Archive for March, 2008

Take 1

March 7, 2008


Last week I put up one of the most… different videos I’ve ever made. I decided to call it Take 1, but I only came up with that because I’d forgotten to insert a text saying Take 1 at the very beginning of the video. I actually don’t mind the effect of not seeing the back screen with the text on it until the first time things start to fall apart, and if you want to get really picky about it, I guess you could argue that the page of youtube its on serves as the original title. But lets not worry about that,

“The video is basically about a bit of dialogue between two characters that becomes increasingly distorted as time goes on. In the information for the video, I claimed that,

This video is an odd one, I must say. I came up with the idea while cutting through raw footage from a day of shooting and I came up with the notion that the different takes and out takes of each shot made their own version of reality. As the editor, I didn’t just choose the take that looked/sounded best, I chose the take that best represented the reality I wanted to recreate; hence, I created my own reality by disposing of any/all other potential and/or available realities. After I wrote this video and filmed it, I started editing it and started thinking of it in terms of alternate dimensions, where there would be different plausible realities where some individuals would have hints or vague perceptions that dimensions other than their own existed, but they couldn’t quite put their finger on how they knew this or what they could do about it. The meanings behind the different audio/visual decisions I made as a director changed depending not only on each take as a sovereign entity, but also on each take in relation to the other takes, and so I tried to show the point that film is always inherently compromised by the fact that every idea created must not only be translated (and therefore have some piece of itself lost) by translation into what is actually filmed, but everything filmed is inherently compromised by the knowledge of the filmmaker that only one version of everything filmed will be chosen for the final product, which I would argue creates a sort of tension that is unique to the art forms of film/ television /video production.
The costumes represent nothing, I wanted to have each take look different and it was, arguably, just an excuse to play dress up with Grace. Kyla was a huge help in actually getting the video done, and I couldn’t have done it without her. Spencer’s and Jake’s music were, as always, invaluable, and I really liked the effect I got when I played Spencer’s “Mr. Meanie” backwards. I uploaded everything through Max Pacheco’s computer, and he took a good amount of time out of his particularly busy video-a-day schedule to help me. Special thanks to anyone who bothers to read up to this point. A 2008 Rojhelio Studios Production.”

Which by copying and pasting that saves me a lot of explanation. I left a lot of things open to the viewer, like to what degree (if any at all) the characters were aware that they were repeating themselves, whether or not the characters are supposed to be real or self-conscious fiction, whether or not at least one, if not both, of them are crazy, and so on. I even had the idea that they’re both ghosts, and that after Mr. Wilkins killed them, they were forced to be stuck in a rut of actions forever and ever. I also never really established how or why Mr. Crumbleburner and Mrs. Taffymaker die, or if Wilkins simply wills them to be dead. Now that I think of it, I also never referred to Grace’s character as Mrs. Taffymaker, which isn’t that big a deal.

I was surprised by the positive response the video got. I’d been toying around with the idea that different takes of the same line of dialogue or different days of shooting the same thing over again created their own alternate realities. I also had no idea that there was a poster for the anime Death Note, but about 20 people let me know that it is, and I quote,

Oh my gosh! Death Note!


Having never seen the anime, I don’t really have anything to say about it.

In other Rojhelio Studios news, the youtuber known as gnosticgerbil has been deleted for unknown reasons. As I have no idea who he or she was, I have nothing more to say about that. The animation project with Spencer Hensel based on his “Willard” characters should be up in a week or so. Pat Ryan came down to Emmanuel last weekend and we filmed most of a project that looks promising. It should be up in a couple of days, but I don’t want to give anything away, its still a secret.