Monday, September 26, 2005

Goodbye Mr. Wise

Robert Wise, legendary film director of The Day the Earth Stood Still, West Side Story and the editor of Citizen Kane died at the age of 91 last week. I had the distinct honor of meeting Mr. Wise at a Los Angeles film workshop in 1996. He agreed to make a cameo appearance in my forthcoming documentary "Maverick in Disguise"

Although many industry insiders claim that Mr. Wise didn't have a signature style, he was a chameleon, directing films in many genres--horror (The Haunting), sci-fi (Star Trek: The Motion Picture), musicals, dramas, and comedies.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Breaking Rules again...The WB didn't take the Culture Survey

The Human Resources department had a meeting with our department today about some culture survey that I didn't even bother to fill out or hand into my supervisors. I went for the FREE PIZZA.

HR Rep: How long have you been employed here?
WB: Ugh..almost a year.
HR Rep: You should have gotten an email.
WB: Yeah, um...right.
HR Rep: Are you casual-ongoing or casual limited?
WB: I think...
Other employee: We have no termination date for him.
HR Rep: Oh, so you're casual on-going. Well, you should have filled one in.

Hey buddy, I dont get health benefits. I just dont fit in. Its like I'm in a fog walkin' around this place. Part of me wants to quit and just freelance again but that will lead to more anxiety about the next paycheck. I've gotta kick myself into gear and finish my documentary. I'm stallin'. Its too self-indulgent. (Get over that and just finish it).

I remained very quiet for the rest of the meeting, listening to this corporate mumbo-jumbo.
One of the questions---Do you support those employees that take calculated risks?

Hmm..what kind of risks are we talking about? Maybe I should be walking on a tightrope on top of the building. Thats risky. I could fall and seriously hurt myself, jeopardizing my health. Maybe I should run a poker room in the office. That can be considered a "calculated risk" Many questions were about communication and how we felt about the level of communication between our department and the rest of the company. Well, I never even met this HR rep until about 10 minutes ago. So, I dont think they've been doing a good job of communicating.

Another question was "How speedy is everbody?" Well, I've been runnin' around the office lately. I dont really do anything. Just run. Sometimes I trot. Sometimes I play a flute like the Pied Piper of Hamlin, and all these strange people in cubicles follow me to the vending machines. Weird?

Another question was about "diversity" How diverse is the department? MB (initials instead of real names) said "We have the most diversity of any department. Every race, color, creed, sexual orientation.

MM said: We don't have a midget.
HR rep: You mean little people.

Human resource employees = self-important politically correct mediocre automatons.
Ok, that might be a little harsh, but at least its not beatin'around the bush. At the close of the meeting...

HR rep: We're starting a mentoring program and we'd love for you to join.
WB: Sure. I could assist new employees on how to be a "working slacker"

My latest short film "The Hurleyville Horror" is done. Its an improvised psychological dramedy about a self-absorbed woman who thinks she sees a musician who created suicide at her friend's country house. Think John Cassavetes with a touch of David Lynch dream logic and the isolation of an Ingmar Bergman movie. I think its either brilliant or an incoherent mess. Not sure yet. Haven't made a final decision about it.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Watch these Avant-Garde Masterpieces----In the Mood for Love and 2046

Wong Kar Wai is one of the few international filmmakers willing to take risks. In the Mood for Love chronicles the relationship of two lost souls who believe their spouses are cheating on them. However, we never actually see the cheating spouses. WKW's camera captures the haunting stares of Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung set to an incredible score that will probably be in my head for days. Luscious cinematography---arthouse cinema at its best. 2046 follows Tony Leung's character further as he uses and discards many women in a hotel room. Zhang Ziyi deserves an Oscar for her dynamite portrayal as a tender-hearted hooker. If you're a fan of arthouse cinema and dont need to be spoon fed a cliched Hollywood plot, check out these two films back to back. You will be mesmerized, intrigued, and haunted by its sad meditation on love and loss.