Friday, 3 August 2018

THE LAST MOVIE - THE HOLY GRAIL OF CINEMA


Punk Filmmaker Fabrizio Federico praises Dennis Hopper's unsung masterpiece

Shot in Peru in 1970 in a narcotic haze, Dennis Hopper's follow up to Easy Rider is the purest experimental mainstream film ever released in Hollywood. Problem is not many people have seen this gem. It has been in exile for 50 years, in limbo as a low resolution bootleg DVD, which is how I first came across it, but it changed my life.



I first watched this amazing movie alone in a school library and it lit a firecracker under me, I had to make a movie! I give The Last Movie complete responsibility for inspiring me to make a film unlike any other. So with no experience what so ever I decided to finish the job Hopper had started in 1970. Now in 2011 I finally completed my first feature film Black Biscuit, I tore up the rule book on cinema and made an anti film with non-actors, no script, shot on mobile phones and toy cameras about a filmmaker lost in a wasteland of prostitution, money and sleaze.

The fact that a major Hollywood studio produced this psychedelic midnight movie is astounding, but once released it was misunderstood, and buried deep; even though it's lyrical beauty is evident in every frame. Easy Rider captured a cultural zeitgeist but The Last Movie could have changed the course of cinema forever if it had been handled differently.



The PINK8 cinema manifesto was born out of this, and just like Hopper; who already had a reputation for wildness, I threw it all away in a hurricane of spotlight, ego and hallucinogenics, but in the process I saved my damned soul, at odds with a system that still didn't understand real youth-quake provoking cinema, and the fact that Arbelos films have had the balls to make a move on re-releasing this masterpiece is better then twenty Christmas put together!!



To me The Last Movie is an allegory about the world as a whole and how it is destroying it's self, and becoming more self conscious and media trained which is boring as fuck. Hopper will always personify to me the true meaning of what an artist truly is; mercurial, insanely talented and untamed. 


Monday, 30 July 2018

Interview with filmmaker Daniel B Salas


Sow will screen at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

How did you get into making films?
In seventh grade English class, I was partnered with my best friend (my assistant director on Sow) to teach the class about pronouns in a creative manner, we decided to video a puppet show lesson.  Since then, he and I have made films together.

What inspired you to make your movie?
A plethora of things.  Beautiful nature and my home county were incredible influences on showcasing the world within the film.  My friends and our mutual respect for cinema.  Particularly, for my film Sow, something that was a high inspiration, was my four sisters, who are thanked in the credits.

How has your style evolved?
Every project I have encountered I like to experiment with.  Maybe things don't work, but I'll learn that as I go.  And each project I hone toward a better masterpiece.  Even throughout production, we as a team experiment often, desire to try something different, or have a vision unattainable, so we utilised resources.  Attempting and growing through film has always made me smile.

Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film.
While trespassing an abandoned fuel station, we spent too many minutes long.  The police were called multiple times by drivers-by who noticed peculiar activity at a known ghost station.  The film's sequence asks the male lead to drive off at a squeal.  Perfect timing, the police showed up, my male lead (not noticing them) squeals off.  With his hand hovering over his holster, the officer finally got the vehicle to cease movement and asked all actors to step out, and we crew joined them.  After explaining our situation as filmmakers, they gaily remarked on one another being "stars" and if we ever should need police officers, we know who to go to.  They were cheeky.  The sergeant came simply to view the excitement.  At the end, we asked them if we could remain to finish the shoot, they allowed and left, waving.
Upon watching the dailies, I noticed the reflections of our production crew in the windows of the vehicle in each shot.  Even after all of this, we had to re-shoot this sequence.  We re-shot in a wholly different location.  Which I find to have been a much better looking shot, and even our actors performed better than before.

The MIsrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind?
Straightjacket Guerrilla Film Festival

What can we expect from your next film?
The fantasy world Sow takes place in is a broad one.  There are many towns throughout this world, each at the mercy of a dragon.  My next film is working-title Eager, production this winter.  It is a winter's fantasy world about individuals who are setting off come morning to slay dragons in the towns over.  But today, they prepare.  We learn of citizens' lives and how they are affected by this impending change.  The facebook page for this upcoming production is facebook.com/eagercatalyst.

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Interview with filmmaker Eli Hayes


Image & Illusion will screen at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

How did you get into making films?
At a very young age, my parents introduced me to filmmakers such as Jim Jarmusch, Agnès Varda, and even more transgressive filmmakers like Lars von Trier (specifically Dancer in the Dark at the age of thirteen or fourteen, which I remember absolutely annihilating me emotionally). But beyond the emotional resonance, I always recognised film as a sort of "ultimate art form," combining text with image with movement and performance, and so on. I began to regard it as the most fully fleshed out art form of them all, or at least the medium to marry the most other mediums within its own innate structure. When I was seventeen years old and found out that my dad had terminal esophageal cancer, I started to make films of my own. I started to think about death more than ever before, and knew that I wanted to leave something behind on this earth when I died myself: what better than art? So during my senior year of high school, I directed my first two short films, Dancing with Shadows and Nobody (2012)The rest is history.

What inspired you to make your movie?
Over the last couple years, I've become obsessed with the notion of films as dreams. Whenever I watch a great experimental film, I always come out on the other end as if I've just awoken from a dream or been released from a trance. This effect is something that I've always wanted to achieve and, with both Mirage and Image & Illusion, I was interested in attempting to straddle that line between ambient, contemplative cinema and the world of the unconscious.

How has your style evolved?
I would say that my style has evolved quite noticeably over the years. While Dancing with Shadows is rather impressionistic, my other debut short film, Nobody, is a hyper-realist video diary of a film, documenting a day in the life of a severely mentally unstable teenager. I play the lead role in the film, and it contains not only dialogue but a rather clear A-to-B-to-C narrative (while still hinting toward some experimental techniques that I would implement later on in my career). The jump in aesthetic from Nobody to my next short film, Vanished (2013), was huge, not even necessarily in terms of quality but more in terms of taking a leap from pure realism to pure non-narrative expression. And I've definitely explored the realm of the latter more so than the former, over the past half decade of filmmaking.

Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film?
I can't specifically think of anything strange or funny that happened during the production of these two features -- I know, I'm so boring, haha -- but there is something unorthodox about the way that both films were shot/created. Both Mirage and Image & Illusion had over a half dozen cinematographers on board. Not in the sense that I kept having to fire my DP or anything; that was the idea from the beginning, to structure a film comprised of segments shot by several different cameramen and camerawomen across the globe, and then fuse all of those visions into one, anthological dreamscape. Mirage was shot by ten individuals across four countries (France, Italy, the U.K. and the U.S.): myself, Ben Danzi, Nadin Mai, Pietro Agnoletto, Seb Karamayar, Andre de Nervaux, Ted Parks, James Slaymaker, Reece Beckett, and Ian Flick. Image & Illusion was shot by seven individuals across three countries (the U.K., the U.S. and Canada): myself, Alex Davies, Andre de Nervaux, Dov Doviak, Susie Brancaccio, Jesse Rolfe, and Ben Danzi.

The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind?
I think that any attempt to break the rules of typical cinematic conventions is a good thing, so the U.K.'s Misrule Film Movement & the Pink8 manifesto bring's to mind the hopes (and, to an extent, the reality) of rewriting cinema's language through the artists of the underground. I love the idea of going against the grain, going against what "film school" teaches and creating, instead, with a micro-budget, a cast of unknowns, little to no preparation, little to no technical advances, and the experience of making something on one's own without the interference of institutions. Directors I admire that seem to have adhered to these kinds of ideas in the past include Giuseppe Andrews, Jonathan Caouette and, of course, Harmony Korine.

What can we expect from your next film?
I've spent the summer in Tallahassee, Florida, where my girlfriend is working a summer job and, over the course of the last two to three months, have been suffering from the extremities of my clinical depression. I was diagnosed with severe depression years ago, long before my father passed away, and the experience of being here in Tallahassee, essentially alone most days without anyone to really talk to or hang around, has been extremely difficult for me. Thank god I have my dog here, but it's been difficult to leave the apartment and actually function in society while suffering from such intense anxiety & depression. The handful of times that I've left my apartment have been to go out and shoot, as the original plan for this move to Tallahassee -- even though I wouldn't have a paying job here in Florida -- was to make a DIY landscape documentary over the course of these few months. As of right now, I've shot and cut 53 minutes of the film. I'm not sure how much more shooting that I will do before I decide that the project is complete, but there are a couple other locations that I'd like to capture before closing the door on this chapter of my life and moving back to Nashville, Tennessee.

Thursday, 26 July 2018

Interview with filmmaker Dave Jigar

Matsar will be screening at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival
*How did you get into making films? For me, Making Films is like living. I started making Films literally in 2007 when I was doing my Mechanical Engineering but I'm making films and visualizing them since 1998 when I was around 13. So When you live it for so many years in your mind, the nature propagates it in real world I guess. 
*What inspired you to make your movie? I firmly believe that movies have a big social impact and as a filmmaker, it's my moral responsibility to make a film that can bring a change in the world. See, change is always a thought process. If you're convinced about something that is how you are going to bring it in your life.
Matsar is inspired by a thought about bringing two different personalities together. One who is a manual scavenger living in a hell. And another is a young kid living exactly opposite. Their interaction brings two different aspects of life face to face and that is how their thoughts begin to change in right direction. 
*How has your style evolved? Well there is no particular style about a film but more about the genre and conviction of that perception portrayed in film. Yet, if I try to find a pattern or style in my filmmaking then On the concept level, I try to give leverage on the battles within. The one who has conquered himself, has conquered the world. My earlier work “Kuchh Manziley Aisy” and “Maanas” - both selected in various film festivals in 2008 and 2011 respectively, are the examples for the same. And another thing that I can quote as my style is music plays a significant role in my storytelling. I find it easy to convey the emotions of any particular moment with lyrics and composition. And Music certainly adds heavy emotions to the scene. So songs are bound to be strong if it's a Dave Jigar film. 
*Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film? Of course there are lots of funny stories especially when you are on guerrilla filmmaking with skeleton crew and limited budget & Timeline. One such incident is when we were shooting a song in Vijaynagar which is a hilly area. And we were shooting with two cameras. I was on one and my assistant was on another camera and we were taking the shot from two different hills. We didn't have Megaphone there. And Even Mobile phones didn't have network coverage. So to communicate I had no other option but to use my strong voice. Yes, I mean I was literally shouting on every take loud enough to be heard on another hill. We decided some body signs to communicate that evening but My vocal chords took 4 days to recover from that. Also it compromises the footages you wish to take but then you don't have option with timeline and budget so you have to rely on editing for damage control.
*The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind? Filmmaking, at the end, is an art. and art can never be bound by any laws or rules. Well, still the basic rule is how psychology works and on that how we are going to convey what we wish to by applying or breaking them. So on that note, having a bunch of rules against the traditional rules are at the end rules. For me, Art is above these measures.
*What can we expect from your next film? I'm working on "Morgue" right now. It is a Film inspired from a real incident and again the very base concept is winning the battles within but this time it will be more intriguing as storytelling part is different from Matsar, having more layers of suspense not only of characters but also of story itself. So thrill is what one can expect as extra perk along with lots of drama, laughter, wet eyes and a story revealing itself with great music and songs.

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Interview with filmmaker Rubber Cripple


Mondo Lizard: A Guide To Gonzo Cinema will be screening at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

*How did you get into making films? 
First of all I would like to point out that I do not consider myself a " filmmaker" or "director" or "video artist" or "photographer" etc, etc. I used these titles in the past thinking that's what I must be because of what I'm doing, right? Wrong! I have no burning desire to make films or photography, Im not at all concerned if nobody sees anything I make, I don't care if people like it or hate it, I think most filmmakers do feel the need to make and show work and rightly so, there are some great people making some great work! I got into this by being frustrated with the music industry Divas, everybody thinks they are so fucking deserving, fuck em! I decided to mess around with cameras, taught myself how to develop film so I could film/record or document things that interest me. Along the way I've met some brilliant people! 

*What inspired you to make your movie? 
I used to be a member of the Experimental Film Society, a collective based in Ireland and I came across an interview or article which featured this filmmaker Fabrizio Federico, he was ripping into us, I think he referred to us as dish-washing hipsters, which was fucking great! So I thought who the fuck is this guy? Who the fuck does he think he is? I hated him! I'm an experimental filmmaker, I'm important,etc,etc. So I got in touch with him, called him up on the phone and asked if I could make a movie about him because he irritated me.....I was so wrong, he turned out to be a great guy and has given much of his time in helping me make my latest pile of tripe called Mondo Lizard. Yeah, so you can say Fabrizio Federico inspired me to make Mondo Lizard. 


*How has your style evolved? Possibly by not watching many films, avoiding the cinema, trial and error? I've no idea if I'm honest. 

*Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film? 
Tony's toothless interview: Fabrizio and I visited a mature gentleman's fetish dungeon for Mondo Lizard, Tony loves eggs but can't eat them with his false teeth in. So, when we took a break Tony decides he's having a few pickled eggs, takes his teeth out, leaves them on the worktop, has his eggs. Meanwhile, I decide they'd make a good prop, so I edged over to the kitchen worktop and slipped them into my pocket, they feel extremely life like, made me wretch a bit too! So we finish our break, Tony can't find his teeth, he's wandering around the kitchen, Fab is singing " I am the eggman " and distracts him by asking what type of music he likes. He gives up, we get back to work and I've got a great prop for a street fight scene in my Boxing movie " I'm in a Wheelchair and this time it's Personal " and Tony gums his way through an interview. Funny? Strange? Nah, just plain fucking weird. 

*The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind? 
Pink8, I think if we understand that it was basically used for one film by Fabrizio Federico (Black Biscuit) then its just there for the taking, if you want to follow it, great! If you want elements of it, great! I think it's a good way to say fuck you! The Misrule Cinema Movement, hopefully it's created a lot of mutant punk filmmakers. Actually the film Anarchy in the UK was one of the reasons I'd called Fabrizio, that and the fact he was ripping into EFS. It's good people challenging the government. Even better now that there are skint, ugly, freaky filmmakers on the loose! 

*What can we expect from your next film? 
I have a couple of on-going projects, the first is researching into something called Autogynephilia and sexologist Dr Ray Blanchard, I started it a year maybe 18 months ago, complex and controversial. The other will be some sort of weird boxing movie. But you never know what might come along, who knows? 

*Tell us about this new film movement that you have captured in your film? 
I think maybe the underground needs to be exhumed, maybe there is no underground. All the people in this film are on their own, they're broke, they all have next to no resources. They are all insane in their own way, they are all true to themselves. They are all completely genuine. None of them backed out of Mondo Lizard. They're maverick filmmakers.

Monday, 23 July 2018

Interview with filmmaker Rafael Arévalo


Year Of The Apocalypse will screen at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

*How did you get into making films?
Since I was a child I always wanted to create universes and tell stories. I fell in love with the cinema at first sight and I grew up seeing all kinds of proposals, from the most important masters of the seventh art to the most extravagant B and Z movies. The democratization that was achieved with the arrival of the digital format encouraged me to take a risk and become a filmmaker. In 10 years of career I have made 8 feature films and more than 20 shorts and I hope I can do many more until it is humanly possible.
 
*What inspired you to make your movie?
As a child my favourite genre was terror and the zombie sub-genre always had a special feeling to me. For several years I planned different options of possible films, but the excessive production of movies of the same theme that caused the revival of the genre since the beginning of the century, made me rethink everything and I decided to make a zombie anti-film that will tell several small stories with few dialogues and a lot of instrumental music from Peruvian independent bands during almost all their footage. My idea was to achieve a mixture of "Pink Floyd’s the wall" and the dead films of George Romero paying homage to the classic silent movies and the bizarre and trash movies.
 
*How has your style evolved?
As my cinema is still very low budget I try to continue experimenting in all possible ways turning the flaws into effects until I can access a big budget that allows me to make a film at 100% of its possibilities. For the meantime, I have fun experimenting.
 
*Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film?
We film the movie in different streets of the city of Lima without asking for any permission. We had to take advantage of days and hours when the areas we needed were empty and we had little time to record because, when neighbors or the police discovered us, we had to leave. Fortunately, we got enough shots to finish the movie with dignity.
 
*The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind?
It reminds me the spirit of Sion Sono’s “Why don’t you play in hell?”
 
*What can we expect from your next film?
I have several new short films this 2018 and I hope to finish filming a new independent and experimental feature film before the end of the year. It is called "Sleepless Sleepwalker" and is about a poet who must undergo a sleep cure to enter into his subconscious and recover his first book of poems. In addition, I plan to post my sci fi feature film project "The Gospel of Chaos" to various contests and funds that allow me to direct it in the best way in the near future.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Interview with producer Antonio Acampora


She Was Young With Light Eyes will premier at the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

How did you get into making films?
It was a story I wanted to do for a long time, but only after writing the novel from which I made the film, I decided to put it on stage.

What inspired you to make your movie?
A fundamental question: how should life be lived, in extremes or in the middle?

How has your style evolved?
Over time it has changed a lot, but with this film I found the precise shape with which I wanted to tell a story like that. Halfway between the American indie style and the French one.

Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film?
There's no better time than filming. But the best thing that happens every time an audiovisual project starts is that when everything seems lost and a scene is completely far from being realised, at that precise moment, like magic, something extraordinary happens and actors and crews hunt their best and succeed in realising the scene of the day.

The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind?
Strength and sympathy at the same time.

What can we expect from your next movie?
A new story which you would never expect, something you would like to see however.