308 Indie Films released in North America market in Q3, only 29 financed and 33 released by big studios

2009/11/25

Ladies and Gentlemen:

We heard this types of stories about music labels, then we don’t hear them anymore, the major labels are gone.  We’ve been hearing them about studios lately. We’ve seen the proliferation of text-based content on the internet, and now we know what has happened to print media industry; we are all watching Youtube, Netflix, BitTorrant, Hulu, Charlie Rose, TED Conference and infinite numbers of other Web-based multimedia, and we also know with the help of HD and recession, broadcast TV and cable are not booming.

The right question is only how quickly and completely the movie industry as it was will disappear. Since we all know that multimedia content only occupy increasingly larger portion of our waking hours, the even more important question is how content creators and consumers should enjoy the freedom of lack of middlemen.

The answer, DIY. That says a lot, but also very little.  Here is another one, “Context is King”.

To be continued…

Independent Films in 2009

Independent Films in 2009: An Analysis Through Quarter 3

Posted on November 9th, 2009

by Jeremy Juuso in Business News, Entertainment, Movie News

Time for a quarterly check-in with the land of Indie. Through the last weekend of September 2009, we’re seeing some pretty interesting results for the year to date. 308 specialty films were released into the domestic market. That is, 308 films opened at 1,000 theatrical venues or fewer during their first weekend in the U.S. and Canada.

Only 29 of these (or less than 10%) were financed in some part by one of the six major studios, Disney, Fox, Paramount, Sony, Universal, or Warner Bros. The other 90+% were born outside of the studio system. Remember, just because a project was not financed by a studio does not mean it could not have been released by one. In fact, 33 specialty films were released by studios.


Movie review – The Messenger

2009/11/23

The Good

* The lessons are all cliches, but true. It’s great to be able to deliver the rather conventional meanings through the drama of a movie
* The director was able to pull it off due to the great acting by Woody Harrelson, Ben Foster, Steve Buscemi
* Along with Kathryn Bigelow’s “The Hurt Locker”, this Moverman’s directorial debut is much needed for the thinking and reflective public (small as it is, certainly noticeable in New York City)

The Bad

Several key scenes that had my hope build-up but failed to delivery

* The kitchen scene with Olivia
* The post fist fight, drunken road trip, singing Home on the Range
* The “morning after” scene in the woods after the Wedding party crusher
* The “coming out” scene on the coach watching Tornado on TV with Will’s War story told to Tony. Though the scene was saved by Tony’s cry with a good camera angle and Will’s controlled respect. Kind of late in the story to bond for friendship sake, don’t you think? The shock of the horror of the war, and irony of being a decorated hero…  Didn’t we just have half dozen episodes of those?

The Ugly

* A warm ending with hope in Oklahoma?
* As controlled as the movie tries, too much were going on which strangely make one feels not enough is there.  It’s so understandable that you want to do so much with your first feature film; or the marketing company got the final say, etc. etc. But a steady hand in the editor and/or director could turn these materials into a better film.

25 All Time Favorite Movies

2009/11/23

  • The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1989)
  • Annie Hall (1977)
  • As Good as It Gets (1997)
  • The Big Lebowski (1998)
  • Born Into Brothels (2004)
  • Bullets Over Broadway (1994)
  • City of God (2002)Cidade de Deus
  • The City of Lost Children (1995) La cité des enfants perdus
  • The Crying Game: Collector’s Edition (1992)
  • Delicatessen (1991)
  • The Doors (1991)
  • Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005)
  • The Fifth Element (1997)
  • Forrest Gump (1994)
  • Gandhi (1982)
  • Heavy Metal (1981)
  • Indie Sex (2-Disc Series) (2007)
  • Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
  • The Lives of Others (2007) Das Leben der Anderen
  • Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
  • Pulp Fiction (1994)
  • Spirited Away (2001) Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi
  • Talk to Her (2002)Hable Con Ella
  • The Unbearable Lightness of Being: SE (1988)

Eroticism

2009/11/21

Have you seen Eros?

Antonioni was a disaster. Wang Kar Wei couldn’t pull it together, and was just tiring to watch though the boredom was eased a bit by his signature atmosphere and frames.  Robert Donnie Jr’s dream by Soderbergh, now THAT is eroticism.  The best part is that the woman in the dream is his wife… Plus, it explained the origin of the Snooze Alarm so perfectly that now every time I look at my snoozing blackberry or alarm clock, I feel like a Jungian. The opening animations are nice.

Catherine Breillat: “When Anatomy of Hell first came out … All headlines read ‘Is it pornography or art?’ My answer is the same, ‘ if you ask that question, it’s art.'”  Jackson Pollock explained in a radio interview that modern artist is working from a source from within. Guess for Breillat, that source is projected to the female genitalia? (I know, I know… It’s not fair.. and I’m being a smart ass, no pun intended.  The Last Mistress is a treat.)


Jung-Blake Double Talk

2009/11/21

The Tales of Hoffmann was shown at the Rubin Museum as part of Jungian movie series during the display of Carl Jung’s Red Book.  The recoloring by Technicolor makes the high handed intellectual construct of the movie version of the Opera story even more over the top. Lack of happiness, after all, can be the creative source.

Went to see William Blake exhibition with a engineer-turned-poet-turned-power house young media executive-turned-big time tech executive friend. Blake never traveled far from his home town.  What happened to “万卷书,千里路”.  Maybe all enlightenment and salvation is in our dreams?  BTW, Morgan library did not do a good job with the Blake show. A disappointment.

Blake-Jung connection may only exist in my mind (and of course my dreams)


“Faceless” Terror

2009/11/21

Last week, watching 2012 for all the money Hollywood throws at a big blockbuster, the “parts are bigger than the whole” type of production that Hollywood can be counted on.

Something funny happened after watching that movie. It made me watch Funny Games again. Guess the connection is an obvious one though not short of a twist. A fantastic disaster such as 2012 is completely unconnected to human emotions, it’s overwhelming and faceless.

The pain and violence in Funny Games have two young and pretty faces but little if any human ethics informed emotions except the strange “politeness” which only make them more surreal.  Hard Candy girl at least had a “reason”.