VF48Hours Lockdown Forum

Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

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Ratty Crack Bride rules. Beyond 48 hours etc.

Maybe most people on the forum are entrants in the competition and it's difficult to get an honest or in depth critique or discussion. Maybe I am a 48 hours resistant outsider. I tuned in to the screening room to look at entrants for the last couple of years (this years winners not being accessible yet). There are only two films in the last two years that I remember as honestly watchable, the Grand Cheval child jumping movie from last year and the Ratty Crack Bride pencil animation from this year.

The Child Jumpers, I honestly cant say how it got though my defences, but it did. Ratty crack bride I think knows its medium, was unaffected by this bizzare time constraint (48 hours !@#$%^&*), and has no flaws that compromise the core idea. And the core idea is good. It feels like a really personal, well familiarized fantasy. And it takes itself fully seriously, whereas most other entrants don't.

What is this irritating thing about Independent NZ cinema (which 48 hours is part of) where we have to treat everything with at least a faint layer of self parody/mockery or allow possible resopnse in a commedic vein. As if serious film is dead. What a joke. I blame it all on those Flight of the Concord fuckers, Eagle vs.. ..and Taika W., but it must have it's roots deeper than that.

I think people can create a little universe for themselves anyhow and anywhere they like, fiddling away while Rome burns etc, but for every action there is a reaction or an effect. There will be some new film makers who may represent the new Vincent Wards, Roger Donaldsons, Peter Jacksons of tomorrow and the environment you guys have created with 48 hours will actually hold them back. So I think there is a responsibility towards the future.

I heard some guys talking about what lies beyond 48 hours. Some of you already have your answers to that. Others don't. In case this shockingly obvious thing has not been stated. Having 48 hours to conceive, develop and execute is a bizare and extreme constraint. It's almost a formula to produce a high volume of mediocre or seriously flawed films. All of which is fine if it's a lot of fun. But I seem to witness industry professionals who are involved, who simply want to validate this, rather than help explain the broader context - help people to find what lies beyond.

Anyone who thinks that the Make My Movie idea is what lies beyond is completely wrong. The idea of film making being popularized or democratized is alreaday a notion at least half realized. Can this really be cool or subversive anymore. No, just forget about that.

You need something to encourage really high quality short films that are not basically goomed by the NZFC or anyone else. Frankly, short films that are made as compliant promos to an individuals entry into the main stream NZ industry are not of high value in the big picture at all, unless by some accident they are totally amazing films.

In conclusion. Fuck democracy (in art and film). No two things are created equal. Yes we can have "structures in place" (modern vomit speak) that allow the infusion of new ideas into the established status quo, the slow morphing of the film industry and the product it creates. But I am convinced that the real leading edge of change is always embodied by artists, most of whom may not even be positively identified right now with film medium. And this is never recognized by the incumbents, who are always too busy excusing themselves and validating the way that things are right now.

For those of you who believe that this is all taken care of, that all is as it should be...I looked over the applications process to Creative New Zealand about a year ago and most of what I read was political stuff about the Treaty of Waitangi. Should an artist be left to navigate the depths or should they be scurrying around on the surface of life negotiating the modern political concerns. Only one possible answer for me.

And I really respected Ratty Crack Bride.
Hey is Francie Murray's daughter. Well done. Hope I catch up with you to chat about it.

Cheers,
Gregg.

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Cardinal
From: Christchurch
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 182

in reply to Gregg MacPherson:

Gregg, I've been idly following this thread without feeling the need to comment until now, but I have to jump in at this point to congratulate you on this recent post, which can only be described as an epic spectacular. Honestly.

Having read it, I feel almost certain that there must have been a phase in your life in which you wandered the earth, solving the problems of small towns using only your kung-fu skills.

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Ant Timpson
From: New Zealand
Since: Mar 2011
Posts: 341

See we're talking about Carradine and Kung Fu now. That can only be a good thing.

Now back to the SERIOUS business of film !

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dramamike
From: Wellington
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 1367

in reply to Ant Timpson:

Now back to the SERIOUS business of film !

But what about the comedy? Drama vs Comedy debate begins anew!

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Ant Timpson
From: New Zealand
Since: Mar 2011
Posts: 341

Peaceful solution?
The dramedy

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Peter Haynes
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 89

Gregg, thank you for clarifying your position. Any anger (or mostly annoyance) in my post stemmed from the perceived belittling of people in this contest who I know are working their hardest to make good films within the limitations of 48 hours. And telling someone that you're 'not sure if he deserves an answer' (Which you seem to have edited out) is just flat out arrogance.

You want more sincere films? Well, thats great, but my first question is, who defines what's sincere or not? Is it Mukpuddy, who slave all weekend to produce top notch animations and could never be accused of slacking off or doing second rate work? Or is it Halcyon, who missed the deadline by 10 minutes this year, but will still be back next year to continue their unceasing rise in filmmaking quality? Or even Bald Faced Cheek, usually known for their offbeat comedies who took the risk this year of producing a touching drama?

Do you deem these films and many others to be somehow not 'sincere', as if the makers don't really care about their work, or do they just not live up to some personal standard of what you think a film should be?

If the latter, then it will only and always be your personal opinion. If its the former, then I think you're struggling, because it would be pretty hard to find many teams out of the hundreds that entered who weren't sincerely doing their best to make the best damn film they could.

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48 Hours Old Boys Club - Lifetime Member
Forum Winner: Best Snapping Dog award, 2012

48hrs 2003 - 'Rockqueste' (Fantasy)
48hrs 2004 - 'Flashman' (Musical)
48hrs 2005 - 'Jungle Fever' (Action) Audience fave, Regional finals, Peter Jackson Wildcard
Moonlight shorts 2006 - 'Two Worlds' (Finalist)
48hrs 2006 - 'Phairytale' (Fairytale) Audience fave, Regional finals, Best Actress
48hrs 2007 - 'Cowboys and Indians' (Western) Audience fave
48hrs 2008 - 'Three's a Crowd' (Romance)
48hrs 2009 - 'The Loneliest Vampire' (Musical) Audience fave, Regional Finals, Best score
48hrs 2010 - 'Two Timer' (Time Travel) Audience fave, Regional Finals
48scs 2011 - 'The Human Centi-V'
48hrs 2011 - 'Stuck in the Mini with you' (National Winner: Best Road Movie)
ABC's of Death - 'T is for Talk' - 2nd Place internationally
48hrs 2012 - 'Blackout' (Found Footage) Regional Finals
MMHM 2013 - 'Penance' - Final 6
48hrs 2014 - 'Flicker' (Time Travel) Audience fave, Regional Finals, Peter Jackson Wildcard, National Finals
48hrs 2015 - 'Katy Harrison: Grooming a Superstar' (Rockumentary) Audience fave, Regional Finals, National Finals
48hrs 2016 - 'Mahnamana' (Puppet Movie) Audience fave

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Ant Timpson:

Hey Ant,
Thanks for saying that. I held those ideas back too long and they landed quite hard. People over react and it's hard to know what anyone really thinks . Strangely, Shifty, the compassionate one, was the one really feeling the load, actually metabolizing the feelings. I worried that he was OK and dropped a post on the "Trifecta of Bullshit" thread or somewhere and got poked by the same stallion that initiated the shitty reactions to me in this thread. Whilst it really put me in the mood to nail some fucker to the wall I just have to take the lesson and step back.

Please don't be put off by what I initially wrote or the tone. I fully respect your achievements and in itself the 48 hours is a great thing. The collective mind of the community is easily capable of moving whever it needs to go.

Regards,
Gregg

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Peter Haynes
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 89

"....and with that, the mysterious stranger turned and walked away into the burning sunset, inexplicably accompanied by a Chinese flute soundtrack."

Team Haynesfilm/Ow - Affluent Syndicate
48 Hours Old Boys Club - Lifetime Member
Forum Winner: Best Snapping Dog award, 2012

48hrs 2003 - 'Rockqueste' (Fantasy)
48hrs 2004 - 'Flashman' (Musical)
48hrs 2005 - 'Jungle Fever' (Action) Audience fave, Regional finals, Peter Jackson Wildcard
Moonlight shorts 2006 - 'Two Worlds' (Finalist)
48hrs 2006 - 'Phairytale' (Fairytale) Audience fave, Regional finals, Best Actress
48hrs 2007 - 'Cowboys and Indians' (Western) Audience fave
48hrs 2008 - 'Three's a Crowd' (Romance)
48hrs 2009 - 'The Loneliest Vampire' (Musical) Audience fave, Regional Finals, Best score
48hrs 2010 - 'Two Timer' (Time Travel) Audience fave, Regional Finals
48scs 2011 - 'The Human Centi-V'
48hrs 2011 - 'Stuck in the Mini with you' (National Winner: Best Road Movie)
ABC's of Death - 'T is for Talk' - 2nd Place internationally
48hrs 2012 - 'Blackout' (Found Footage) Regional Finals
MMHM 2013 - 'Penance' - Final 6
48hrs 2014 - 'Flicker' (Time Travel) Audience fave, Regional Finals, Peter Jackson Wildcard, National Finals
48hrs 2015 - 'Katy Harrison: Grooming a Superstar' (Rockumentary) Audience fave, Regional Finals, National Finals
48hrs 2016 - 'Mahnamana' (Puppet Movie) Audience fave

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http://www.afkwebseries.com
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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Peter Haynes:

My internal batteries are a bit low now and life's busy. a son with larengitis or something (dodging his math test tomorrow maybe). If I can refresh myself I'll come back to some of those questions. Few hours or a day or two.

You may have caught on to something that really puzzled me. I had replied to one post and told someone... something like they didn't deserve an answer, and then gave them a short answer. Sent it I thought, then went back in to edit some other things in there. I checked the new post (this is what you read), saw I missed something, fiddled again and suddenly the ...them not desrving it bit etc was gone. I got a shock, wondered if the moderator might have done that, or was it just, lucky. Less insults flying around, and more importantly (for me), the answer was about me, and I really didn't want to start talking about me.

So that was my inexpert fiddling with the text. I'm glad it was no one fiddling with my junk.

Cheers,
Gregg

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Cardinal:

:
... I feel almost certain that there must have been a phase in your life in which you wandered the earth, solving the problems of small towns using only your kung-fu skills.

That's very funny, I LLOL (literally laughed out loud). I loved my short stay in India, but I had to come home and sit on a toilet for a month or two.

BTW I heard, but never had time to read up on, the idea that martial arts came to China via enlightened wandering Indian princes.

Cheers.

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IctusMortem
Since: May 2012
Posts: 408

in reply to Gregg MacPherson:

I agree that sincerity within films is good to see. Funny how using different words puts a different slant on things eh? (sincere vs. serious)

I agree completely that there is nothing groundbreaking being discussed here, and my initiating post was not a discussion. What it was.....was someone having some intense ideas and simply disclosing them.

Yeah, that's what...bewildered people a bit about your original post (which anyone can see just by glancing through the first replies) as this is a forum, created for discussion whereas your original post wasn't aimed at that or seemed to have any particular aim at all really. Which is fine but you have to keep in mind your audience, particularly if you're going to start having a back-and-forth with them :D

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to IctusMortem:

Hey Ictus,
I was tying to figur out what your nickname meant but my vocab is too limited. I did study latin as a kid but the only thing left is the enduring impression of us all chanting an endless array of present, past, future....parallel universe tenses.

I can say from hard lessons learned in brother/ sister family life that sometimes there is just no easy or right way to say a thing. And regardless of how it was done it will look wrong in hindsight

If I can charge up I would like to pop back and add a couple of thoughts or responses to ideas on topic.

Cheers,
Gregg.

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Ant Timpson:

See we're talking about Carradine and Kung Fu now. That can only be a good thing.
Now back to the SERIOUS business of film !

Treading water while I prepare to get serious again.....Our film tutor at CSFA did actually organize a couple of really good things. This was one.

David Carradine Drops In......(as in, he visits NZ and I drop his name).

David Carradine was coming to NZ in 1982, I guessed to backpack Americana, his own indie feature, or to be at the screenings. Most of our small film class and my large dog squeezed onto the back of my 1930 Ford Model A Roadster Pickup truck and drove to the Academy Cinema where he screened Americana just for us and a couple of Kiwi suits. Then chatting with us quite intimately about making Americana, films, life, whatever. Back out in the sunlight, I remember David C and my big dog really liked each other. The dog had very large teeth. DC was quite fearless. I seem to remember we dropped him off somewhere in the Model A. The maker and star of Americana, riding along in this iconic old piece of Americana enjoying his cigar. Years later when remembering all this, I wondered if that very last bit, the truck ride, was an imaginative extension of the memory. Odd.

For the lovers of old vehicles, just google for a generic picture. It's like riding along in a sports car, a little sports car truck, if that makes sense.

Cheers.

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treefrog
From: Dunedin, Otago
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 1115

Agreed, Boss.
Apologies to all on the Forum for my lack of temperance and jurisprudence.

This wonderful comp, and all the marvels it produces, may never birth another 'Brideshead Revisited', 'Mulholland Drive', 'Casablanca' or 'The Graduate" (Massacre?. No? Too soon?) because thios comp is not designed to birth such events (sic) and I think V48 is more of a foundry than a competition.
Raw and partially processed materials are stockpiled...then its all bash/blend/rend/pour by labourers and craftsmen until beautiful oddities are delivered on Sunday night. The sweat of honest labour is a healthy sheen. The rewards are obvious.

Later, after the Makers retire, their works are presented and opinions are formed. Often without consulting the operators manual, users, of various skill levels, attempt to use the found devices as they see fit.

Its a populist film-making competition. It will produce marvel and tragedy in dis-similar quantities. RTFM.

One mans Art House, is another mans (insert dis-tasteful commentary), while one mans Mickey Mouse is another mans Leen. Go figure.

The anti-capitalist/anti-consumerist band 'Consolidated' use McDonalds ads to demonstrate the oppression of the populace, while the same ads are on display in Metropolitan Museum of Art as examples of cultural and commercial significance. (__sighs, rolls eyes__)
Andy Warhols 'Campbells Soup', anyone?

Teams dutifully and passionately return to V48 year after year.
Some will ascend mightily, (thedownlowconcept) while others evaporate, become footnotes and also-ran's. This is a significant reason to return if nothing else. Teams dissolve, and bob up again in different configurations endlessly, a bit like the NZ music scene.

65%(+-) of the populace act as a functionaries for the whole, allowing the balance to dance/create/flourish. Darwin calls this mechanism the 'developing mutant pool.'
We could identify the functionary group within V48 as those who aren't in the Top 12+ of each region. This NOT to say they're not fine, hardworking, elegant and educated individuals. The products are viewed, not the fount. Its just that....well, cream rises.

The inherent nature of V48, continuing with the Darwinian skew, is that its an unpredictable format producing unexpected results.
Occasionally very unexpected results are birthed.
Bewildering, actually. (2011 winner. Seriously?!)

Q/ Can anyone tell me if the same team has won nationally twice?
I'd be keen to see their films side by side. Such is the nature of the comp.

So...Go Team Gregg! Go, Team Anybody Else!

How about that local sports team, eh?!

I will retire from this thread forthwith.
Again, I offer my apologies for any harm I may have done.

2009-2015 48 Hours Otago/Southland Manager, all-round filmy geek.
2008 - 'Oh! My Gucci Boots!' - Cats of a Feather - Director -*Best Costuming
2007 - 'ARC' - Schrodghers Cat - D.O.P.
2006 - 'Scarred-The Directors Cut' - Strange Attractor - Audience Favourite
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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to treefrog:

This wonderful comp, and all the marvels it produces, may never birth another 'Brideshead Revisited', 'Mulholland Drive', 'Casablanca' or 'The Graduate" (Massacre?. No? Too soon?) because thios comp is not designed to birth such events (sic) and I think V48 is more of a foundry than a competition.
...........I will retire from this thread forthwith.
Again, I offer my apologies for any harm I may have done.

Hey Tree Frog,
No harm, no real foul. Ok, you're probably apologizing to Ant... that's cool.

I'm quite respectful of what you are writing and I'm really glad that you did write. No need to leave. You just helped set up a much better beginning point for people to share their ideas.

One way is the way of debate, anything from the civilized to the raging shit storm. It leads to winners and losers, or compromises. Another way is a sort didactic or synergistic thingy. Ideas get expressed and we all just morph together into whatever new thing we need to be collectively.

I'm trying to find time to get some ideas down. My wife thinks I'm chopping wood right now.

Cheers,
Gregg.

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Gregg MacPherson:

Another way is a sort didactic or synergistic thingy

Sorry, in the interests of being readable.....a correction.

Another way is a sort of didactic or synergistic thingy

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IctusMortem
Since: May 2012
Posts: 408

Ah, the old chopping wood excuse... cunning.......

I like the fact that the films that win 48hours are not always the slickest productions (though sometimes they are), more attention seems to be paid on that indefinable x-factor. Of course to get into the finals the films are all up to par with the sound/footage quality and over par with the way they USED that sound and footage, but it's nice to have a competition which doesn't seem to have an overbearing leaning towards who has the best resources.
Maybe that's part of the reason why you seem to think that 48hours isn't aimed at or achieving high quality short films. After all, 2011's winner The Child Jumpers were a shock win for a lot of people, but it still had something about it. "I honestly cant say how it got though my defences, but it did", as you said.

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

Hey Ictus.
It is factual that I was supposed to be chopping wood and did later get some of that done. Started writing yesterday. Being clear and orderly feels like a rather bland, milk-toast half assed thing, but I'm trying.

I was writing a reply to you while I randomly happened onto a post by Veli in the "Re-edit for screening room" thread (page 1), with a link to Third Wheel, from last year. My response to that post is hopefully useful here. Splitting the idea onto two threads is maybe bad, so I'm going to quote Veli and show my reply to him. Here is the link to Third Wheel.
http://www.v48hours.co.nz/screening-room/2011/wellington/third-wheel/

Gregg quoting Veli
"Word.
Ours was a big disaster last year (no excuses) and I still put it in with all of it's technical glory..
Nobody wants to show their mistakes.. and the society seems to make it worse (film school attitude at worst)
Not that mistakes can't be gems sometimes............
For example there was one film with just absurd ADR (or lack of it) and that made the audience laugh big
at it (according to reports and little birds)......."


Gregg replies to Veli.
Good word Veli,

I stumbled into here almost randomly and saw this old post and watched the Third Wheel movie. I enjoyed this a lot. Initially I was confused whether this was cock up or not, so it's like I'm distanced from it, wondering. Then I flicked the "what if" switch in my head and enjoyed my own version of it.

I'm always relieved when I find a movie that is, I dunno, deliteralized. It is a simple little, well conceived narrative, but the form feels quirky new, even if this device has been used before. Decoupling the words and lip-syncy pictures was quite potent as an inadvertent device.

On a second viewing, you know, enjoying my own imaginary version,
- I ditched the 48 hour group photo session. That was just completely distracting.
- I ditched the first shots where they meet up in front of the car. I ran some of that dialogue over black screen with maybe some credits.
- Opened with their title shot and left them to it for a while.

The unusual formal premise, the wierd off sync ADR and the possibility of picture and sound being fully decoupled is actually quite well set straight away. Maybe the first shot of the girl could have been more grossly out of sync. Dunno

So big claps to these guys, even if it was an accident. With such a tight constraint as 48 hours to work, I think great ideas with more bold or original form are the most rewarding and productive way. Beating your heads against a brick wall trying to execute normal photo-realistic narratives with high production values is just begging for a result with significant flaws.

Veli, do you mean that the Art School attitudes are the worst culprits at forcing us to have an aversion to flaws? I don't know what the art schools are like now, but back in the day (1980s) we would all have liked or hated this film enormously. I'm just assuming there would be haters, just because of their nature (nothing to do with the film really)

Cheers,
Gregg.

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IctusMortem
Since: May 2012
Posts: 408

in reply to Gregg MacPherson:

I'm... a bit confused how that responds to my comment. Or just in general links up with the discussion here. :D I might just be being slow, but looking at this for the third time I'm still a bit bewildered, so can ya elaborate/explain what ya mean in connection with THIS discussion?

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to IctusMortem:

I'm... a bit confused how that responds to my comment. Or just in general links up with the discussion here. :D I might just be being slow, but looking at this for the third time I'm still a bit bewildered, so can ya elaborate/explain what ya mean in connection with THIS discussion?

I think your post prodded me to think about what high quality films were, what this meant in terms of 48 hours and what misperceptions might be there about my opinions. Referencing Third wheel seemed a way to say some of that.

I guess I could have just pointed to that link I thought it was a good opportunity to explain better my point of view. I think it's very significant that the quite energizing form in that film, decoupling the dialogue and pictures, was achieved by accident. In my utopian vision of what short films could be and what the 48 hour films could be, I would be more excited if far more of them explored more novel forms of this kind.

To be fair or clear, I'm referencing the imagined version of Third Wheel which could have been made deliberately

High quality films. I think of it as where you are the master of your idea and the master of your medium, within boundaries. And the best ideas come with a clear idea of how to work those boundaries. Think Ratty Crack Bride. Simultaneously, and I know this is or seems quite contradictory, my unchanging belief is that it is better to over reach for something amazing and fail rather than choose a safe path.

Thoughts about what "high quality" or really good films are is pertinent to most of the themes in play in this thread. Rather than a topic, we probably have a collection of wriggly ideas. Seething ganglia. Blame me for that

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Gregg MacPherson
From: Auckland
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 232

in reply to Gregg MacPherson:

Seething ganglia.

Ganglia just meaning nerve cells in the central nervous system. I just googled "seething ganglia" and they looked like some kind of healthcare concern forum.

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