Cowboy Blob's Saloon and Shootin Gallery

I'm not a real Cowboy, but I play one in the movies.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Going Nowhere (NSFW/Language)

Going Nowhere (2011, Travis Ardle, Dir.) is the director's rally back into film-making after his capstone Advanced Video project fell short of the Pima Community College course's minimum time standards. Unfortunately, Travis tends to write a rather fluffy screenplay, so the industry norm of 1 page of Final Draft script = 1 minute of screen time fell to the wayside again, though some of this can be attributed to on-the-fly paring of the script to meet production time constraints. As the editor of the film, it was my job to tighten up the flow of the footage in support of the story; this tightening rendered what was a least a six-page script into less than three minutes of screen time, even with two scenes of travel montage added as transitions. Travis' screenplay was a slave to dialogue with only a little non-verbal acting depicted. Before you critique the acting too harshly, please realize that Travis cast his friends in the roles, not "actors." That being said, James Maxam turned out a journeyman performance as the lead role of Leo, a man breaking ties with a criminal gang led by the lovely Diamond (Krissa Goodin). Jeff Meyhoff turned out a convincingly menacing thug, Dirk, and Kristine Downey an understatedly sweet Beth, Leo's love interest.

Going Nowhere benefited from the cinematography of Mario Silvas' deft camera work and lighting direction; my audio mixing managed not to screw up the short, which is really all you can ask of the "invisible art."

Travis and his cast have already expressed interest in a sequel and I hope he leads them through some structured rehearsals before the shoot. That way, Krissa can master the dialogue beforehand and concentrate on emoting on-camera... she should have plenty to emote about, after what Leo did to her.

Maxam is a member of the local metal band We Killed the Union with Sean Raines (who voiced the police officer). Sean (WKTU's Screamer-in-Chief) gave me a copy of their latest indie CD "Bloodset Arizona" during the shoot and the next day I popped it into the Stang's player on the way to town. Holy cow, that was intense! Blasting down the Interstate with the top down, volume cranked to Eleventy to fight the wind noise, it was better than a Five-Hour Energy Drink! By the time I hit the off-ramp, the more sedate "Mud River Blood" cued up and I knew we had the soundtrack cut before Mr. Ardle even told me.

If Travis still talks to me after this review, I hope he'll keep me in mind for crewing the sequel(s).

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