Obviously Losing

Location: Los Angeles, California

Friday, September 23, 2005

Update... and then some

I'm trying to keep this blog updated, although... is anyone even really reading it? I dunno. I'm going to keep chugging along and adding to it. Things may get more interesting around Oscar Season -- lots of movies to see!

I'm about to start editing Film #2, which is going to be a bitch because I feel like the film shoot didn't go that well. Hopefully, somehow, I'll be able to edit around my shoot's flaws.

I saw a few movies recently.

The Constant Gardener (8 out of 10) - This was directed by Fernando Meirelles, who did City of God, the best film of this decade so far. So to say that my expectations were high is an understatement. The movie is very good - a thriller with a message that also manages to entertain. Meirelles' stylistic flourishes are toned down a bit, but he still manages to shoot the story in intriguing ways. The acting by Ralph Fiennes is perfect, but Rachel Weisz came off as a bit annoying. What was a letdown was the film's script - it went in too many directions, introduced too many characters without really developing them. Also, I never really felt the love between Fiennes and Weisz, but I did appreciate the fact that the narrative was presented via flashbacks as Fiennes learns more about his wife after her death.

Transamerica (7 out of 10) - This comes out in December. It stars Felicity Huffman, who just won an Emmy for her work in Desperate Housewives. And get this, she plays a male-to-female transsexual who learns a week before her final operation that she is the father (mother?) of a 17-year-old son. I don't think this film will make it to Bush Country. The story is sweet, if somewhat cliche. There are moments in the film where the characters' decisions, especially the son's, make no sense. But this movie belongs to Huffman - she pulls off a fabulous performance and really lets us sympathize with her character.

Innocent Voices (8 out of 10) - Comes out in October, and I'm assigned to do a review of it. I'm legally bound to restrain from posting my opinion until the film is released... either that, or I'm too tired to keep on typing. Look for my Daily Trojan review later on.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

God has been cast

For my 2nd film, the role of "God" has been cast. He'll be played by Steven J. Russell, who looks like this ------->

Monday, September 12, 2005

Entering Oscar Season

With the Toronto Film Festival happening, the movies are now ready to gear up for Oscar Season, which means the quality of films released is about to soar.

So far, the best films I've seen this year have been, in alphabetical order:

Saturday, September 10, 2005

My Dream

I have a dream. It is to beat Doug once ... just once, for crying out loud... just one little victory, that is all I ask... in MVP Baseball 2005. Until that day, this game is my nemesis. And Doug too.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Oh, and...

I forgot to mention that I was officially admitted to the USC Annenberg School of Communication. So, now I'll be double majoring in Cinema Studies AND Print Journalism, which means I'll be at USC until 2045.

2nd Movie

So I'm starting to work on the script of my 2nd short film. I think it's going to be about this guy ---------->

Monday, September 05, 2005


Two weeks into school and my classes are looking good for the most part. Here's the rundown.

JOUR 201 - History of News in Modern America
Professor is cool and it looks like we'll be covering some interesting parts of journalism history. But the textbook is the most poorly-written thing I've ever seen. It'll use a quote from Thomas Jefferson on one page, and then two pages later will repeat the exact same quote as if it's new information! Grrrr... you would think journalism books would be grammatically flawless, I mean, the profession is about writing.

CTCS 200 - History of International Cinema Part I
Again, professor seems chill, uses PowerPoint (always a plus), and has been showing a ton of wonderful early silent films. The best film has to be "The Cameraman's Revenge," which very briefly is a stop-motion animated sex drama involving bugs. Yeah... trust me, it's great. It looks like we'll be viewing many excellent films; unfortunately, I've seen quite a few of them already. But I don't mind seeing "Grand Illusion" or "The Fall of the House of Usher" again... masterpieces never get old.

CTPR 241/290 - Fundamentals of Cinema Technique & Cinematic Communication
As everyone warned me, these two production classes are going to take up all my time this semester. You make a short film every three weeks. Three weeks may sound like a long time, but it's not -- you have to create a story (the hardest part), write it, plan your shoot, audition and cast actors (real actors in LA, mind you), shoot it, and edit it. I finished my first film, which means I'm now desperately searching for ideas for my second film. Anyone? Anyone?

CTCS 469 - Film Style Analysis: Steven Spielberg
Probably my coolest class, for many reasons. First reason: It's taught by Drew Casper, the celebrity of the Critical Studies department. By now, everyone who's in the class has had Casper before and knows what to expect... we're there for a show, and Casper has yet to give a poor performance. Second reason: Watching all of Spielberg's films on the big screen -- "Raiders of the Lost Ark," "Schindler's List," "A.I. Artificial Intelligence," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "E.T.," "Jaws," and so on... it'll be sweet. Third reason: Spielberg is stopping by for a Q&A session. I'm determined to ask him a question... I only need to think of the right one first.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Upcoming Movies

Here's what I'm looking forward to most in the rest of 2005...

1. The New World (Terrence Malick) - Dec. 25

2. The Fountain (Darren Aronofsky) - December

3. King Kong (Peter Jackson) - Dec. 14

4. Jarhead (Sam Mendes) - Nov. 4

5. Munich (Steven Spielberg) - Dec. 23

6. Brokeback Mountain (Ang Lee) - Dec. 9

7. Memoirs of a Geisha (Rob Marshall) - Dec. 9

8. Lord of War (Andrew Niccol) - Sept. 16

9. The Corpse Bride (Tim Burton & Mike Johnson) - Sept. 16

10. MirrorMask (Dave McKean) - Sept. 30


All the King's Men (Steven Zaillian) - Dec. 16
The Chronicles of Narnia (Andrew Adamson) - Dec. 9
Elizabethtown (Cameron Crowe) - Oct. 14
Good Night, and Good Luck (George Clooney) - Oct. 7
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Mike Newell) - Nov. 18
In Her Shoes (Curtis Hanson) - Oct. 7
Match Point (Woody Allen) - Dec. 25
Mrs. Henderson Presents (Stephen Frears) - Dec. 25
Oliver Twist (Roman Polanski) - Sept. 23
Prime (Ben Younger) - Oct. 28
Proof (John Madden) - Sept. 16
Rent (Chris Columbus) - Nov. 11
Shopgirl (Anand Tucker) - Oct. 21
Syriana (Stephen Gaghan) - Nov. 23
Walk the Line (James Mangold) - Nov. 18