Thursday, March 13, 2008

80s Movie Elements Pt 3

AEROBICS Mmmmmmmm…lycra Example: Perfect

SPONTANEOUS CLAPPING SCENE Something happens in a public place (proposal / punching an asshole who’s pissed everyone off / Saving a kid from a man eating ferret) and all the good ornery folk on the metro / rubbernecking in the street, break into spontaneously joyful applause.  Example: Coming to America (Akeem proposes to Lisa on the Metro)

PUNTING The most heroic of all 80s moments. A struggling actor is given one line (usually for comic effect) and put all his heart and soul into its delivery knowing he may never get another chance at glory. Especially good on submarines/during war. Example: Trading Places – Ridiculously volatile cop: ‘Strip you little pussy before I tear you a new ass-hole!'

Variant: DRUNKEN REDEMPTION Deserves its own subset. Drunken bum witnesses some crazy event then decides to go straight. Usually looks at the bottle as if to say – “wow I’ve been drinking so much of this shit I’ve started to seeing little goblins”, before tossing it away. Because alcohol make you hallucinate. Really. Example: Gremlins

Variant: CELEB CAMEO – Often involving Hulk Hogan / Mr T.  Example: Crocodile Dundee 3 (Mike Tyson), Blues Bros. (Bo Diddley et al.)

Variant: CONVERSATION MIDDLE ENTRY: (aka ‘And She Stepped On The Ball…’) Where the scene is entered in the middle of a conversation just as someone is saying something surreal. Often the punchline of a joke. Example: Trading Places - Squash club scene. “…And she stepped on the ball!”

Thursday, February 21, 2008

TV and such

So the TV show's starting to grow legs, albeit a couple of stumpy ones for the moment.

It's been an interesting journey - the show started off as an adaptation of a Japanese manga, and has morphed via a late night HBO-type drama into a light n' primetime ITV pitch. For women.

We're calling it Bridget Jones meets Karate Kid. Get your head round that.

The treatment's done, (6 x 1hr eps), with character summaries, themes, style and cast. It's our first move into the world of TV but it can't be that different to features, right?

We're getting feedback from industry types at the moment and so far it's all been good.

Next week the hard pitching starts. Watch this space.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

80s Movie Elements Pt 2

UGLY DUCKLING / GEEK GETS THE GIRL

There’s usually some frumpy/geeky type girl whose heaving bosom is concealed beneath the oversized dungarees that used to belong to her dad/retarded brother. Ideally her mom has left them somehow (often dead) leaving the clueless dad to try and handle her pubescent raging hormones and ‘women’s business’ with hilariously touching results.

The ugly duckling gets done-up like a cheap whore to go to the prom, so that the high school quaterback, pre-saging his future as an alcoholic travelling saleman drinking himself into a stupor in $2 stripclubs, will decide that she’s the woman of his dreams. The hilarious thing is that she had absolutely no idea that she actually had the body of a stripper and all she had to do was lose her glasses! Who gives a toss about inner beauty when she’s got a rack like that…?

Variant: Other versions include the pretty girl with a good heart who, for reasons best known to herself, has decided to go out with some meatheaded thug (nearly always called ‘Chet’ or ‘Brad’) who is also usually the quarterback for the high school football team. Our hero (ideally her childhood sweetheart) has to prove to her that his love/intelligence is more attractive than Chet’s money/looks/brawn. Usually involves him growing some cojones and thumping someone, thereby negating the whole positive message.

Example: Back to the Future.


BAND OF MISFITS

A bunch of freaks and weirdos, each ideally with special (and not at first obviously uselful) skills, come together into a kind of superhuman army, forged in the fires of team spirit and the triumph of human will.

They then defeat the ├╝ber-team of the enemy mastermind (characterised by their Aryan looks and matching uniforms).

Examples: Street Fleet, Police Academy

Monday, February 18, 2008

80s Movie Elements Pt 1

So here they are, the first two Elements in the Great 80s Movie Elements List of Elements that make a Great 80s Movie.

Maybe all movies from now on should have an EITG80MELOETMAG80M score depending on how many elements they have and how much time you have on your hands...


TRAINING MONTAGE
Need no real explanation. Hero is crap at something. With a thumping soundtrack and a few innovative training routines he become a superman in about three days.

Actually you can have a montage about anything, especially building wacky machines, but this is the best type and deserves its own category.

Examples: Karate Kid, Rocky.


BACK FROM THE DEAD
Our hero is getting a wholesale behind-of-the-hand ass whuppin’ from some enormous neanderthal. About to give up when he catches the eye of his adoring girlfriend / the girl he fancies, who has just arrived. Comes ‘back from the dead’ to win heroically.

Variant: Echoed voice of dead master / “Do it for little Jimmy”/ “I will avenge the death of my father” etc.
Example: Rocky, Karate Kid, Star Wars

The 1980s

The 1980s

This is a decade I have a lot of mixed feelings about.
Actually that's not true - apart from Movies, I wish the entire decade had never happened.

People dressed badly, ate horrible food and listened to music that was like being given an aural enema with a cactus.

That said without all that awfulitude, it's arguable there would never have been an Eddie Murphy, a Gizmo or a Spielberg.

At least with 80s movies you knew where you were. This was because they were so relentlessly formulaic. The following is what I would describe as the definitive list of Elements for a Great 80s Movie. Well I would, wouldn't I.

All suggestions for inclusion will be laughed at (hopefully).

Friday, February 08, 2008

And they're off. Up and running.

I guess I should explain what the hell is going on here.

I am Producer (read idiot, broke) in the UK Film industry. If you can call it that.
It's an industry in the the way the Bridlington-under-Lyme Women's Institute Annual Summer Fete can be called a Jam Industry: a lot of well intentioned people producing some pretty tasty stuff with no real clue of how to make anyone outside the Women's Institue, their friends and family, buy it.

I go through a lot of crap on an almost hourly basis and need some cathartic expression for my boiling rage so here it is.

We'll learn more about each other as we go along. This is the honeymoon period. I'm keeping my bad habits under wraps.

I'm developing a bunch of movies and some TV so there's plenty of things to go wrong, believe me.

Come to think if it I should have called this blog 'Schadenfreude'.

You have been warned.