If i could name one director whom influenced many directors to date in the commercial context, i’d say Terrence Malick fits my answer perfectly.
Having been directed award winning feature films such as Thin Red Line, Tree of Life, Days of Heaven, and To the Wonder, without a doubt, the hermit has settled his position as one of the greatest living directors to date. I’m not even exaggerating it. It is merely a fact. I mean, how can you be envisaged such thing, such wonder of telling a story through your lens by combining various angles of remarkable perspectives and the use of straightforward narrative with the main character’s voice as its zenith while the music also plays the biggest role in it.. It is as if he comes down to earth to envision the days in heaven and set the goddamn method.
American Cinematographer once had an interview with Terrence Malick’s DoP. Emmanuel Lubezki and other production team and they tried to enlighten us by telling some unwritten rules called as dogma that terry used in his film, The Tree of Life. And here’s the list that I find it hard to catch up yet:
- Using only one lens, or shooting the entire film at T2.8
- Shoot in available natural light
- Do not underexpose the negative. Keep true blacks
- Preserve the latitude in the image
- Seek maximum resolution and fine grain
- Seek depth with deep focus and stop: “Compose in depth”
- Shoot in backlight for continuity and depth
- Use negative fill to avoid “light sandwiches” (even sources on both sides) (WTF is light sandwiches?!)
- Shoot in crosslight only after dawn or before dusk; never front light
- Avoid lens flares
- Avoid white and primary colors in frame
- Shoot with short-focal-length,
- hard lenses
- No filters except Polarizer
- Shoot with steady handheld or Steadicam “in the eye of the hurricane”
- Z-axis moves instead of pans or tilts
- No zooming (FU*KING YES)
- Do some static tripod shots “in midst of our haste”
- Accept the exception to the dogma (“Article E”)
I’m not sure if i turned snob by viewing and practically judging few Tv Ads that features landscape shots, biblical narrative, Wagnerian music and the exposure of naturalism had used such directing style perfected by the enigmatic terry. However, It’s not something bad though. For me, it’s just the technique you applied to capture feelings, heartwarming moments, environment, and finally be able to send a message in an unlikely way. If I ever be able given the opportunity, I’d really really like to try his method in directing a commercial because IT WILL BE A DIVINE. (I mean the technique, not my output lol. But im trying tho).
Crumb is a documentary film exploring Robert Crumb’s personal life, physical environment and the relationship between his career as a cartoonist and the BIG BAD WORLD surrounds him. After we’ve finally been exposed by the bizarre interests and one-of-a-kind worldview from the characters in this film, we may acknowledge that somehow their personalities are made as a product of social conformity. They chose art as an escape route, a corollary if you will, to avoid social pressure they couldn’t withstand and as a way to perfecting their craft by doing so.
Robert Crumb’s worldview and his satirical comments wasn’t vague and rather plausible for me to relate with. There’s some part of him that I understand. Like his sole perspective against all odds, his profoundness as how to see “our world”, such an idea.
Despite the fact that they were merely a dysfunctional family, we could see throughout the film a glimpse of love and care shown by the Crumb brothers. A glimpse of longing for each other. His relation with his brothers. That not so close relation, a relation one could only reminisce when they were younger. One true self they could expressed when they were kids.
And also while watching this poignant documentary, i feel like i was brought to a neighborhood where the characters from Gummo reside and enjoy their ‘life’ as good as possible in a dystopian society aside from the American dream. It’s like watching scenes from Napoleon Dynamite.
Robert Crumb as Kip, Charles Crumb as Napoleon Dynamite and Maxon…i don’t know, Uncle Rico perhaps.
While It’s pretty much hilarious for me to have discovered his sexual interest in particular which was not too explicit but more than enough for me to relate with his kinky-ness, i could also digest more to comic artist’s special interests in America and to find out more insights from its industry.
I’ve had a brief encounter of this film and yet my bowel is not as daring as others who have been damaged by it. Clearly, I was unable to watch it as a whole, though I set my record at 25 minutes of unholy immersion and subsequently closed that perverse YouTube channel. Inevitably, there are numerous scenes in this film depicting exploitations towards innocent souls comprised of 18 young men and women in entirely unthinkable manners, for instance: You’re more likely to see Coprophagia, Black Mass Wedding fiesta, eye gouging, scalping, branding and whichever things in it that are truly repulsive. (F.Y.I, the very pleasant things to watch are the beginning of the film and the moment when the 2 libertines were dancing to the last waltz in a fanciful sequence toward the end of the film).
Conversely, I must say that one would have been such surly and counterculture and even has interesting perspective to understand and consider it as an Art of what once Pier Paolo Pasolini and Marquis de Sade were trying to deliver upon watching their last attempt to state “Men of Power” and “Human Capabilities”.
It Is perhaps not surprising to named Salo as one of the most remarkable and debated films to date and remained as a film long cherished by cinephiles and critics.
“Sade understood power. Pasolini understood Sade. Together they made a horrid masterpiece. But under the surface there’s profundity, humor, and passion” – Aleksi (criterion.com)
Furthermore, I suggest you to download and read the unfinished novel of 120 days of Sodom by the Notorious Marquis de Sade here.