Sunday, January 5, 2014

Firearms and films

            Firearms and movies
The armorer will provide several different kinds of firearms for a show or movie.depending on how they will be used: there's a real gun that can fire blanks;also a replica gun which is a non-firing weapon; a airsoft gun powered by green gas that, when the trigger is pulled,recycles the slide,ejects a shell casing and chambers the next round-but no projectile is fired from the barrel: rubber gun for stunts. To the audience it's all the same firearm.
      TV series-banshee has many firearms onset. Glock 17-9mm, beretta 92fs semi-automatic pistols,smith and Wesson .44mag, h&k g3 select fire rifles, ak-47 assault rifles,Taurus pt92 nickel plated pistols,m249 saw machine gun,m60 machine gun,IMi micro Uzis,sig p229,double barrel shotgun, m240 machine gun.
  Some of the baddest characters with kick-ass firearms.  Neo with his beretta 92fs,cz99, and micro Uzi.travis bickle from taxi driver and his s&w29. Dirty Harry and his s&w29,and mr. White from reservoir dogs and his s&w model 639 which is a double action 9mm version. These firearms and great visual effects make for real life looks on film and beyond. One thing that is sometimes not realistic is getting shot and squibs. Most squibs have a small explosive that when hit shoots out which is a total defiance of the laws of physics. Wound channels goes out and has a temporary and permanent wound channel. So all in all firearms can make a film more exciting but need to be spot on. The newest seal film lone survivor had two weeks training with real seals on small tactics for the actors. This helped with the realism. I hope you enjoyed this blog. Some of my sources were firepower.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

the fallen

    The fallen
according to the Book of Genesis, two sons of Adam and Eve. Cain is described as a crop farmer and his younger brother Abel as a shepherd. Cain was the first human born and the first murderer, and Abel was the first human to die. Cain committed the first murder by killing his brother. Exegeses of Genesis 4 by ancient and modern commentators have typically assumed that the motive was jealousy.[1] A millennia-old explanation for Cain being capable of murder is that he may have been the offspring of a fallen angel or Satan himself, rather than being from Adam.

Fast forward to present day. The fallen is a new age story  on Cain and Abel. " my brothers keeper"
  Nicholas Jaye Stauffer plays Cain the cold-hearted brother who summons his brother Abel, played by Nathan Luttrull, to a private meeting. The Fallen is a stylistic film which mixes the feel of a western and a gangster movie together. Written and Directed by N.K.Osborne. I loved this film for giving a taste and leaving you wanting more. Flopitworks  to the point short film that was shot on canon's c100 which gave it the look I think they were going for. I'm a huge fan of canon anyway which helped me figure out the look.
Will Cain kill his brother? You'll have to check this film out.

Here's the trailer-the fallen

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

drive-ins"where are they now"

                                                               Drive-in Theaters

The drive-in was the creation of Camden New Jersey. Richard Hollingshead Jr. conducted outdoor theater tests in his driveway in 1932.After nailing a screen to trees in his backyard he set a 19328 Kodak projector on the hood of his car and put a radio behind the screen, testing different sound levels with his windows up and down. The Hollingshead drive-in opened June 6.1933. It offered 400 slots and had a 40x50 ft, screen.
     For some you,your asking what is a drive-in? A drive-in theater is a form of cinema structure consisting of a large outdoor movie screen, a projection booth, a concession stand and a large parking area for automobiles. With in this enclosed area, patrons can view movies from the comfort of their cars. Screens can be as simple as a wall painted white or it can be a steel truss structure with a complex finish. Sound was originally provided by speakers hung from the window of each car,attached by a wire. The system was superseded by the more economical and less damage-prone method of broadcasting the soundtrack at a low output power on am and fm radio to be picked up by car radios.

    Drive-ins peak popularity came in the late 50's to 60's. With 4,000 drive-ins spreading across the us. Advantages were that a family with a baby could take care of the child while watching a movie. Teenagers with automobiles found drive-ins ideal for dates.In the 50's the greater privacy afforded to patrons gave  drive-ins a reputation as immoral and labeled passion pits.In the 70's some drive-ins changed from family to exploitation films to make up for the declining patronage and revenue. Some drive-ins used gimmicks to boost attendance. The attractions varied from small petting zoo's,personal appearances by actors, and musical groups. In the 50;s and 60's admission was only a dollar. The biggest drive-in was in Long island New York. It covered 29 acres,and could park 2,500 cars.  It had a full-service restaurant with seating on the roof,trolley system to take patrons to a playground and a large indoor theater for bad weather and for those who wanted to watch in air condition.

  Overtime, economics of real estate made the large property areas expensive for drive-ins to operate. Land became too valuable for drive-ins,which were in most cases summer-only. Vcr's and video rentals led to a decline in drive-ins. By 2003 drive-ins compromised only 1.5 percent of movie screens in the us.At the industries height 25 percent of movie screens had been drive-ins. Today many drive-ins remain as flea markets or storage.

  The conversion of the film distribution network to be exclusively digital distribution. This added additional pressure to the drive-ins.Most drive-ins lack finances due to the fact screens started at 70 thousand dollars. lack of multiple screens with daily showings meant low volume of ticket sales. Going digital is more complex for drive-ins. The projectors need a more powerful bulb since the booth is usually the length of a football field away from the screen.

  In 2001 do-it-yourself drive-ins or guerrilla drive-ins started showing up. Most would meet online and head to showings where the films were projected on bridge pillars or warehouses. The best known guerrilla drive-in is  Santa Cruz guerrilla drive-in. As of 2012 there are 368 drive-ins. Its not clear which are traditional.

  In 2012 I was filming in several locations and had the honor of filming at a drive-in. Before filming one night, I got to see  batman the dark night returns in 35mm. It was a great experience and brought me back to when i was a kid going to drive-ins with my family. Here are several pics from the projector room.

Its good to see old school drive-ins still exist! I remember the concession stands,popcorn,yellow salt,dill pickles,hotdogs and candy. It was some of the best memories of my life.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Les Mise`rables

                                                            Les Mise`rables
I recently saw this film several weeks ago.This musical adaptation of Victor Hugo's epic novel set in 19th century France,staged in 43 countries,translated into 21 languages,and seen by over 60 million people worldwide. There have been at least 14 film versions. I  really want to concentrate on the technical side of the film,showing camera,glass and lighting issues.After testing a wide range of formats,including 3d,65mm,35mm,alexa,anamorphic,and spherical,eventually 35mm spherical package of Arricamlite with Arri/Zeiss master prime glass was used.For period production,film has more of those imperceptible qualities such as texture,patina and grain.The main unit consist of three cameras. A-cam operated by Zac Nicholson, who shot as close and as wide as possible on the actors. Band c cameras operated by Luke Redgrave and  Vince McGahon, shot action on longer glass. On big days there were as many as ten cameras working on vatrious sets. A broad range of focal lengths provided invaluable flexibility on multiple cameras. Glass sizes went from 12mm to 150 mm, plus ultra primes from 8mm,10mm and 180mm. lighting the sets was a major challenge. Tstage housed  a cafe set that had only solid ceilings. So they hung 15 tungsten light bulbs on the beams and played with it.This gives you an idea of the setups and cameras angles that went into this film. Ipersonally loved the overall look of the film and Arri was a beautiful choice for this dark period piece. i hope you enjoy this information and check out this amazing film.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

65 mm film tidbits

65mm film is also known as 70mm. 65mm is generally used for sweeping landscape dramas.Here are some examples of 65mm film.
Here is one of the cameras that shoot 65mm film.
70mm Cinerama releases were projected with special optics onto a deeply-curved screen in an attempt to mimic the effect of the original 3-strip cinerama process.
  HI FI Stereo 70(also known as Triarama and Stereovision 70) was a 3-D process.(1) Two anamorphic images,one for each eye,were captured side by side on 65mm film.(1) Aspecial lens on a 70mm projector added polarization and merged the two images on the screen.(1) A similar Soviet system known as Stereo 70 did not employ anamorphics,resulting in an aspect ratio of 1.37:1.[2]
This is a few tidbits on 65mm and hope this gives some insight.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

This review is on Glide tracks Mobislyder. It's the worlds first portable camera slider for iphones. It gives you the opportunity to create fluid moving videos. The mobislyder was developed by the world's no.1 camera slider company, Glidetrack. It comes with the mobislyder ,articulated mount, mobile device mount, 1/4" standard mount, adhesive ball mount, and 1/4" ball mount. I found this slider to be very sturdy, lightweight, and easy to carry. It makes a great addition to my film gear. Here are several stills while i was testing the mobislyder out.

mobislyder with device attachment and iphone 4s
mobislyder with iphone 4s catching some on-screen action.

here is the video of the mobislyder review.

checkout glidetrack at

film reviews and covenfilm tidbits

The first film i wanna talk about is The perks of being a wallflower.
Release date -October 12,2012. Plot- based on the novel written by Stephen Chbosky. This is about a 15 year old Charlie ( Logan Lerman) , an endearing and naive outsider, coping with  his first love (Emma Watson), the suicide of his best friend, and his mental illness while struggling to find a group of people with whom he belongs. The int overt freshman is taken under the wing of two seniors, Sam and Patrick, who welcome him to the real world. I loved this film very much. The roles were strong with a tight storyline.

Covenfilm Tidbits- When Patrick holds up his report card, the name at the top says " Patrick nothing". In the book " the perks of a wallflower" Patrick was called nothing because he was always called Patty and one day he said "listen, you either call me Patrick or call me nothing", so his nickname was became nothing.

 Though not explicitly shown on screen or mentioned, the film is set during the 1991-1992 school year. Just as it was in the book. Music,technology, and clothing styles all reference this as well.

The "tunnel song" which is "heroes" by David Bowie, was covered for the "Godzilla" soundtrack by none other than the wallflowers.

The perks of a wallflower was shot in Pittsburgh,Pa.

The next film is Chasing Mavericks.
Release DATE- October 26,2012
Plot- The inspirational true story of real life surfing phenom Jay Moriarity. When 15 year Jay discovers that the mythic mavericks surf break, one of the biggest waves on earth, is not only real, but exists just miles from his Santa Cruz home, he enlists the help of local legend Frosty Hesson to train him to survive it. As Jay and Frosty embark on their quest to accomplish the impossible, they form a unique friendship that transforms both their lives, and their quest to tame mavericks becomes about far more than surfing.I really liked this film. It had a strong storyline and some amazing shots.

Covenfilm Tidbits- 6 red epics were lost while shooting the mavericks surf footage.

My next film Seeking a friend for the end of the world.
Release date- June 22,2012
This film was very strong, as it showed a man going through day to day life struggles, plus the end of the world was going to happen in four weeks. I really thought the ending was cinematic and very well done.It was Steve Carell's best performance.

Covenfilm Tidbit- the movie was shot on Arri Alexa's and edited on Advid software. makeup was by Mac.