Thursday, February 5, 2015

Higher Level Art Installation at The Art Academy of Cincinnati

Higher Level Art Installation at The Art Academy of Cincinnati from Art Academy CE on Vimeo.

Recently myself and Leland Schuler were commissioned by the Art Academy of Cincinnati Community Education to make a video about the creation of their new mural by Higher Level Art.

I am very proud how it turned out. Can't wait to make some more timelapse videos soon!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Scarlet Spacer Kickstarter launching this week!

My retro radio show The Scarlet Spacer, my biggest project to date, will have a kickstarter launching this week!

I couldn't be happier to embrace this new (for me) medium of old radio. If you are visiting after listening on WVXU be sure to comment. I'll message you when the kickstarter officially launches.  More details will be here shortly. Until next time!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

4th Annual Adam West Batman Thanksgiving!

 Happy 4th Annual Adam West Batman Thanksgiving everyone!
Is it already that time of year again? Where we gather around a table with family and devour turkey, potatoes, dressing and pumpkin pie. Where we then move with our now full bellies to the living room, sink into the couch and watch as many classic Batman episodes we can until we fall asleep. Oh, you watch football? I'm so sorry. I will keep you in my thoughts while Adam West and Burt Ward punch and kick crooks in brightly colored slanted rooms. Enjoy your random forgettable football games while I enjoy something that will be remembered and enjoyed by every new generation until the end of time, Adam West Batman.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Great Pumpkins and Oversized Gorillas

Happy Halloween! This list is not simply my top 10 horror movies but more of a list of films that get me in the mood for Halloween. If I were to program a trick or treat marathon these are the mishmash of films I would choose. A couple of horror standards and a few that people might not think of.

10. It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966)
"I got a rock" - Charlie Brown
Every year on Halloween when I was child there were a few specials I had to watch or it would just not feel like Halloween. Sure I'd still have a bag full of candy but I would know there was something missing. This is one of two specials I have continued the tradition of viewing into adulthood. 

Not only do I have a lot of nostalgia wrapped into the Great Pumpkin it's also has some interesting messages that are open to interpretation. Should we admire Linus' blind faith in something ridiculous? Knowing Charles Schultz's christian beliefs it is definitely interesting to analyze exactly what his message is here. A crisis in his own beliefs perhaps?

But like my favorite movies it does not have an overt agenda. It just tells it's story and gives faith in the viewer. Oh, and besides my tangent did I mention that the film is just nostalgic fun? Because it is.

9.  Noseferatu (1922)
"Is this your wife? What a lovely throat" - Graf Orlok
You will see a lot of black and white movies on this list. Something about older films adds an extra element of creepy to it knowing most of the people who worked on that film are long gone. Horrors as portrayed by celluloid ghosts.

Not that this film needed any extra layer of creepy. Besides being an incredible influence on all horror films that came afterwards it really holds up on it's own.  Still one of the creepiest villains of any film. And the visuals are stunning.

8. Carrie (1976)
"They're all gonna laugh at you" - Margaret White
I have a soft spot for this film. I can understand how some might find this movie a bit corny now but I love it. I can easily enjoy it in a campy way and as a straight up narrative.

The creepiest part for me is not the supernatural elements but really the relationship between Carrie and her mother.  Most people talk either about the prom or shower scene but for me the movie really lies with Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie.

7. King Kong (1933)

 "No chains will ever hold that" - Captain Enlgehorn
This movie really stuck with me as a child.  I remember being a kid and every time I'd see the Cincinnati skyline I would say "King Kong city." Although I was slightly off you have to give me some points for the Carew Tower being the basis for The Empire State Building. Also the PNC Tower always looked a bit like a banana to me.

When I saw the King Kong again as an adult I was expecting to be disappointed but it is awesome. Such a strange dream like adventure that I still enjoy today.

6. Peeping Tom (1960)
"Whatever I photograph I always lose." - Mark Lewis
A guy with a camera films his victims as he kills them. I'm a filmmaker. Perhaps that is why I connected with this movie so much. Not that I kill the people I film. I mean I have put them in such embarrassing situations they might have wished they were dead. But as of this date most of the people I have filmed are still with us.

I like the straight up story of this film but I being a filmmaker like the philosophical side of capturing people on film. At the same time he kills his victims he is immortalizing them. He is killing them and preserving them in a way. If you pay attention I think there is a lot going on this story that you might normally miss.

5. Young Frankenstein (1974)
"For what we are about to see next, we must enter quietly into the realm of genius" - Dr. Frederick Frankenstein
Hilarious. And we need a little comedy after the last movie and before the next. Mel Brooks is a genius and this movie proves it.

The cast is great and the script is amazing. A perfect genre parody while still being unique and fresh. A very hard thing to emulate. Trust me, Brooks has tried. Blazing Saddles is great but I see it as less a genre parody and more of western comedy. Young Frankenstein is the real genre parody masterpiece.

4. M (1931)
 "I have no control over this, this evil thing inside of me, the fire, the voices, the torment!" - Hans Beckert
I don't think Fritz Lang gets mentioned enough. His film Metropolis does but he was truly amazing. And this German made film of his proves that.

This story would be controversial to be released today nevertheless 1930. Not only is it a film about a child murder but also about what is justice. Are murders always guilty or are they merely following their screwed up compulsions? Are you any better for wanting to murder a murderer? Very interesting questions being asked amongst incredible visuals.

3. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947)

 "You can be much more alone with other people than you are by yourself, even if it's people you love." - Lucy Muir
I just saw this movie recently for the first time and I really wanted to share it.  A movie about a widow and her daughter moving into a house haunted by the ghost of an angry sea captain. I was expecting it to be a comedy in tradition of Topper or perhaps Bewitched but I was definitely not expecting a straight up love story. And not being a fan of most romance films I was surprised how much I enjoyed this one. You want these two to be together but how?

2. Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred A. Leuchter, Jr. (1999)
 "The human body is not easy to destroy and it's not east to take a life humanely and painlessly without doing a great deal of damage to the individual's body." -Fred A. Leuchter Jr.
This is my favorite documentary of all time. It is perhaps an unconventional Halloween choice but one I think fits perfectly.  I don't want to give too much away about this film but it highlights something much scarier than any villain on this list.  The greatest threat is not thoughtless monsters but other humans just like ourselves who choose to believe monstrous thoughts.

1. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (1949)
"I'm telling you, brother, it's a frightful sight for what goes on Halloween night." - Brom Bones
The other Halloween special I still regularly watch from childhood. Every year I could handle the various children's Halloween specials with ease but this is the one that stuck with me. Whenever my family would drive down some old leaf covered back road in the fall I would listen for the clippity clop of the headless horseman's horse. I would breathe a sigh of relief when we would finally cross some sort of bridge.
Supposedly Disney still gets complaints from parents about this cartoon and I can see why. Still the best version of the "Sleepy Hollow" story I have ever seen. Sorry, Goldblum.

What do you think of my list? Some of my favorites did not make the list such as Dawn of the Dead, a couple Hitchcock films and Ghostbusters, mainly because I could watch them all year round.  So what movies get you into the Halloween spirit? 

Also if you want to hear me and my co-hosts discuss this very topic then you can listen to our podcast, As Usual, Thanks for Nothing.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Ok, Maybe I Will Join You

For those who don't know what the Star Wars Uncut project is, let me explain. Users claim a small bit of the movie, Star Wars, film it, submit it and then they mash all the different clips together into one crazy feature. They won a Primetime Emmy for their efforts and have been featured in tons of documentaries and news shows. I missed out on being a part of Star Wars Uncut so when I heard they would be doing Empire Uncut I jumped at the chance.

I picked my scene because Erin Michele Gabbard was fortunately in town so I knew we needed something with Leia. But now that I think about it, Erin painted gold or with a mustache would have been hilarious. Perhaps they will do Jedi Uncut and these dreams can become reality.

They already have the same look down.
 If you want to skip directly to our scene you can do so by clicking here. Now, bring on some Ewoks!

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Great Outhouse Blowout

Becky and I attended the Great Outhouse Blowout hosted by the historic and cool Penn's Store in Gravel Switch, KY. "Where's Waldo" has nothing on attempting to find this place on a map.

The Great Outhouse Blowout is essentially a reason to build outhouses, attach wheels to them and race. You know that old chestnut. On this journey we were joined by Becky's sister, Laurie and brother-in-law Alex who immediately became crew.

                                                    Thanks guys!

When we went down to cover the event we had no way of knowing that we would become part of an actual race.

                                             And they both died. The end.

But that is exactly what happened when team "Georgia Boys" came up a couple of runners short. To see how we did please watch and share another Josh & Becky youtube adventure. 

The video does not touch upon some of my favorite parts of the trip which involved many historical markers and having an old fashioned soda at Dedman Drug Store in Harrodsburg, KY.

No words could properly describe this experience.
So another adventure wrapped! Where should we go next?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remembering Mark Burchett

Cincinnati filmmaker Mark Burchett recently passed away on July, 12 2014 at the age of 54. He directed such B movies as Vamps, Satanic Yuppies and Blood Sisters: Vamps 2.

I knew Mark primarily through the Southern Ohio Film Association. I remember when I was first trying to make my own films, Mark was a local film icon.

As a tribute I had the idea to gather some of his friends and colleagues together to talk about his life and films. I first reached out to the amazing cinematographer, Jeff Barklage who I knew worked with him several times. From there he recommended actor, Paul Morris who was a great help. I am not for sure if the show would even have been finished if not for Paul.

From my interactions with Mark he was a great guy who loved to talk about films and I hope my little show honored that man.

Special thanks to Josh Boedeker who directed and Jason Dudas, Myra Cates, and Matthew Johnson for volunteering their time behind the camera. If anyone reading this would like a copy of the program let me know.