Sunday, 30 October 2011

Daylight saving grumbles

Although technically we have gained an hour, I'm certainly feeling very tired right now as my brain is telling me it is much later than it is, I shall counter this with the finest of coffees next morning! Our Halloween video is up, I apologize in advance for the long winded nature of it and general lack of entertainment value at times but it gives you a good insight to our personality off camera and will definatly please some die hard fans.

On the car ride home from my Grandparents I watched Enter the Dragon, a martial arts film that was hugely groudbreaking for its time but has since been greatly surpassed by other great Jackie Chan and historical chinese films like Hero. It was all a little bit too serious with a hint of 60's Bond, the fight scenes were decent enough but I would only re-watch one of them on youtube if I wanted to. Like our Halloween film, only the hardcore fans of the genre need apply, otherwise watch Kung Fu Hustle, that film is amazing!

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Visits have been due

After a very hearty and continental breakfast of grapefruit and buns we were greeted by half of the other half of the Durrant family, (just one uncle and one cousin,) we then rushed off to friends of the family for cake and coffee. The day has gone by quickly and I am due to visits another grandparent tomorrow, figures when most of your family lives in Kent. I highly recommend the game Rummikub though! It's like rummy and scrabbles love child and is great fun if you like either of those games. 

Friday, 28 October 2011

We have the Internet!

Well, tell a lie, we have BTopenzone's complimentary internet in this area. I have arrived at my Grandparents house and about to settle into bed after the long journey to Kent. I also had Mark and Dan round this morning so we could absolutely ravage the now mouldy pumpkins, we started lightly with the bb guns but they didn't do huge amounts of damage, therefore we jumped straight to a shovel and played baseball with the pumpkins; they didn't last very long.

Immediately after that carnage we sat down to Peter Jackson's Braindead, we agreed that was absolutely, positively the most disgusting and gory film we had ever seen; and we bloody loved it. It certainly had that cult charm also held by Evil Dead, the main actor certainly reminded me of Bruce Campbell due to his health dose of overacting that was hilarious in some scenes (I'm looking at you, baby fight in the park scene!) The final half hour will kick your ass until blood pours out your ears, and hopefully you won't lose your appetites like we did, it was just violence done amazingly over the top and incredibly creative, each kill was just more cringe worthy than the last, and at one point we just couldn't bare to look. Highly recommended to the blood thirsty among you!

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Bang bang

Our Halloween video is nearly ready for it's release on Monday, promotional picture can be found below! As I write this, Mark and I are talking about getting a fancy DSLR camera to shoot our videos on in the future for hyper awesome quality looking uploads. Speaking of shooting, Ben Gomm bought over some gas powered bb guns to show as potential props for our zombie film, they were pretty cool, the pistols especially had some actual blow back and power, meaning that they look the part and function like the real thing, we will certainly be calling on him later on. As of tomorrow I will be in Kent visiting grandparents again, I am told that they have internet this time around so I may be able to blog, otherwise I will get the others to do a stand in. Have a good weekend!

Halloween Special Coming Soon

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Leauge of Meh...

After a few days of Louis pestering me to play League of Legends I agreed as I have recently been putting down games he likes with little reason, so I got the full experience with some other human players all of which were Louis friends. The game is very boring and time consuming, it even displays the amount of time you have spent in-game just to taunt you and remind you that you could have done so many better things with your life, like bake a pie or ride a boat, but instead you are where you are, watching your champion run into a hoard of minions as he gets massacred by the enemy champion with the stun spell which leaves you buggered and left looking at a very dull re spawn screen where you ponder is it worth it or not. In short, get Swords and Soldiers instead, games last 1/10 the amount of time and it is actually more fun. Other than that I did very little, I re watched Speed this evening because I needed a good action film to get my blood pumping again after being in a 45 minute state of comotosis after enduring LoL.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

In the can

Sorry about the lack of a blog yesterday but the team and I were bogged down in filming all evening. First off we bought some more pumpkins, we were a bit lazy so we went down to Lidl, apparently the German's don't celebrate Halloween in the same...scope as us to the pumpkins were much smaller; and cheaper! Armed with 3 brand new pumpkins and after brushing of some immature kids outside Pets at Home calling us gays we triumphantly returned home and got to work on carving the things. Scooping out the insides was easy enough, getting designs was the tricky part, we used up 2 pumpkins for our logo and writing, Nick made a compilation of ghouls and Ben carved a grim reaper manatee. Of course my pumpkin was going to have to have a Homestarrunner design on it so chose to do Trogdor, which Mark originally poo-pooed but quickly changed his tone after I showed him the fan slide show with music video! Setting them alight was also interesting, dropping candles into pumpkins resulted many a scorched finger and spilt wax which ignited within Trogdor, leaving his pumpkin BURNINATED!

This morning we rolled on down to Chris' house to film our Wikipedia sketch, it was great fun filming that. We even managed to think of some new material as we were going that was awesome, expect that one up within the week also. Quickly, Tintin was AMAZING, so many nods to the source material and other Spielberg films, the whole thing felt like a new Indiana Jones adventure and me and friends were actively picking out best scenes that were incredible, one of the highest compliments you can give to a film. I also watched the 1932 horror film Freaks which was very good, it is unlike anything you have ever seen before as it uses genuine 'freaks' so it becomes startiling but also heartwarming as we see them get on so well with the others. I also like how eventually it is some of the 'normal' people become the ones are are looked on with scorn and curiosity, a nice twist.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

'Nose Powder'

Once again, I had a very slopey Sunday and accomplished very little. Tomorrow however, we shall be very busy indeed filming an informal and unscripted pumpkin carving event at my house, video up for Halloween. I watched Charlie Chaplin's Modern Times today, I think that city Lights is his better film as it had more emotional moments and a better ending. For comedy purposes however I think this film is a little better, the final singing scene is great and there are some other great gags. I would recommend it to any fan of Chaplin and anyone else who is a fan of silent comedy, but City Lights and Safety Last are a little better.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Hooray for Half Term!

Work was very slow but relaxing today, mainly we sat around and played pass the pigs, legend of a game that is. Louis and I watched Living in Oblivion which was really very good, Buscemi is in one of his best roles here and he really pulls it off. The dark comedy is great, you can't help but laugh when things go a little wrong but by the end you realize that maybe, just maybe, film making is worth all the hastle you put up with.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Feeling oddly spiritual

Yesterday we gave you a lovely picture of Jamie pulling an amusing face, 'this was no ordinary announcement, Cafe Studios is planning something big' you think to yourself. Today we give you an apocalyptic look at our school after we were done with it... on final cut pro! We plan to release our new short by the end of half term, before Halloween, it will not be our formal holiday video as we have something much more basic planned for that, rest assured, by the 31st there will be 2 new videos on the site!

I watched Waking Life today as it is made by one of my favorite directors on one of my favorite topics: dreams. The film was animated very differently to most and it's general feel reminded me very much of the Sandman books as they shared a similar subject matter and done by multiple artists. The film also provided some very interesting insights that puts the phrase 'food for thought' to shame, by the end you feel like you have taken in enough information to last a lifetime, leaving enriched and checking your light switches compulsively.

Film Friday choice was Office Space, the 1999 cult classic comedy. It was pretty good, I didn't personally think that it lived up to it's prestige, it was certainly very funny in places but despite it's brief run time of 89 minutes it still felt a bit too long as some scenes tended to drag a bit. However I would probably recommend it to be seen at least once just so you can understand the legion of film's memorable lines.

Say no more...

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Armoury increased

After waiting a month and a bit my Birthday present from Mark and Dan has finally arrived: A BB shotgun! It is very cool, I also ordered another handgun, this one is capable of firing ink filled BB's, after playing around with the red ones we decided that they would make a very good special effects thing if we ever wanted to shoot someone on camera. I went round to Chris' house as well, at first it was just to wash his car, then we were finding out how long we could last on his treadmill at highest setting, then we were preparing a late pasta dinner; I got home much later than I thought I would!

Coming soon...

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Missed a shot

Got a text in the wee hours of the morning form Mark telling me to bring the same clothes I had yesterday on set because we needed to film a single reaction shot from Dan. This was both a good and bad thing, it was bad because it was a little bit of a faff, although it was a necessary faff, it was good because without the text I wouldn't have gotten up in time for school. In the evening I went out to see Pink Floyd's 'The Wall' being performed by a semi-local school and for a school production it was bloody good! Certainly much better than Othello but now I just really want to see the film again.

I watched Cape Fear (1962) because I craved a good old thriller and it certainly delivered on many levels. Michum's performance was as good as his role in Night of the Hunter, he played a very similar creepy character here and we can truly see everything he is thinking without saying a word and he really stole the show for me. It was also one hell of a ride, tension was very high in certain scenes, the last scene in particular had me squirming with discomfort. A decent view that I would recommend to thriller lovers!

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Some more filming, late home again

Once again, I had little to no free time today as filming went on until 6 and I needed to be ready to go out at 6:30. The shooting went quite well as a whole and I am very excited to see Marks end product, at home I was left with 10 minutes to get ready, with a fork in one hand and chopsticks in the other I warfed down my sweet and sour pork and went our to see an amateur performance of Othello. I was very lost after 5 minutes as the language was needlessly confusing thanks to a loose adaption towards a more Caribbean dialect, I spent 80% of the viewing experience starring into space, daydreaming; fortunatly the company I was with shared similar opinions of the performace.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Hot chocolate weather

It has come around to that time of year where you just want something hot and sweet, you don't want a tea or a coffee and then you think 'ooh yes, a hot coco will do nicely.' I spiced mine up with half a teaspoon of coffee granules to give it a faint bitterness, Louis likes his with a dash of cinnamon or ginger which I think is a bit rank. Filming today went on for a very long time, we finished around 7 and I didn't feel particularly helpful this time around as in reality there was very little I could actually do to help. What we got looked pretty good and we will be filming the rest tomorrow, Mark will have plenty of fun editing the footage and it will defiantly keep him busy for the next week.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Lego patterns are infinate!

My girlfriend got me an unofficial Lego book that teaches you to make pretty much everything from bridges to spaceships with the miracle bricks after they have found an ideal blueprint for everything, it's pretty awesome and I will certainly be giving some of the stuff a go.

Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf was a very interesting film, the writing and performances were excellent and there were some scenes of ridiculous amounts of tension despite it being about 4 characters over the course of one evening. The bicker, dance, laugh, cry, drink and bicker and drink some more, my only complaint about the film is that it is just a little bit too long; if you are willing to put up with that then you are in for a real ttreat if you like a character study.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Dustin in drag

Oooh, it was nippy outside today, bit of a shock as we have just had a few warm days before this cold, I actually wore gloves to work today for the first time in 9 months. I do love the cold though, there was little to no one walking outside and the glistening fields of frost put a smile on my face as I cycled past.

Today's highlight was easily Tootsie mainly because of Hoffman's performance as a women, it was just the little things about her character and mannerisms that made it so charming, by the time everything goes wrong during the later section of the film you really do start to cringe with embarrassment because you know his secret. It was very funny too, I was laughing out loud on numerous occasions and was very pleased to see Bill Murray in a small but piviotal role. Mark. If your reading this. You will love this film.

Friday, 14 October 2011

No time for FIlm Friday

Cafe Studios spent our afternoon filming our new sketch, simply we got around 12 people to look like they were sitting an exam until they break out and start shooting each other with invisible guns. One person actually (and miraculously) did draw blood but we filed that as an accident on set. After that we came home and thought about watching a film but instead watched an episode of Tintin in preparation for the new film coming out in less than 2 weeks. Collapsing on the sofa we just had some witty banter for about an hour, Louis joined in and we laughed the minutes away. I rustled up an omelet and some bacon for Dan and Mark, then we were off to House Evening (a school talent show.)

The opening acts left something to be desired I will admit, the performers did try, bless them, but some real charisma was lacking within them so it was hard to get into their acts. My 6th form tutor group put on some very tongue and cheek intros to each new show, usually ending in a God awful pun. We got a chance to show our film during the second half however, me and Dan braced ourselves on making a stage performance to introduce the video and that went surprisingly well due to our natural chemistry, even put in a bit of free advertising for the site at the end. The film went down amazingly well and it was really lovely having people come out of the show and openly congratulating us, teachers, tutors, friends, even people we didn't know said that the film was great! Such a pleasant way to end a good day, it's worth making films just to hear an audience enjoy themselves.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Energy Ball

I found my electricity glass ball thing, I forget the actual name for these things so hopefully pictures will speak louder than words:

Google images informed me that these are called plasma balls, my nostalgia informed me that they are awesome.

Me and Mark had a proper go at scripting our zombie film today and it sounds amazing at the moment, I have also been doing a lot of Internet research on gore effects we can use, so far we want to make a head a'splode and to break an arm, there will probably be bullet wounds as well but we'll have to wait and see. Cafe Studios are also going to be filming half of our latest short film/sketch idea, we pray that our extras will turn up, the bribe of 'biscuits and other snacks' is hopefully enough!

I found Dazed and Confused while scouting through our DVD's today, hit it up on IMDB, who's the director? Only Richard Linklater, the man who brought us School of Rock and the lovely Before Sunrise (a favorite.) The film is basically 100 minutes of high school kids chatting, smoking weed and paddeling freshmen, and it's great; if you like that kinda film. Simple day in the life premise, lots of mini narratives and decent characters and somehow it just works as a film. If you love an meaty plot then steer clear, like Clerks this one has a bare bones narrative but human characters doing normal things and chatting about crap; the kind of film I deeply respect.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Akward phone call

Nothing too eventful happened today so I thought I would share this real telephone transcript with you from this afternoon, please bear in mind that the gentleman on the other side sounded awful due to his very shoddy phone.

Theo: Hello
Mr X: Hello, is Mrs Durrant there?
Theo: No I'm afraid that she is out
Mr X: Oh ok, i'm one of her colleges and I was told that she pick up my (inaudiable), I really need it so when she gets back could you get her to call me
Theo: Your what sorry?
Mr X: My (inaudiable)
Theo: (Knowing that he cannot ask again in fear of sounding rude) Oh... ok... I'll, I'll tell her you rang
Mr X: Ok, thank you, goodbye
Theo head: What the hell just happened?!

I got arround to watching Irreversible after that phonecall and in some small way I left mentally scarred. It left an impact on me as a viewer in a similar way to 2001: A Space Odessy as I would personally only watch it once but it was one hell of a ride. It has possibly the most infamous of rape scene in a film amoungst a few other moments in the first half which really leaves you feeling sodimized yourself. The second half is an almost polar opposite and I actually found myself laughing with the characters despite the violence I saw in the first half that nearly left me thinking 'They went too far.' Watch it if you like extreamist or hyper-realistic cinema but do view with caution, I read on IMDB that the first 20 minutes has a very low frequency in the mix that is inaudiable to the naked ear but is the same noise you hear during earthquakes that creates feelings of sickness and nausea and I was certainly felt a little disorientated during the exposition.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Zombie planning

Our film lesson today helped me and Mark focus our efforts on our coursework on our beloved genre of zombies. We have planned a general synopsis for our 8 minute film, it will be mostly set within our scout hut and a good old siege, we are hoping to spice it up with some typical comedy and plenty of gore!

My new pair of Lovefilms arrived today so I hastily popped in Barefoot Gen, a film I have been greatly anticipating since I saw it on the top 50 animations list, it makes a very good companion piece to Grave of the Fireflies as both are about the late war in Japan. While I would call the latter a slightly better film it isn't by much, considering that Grave is one of my favorite films that is saying a lot. The animation style is a lot more cartoony and the first 20 minutes of the film lull you into a calm state of mind, much like the peaceful civilians of Japan. What comes after is one of the most shocking and brilliant moments I have ever seen in an animated film that truly and horrifically portrays the bombing of Hiroshima. I squirmed, I smiled, I laughed, I cried and all in a brief 80 minutes. I highly recommend this under appreciated film, it was simply wonderful.   

Monday, 10 October 2011

MIB

Had some very interesting conversations in school about religion and the existence of God today because it was Monday and we were feeling a tad philosophical. We are also very excited about our screening of our film 'As Time Goes By' to a large(ish) audience at our house evening, it's basically a talent show and I in particular would really like to see a audience response to our film.

I had intentions of watching Irreversible today but I was somewhat intimidated by its themes that consist mainly of rape and violence so I just thought 'sod it, I'll watch Men in Black,' a complete contrast I am aware. It was pretty decent, the opening sequence had some very good music from Elfman and the film ended quite well. What bugged me is that it had a lot of 90's pop culture references, mainly ones that poke fun of other actors, some of which flew right over my head and will seriously hinder it's lastability. Smith was very good but Jones's character was a bit dull until near the end where he is given a very rushed attempt at character development. I'm sure it will have a place in some 90's kids hearts but for me it was a little bit mediocre, I expected more laughs but I merely sniffed wit amusement infrequently.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Another weekend gone

I didn't really accomplish much today, I worked on my English coursework but that's about it, I did watch 2 films, the first being Ghost in the Shell, after a very awesome 20 minutes of garbage truck shootings and invisible water fighting the film really went downhill as it tried to talk about too many philosophical questions during its last minutes, only a few of which made sense. The animation was both amazing and lazy at times, the fore mentioned water fighting moment was great but there were several dialogue sequences where mouths didn't need to move thanks to the convenience of telepathy. Luckily it was quite short otherwise it would have dragged on for way longer than it needed to. The other was Touch of Evil, the main thought going through my head was 'good God, Orson Welles has gotten fat' It stated and ended with a very tense sequence but I felt that it dragged on for the first act quite a lot but towards the end it certainly got a lot better and a little bit thought provoking thanks to Welles' performance which was, as always, very good, it was quite clear that he saved the bast character for himself, everyone else I didn't really care about but Hank (Welles) was very engaging. 

Saturday, 8 October 2011

No vegitables

Lunch today comprised of s whole roast chicken between 3 people along with our typical toastie recipes, but now with 100% more chicken! Dinner was a steak pie and chips and I must say I really have noticed the absence of fruit and veg in my diet today as I am feeling quite ill, I should bounce back though despite me additionally feeling knacked to hell.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Yay, weekend!

Had a good old Friday today with a small gathering for the weekly film which was Police Story, A film I haven't seen in ages but it was way better than I remembered, Jackie Chan is a genius of action and comedy, amazing stuff. Making milkshakes again but I ran out of ice cream to make them in the standard uber thick state, we had to settle for single cream consistency rather than porridge, it was tough times. I have also been replaying Bioshock 2 on my new graphics card, I got to the bit where you get the shotgun, spotted a splicer and unloaded hell onto them, fired my first shot and clearly the card couldn't handle that level of awesome and it crashed instantly.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Comedy Cabaret

This evening I went to go see Frisky and Mannish performing in our area, they are basically a music comedy act which was absolutely hilarious. As with most acts of this type the phrase 'audience participation' came into play a little more then I anticipated as I was selected to perform along 4 other oh-so lucky audience members to perform in a very tongue and cheek boy band. We were told to look emotionally into the distance and mime along to a pop song that none of us knew the words to, when I returned to my table my friends thought it was absolutely hysterical and honestly it was a good time. If you get a chance to see the pair perform do so, they are extremely talented, more so than most modern pop musicians.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Happy Birthday Blog!

My goodness, has it really been a year? A whole year of me writing down my daily crap to anyone and everyone who would listen, to be honest I am surprised I have been able to keep it up for so long. I'd always wanted to keep a diary of some sort when I was younger because I thought it would be really cool to look back on myself and see what I have done/accomplished, after looking back through the blog archives I do feel a little proud. Blogging daily has been no easy task either, many times I have been away and got Mark or Daniel to do it, other times I have stayed out too late to warrant a blog entry, once or twice I forgot all together and lay in bed feeling like I had left some task incomplete, after promptly remembering it was the blog I had to re-boot the computer just for you peeps. I would like to thank everyone who reads the blog, I know there aren't many of you but without the few that do I wouldn't have been motivated to continue.

Me and Mark sat down today to do some of our scripting, so far we have begun some basics for our 'Day in the Life' series, picking out unusual characters and jobs. I also handed in my CV to Gamestation who have been offering jobs for seasonal staff, looking forward to hearing from them as it would be pretty sweet to work there, chatting with people like me and serving the occasional new gamer, dropping in some recommendations and denying adult games to minors; that would be the life. By far the 2 best things to happen to me today were finding £1.52 down the sides of my desk chair and finally getting my hands on the Evil Dead trilogy DVD set, I now have all of the films in easy access, it even came with a bonus disc with some hilariously cheap looking interviews with fans of the series giving a very broad overview of the history of the series, complete with over enthusiastic presenter with mock 'Raimi Rush' shots; ironically I found it quite campy.

Thanks again for reading, if you can put up with my dull life and horrendous spelling I would be honoured if you would keep reading through the next year.

Theo Durrant

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Ideas on paper

The group had a small brainstorming session today about our future projects, we know for a fact we will do a genuine zombie film as our coursework practically demands it since Mark has decided to study Zombie in film and I have chosen to study Sam Raimi's horror films. We have also begun planning 'A Day in the Life' mini series that will basically play out as 2-3 minute mockumentaries on unusual characters, we have some good ideas so far and will have a lot of fun making them. We shall spend some time in our frees scripting these shorts and should definitely come out with some good stuff for the future!

I have been very keen to watch Network as I have seen it on numerous Icheckmovies lists. The performances were absoultly stunning, especially between Dunaway and Holden, his final monolouge is one of the highlights. The film did tend to phase in and out of interesting points at it kinda lost me when they hit us with all the TV jargon but I got really interested when people started yelling, I couldn't take my eye's off Peter Finch whenever his character was onscreen as you know he is going to be so unpredictable. It also poses a lot of interesting points about the TV generation and the media as a whole, encouraging you to get mad and scream: 'I'm as mad as Hell and I'm not gonna take this anymore!'

Monday, 3 October 2011

A lot of views

Our 'Ah... Bisto' video has received nearly 600 views, that is more than all our other videos combined! This is probably because we have since posted it on funnyjunk and reddit so we can spread some of our comedy to the unsuspecting Internet!

I got the chance to watch A Bridge Over the River Kwai today after becoming a Guinness fan I could not resist this film. I must say I was very impressed as I can not name another film before 1957 with the same scope or scale as this one, clearly it had a massive budget and was shot on location so it looks great even by today's standards. The final sequence was very impressive but did fee like a massive step backwards in regaurds to the plot, at least it provided a huge specticle that would not dissapoint any viewer.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

My milkshake...

...Did not and will not bring all the boys to the yard because it was funky and not all that great. Afterwards I tried to make some pukka iced tea with freshly squeezed orange and lime juice, that went a little better but I didn't add enough sugar at the last minute and it tasted like water as a result, I even frosted the glass with sugar to make it look the part; sadly it was another letdown.

While watching some film noirs I realize that my brain goes numb from all the information I am putting into them as due to the fast talking and twisting plot, worst offender is Brick which I couldn't understand a word of dialogue. The Maltese Falcon was not so bad at this but I did briefly get lot at times but at least it had the decency to recap every now and then and the talking moments were varied with moments of shouting which were pretty cool. The fighting was also quite humorous and Bogart was great as usual. It didn't have the most satisfying of endings but at least it didn't go for a strictly happy ending.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

HD gaming!

I had a very tiring day at work, we had to deliver a sofa during our lunchbreak by hand and the door wasn't big enough in the guys house so we had to take it back. I did get a very nice drinks cook book though, it teaches you the basics of cocktails and smoothies and I shall hopefully be making some awesome milkshakes tomorrow. The highlight of the day was fitting my graphics card after yesterdays issue was simply resolved, it makes my games look pretty sweet, I can finally enjoy them to 90% of their fullest and apart from homework and films tomorrow, that is all I will be doing, thank God for Sunday's