Perspectives

Offering a take on things in film.

Welcome to Purgatory: Trying to understand life after trying to take your own.

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Welcome to purgatory my friends.

Of course I mean a mental one, not an actual physical one… or is purgatory purely spiritual? But that’s for another day. I’m simply referring to a negative state of mind you can’t get out of. It feels like you do everything you can, but you just end up right back where you started. Like you’re fenced in by failure, anxiety, or whatever else you might perceive is weighing you down.

You’ll spend your days, not necessarily depressed, but more hopeless. You haven’t given up but you just seem to be spinning your wheels.

In my case, it comes off my suicide attempt. Of course I didn’t die (this was almost 10 years ago now.) But as you’re going through all those failures and hardships, even a decade later, no matter how many good things happened, you’re brought back to this terrible place where you started.

You sit there some days and you just want to die. But you know you’ve already tried that. That shit hurt and didn’t even work out for you then. Maybe you just weren’t meant to die then for whatever reason. But now you know that you’re stuck in this world for the time being whether you want to or not. It’s completely out of your hands.

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What can be done?

People will tell you to “Just get over it”. Well you can’t, this mess is going to haunt you in one way or another for the rest of your life. So there’s no simple fix. Drinking and drugs only mask it.

I honestly can’t tell you. What you can do is take every day one at a time. I’m not going to pretend to be an expert on the issue, because it’s really not that simple. Everyone’s going to feel the way they’re going to feel. I just choose to work on making other people happy. Movies and stuff are always a great escape for me when I’m at my lowest. So I want to give back that way. And memes, I love to share memes and laughs with others. Not to mention dogs. I love dogs. I love working with them and petting and loving them.

Between those things I find it makes the days almost tolerable.

In the end, I think it’s about making sure no one feels the same terrible way I do every single day of my existence.

48 Hour Film Festival and the Future

We did the 48 Hour Film Festival Chicago a couple of weeks ago. And the movie screened. We didn’t win shit, as expected. But that’s totally okay and I’ll tell you why.

Even though no one showed up to my screening (and I mean no one, not even my cast. That hurt a bit.) I did get some loud and honest laughs, and that was super cool. It was all I really wanted.

Afterwards, I was feeling a bit down, with people not showing up and what not. But then someone approached me and asked if I’m that guy who made that DDR movie. Yes, apparently people are still talking about that. But it affirms my belief that it’s the audience that’s important. Leave them with an experience they won’t forget. Which is what I’m taking into my next thing. You’ll see more on that later.

Will I enter again? I dunno. I don’t have a team I can really trust to deliver in the clutch (as of right now). This year was a measuring stick to find out everything I have to do from that moment on. Considering I had to scramble to get people actually IN this thing after letting everyone know a month in advance hurts a bit. That made my casting choices suffer. Nothing against those guys, but they’re not actors. Denise is the only one of them who could act out of a wet paper bag. But I’m glad those guys showed up. We had really good conversation. But that’s really it.

Much as I love the 48 Hour I like to spend more time and plan stuff. But it’s been a good few years.

 

Handling One’s Anxiety.

Okay. We’re  doing something a little different today. Its all fun qnd games mostly,  but sometimes its serious  time.

Today is serious time.
I want to talk to you about a problem that im just finally accepting that i need help with.  And i see its quite common around those i happen to observe.

Anxiety. 

I generally  don’t complain about it because I  dont want my anxiety to define me at all. I’ve always considered talking about it “being a baby”. So i guess  it’s  time to grab a bottle. Because its a real problem. And it really does explain the person i am.

Even this morning,  i was thinking about my job. My job is shitty and the first thing i do when i get home is cry. That isnt fun. I just get overwelmed by the things that happen. All of which are out of my control.  But i cant really  tell folks at the job because they honestly already  make fun of me for looking tired and being stressed out. Of course  this is no joke.
Its made me into what i think is a shell of a person. I reach out to people thinking  i can get some insight. But i generally end up listening to their problems instead. Which is fine, i like helping.

Whether its fighting  game tourney or Roller Derby, it’s painful and scary just to be there. Even though i want to be there and have fun. Im sure they’re nice people. But i just cant bring myself to be there with the other people.  Its overwhelming. But again, i felt like i was being a baby. I wanted to do those things so badly but my own self got in the way.

Its been like this my whole life. Even when i went into the military  they said i had it. But i decided  to tough it out and it turned  into a suicide attempt. Its nothing to take lightly.

I always try and talk to people when they’re suffering depression  or aniity. The two tend to go hand in hand. Just hang and just listen to them talk. It could make all the difference.
And if you can get help. Get it as so as you can. And im around too if you wanna talk about stuff. Listening is the one superpower  i actually got.

What’s New and What’s Going down.

New day, new year. All the bullshit. But hey, it’s all for the better.

Time has been here for a minute to figure out what to do next. I’m back in Chicago so I have a ton resources at my disposal one again.

But there’s a big problem that I was having. I didn’t really know where I belonged. I have this problem where I’m just not posh enough to hang out with the cool kids. Whether it be film, derby, or fighting games. I just never really fit in. No matter how much I wanted to. But it wasn’t all because they weren’t completely nice (some where actually quite cool) but it’s my problem of wanting to be me and no one else. Anyone who knows me knows that I don’t kiss ass to anyone, don’t care who they are. Nor will I treat anyone differently than anyone else for any reason.

Which leads me to what I’m doing, we’re expanding what we’re doing.

We’re going to be active on Twitch and Youtube again… as well as Soundcloud now, doing various gaming a podcast type things. Got stuff planned, and it’s going to be fun.

On top of that, we’ll be releasing short films more often and maybe a new series or a feature or something. Dunno, we’re taking larger projects by ear. The focus is going to be on small, self contained things for now as the staff builds.

My intention is to build a space where we can all feel more comfortable being ourselves and making the things we want to make without the fear or necessity of having to conform to elements that might not be worth conforming for. No need to be posh, we’re just here to make cool stuff. It’s what makes us happy and fulfilled.

Not surprisingly I’m not alone in my sentiments.

There’s no doubt at all in what I want to do. I want to make stuff that’s fun. Not only for me but for those watching. That’s always the number one priority. However that can be a little difficult sometimes when you’re trying to make something new. It’s not always going to go the way you want it. But the important thing in the long run is to try and do things differently because you never know, you could be on to something.

But that’s where we’re at now. We’ll make some staff announcements soon. Yay. Let’s go.

 

See you guys at C2E2.

Let’s Waste Some Time: On the movie, leaving leaving for Indiana, and general life lessons. Trying to make movie in Chicago, and other things you may or may not be interested in..

It’s been a crazy time filming this movie, I have to say. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. But that’s kind of the way I am. If there’s not challenge then something will always seem off. I feel like it won’t be as awesome as awesome as it could or should. Everything I do I always give a lot more than I should. Why? Because I love what I do.
Why do I do it if it causes you such pain and frustration?
It’s simple. Look at my life. My life sucks. It just sucks. I got a family that hates my guts and has gone as far to try and have me institutionalized (that was a great story). Then you have so called friends that don’t even acknowledge your presence… until of course they need something. Then they feel like talking. It’s pathetic quite frankly. Time and time again

This is why I make movies. I have a unique chance to make people’s lives not suck so much for an hour or two at a time. It’s something I do pretty okay I must say (though I’m sure some would disagree.) But it really makes me feel like I’m contributing something.

It’s never about me. It’s about the project and everyone in it. I do my very best to stand up for my guys. I pay them. Everything about every movie is funded out of my own pocket because I believe in what I’m doing. I put everything into it.

I honestly wish those I work with felt the same  way. It’s a little heartbreaking sometimes but you really have to push through it.. They don’t know how hard you work or that most of their day is, but they’re actors. What do you truly expect right?

So I came to the decision that it’s time to go. There’s really nothing for me here. Much as I like Chicago I don’t really like the people that are in it quite frankly. It just seems like everyone is really full of shit as I’m learning. Lot of talk. Not a lot of doing. And I hate that. The more we talk, that’s less time we have to really get down and dirty and finish things that need to be finished and whatnot. It’s frustrating to say the least.

That’s kinda the deal with trying anything unusual and new. It’s the weirdest thing. I’ve had more support abroad for all of my projects than I’ve had in my own city. It’s like I have the plague. No one wants to really be associated with me, and those that do… don’t even really mention me at all. Like I’m nothing. Again, that really sucks but I’ve tried to not let it bother me. Have to have that diamond skin you know.

However, I’m a man of my word. And even though I’m moving to Goshen, Indiana I’m going to travel the 2 hours back quite frequently to finish it. Why? Because I’m a man of my word. And we’re going to finish the damn movie. Happy with anyone or not, I have to get it done because I don’t give up on things because they’re hard. I guess that’s the gamer in me.

But hopefully I can go where people don’t know me, make new friends, and finish school. Then go wherever I please from that point on. It should be fun times ahead. And I’ll be looking forward to watching roller derby and helping Willie because no one knows how to use a camera.

 

All and all, it took me a number of years, but I’ve come to this conclusion.

 

It’s not me, it’s them. I’m a nice, cool, guy. Everyone else just sucks and the people I know don’t deserve me.

If feels good to say for once. Fuck being humble. This city is awful and I can’t wait to be away from all these people for a very very long time.

“Friends will help you get your movie made”. Don’t make me fucking laugh. They’re the worst. Keep them the hell away from your movie.

Not-sure-if-dvz8nf So you’re going to make a movie. That’s great. You’re a really brave person. I realize now just how much courage I had to do what I do despite the mountains of opposition. That opposition of course being… ya know, everyone and everything. But this article isn’t exactly about “The Struggle” it’s about relationships. I’m sure if you’re alive, you have friends. Or if you’re here on the internet reading my musings about absolutely nothing and you have you damn friends.

Anyway, when I started making movies, I was told to not pay people right away, but to find friends willing to help. Being broke as hell I didn’t really have much of a choice. I managed to find people who would help and it was great. We got things filmed and it was actually rather simplistic. With the next movie, “Pump it Up: The Warrior’s Path”, we really upped the stakes… despite the issues that turned up… it was actually pretty good. HOWEVER, friends jumped on the project and seemed to support at first. But then when the actual work came around, they were sudden hard to contact… or would just flat out lie about going to shoots and leaving me high, dry, and looking like a fucking idiot. But a good directer/producer knows how to work around it. Always plan for the worst. That brings me to the current move I’ve been working on, “Everything Else: The Warrior’s Path. I’ve really leaned on those friends for support once more. But again, the lies all over the place. It’s crazy. We were supposed to film at once place on the 10th of May. It’s Ryzen’s house. We’ve been there in the past couple of movies. However, flaked on me at the very last second. Or the guy who was SUPPOSED to play Langer, has lied to me twice and is most likely going to get punched in the face by me really soon.

So remember, your friends most likely lack the passion, heart, and honor to make films. Or even to actually be real friends at all. Always remember to question everything in your friendships. You want good people on your movie? Pay them. Until then, get ready to deal with your shitty friends. I know now that mine have no heart. It sucks.

When Is it Okay to Use Rape Jokes?

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First of all. If you’re asking that question, you must have some sort of doubt to begin with. Don’t tell or write any jokes if you’re going to have doubt. It’s an all in deal. Don’t half ass your jokes. However, rape jokes can be quite funny in the proper context. Much like racial jokes.

Rape jokes fall in the same cookie jar as suicide jokes. They’re both highly traumatic and delicate situations and it’s hard to crack a joke without it being malicious or worse, just unfunny. It’s really all a situational thing. You don’t just walk up to someone and say, “Did you hear about the 12 year old that was raped by the creepy ass clown?” or something like that. Moreso it has to be used in conjunction with something going on.

For instance. When I’m getting my ass kicked by a Vergil sword loop in Marvel 3.
Which is all the time.

I tend to get those comments. “Just bend over Joe. This is happening.”

It must be used as a quip for someone being mercilessly overpowered and there’s not much you can do. Thus the term itself.

“Man, Hunger Games raped the box office last weekend.”

You see where I’m going with this? I hope so.

But like anything, there are lines. Don’t take the joke beyond a couple of lines. It loses it’s edge and frankly you’ll just look like a damn tryhard.

Also, if you want to make plays on alleged “Rape Culture”, that’s cool. Those silly, stupid things that I’ve never ACTUALLY heard anyone say before (seriously, I’ve never actually heard it come of out of someone’s mouth) such as, “she had it coming.” can be used again at the proper time. It’s all about the timing.

Oh, and jokes are no longer jokes if you’re being malicious. Remember that. But no matter when you make a rape joke, there’s always going to be people on your back saying it’s not funny. The same people who laugh at your jokes in private, but in public are a bunch of prudes. But that’s just the way it works sometimes. Humans are just weird like that. They put up that facade of political correctness, but deep down they’re more sadistic than all of us.

And again, it doesn’t take the severity of the situation away. Because of course it can be life shattering and all that. Everything can and must be joked about in society or we run the risk of taking ourselves too seriously… which can lead to serious problems. We’re just animals folks.