You Try Making a Movie in 48 Hours

You Try Making a Movie in 48 Hours-attachment0

Actually, I have never tried to make a movie in 48 hours, though I was on the very periphery of the Mountain Xpress’ efforts to make one the first year there was a 48 Hour Film Project in Asheville. That may also be the only year when I wasn’t a judge. I have, however, dabbled off and on in filmmaking since I was about about 9 years old, and while I did once shoot (very different from completing) a single-location 16mm short in one day, the idea of taking a film from concept to final product in 48 hours scares the living DeMille out of me.

I’m assuming that by now everyone more or less knows the concept but, briefly, it starts from the most level playing field possible with participants being given a line of dialogue, a character name and a prop that all have to be used. That part is the same for everyone. What differs — and really evens things out — is that each team is assigned a genre to work in, so if you’ve spent all year dreaming up a horror picture and you draw “musical/Western,” you’re in trouble. (Of course, there’s nothing that says you can’t make a musical/Western that isn’t also a horror picture.)

This year the genres we reviewed covered time travel/doppelganger, comedy, thriller/suspense, silent film, buddy film, heist, romance, mockumentary, dark comedy, fantasy, film de femme, film noir, sci-fi, musical/Western, drama and road movie. I thought “silent film” was a terrific idea and I don’t think it had been done before. I’d like to see more of that because, trust me, the less you let amateur actors speak, the better off you’re likely to be. On the other hand, I think “mockumentary” should be stricken from the list for all time.

Generally speaking, I was amazed by the overall quality of the entries. It was hard coming up with a clear winner, and it usually is. For me, it was a very near thing as concerned Touched by Angels (which I’m glad to see got the Audience Award in its block), Viva Vasquez and, in some ways, Get Down. That last, in particular, was a solid little film with a brave ending (and I applaud the filmmakers for it), but it didn’t quite hold together as well for the judges as the others I named. This isn’t to say that the lack of an award means a film is bad. It means it didn’t strike three judges — Marcianne Miller, James Cassara and myself — as being as good as some other entries.

Some teams were fighting an uphill battle because of genre. Some filmmakers and some genres don’t mix. One of the cleverest films one year was one that focused on people who had drawn a genre that simply defeated them and dealt with their failed attempts to make such a film. Unfortunately, clever as that was, it didn’t exactly stick to the rules. Another year, the film that would have won couldn’t because it exceeded the seven-minute running time.

I’ll be glad to discuss any of the films individually, if anyone would like to pose a question in the comments section for this article online at mountainx.com. First, however, let me offer a few generalized observations about what seems to hobble a lot of entries. One of the biggest problems are with movies that start strong and then kind of lose traction. Map your film out so that you have a clear idea where you’re going and make sure that the destination lives up to the trip. In an altogether separate area, I’d suggest to filmmakers that they don’t tackle anything too weighty. The running time is too short to support most heavy material, especially if it requires characterization. Remember that the characters have to be sketched in quickly. Also, play to your strengths. Know your team and everyone’s particular abilities in order to maximize your potential.

Regardless of whether you won anything or not, keep on filming. Keep working at it. If you enjoy it, just do it. The joy of it should be in the doing. And who knows, next year I might even join your ranks. My comrade in criticism, Justin Souther, has been badgering me with the idea that we should make a film. Right now — looking at it from a year away — that doesn’t sound like such a bad notion. Hopefully, I’ll regain my senses in that time, but maybe not.

SHARE
About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress since December 2000. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

55 thoughts on “You Try Making a Movie in 48 Hours

  1. Dear god yes, make a film Ken! I, personally would love to see one in which you play a Universal mad scientist with Just as your assistant.

    My first six or seven short film were made in less than 48 hours – a time frame I find more and more attractive as I wade through months of preproduction time on my more elaborate productions..

  2. Ken Hanke

    Dear god yes, make a film Ken!

    It once took me 2 years to make a movie that runs 33 minutes. This does not bode well for this 48 Hour thing.

    I, personally would love to see one in which you play a Universal mad scientist with Just as your assistant.

    That, I think is highly unlikely.

  3. TonyRo

    what sucks is that our team put a lot of time and effort into making a flick that was of great quality in all fields (aside from some shakey editing) and it got no recognition because it was a drama that didn’t have long musical numbers, weird flamboyant costumes, or any gay humor at all.

    our film was Welcome Home:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WpDF6Wa7EY

    watch it in HD to really get the quality we delivered, not what was shown at the screenings.

    if the screening at the Pizza and Brewery was any indication of what the judges saw, it’s no wonder it was passed up. The aspect ratio on the screen was off and the sound was delayed for some reason (even though it synched up perfectly on the DVD and in the studio).

    sure the story isn’t the most compelling or original, but given the time frame it’s pretty damn good. not to mention a plethra of locations and stellar camerawork. even our score, something really unique and special, didn’t merit a mention.

    48 hr. fest in asheville is a joke, it’s all about who can make the weirdest, flamboyant crap. they don’t support effort or quality.

  4. Keep working at it. If you enjoy it, just do it. The joy of it should be in the doing. -Ken Hanke

    Sure man, but wait-what about our entry fees and other cost? This festival isn’t gratifying at all for true filmmakers who dump heart and soul into their work.

    Its just too bad Asheville can’t get a reasonable pool of judges who understand good work.
    Jesse Romine-828.226.6017-Ken, I would love to talk…

  5. Ken Hanke

    The aspect ratio on the screen was off and the sound was delayed for some reason (even though it synched up perfectly on the DVD and in the studio).

    The aspect ratio was fine, but the sound did lose synch on the DVD we screened.

    sure the story isn’t the most compelling or original, but given the time frame it’s pretty damn good

    Yes, given the time frame it was pretty damn good. Actually, this was the very film I was talking about when I said, “In an altogether separate area, I’d suggest to filmmakers that they don’t tackle anything too weighty. The running time is too short to support most heavy material, especially if it requires characterization. Remember that the characters have to be sketched in quickly.” For me, this is why the film didn’t merit a win — it required that I was invested in the characters and I really wasn’t.

  6. Ken Hanke

    Its just too bad Asheville can’t get a reasonable pool of judges who understand good work.
    Jesse Romine-828.226.6017-Ken, I would love to talk…

    You’ve established that you think I am part of an unreasonable pool of judges and that you think I can’t understand good work, so I’m curious as to why you would love to talk to me. That assessment doesn’t exactly make me inclined to give you a call.

  7. TonyRo

    I understand what you’re saying Ken, I realize it’s almost too much to ask for audiences to accept that a man coming back from war has no home left. I’m not going to argue my own film with you. Maybe next year I can make a movie about gay breakdancers that accidentally kill someone and sweep the awards.

  8. TonyRo

    also, the DVD we submitted had perfectly synched audio…sucks that it didn’t show through for the rest of the world to see.

  9. Ken Hanke

    Maybe next year I can make a movie about gay breakdancers that accidentally kill someone and sweep the awards

    You only demean yourself by attacking others’ films.

  10. TonyRo

    wasn’t attacking anyone’s film, just mentioning the caliber of film that means anything to this festival. that description could be one of many films that have worked for the festival over the years.

  11. Ken Hanke

    that description could be one of many films that have worked for the festival over the years

    Loosely speaking, perhaps so, but when taken in conjunction with your statements, “it’s all about who can make the weirdest, flamboyant crap. they don’t support effort or quality” and “it got no recognition because it was a drama that didn’t have long musical numbers, weird flamboyant costumes, or any gay humor at all,” it’s pretty hard not to get some sense that you’re trashing the other films.

    The idea that this is what sells only to the judges isn’t exactly borne out by the audience award winners.

  12. TonyRo

    deduce what you will Ken, but my statement remains unchanged. I applaude anyone who makes an effort to do a film in 48 hours and accomplishes that feat. I just don’t think this festival does.

  13. I was completely floored with most of the decisions that you all made. I feel that our film invested you within the characters because of the content of each scene.

    Please Ken feel free to review the winners from other cities like Boston and Atlanta. It seems to me that the judges from those cities might have spent sometime weighing out the winners.

    Wether you want to argue that your a good judge or not, please send me an email with contacts for the other judges. I would like to try and figure out where our team went wrong. Thanks for your critique.

    Jesserom@gmail.com

  14. Stanley Price

    Thank you for the write up Ken. As an avid “48 Hour” supporter I feel a post is necessary:

    Having seen all the films myself, there was a clear Top 5: “Touched By Angels”, “The Big Picture”, “Get Down”, “Happy Trail”, “Dance Dance Execution”. And I disagree. I think “Get Down” (as you mentioned) and several other films were worthy of a Top 10 spot, including the sensitive “Welcome Home”. Which had an awe-inspiring opening of a plane landing.

    Being a “Prideful” fan of “Get Down”, I can’t help but wonder what best represents the city of Asheville than southern gay? I admire it for raising an eyebrow, as well as trying to “say something”. And it was in fact great, all around. That, combined with being a “solid” film should have pushed it into the Top 5 alone.

    It is true, we all have opinions and whereas they are totally respectable… I always go back to this theory: If something lays an impression on your memory for whatever the reason (and is one of only three movies mentioned in your article) odds are it should gain recognition for its efforts.

    Wasn’t there an award created for “Best Tattoo”? Funny, but what about “Best Kiss” or “Best Duo” or “Best Ending”? Or for a more serious fare “Best Actor, or “Best Song”.

    Again- thank you for your article and your work.

  15. Carey M.

    I am the director of “Get Down,” thank you for your positive comments about the film. I’m running the film through another cut and I would love to hear some specific comments from you in order to make the film more effective.

    I also agree with you when you say “Keep working at it. If you enjoy it, just do it. The joy of it should be in the doing.” At first I was very disappointed in the outcome of the awards, but I got an email from my grandfather that I think all filmmakers should take to heart. He said
    “One of the things I have learned from living 75 years, is that you move ahead with your life without questioning too much whether other people approve or admire you.”
    I think this important especially for filmmakers. Film is art. The most we can do as artists is to express ourselves, regardless of award. Some of the greatest artists, authors and great thinkers spent most of their lives unrecognized, but they still did what they loved.

    Thanks again, I would really appreciate more detailed comments about the film.

    email: careymckelvey@me.com

  16. Kai H.

    Your grandfather was right as rain. :-)

    The passion our team put into “Get Down” and the memories were totally worth it. If an artist doesn’t make something that he is not personally proud of, then there is little or no point.

    In the end, that is what truly matters.

    Comments would certainly be helpful in making the Directors Cut. :-)

    Thanks much.

  17. Ken Hanke

    I wonder if the Cannes Grand Jury get messages like this?

    No. There the judges usually try to kill each other — or so I’m told from people who have been on that and other such panels. Actually, I’ve mostly had good experiences with the people who didn’t win at film festivals. There was, for example, a group of young guys — about a half dozen of them — who’d come down from Jersey for the 2009 Asheville Film Festival. Their entry — a feature film — didn’t win, but we spent a very pleasant hour togther at the party at the end of the awards presentation discussing their film and what I thought had worked and hadn’t worked. In fact, I spent much more time with them than I did with the director of the winning film. They also sent me a nice letter afterwards, asking if I’d watch their next movie, which, of course, I’ll be glad to do.

    People do misunderstand judging to some degree, I think. In most cases — certainly this one — it’s a volunteer thing in the sense that we weren’t paid for taking a day and doing this. We did it because we are actually interested in the films and the project. Similarly, I’m not paid for the time spent discussing the films on here. You may not agree with me, you may not agree with the choices we made, but we did this for love of film and because we’re part of the community and especially part of the community that deals with film.

  18. Ken Hanke

    Having seen all the films myself, there was a clear Top 5: “Touched By Angels”, “The Big Picture”, “Get Down”, “Happy Trail”, “Dance Dance Execution”. And I disagree.

    I’m not sure what you’re disagreeing with, since we’re in accord in some areas.

    I think “Get Down” (as you mentioned) and several other films were worthy of a Top 10 spot, including the sensitive “Welcome Home”. Which had an awe-inspiring opening of a plane landing.

    If I did a Top 10 list, I’d agree with you, though I can’t say my awe kicked in over the opening in question, which isn’t a knock at the film, merely a note that the statement seems hyperbolic to me. The Romine Brothers have talent. That’s not open to argument for me. But that wasn’t — for me — where the strength of the film lies.

    Being a “Prideful” fan of “Get Down”, I can’t help but wonder what best represents the city of Asheville than southern gay?

    I don’t argue that in itself, though that’s mixing intent and material with the film itself.

    I admire it for raising an eyebrow, as well as trying to “say something”. And it was in fact great, all around. That, combined with being a “solid” film should have pushed it into the Top 5 alone.

    Considering I put it in the top three, I’m not sure what point you’re making.

    It is true, we all have opinions and whereas they are totally respectable… I always go back to this theory: If something lays an impression on your memory for whatever the reason (and is one of only three movies mentioned in your article) odds are it should gain recognition for its efforts.

    By which you mean an award. My problem with that is we’re dealing with a movie that’s, for me, a cumulative thing. By that I’m saying that it’s not a case of one where — apart from its theme and its ending — some single easily awardable aspect overrides the others. What I mean is it was a Best Film contender and I recognize that here, but one of the very strict rules of the judging is that there can be no tie in that category.

    Wasn’t there an award created for “Best Tattoo”? Funny, but what about “Best Kiss” or “Best Duo” or “Best Ending”? Or for a more serious fare “Best Actor, or “Best Song”.

    Best Tattoo came about strictly in a humorous fashion. (I’ve never seen anyone with a giraffe on their arm before.) We tried to do Best Song, but couldn’t agree on one — there were a surprising number of songs this year. If I’d given one myself, it’d have probably gone to Snip the Wire. In hindsight, I do think we should have given Get Down Best Ending.

  19. Ken Hanke

    I am the director of “Get Down,” thank you for your positive comments about the film. I’m running the film through another cut and I would love to hear some specific comments from you in order to make the film more effective

    I’ll be glad to offer any help I can and will contact you.

    “One of the things I have learned from living 75 years, is that you move ahead with your life without questioning too much whether other people approve or admire you.”

    Judges and critics might take that to heart, too.

    I think this important especially for filmmakers. Film is art. The most we can do as artists is to express ourselves, regardless of award.

    You’ll get no argument from me.

  20. Ken Hanke

    Comments would certainly be helpful in making the Directors Cut

    As I said, I’ll be glad to be of help if I can.

  21. I had a film in there as well, first time attempting it – “Life Bag: A Success Story”. We were a little disappointed in not winning anything, but I’m curious as to what you thought about it, and suspect we agree on most of the problems (the script I wrote was significantly different to what appeared, our biggest problems were timing on the two-camera shoots and thus having to lose two key scenes).

  22. Kai H.

    You have certainly helped already Ken. With all these posts, it is good to see your support for the film and the competition in general. Thanks a million!

    I’m sure Carey, the director, would love to hear from you as far as suggestions go. :-)

  23. Kara

    Ken says, “I’d like to see more of that because, trust me, the less you let amateur actors speak, the better off you’re likely to be. On the other hand, I think “mockumentary” should be stricken from the list for all time.”

    Wow. Ouch.

    I was on a team that drew Mockumentary. We did a mockumentary, and were then dismayed by MANY other films——with other genres——also going after the mockumentary approach. Perhaps that took away the punch of what our movie was. I would like to know your reasons for wanting to throw that genre away completely.

    On amateur acting: considering the judges pick for Best Actor, I’ll keep my opinions to myself.

    While I don’t believe the judging was terrible, my teammates and I believe that having judges from outside our small, recognizable community would give a more objective feel to the festival in general.

    I have enjoyed almost every year I’ve worked on the 48 hour festival, but every year I’ve been disappointed in some way or another–and that’s not because of NOT winning an award. (I mean, the award is literally a piece of paper created from a word template; my team has won several over the last six years.) I think my disappointment stems from that fact that it doesn’t feel like a festival in the truest sense of the word. There is a heavy focus on winning, rather than celebrating. The opening event was clunky and disorganized, and the festival in general had a “meh” feeling surrounding it.

    But on the flip side: I’ve never been more proud and honored to be part of such an amazing team. I have found a group of people that love to do what I love to do, and that connection doesn’t happen every day. The joy truly IS in the doing, and its important for all 48 hour participants to remember that.

    As a sidenote: TonyRo——my teammates and I felt that your film was one of the best of the festival. It’s true that drama is often overlooked——particularly because it is so difficult to produce a good one in 7 minutes. And your team did a superb job. Congrats, from your film-making peers.

  24. Ken Hanke

    I had a film in there as well, first time attempting it – “Life Bag: A Success Story”. We were a little disappointed in not winning anything, but I’m curious as to what you thought about it, and suspect we agree on most of the problems

    Well, you drew the short straw in terms of genre, I think by getting mockumentary. This is an almost impossible genre to pull off — even Christopher Guest is spotty at it. As I said, I think it should be dropped altogether. I’d be curious to see your film again with the knowledge of what’s missing and where it would have gone.

  25. Ken Hanke

    Perhaps that took away the punch of what our movie was. I would like to know your reasons for wanting to throw that genre away completely.

    I think it’s a terrible genre and I’d feel sorry for anyone who drew — though as a veteran of an awful lot of film festivals, I know full well that an awful lot of people choose to make them.

    having judges from outside our small, recognizable community would give a more objective feel to the festival in general.

    Like trying a case out of town? I suppose that might be a point, but I will say that I had only even met a couple of people involved — and they didn’t get special consideration. By a huge margin, I knew none of the filmmaking talent on either side of the camera. And I certainly have no vested interest in or animosity toward any of those involved.

  26. E Adams

    Well I was excited to finally see a follow up story to the awards ceremony from last week, as I couldn’t find it in this weeks Mountain X print edition… but now I feel a mixture of feelings. Our film was Touched by Angels. I was the main writer and general “let’s make this sh!# happen” guy who helped pull the team together and photoshopper etc.

    It was a lot of work, and we had several of our team from last year bail on us at the last minute due to life circumstances.
    Well we made a good film last year that won a few awards (Silver Slugger: The Life and times of Lefty Lober), but it did not win best picture. The movie that did win, I felt wasn’t a “better” all around experience than our movie, but I recognized that it was totally professional, clean shots, clean sound, and solid suspense (which is what the genre was). We, on the other hand, had home video cameras and no camera operator with ANY real training. It showed in the final product (even though the edits are tight, story is tight, and it’s funny where it needs to be) and I could see why the judges have to weigh that in when they are deciding on Best Picture.

    “Does it feel like I’m in the theater watching a real movie or does it feel like a good home made movie?” That’s what I had been thinking about for the last year, and luckily we got a new person on our team who had the camera and experience in filming and editing, so she could bring our story and my rather comedic team’s acting talents to life in a more professional way.
    I know it’s hard to judge all of these films and I didn’t agree with every award, but I felt that most of the films that were shown that night were really solid and the competition was much tighter than last year.

    I want to give a Special mention to “Viva Vasquez” and “Snip the Wire”. Both very funny and well delivered. I liked somethings about several others as well. “Chariots of Choir” was great considering it was actually a 25 hr film.
    I was hoping for a little more solidarity for the fact that we’re all from the same town and we tried to represent a little Asheville oddball humor and worked our @$$es off too. But hey, I know it sucks to not feel really recognized for lots of hard work.
    Personally, I think the 48 Hr film Project should have more categories and prizes that actually feel like you won something sweet. Even a gift certificate to Asheville Pizza or some cool software discounts. Even as the winning team, we are out hundreds of dollars and I am the only one who will benefit from the free writing software (though I am thankful for that). Adobe CS5 would be nicer or Final cut or something to make Asheville, as a town, able to create even better films. Even the little trophies from last year were better than the pieces of paper. I also think many of you are frustrated because your team collectively paid another $100 to just attend the awards ceremony, and then didn’t feel recognized. I would. I think the $135 we pay to sign up should cover the cost of the awards ceremony and Fine Arts (or somewhere else) can give them a discount to support the arts.

    TonyRo I don’t agree with many of your sentiments, or assessments of what the judges are about but I’ll watch your movie, as I have heard great things about it. If you read Ken Hanke’s reviews, he rarely praises total insane comedies and I was actually worried about him shooting it down because of his prejudice against Will Farrel, who I think is pretty funny most of the time. Other than that, I almost always agree with his reviews. Overall, my thought to anyone wondering where and if their film went wrong is:
    1) do your main characters have anything at stake?
    2)Do they go through significant change from where your story begins and when you roll credits?
    3)And will the audience connect with that change / evolution / triumph?

    If the answer is “no” to any of those questions, then all the good camera work, SFX, acting, and scoring won’t help much except in their respective categories.
    And unfortunately, if the answer to those questions is yes, it does boil down to all the performances and technical categories that distract the viewer if they aren’t done right.

    Every set up has to pay off and you have to walk away feeling like something happened. In our case, it was absurd as hell, but we establish that this rock anthem has to be written because it will change the world.
    By the very end we find out that it has ended corruption in Washington, blasted the oil out of the gulf, etc etc. It’s ridiculous, but the set-up paid off and the actors are just naturally funny people who are comfortable in front of that camera so there weren’t too many spots where the audience get has time to notice that “this is just an amateur film and I’m just watching actors.”
    Anyways, I don’t want to have to stick up for our movie, as I think it stands on it’s own merits for what it is (a Buddy Film for cryin’ out loud. The ONE genre I specifically didn’t want!) I hope some people wish us well for the Filmapalooza thing, whenever that will be. Peace Asheville!
    -E

  27. Jan Powell

    Having been a panel judge for the 48 film festival the year that “Cosmo 1932″ won we had such a clear choice because of the extreme skill of the film makers in a difficult genre. Their success was certainly merited. I felt fortunate to have been asked to judge that year. My background as a working professional for 30 years in film and television in Hollywood was obviously why I was asked (You may check out my credits on IMDB.) I am sorry to see this very vitriolic debate this year but can certainly understand why the people making “Welcome Home” were upset. I loved that film and all that it had to say in such a short time. My second favorite film was “Get Down” and certainly thought it deserved mention. But seriously folks, it’s just a contest with a prize that always reminds me of reaching into a box of Cracker Jacks so let’s not get so bent. Asheville should be a place where film festivals are taken seriously but not with this kind of snappish behavior. Let’s lighten up and try to do better next year. One of the reasons I was able to move back home after so many years away was because we get a lot of good movies here and the restaurants are certainly world class. What I was not prepared for is all the back-biting that goes on in such a very small pond where we should being trying to help each other achieve the best in ourselves. I know that the arts/crafts scene (being a member of that movement too) is filled with helping, caring people who appreciated seeing others succeed. Let’s try to be more constructive.

  28. we get a lot of good movies here and the restaurants are certainly world class.
    That 15,392 mile walk is looking more and more tempting every day.

  29. Ken Hanke

    he rarely praises total insane comedies and I was actually worried about him shooting it down because of his prejudice against Will Farrel, who I think is pretty funny most of the time.

    You see, you’re already funnier than the painfully unfunny Mr. Ferrell. But then I think I’ve praised any number of “insane comedies” over the years — just not many inane ones.

  30. Ken Hanke

    That 15,392 mile walk is looking more and more tempting every day.

    I can get you a job doing simian graphics.

  31. Jesse Romine

    I am and have presented myself as a sour puss within the festival and within the film community. After reading all the comments and banters I am slowing starting to care less about not getting any recognition.

    I snapped at you Ken because I hate authority and judicial decision. I apologize that you were the man that was in that position-you could have been tom hanks for all I cared. I also apologize for being crude within my comments towards you.

    Big shout out to Jan Powell and all who enjoyed the movie Welcome Home-whoo hoo-thanks for you enjoyment.

    I am Jesse Romine producer director. I was the guy that lined up the 10 speaking roles in our film and the 6 different locations (one of which was a airport where an actual pilot took off and landed for us for the 48 hour film) in Welcome Home.

    Above all story is everything and being the college graduated-film producer I lined up not only great actors and locations but wonderful talent. My brother Tony and Trey Campbell are experienced life long writers who don’t wish to spell things out for people–they think the audience is a little more smarter than that. Wether what came across was unappealing or moving or it made you cry-its your problem, but a well rounded story exist within the playing field.

    Fun Facts about our film

    Did you know that one of our actors, Steve Carlisle acted in 11 major motion pictures including our childhood favorite Cop and a Half??? and 10 tv shows including Roseanne and Quantum Leap?
    check him out…http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0137652/

    The airport we filmed at is run completely by a volunteer. He is an awesome person and owns his own plane but didn’t have enough experience with it to want to fly us around in the plane for any interior shots. Michael mann was a huge inspiration for our opening shot.

    The Bar fight scene-we actually took over a bar in operation for a hour. The crowd in the bar at the time loved watching us make the film. When our actors rehearsed the fight they started throwing real punches and knocked over three tables in a row! Dang why weren’t we rolling!

    We actually woke up a new born at 1 am in the morning for our final shot.

    Finally-we had a three hour break between filming the night scenes- everyone had a nap, shower, dinner. I am a good scheduling producer. Hit me up if you want on our team next year..haha.

    PS..The Romine Brothers Directed the Film and the Sutton Brothers filmed and did the awesome sound work in our movie Thanks guys.

    I am actually glad to see people making movies and making connections, that is the most positive aspect of the festival. If you read this comment this far- tell me about your production.

  32. I can get you a job doing simian graphics.
    Through in a Robert Zemeckis Film Festival and you’ve got yourself a deal.

  33. Ken Hanke

    I snapped at you Ken because I hate authority and judicial decision. I apologize that you were the man that was in that position-you could have been tom hanks for all I cared. I also apologize for being crude within my comments towards you.

    That’s okay, Jesse, I’m not big on grudges, I’m used to being yelled at (figuratively speaking), and I certainly understood your disappointment. I might note that this article would have been longer and more detailed had there been room. It was meant to run in the paper and somehow got overlooked in production, but having been written with a certain length in mind, it is as it is.

  34. Ken Hanke

    Through in a Robert Zemeckis Film Festival and you’ve got yourself a deal.

    Do I have to sit through it personally?

  35. Carey M.

    Was “Get Down” based on “The Crying Game?”

    it wasn’t, I haven’t seen the film. I will have to see it now.

  36. Ken Hanke

    Was “Get Down” based on “The Crying Game?”

    it wasn’t, I haven’t seen the film. I will have to see it now.

    I’m pretty sure it’s in the near (like next month) future for an Asheville Film Society screening.

  37. Ken Hanke

    I think that’s about commensurate with walking 15,392 miles

    You’re a hard man, Jeremy Dylan.

  38. Pete Carver

    Hi Ken:

    Curious as to what you thought of S.T.A.R. the musical by A-B Tech DME/Drama which made the top 10 at the Fine Arts Theatre. Any comments or advice? Btw I directed the production of PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE you saw this spring. Many thanks, keep up the good work,

    Pete Carver

  39. Ken Hanke

    Curious as to what you thought of S.T.A.R.

    My memory of it is a positive one, but to get into specifics I’d like to see it again. Is it available online?

  40. DrSerizawa

    You have to respect anyone, except Herschel Gordon Lewis, who goes through the trouble to make a movie. Closest I came was in the 7-8th grade with some friends and an 8mm camera trying to remake stuff like Pal’s The Time Machine in the backyard. We’d take half the day just to do the 50ft reel. It takes a lot of real intention to pull a real movie off. When a movie turns out actually good it’s even better. Even if I dislike a movie I almost always retain respect for the people who felt what they were trying to do was important enough to jump all the hurdles.

  41. Pete Carver

    Ken:
    Yes, STAR is on youtube, just search star and ab tech,

    Pete

  42. Mark Bloom

    For what it’s worth, Welcome Home was my favorite film of the competition. I like comedy, so it surprised even me that a drama won me over. The story, though perhaps cliched, was well presented, well shot, and well acted. Not that I immediately connected with the lead character, but I did want to find out what happened next. I liked the understated ending.

    My film, Chariots of Choir, was, as has been mentioned, a 25-hour movie from start to finish. Here’s what happened: we tested all our equipment the week before, but the camera we used got swapped Saturday morning, and no one thought to check the settings. All our footage Saturday morning included all the characters on the monitor: frame rate, etc. etc. We debated using it anyway, but…

    Then we had an existential dilemma. Some of the actors argued that our script really wasn’t a mockumentary. We had “dramatic re-enactments” using the same actors as in the interviews. We decided in the end that they were right. Maybe it was a good thing we didn’t finish that movie.

    So we found ourselves at our last location (a church) at 5:00 pm with no usable footage, no script, and no movie. But we somehow came up with a solid idea. Everybody jumped on board, and then everyone–cast and crew alike–took turns in front of the camera. Everyone came up with a character and improvised dialog. We finished filming at 10:30 with 55 minutes of footage. We made the deadline with a 6:56-minute movie. That was our accomplishment. We didn’t need to win any awards.

    Shit happens. It’s what you do after it happens that matters.

    Believe it or not, this was my sixth year participating in this event. My teams have won Best Use of Prop twice and Best Choreography once (thanks, Ken). I’ve never missed the deadline, but one of my films was disqualified. I figure I’ve averaged about 6 hours of sleep each weekend. I’ve always wanted to make a better movie, but that’s not really what it’s all about.

    The point is to make connections and learn something. And I’ve done that. I’m happy to report that I’ve got a team together (Shallow Pocket Films), and we’re working on making a *real* short movie. We are near pre-production. There’s a 50-50 chance we’ll start shooting in the fall. And it all came about because of my participation in the 48-Hour Film Project.

    Will I participate again? I’d say it’s less than 50-50. I agree with everything the Romine Brothers (and others) have said–it’s just part of the nature of the “competition.” But ultimately, I’d rather be working on making a movie I can be proud to show off. Maybe at a festival. Good luck to everyone. Keep making movies.

  43. Vanessa

    My picks are for Get Down and the Deep End. A few of the other films mentioned here needed flair to keep my attention in 7 minutes but that is just me.

  44. E Adams

    I just saw and enjoyed Get Down, and Deep End. Deep End was an interesting downbeat film, but I think it got the character name and line wrong. It had “Looks fine to me.” Instead of “That sure looks good to me.”
    and “Maria Vasquez” instead of Monica Vasquez.
    Still a good film, but I wonder if that disqualified them.
    I re
    I also saw “Welcome Home” the other day. Really good film. I would have liked to connect with a change in the character more or understand who Sarah was to Mike better. At first I thought it was his wife and that was his kid being looked after by Mike’s sister. But everything was really well done, I think you needed a bit more time is all. I definitely noticed Steve Carlisle as a natural actor. Probably the most natural of anyone in the competition.

    Also watched Dance Dance execution all the way through (I’d missed part of it to go to the bathroom at the theater.) Very funny stuff. I laughed out loud a few times. There’s a lot of talent in this town. Who’s going to be the first to make a feature film?

  45. Kai H.

    Thanks for the complements on “Get Down” E Adams. :-) “Who’s going to be the first to make a feature film?” hehe I don’t know who is going to be the first, but I def. have a fantastic one I’m writing and plan on making in the near future….

  46. Whiplash

    E. Adams:

    I had the same question about Sarah in Welcome Home. There were plenty of hints that it was a serious loss to the main character, and I assume the baby was hers, but it was one of a few weak parts of what was a really big effort because of the ambiguity. I commend all of the filmmakers. Loved Touched by Angels for the pure lunacy.

  47. TonyRo

    Thanks to everyone for the love poured upon WELCOME HOME. As co-director and writer of the film, it’s good to see it appreciated (or just seen at all, for that matter).

    The end of the film was our biggest problem. I was going for more of a subtle approach and the tight shooting and writing schedule kind of destroyed that. I’m not going to clarify the story here though, the film should speak for itself, even with it’s flaws.

  48. dee s.

    First off, Hanke, I would like to say that I love your movie reviews and can’t wait each week to read them.

    My movie was Bad is Better, genre- doppelganger. This is our team’s 2nd year making a movie for the film festival. We realize that our humor, at times borders on sophmoric, but we would love any feedback you may have for us so we can grow next year in the festival.

  49. Ken Hanke

    First off, Hanke, I would like to say that I love your movie reviews and can’t wait each week to read them.

    Thank you.

    we would love any feedback you may have for us so we can grow next year in the festival.

    Can you provide me a link to it?

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.