Any true Culkin fan or child of the 90s probably remembers My Girl and how awkward the funeral scene was. All it took was a quick audio edit to take it from uncomfortable to hysterical. Vada really needs to know why Thomas J isn't wearing his glasses.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
When news broke yesterday from Sundance that Kevin Smith is going to retire as a director, I kind of flipped out. As far as I'm concerned, Smith is the John Hughes of the 1990s. He defined the Generation X slacker culture through film with both Clerks and Mallrats.
But he didn't keep churning out the same stuff. He kept up with the times, making several filmic innovations. In 2008, he pushed the censors with Zack & Miri Make a Porno. Who else could take a story about two people filming a porn to make ends meet and turn it into something charming and romantic? Smith has been one of the most consistently great comedy directors in the business and has built quite the following for himself. So needless to say, his retirement from directing came as shocking news.
I relaxed, however, when I learned that his retirement from directing was to move into producing. In a dramatic move, Smith purchased the rights to his own new film, Red State, and gave a striking speech about the corruption and brokenness of film studios and his intentions to work against these issues. Hopefully his impact as a big wig in film will be as profound as his work as an auteur.
Have you ever had a shining moment where everything in your life came into focus and you found your true calling? Well, I didn't. But somehow, one day I knew that I wanted to be a filmmaker-- without any profound experience or divine intervention. Thankfully, after some retroactive and totally uneducated psychoanalysis that I performed on myself, I realized how I had come to that conclusion.
You see, the summer after I graduated from high school I sank into a really depressing place, having realized I would never truly be a child again. To fuel my nostalgic yearning, I began to delve into all of the movies and TV series that made me happy as a kid. It was a wild affair. I must have watched The Sandlot at least 30 times. Not to mention the countless episodes of The Adventures of Pete & Pete, The Weekenders, and Clarissa Explains it All. I was possessed by my 6-year-old self. Obviously, I was dealing with some regression issues, heavily linked to the fact that my second parents were Cliff and Clair Huxtable.
Once I got into college, I was getting pretty deep into my philosophy major when I decided to randomly take a film culture course. To my astonishment, all of the different methods of criticism I had studied (particularly in the contemporary philosophy course) applied to all of the films we had been watching. I couldn't help but notice the capitalist woes of Charles Foster Kane; all of the Marxist, Platonic, and feminist messages present throughout the different films we studied. I realized that the material from almost courses was interconnected and that my two majors (Philosophy and Media Studies) were, in fact, compatible. That's when I first began believing in postmodernism and my future in the film industry.
Though my ultimate goal is to create the next great kidventure film (in the same vein as Harriet the Spy or The Goonies), I also am interested in a multitude of genres. And after writing my first film final about the teen comedy genre, I found out that writing about entertainment can be almost as fun as producing it. So, read along as I explore the many facets of the film and television from the deep to shallow end.