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patterns of ink

How fruitless to be ever thinking yet never embrace a thought... to have the power to believe and believe it's all for naught. I, too, have reckoned time and truth (content to wonder if not think) in metaphors and meaning and endless patterns of ink. Perhaps a few may find their way to the world where others live, sharing not just thoughts I've gathered but those I wish to give. Tom Kapanka

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Your Turn to be a Movie Critic

A few weeks ago I was watching some "movie shorts" made by budding film makers at "On the Lot." I have not yet seen the TV show on Fox, but the site has samples available to be viewed on-line. The title of one caught my eye because each fall school teachers everywhere are required to attend a "Blood-Borne Pathogens" workshop to review contagious diseases carried by human blood and procedures for preventing contact with it in a school setting.

This short film, however, is not called "Blood Borne" (with an "e" as in carried by the blood though that does apply). It is called "Blood Born" (witout the "e" as in birth).

Like poetry, short films are often metaphors rather than stories.
I could be wrong, but I think this filmmaker may be playing on the borne-born word relationship in the same way I explored in a post called Borne back in May.

Most of us remember Siskel and Ebert from back in the 80's. Well, here’s your chance to be a "movie critic" (hopefully without getting as personal as they sometimes did) by commenting on one, two, or all three of the following:

#1: Watch the short film Blood Born and see if you think this is a random "what if" plot or if it has a deeper meaning. Why the missing "e" in the title? Does the doctor's dialogue bring something else to mind? Is there a subtle allusion to a broader concept of "remission" (than being healed from cancer). Why might the implied ending validate or invalidate the film's message of hope? (Sorry these questions sound like a high school textbook. Feel free to ignore them.) I may be way off, but I can't help but think the film was intended to stir this sort of discussion.

#2: Speaking of blood, the next option is this 8-minute "must see" film not created by a director but simply captured live on video. Its Youtube heading is the Battle at Kruger, but there's got to be a better title for this incredible story about "the food chain."
[Update: July 22. Some creative viewer has remixed that last link for our entertainment. If you liked the unedited version, you'll get a kick out of this short sequel. This was the first critique of the film I've seen. (I didn't know Amish had high-tech equipment.) It was followed by this explanation of the amazing footage.]

#3: If you found #1 intriguing, you may also enjoy sorting out the meaning of this brilliantly-done "short" that a friend directed me to a couple years ago. It's called Spin.

Please feel free to invite your blogging friends to participate in this mid-summer mini film festival assignment, and feel free to add links to other interesting film shorts or Youtube clips.


Anonymous Jason said...

Hi! I found a stone in the Detroit airport with your URL on it. Thought I'd drop a line to say hi. :)

10/7/07 6:18 PM  
Blogger SusieQ said...

Tom, I want to do this, but I will have to postpone it until Friday. I like the idea of a little summer schooling for myself. :-)

10/7/07 11:11 PM  
Blogger patterns of ink said...

I thought and thought about this short message... stone? airport?
Then I remembered that over a year ago in May of 2006, we were returning from Destin, Florida, with a group of students. Our Detroit flight got canceled due to a storm causing a six-hour wait there at Detroit Metro. I noticed that some people had written their names on stones in that planter by Starbucks. Instead of writing my name, I wrote this URL. I had forgotten all about that... sort of like putting a note in a bottle and thinking it would never be found. Thanks for "leaving no stone unturned." Your short note made me think of this poem I posted a year after dropping that stone while returning from the same trip with a different group of students.
Do come again, Jason.

No hurry on the "homework" since it's summertime. =) I could be wrong about this film. There are certainly some holes in my initial thoughts.

11/7/07 6:33 AM  
Blogger Dr.John said...

I'm not much good at pulling meaning out of movies. But I found all three clips to be interesting.

11/7/07 7:16 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

Thank you for the birthday greetings, POI, and your post about my career change/life enhancement. I am genuinely thrilled and nervous and confident and ... What a roller coaster !! A

11/7/07 7:17 PM  
Blogger JR's Thumbprints said...

I've been following the television show "On The Lot" since its debut. The young filmmaker you speak of is my favorite. He has consistently shot remarkable shorts that tell wonderful stories. He survived a tongue lashing from Carrie Fisher after his "Ghetta Room" short. He claimed he wasn't picking fun of mentally challenged people and that the main character was "just a nerd." I think the viewers knew better, yet laughed anyway. Personally, I hope he wins. Great show. His last short made the viewer think about the main character's "special gift" and how it would never be utilized. My only fear, that the networks cancel the show. Also, their website is awesome. The show definitely fills the void since ZED TV no longer airs.

11/7/07 11:40 PM  
Blogger patterns of ink said...

Dr. John,
Glad you liked the links. I find watching good web TV more interesting than regular TV. That #2 film takes a turn ever minute.

Keep enjoying your summer, you'll do great in the fall.

Thanks for directing me to that site a couple weeks ago.
That was when I started watching the clips. I wish I had been following the show from the start. I didn't realize that this director was actually someone the viewers have met. It was the language of the doctor that seemed to give the film a subtle religious tone, because the traditional teachings of the church tell us Christ's blood changes lives. He, too, was a miracle, a gift from God. His blood, however, had to be shed for remission, and in that sense it was activated through his death.
This character in this film’s blood is described in much the same way and also causes remission. It was shared not shed, and its potential was lost through his death. The young director could tell me if I'm reading too much into it, but he'd probably find the discussion interesting.

Check out that "Spin" short. I think the guy is a DJ guardian angel or something. It's kind of funny and very well done.

12/7/07 12:49 AM  
Blogger patterns of ink said...

The morning after writing the above comment, I went to “The Lot” site again and checked out the directors (instead of just watching the clips).
To my surprise, Jason Epperson comes right out and gives his perspective that seems to confirm my take on the the tone of the film. He was not talking about his film "Blood Born," but in his brief bio he says, “By making it this far in the competition, I have a newfound confidence level and I'm excited to show off what this Kentucky boy can do. I am a Christian and feel that God has blessed me and put me on this show for a purpose. I don't consider myself a Christian filmmaker necessarily, but a Christian who wants to make positive films.”

12/7/07 7:06 AM  

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