Tuesday, September 25, 2007

For Your Consideration

I get really excited about small-budget, independent films. The San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival is a great place to hear about these. Some of the finalists this year were recently published by Vision Forum:
A Cry from Iran
Monstrous Regiment of Women
Joel's Journey
Smuggler's Ransom

I have a friend who went to film school, and another friend who is finishing up a film project from this summer. Though they know an irritating lot about cameras, lighting, angles, and editing (taking those obligatory photos after competition events with a group of filmmaker/photography people tries patience). All of my knowledge comes from watching DVD extras: making of, especially for low-budget films. I've watched Excel Entertainment's Pride and Prejudice making of, Pride and Prejudice for BBC, Lord of the Rings, other small independent films. They're all great. I love finding out how they did the costumes, decorating, dealt with extras issues, and chose locations.

The movie industry is going to experience a diaspora, more independent films, less big stars. Watching it happens is, yes, exciting.

Another little film I found is:

To God be all glory.


Dr. Paleo Ph.D. said...

Aha, I almost blogged this! ^_^

I would love to see the Iran and Regiment. They both look sooo good!

Roger said...

(Note from Blog Owner: I edited Roger's comment for content that he can feel free to post on his own blog or in a forum that supports this. The point of my post was not to endorse or criticize Vision Forum or Doug Phillips. Most of the movies listed were in the film festival started by Vision Forum.)

A Cry From Iran is the obvious winner, and everyone who attended the SAICFF this year knows it should have won the Jubilee Award.

The film that did win the Grand Prize didn't win because it was at all well produced, or for any other valid reason. It won for the same reasons that Al Gore's global warming video won an Oscar. The judges are gaga over the agenda. Even if the production quality was far inferior to other entries, all those considerations were cast aside in favor of giving the top award to a poorly produced film because it pushes the judges' personal political agenda.

The one and only problem with A Cry From Iran is that it doesn't push Doug Phillips' personal political agenda, and therefore line his pockets. If a film has any chance at all of winning at the SAICFF it has to push Doug Phillips' Vision Forum agenda... and that's exactly what every year's top SAICFF films have done, ... If it doesn't push his agenda it won't help him peddle any "complimentary" Vision Forum merchandise. That's why Monstrous Regiment Of Women won the Jubilee Award this year. He'll sell the winning video and bundle it with other misogynistic Vision Forum merchandise.

Monstrous Regiment Of Women didn't win because it was well scripted, edited, or produced. It won because Doug Phillips hand picks the "judges" and all the "judges" are in his hip pocket. Doug Phillips decided it was the winner and his little cadre of "judges" rubber stamped his decision. The entire process is even more biased than any film awards that Hollywood hands out. At least Hollywood film judges actually have some film making expertise. Doug Phillips' "film judges" don't even know the first thing about how to make a film.

...Doug Phillips is turning the Christian independent film making industry into a disreputable laughing stock. With this kind of leadership the Christian film making industry is doomed...


Lisa of Longbourn said...

Please forgive me for editing your comment. This is my blog, and will only allow promotion of certain ideas to an extent. Beyond that your inflammatory opinions may be posted somewhere at which you are liable for the content.

Let me make some observations about your logic in criticizing the festival.

I venture to guess by your original language that you are opposed to the message of Monstrous Regiment of Women, so your opinion is not all that balanced either. Neither is mine. Hollywood's isn't. Vision Forum's isn't. But when an organization hosts their own film festival, it is their perogative to judge it however they want, or as they publish.

Doug Phillips doesn't judge Hollywood for biased awards, but for the ungodly content they promote. Vision Forum is trying to help and inspire independent filmmakers. Their conference last year taught a lot of filmmaking skills.

I believe some of the judges are filmmakers. They are also likeminded to Doug Phillips or they wouldn't be part of the festival. That doesn't mean that he owns them.

You said Vision Forum would peddle "complimentary" merchandise. I think you meant "complementary." They're a business; of course they want to market their goods.

I'm not sure if Vision Forum will sell the movie itself, though. Maybe.

Take heart. Christians will keep making movies, and the quality will increase with practice and available technology. A single film festival good or bad cannot make or break the creativity of a generation.

Anyway, my whole point was to encourage people who like independent films to look into the ones I listed. I'm very sorry you seemed to miss the point. "Expelled" has nothing to do with Vision Forum or the San Antonio Christian Film Festival. Nor do the movies whose making of I watched, or my friend who went to film school. If any of you have friends making movies, support and encourage their talent.
To God be all glory,
Lisa of Longbourn