28 May 2009

There Will Be Controversy

Okay, I'm sick of blog post titles relating to the name of our incredible movie, too.

I've just returned home from the Hamilton Final of the V 48 Hours Furious Filmmaking Competition for 2009. And I must say, I'm quite disappointed.

Not with the films. The films were of course, amazing. Along with our masterpiece, we watched films ranging in theme from funeral protocol, to courier drivers, to real estate agents living in bizarre parallel worlds. With some unorthodox priests, speed dating and softcore porn/horror (???) thrown in there for good measure. Hamilton filmmakers = SO talented.

The entire cinema was shocked and overall dismayed however at Chris Tan's recrowning as City Champion, for "Hardwood Floors". Chris is something of an awkward and intoxicated prodigy on the local film scene, and he most definitely deserved his win last year. This year, however? Not so much. While his film had excellent cinematography and costumes - and my personal favourite sequence "I sold this house, and this house, and this house, and this house... this is my car... and this house, and this house..." the concept for their film was generally hailed by the audience as pretty crappy. The weird clown dancing in the street, for example? Get out of here. Cool use of a prop: "the rock garden is made from dragon eggs...!"

And don't even get me started on second place, which was "Speed Date". As Jono brought up later, "how is making violence towards women funny ever a good thing?". Now, I'm not going to go all feminist on you, but you have to admit, it's a pretty touchy subject. And not one you really want to reward with runner-up in the City Final. The female actors were pretty rank, but one of them somehow managed to outclass our Kimmy for Best Actress. Yuk. Also, somehow the creepy main actor won Best Actor. Get out, get OUT!

Other shitters? Okay, how did "Wrong Place, Wrong Time" even make the final? They were in our heat, and they got a pretty poor reception there. We realised at the end of the night when they took the award for All Girl Team. All Girl Team? Are you kidding me? What about All Boy Team? This movie was pretty much pisspoor. And that's a word I hate. The lighting was so bad it was non-existent in some scenes, it wasn't even horrific (unless you consider the acting) and there were some questionable camera angles (for example, down Alex's already scantily clad cleavage) that all made for a pretty crappy production.

There was also "Recharge", a conspiracy film involving "iPears" being hacked and used to make the listener perform tasks like grand theft auto, and hit and run. Niiiiiice. Pretty awful acting, bad spelling, but kind of cute ending when the battery ran out.

"The Room" could have been the worst. They received an award for what I think was supposed to be consistency. Kimmy later asked if it was because they shot the entire seven minutes from one angle. Got a little tedious. The "hot" girl wasn't even hot, the ending was stupid, the only impressive thing was really the incredibly outrageous Alex, who listened to rocks and "dolphin eggs" throughout. Kinda funny. Overall: fail.

Film we LOVED: "Puddle Finishing School Part IV: Funeral Protocol" a massive and all-conquering crowd favourite, we're baffled as to why this little gem didn't win almost every award including the overall City Champion. The film was so serious it was hilarious, impeccably shot and cut, and the crew got it "just right". Particularly loved the trip hazards: a baby! a rock! a grenade! I can assure you there were more than a couple of angry viewers and fellow filmmakers who were dismayed at the lack of acclaim this flick received. Boo. But two thumbs up for the movie itself.

Other qualms: the judging of the minor awards. As I mentioned earlier, some of the worst performances of the night received Best Actor and Actress, a film with a poor soundtrack won an award for sound, and a film which made absolutely no use of costumes won best costume.

I'm a little bitter myself as I was nominated for Best Makeup (yay!), but didn't win... a film with no makeup whatsoever won for their projectile blood spurt. Which, for the record, at the Oscars is considered Special Effects. I really thought I had that one in the bag.

Radioactive Reptiles didn't come away empty-handed, though. We were nominated in five categories:  Best Actress (Kimmy), Best Actor (Brendan), Best Script (Thom), Best Use Of A Line (Thom) and Best Makeup (me). Thom took the award for use of "it doesn't fit". And too right. The judges did get something right, after all. A little shocked, too, that Bevan's incredible cinematography skills went virtually unnoticed. Boo.

We still had an amazing 48 Hours. As best put by Sophie: "we're chasing the thrill, not the competition". And we still have a shot at a Wildcard entry for the National Grand Final, as Peter Jackson (of Lord Of The Rings fame) HAS WATCHED OUR FILM and it's up for one of three nationwide Wildcards. Do the right thing, Pete!!

It's 2:36am. Miriam is very tired, still wearing makeup, and needing to sleeeeeeep.


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