I knew the moving image essay class Im taking right now was going to start influencing my work on this piece in someway shape or form. Ironically it is another matter of me being attracted to a bizarre fear I have- a fear that this might turn into an essay film- I don't think it will be that- but I have always seen it possibly having moments or influences from that. Why have I been afraid of this being a possible result of the film you might ask (or not, whatever)...I don't know.
I am so in love with 'movie-love'- the love that made me believe in love. Certain films always spoke to me more then others- ones with a boy I could like a girl I wanted to be always seemed to be step one. For me, the girls I always wanted to be were tomboys, and too tough to actually express their feelings directly in the stereotypical feminine 'princess' canon. To me, being stuck in the 'princess canon' means being stuck in the 'submissive role', having to wait for prince charming to come in order to attain true love. The tomboys were ironically also stuck in the 'princess canon' without getting the benefit of being a 'princess'- to me it makes me question the cause and effect of their personalities: are they tough and distant because they are also stuck on the submissive role, but have no way of getting prince charming to come- or do they become 'tough and distant' as a result of him never coming. I am aware of how surfacy this read is- its hard to see the difference between the two for me, but I do know it is there. I personally think the 'tough and distant' act is a coping mechanism to keep people away.
The boys in these scenarios usually seem like 'head in the clouds' dreamers- unaware of what is right under their nose- but my story is different- Charlie nows Louise is there and wants her (just as much as she wants him), but he is unaware of the danger right under his nose. I guess one of the narrative flaws that I took as challenge was that the film is not seen from his point of view- of the audience following him and discovering what Lilin are at the same time- which seems to be the formula of the films I love.
My structure I feel is much more like "My Demon Lover", where the main character has a 'demonic' secret to hide from the woman he loves- and the only way he can prevent her from finding out is to avoid becoming intimate with her (since he turns into a demon when aroused). This of course causes humorous scenarios- something I havent been able to master yet in my script. It all seems so simple sometimes, and I feel a fool not realizing it until I write it now: The problem Ive been having is approaching Louise and Charlie as characters who are jut sex crazy- I for their evolving relationship to be one where the pleasure of eachothers company overrides the need for sex- to a point ofcourse. (I guess I just need balance). Louise I feel should be trying to have Charlie in her life in a non-sexual way in order to keep him in her life at all- but ofcourse she can't do that- and not out of a need to feed through sex, but more from her own sexual urges that she must finally take responsibility for- the human residue. The act of taking responisibility for her actions is frightening for her- (much like taking responsibility for your own sexuality in contrast to the rape fantasy coping mechanism).
For Charlie, he is also attracted to rape fantasy- but as the dominant role. I guess my immediate feelings would be that Charlie enjoys this control in sex because he perhaps lacks this control in other areas of his life. It is here where I have started to take Charlie out of the controlled 'professorish'- I feel like he should be more of a fuck up in his professional life- like he has no focus (much more like the 'head in the clouds dreamer' role I just realized). At first I felt like this leap was a cop-out, but as soon as I started to allow myself to think of him as something else- he has become much more organic and life like. This is more of a man I can relate to and write. Charlie has just been too 'well-put-together' and stiff until now (in my head atleast). I feel as though his interactions with other women should express this- Im just not sure how to manifest it yet. For Charlie, it feels as though other women should bore him- I guess the fact that Louise and Charlie are very distinct cinephile nerds should play more in their connection- which has been their from the start. Its tough, because as a professor their was the device of the class being not on the same page with him- whereas Louise obviously is.
My friend Chris (who is playing Charlie) suggested that Louise and Charlies attraction to each other been expressed in a way of how they 'see eachother'- they see life through the lens of traditional cinematic structure- through the specific structure of the actual films they themselves both love (that being the romantic-horror-comedy) which is a little tough for me to see clearly, since the whole film already seems like that. What devices could I use to separate it from the rest of the film? Do I want to seperate it? They also share a strong love of silent film (specifically Pandora's Box and Nosferatu)- Louise has this love because it marks the time in her life when she was last human and when she stopped ageing- when she lost Charlie. Whereas Charlie has this love because it is a form of nostalgia he can not quite grasp- that is why the use of reincarnation is so interesting to me. Charlie is not the 1920's Charlie, but somehow the residue of that soul has carried into this new life- maybe this is something I should think about more. Charlie's lack of control in understanding what he himself is may in fact feed into his sexual fetish. I feel like I can't rasp my brain around it, and that I might be forcing something.
On a separate note- I just realized something. I have so many problems with this script because I think I let location and surrounding dictate character too much. If I changed location for a scene it felt like Charlie's character would start to unravel with it- I fucking hate that! I myself fetishize set design when filmmaking- it is usually more important to me then character- the set has always been the main character to me. Now here I am trying to reconcile this- since I have no idea what I will be able to afford or imagine to surround these characters. What camera I use is also apart of my set design. I want to shoot this on VHS- which is something greenscreen has a conflict with- I want to stop being bogged down by these elements right now so I can focus on my human characters- it is always a struggle. I cannot divorce it- Im constantly second guessing myself right now as I type- IM FREAKIN OUT MANNN!
I want this film to be so many things. I want it to 'appear' to be a very successful horror-romantic-comedy (circa late 80's/early 90's) on the surface- but as it progresses- I think I want non-linear moments and materials to penetrate the structure (referring back to the essay film element which I somehow steered off course from). I want these, I just don't know what they are yet. (the use of found porn and silent films touch on this a little- but all this seems very abstract right now). I also think these non-linear moments can manifest from the suggestions my friend Chris gave me. In moments when Charlie and Louise are together- right now they seem to function as regular human beings- but the magic of cinema is in my hands and I don't know what to fucking do with it. This is something where I think Green screen can come in and act as that 'set-design' character I love so much. The background can become filled with remnants of the 1920's silent films (ofcourse color corrected and abstracted just enough to satisfy my fetishing vhs-bleeding colored eyes)- I think maybe I want things to seem a bit more alien when they are together- almost relating to how I want to open the film with Lillith and Adam- which will be the next blog entry.
I apologize to you readers out there who must deal with my grammatical/spelling errors and fucked up repetitive way of talking- I have to circle around things like a vulture for a while before I feel safe enough to actually look at them for what they are.
ps- the idea of prince charming disgusts me btw- I think it has something to do with the shoulder pads