Posts Tagged ‘movie’

‘A Changed Man’ Teaser Trailer

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

As mentioned in a previous post, our short film, A Changed Man, has been accepted into this year’s Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival. A Changed Man will screen in the Local Shorts #2 block on Saturday, August 27th at 7:20pm at the Hill Event Center. Many wonderful people donated their time and effort to produce this film, which is a testament to the love the people of Birmingham have toward the film production industry. Enjoy the teaser trailer for our film. We hope to see you at this year’s Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival.

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Our Latest Short Film Nearing Completion

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

In April 2009, we started production on a short film, tentatively titled “If Only.” The production itself was set back several times due to bad weather and some issues with locations, but we finally wrapped in early July 2009. If you would like to see some production stills, click here. Since that time we have been trying to finish post-production and it has been a long process. One reason for the delay has been our conflicting schedules. It has been difficult for the editor and me to sit down and hammer out the cut. Another reason has been our approach to the story. When I first wrote the script, I had a certain structure in mind for the film. However, as the editor and producer looked through all the footage, they had a different take on how we should construct the story. We had several discussions on how we would approach the edit and I am very pleased with the approach we took. We have now completed the edit and currently the film is in the hands of our music composer who will score the film. Once we have the music in place we will due a final audio mix and some color correction before we submit it to this year’s Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival.┬áThe film has been officially renamed, “A Changed Man,” and centers around an emotionally distraught woman who struggles to put her past behind her and regain control of her life.

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What I’m Watching: ‘Melinda and Melinda’

Monday, April 6th, 2009

Melinda & MelindaHow one goes through life depends entirely on his or her perspective. One individual might see the tragedy inherent in a specific event, and yet someone else might perceive the same event to be a positive. Is the event itself tragic or comic, or does it depend solely upon your point of view?


This philosophical merry-go-round is the foundation for Woody Allen’s 2004 film, Melinda and Melinda. The film opens at a restaurant where four friends are in the middle of a conversation about life and relationships. Two of the friends are playwrights. One friend says that life is inherently tragic, but the other claims that life is inherently comic. A third friend sets the plot in motion when he asks the two playwrights to listen to a story and then comment on whether the tale is best viewed as a tragedy or comedy.

From that point, the film follows two parallel stories, centering on Melinda, a young woman trying to get her life back together after a series of bad relationships and self-destructive behavior. One story follows a dramatic interpretation, and one follows the conventions of a romantic comedy.

Commentary: The Premise

The premise of following parallel stories is engaging, although cliched and formulaic. This movie would not seem quite so original had it been produced as a stand-alone tragedy or comedy. But because both story arcs are shown side by side, the film is much more interesting. I think most people enjoy contemplating how life’s course can be set in one direction or another by events outside their control. It’s fun to imagine what if? scenarios, thinking how things could have been different, if only…

Commentary: The Dialogue

The dialogue in the film is a number of things – snappy, clever, poetic, and philosophical. Allen allows his characters to speak what many of us only think. The danger of doing so, however, is that a lot of the dialogue is too on-the-nose and expository. It doesn’t ring true for real life. Characters (Melinda especially) engage in reflective and introspective monologues that are often tedious. At times it feels more like a stage play than a film, but perhaps that’s the intent, considering that we are seeing this story through the eyes of two playwrights.

Commentary: The Comedic Interpretation

Of the two “Melinda” stories, the light-hearted, comedic tale is much more interesting, due to the talents of the actors on screen. Will Ferrell plays Hobie, a struggling actor married to an up-and-coming director played by Amanda Peet. Ferrell’s Hobie is charming and innocent, and he falls for Melinda (played by Radha Mitchell) when he realizes his marriage is going nowhere. Peet is equally likeable as the ambitious work-aholic filmmaker, striving to lock in the extra money to get her first feature into production. The dynamic between Ferrell and Mitchell is fun to watch, and the dialogue between the two rings truer than the dramatic counterpart of the film.

Commentary: The Dramatic Interpretation

The weaker of the two stories is the dramatic interpretation. Here, the characters are far less interesting, the dialogue far too stilted, and the acting too melodramatic. Aside from Mitchell’s performance, the ensemble around her was flat, stiff, and too over-the-top. Mitchell’s portrayal as the emotionally disturbed and suicidal Melinda really carried this portion of the film.

Final Thoughts

Overall, Melinda and Melinda explores some very human themes in very conventional ways, but presents them in a unique way.

5 1/2 out of 10

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