Learning as I go….

Seems to me one of the most complex things about film-making and more specifically Documentary film-making is the notion that the story is just handed to you. With my two films officially finished under my own imprint and the many other things I have independently filmed in this cinema verte’ format, THIS IS NOT EASY. The story isn’t a given. In Some cases you have a fireball of energy that’s going all over the place and  in some cases you have a subject with good intentions that’s just boring and lacks intimacy. Its often my goal to try and pull that special thing that grab me about the subject out of the subject. From that point I hit the cutting room and try to decide if they story I think is there is really there. I want to give the subject the opportunity to tell the story they want to tell. I find there can be alot more honesty there without me directing the answers. The subject is the director and I am the captain that steers the ship. The problem with this is the subject tries to tell the story, which is essentially their story the way they think I want to hear or the way that they think best represent themselves. For me this is the worst of the worst. It becomes vanity, commercial, and no different than a 60 minute piece of network TV. Telling these short stories I want to find that conflict and resolution but more specifically the conflict.Having the chance to tell my stories the way I want when its time to edit I want the only omissions be the ones I intentionally create and not the ones the subject is avoiding. Because I play the role of eyes and ears in my films alot can get missed therefore camera only stops for battery. Its not untill I am editing that I can fully devour what is captured. Its here where I usually see the true person, the body language, the truth, and the lies. Its all revealed in the edit. Listening to hours of tape where you hear mere minutes of story and large chunks of filler. This is where I find my story. I can say more than 80% of the time the story I fine is not the one in the treatment. I want to tell the honest story. The truth. The truth as it is captured in 24 frames. In my next short doc “Wifi at Rock Bottom” there will be a truth unlike any I have ever experienced. Also I will post some experience videos from filming Saddle above the Axle and Trim and Fade soon.

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