt.
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AND FINALLY A SONG

Gang Bang Suicide by Broken Social Scene