Looking to those who go before us.

I’ve fallen in love a couple of times today, and I’m not the least bit ashamed of it.

First time was while reading a Moviefone interview. Alexander Payne’s doing the rounds for his latest, The Descendants. You know the one, George Clooney runs a lot. You can’t not love it.

I can’t help but love a guy who’s not afraid to call a question ‘the most idiotic’ he’s heard all day. And he has such a realistic point blank view of his work, and how he answers his questions. Few I’ve ever read rival it, though if you want some scary levels of honesty, Lars Von Trier is your man.

Anyway, I loved reading it (find it here), and I’d love to hear the guy speak in person at some point. Anyone who can speak that plainly and then still have the sense of humor to try and imitate the Moviefone Guy is okay by me.

The second time tonight was after the screening of The Artist, courtesy of Boston Independent Film Festival. (I volunteered for these guys last year, and the year before that I went to a handful of movies. Both times, one spectacular week.) The director, Michael Hazanavicius, was there after for a Q&A.

And let me tell you now, if you have a chance to, see this movie.

It screened at Cannes, and the lead actor Jean Dujardin bagged Best Actor. The movie is gorgeous, in black and white, and almost entirely silent. And to make something that good, and to make it work today, is a feat that definitely demands a hefty chunk of respect.

It’s set in the Golden Age of Hollywood, where an aging silent movie actor finds the Talkies looming over him. He meets a young movie extra, and just as everything’s on the way down for him, everything’s on the way up for her.

Gorgeous movie. Seriously.

And as I listened to Hazanavicius answer questions about music and process, and the omnipresent questions about the dog (See the movie and you’ll get it.), I felt what I usually feel when I see a director speak/read an interview. That perfect mix of deference to S/he Who Has Made It, and that profound level of jealousy. Because it’s not me.

Although I can’t say I relish the idea of Q&As. For someone who has no trouble with running a group, I am a horrendous public speaker. And I talk way too fast.

It’s both uplifting and disheartening. I thought I was coming close to being able to count myself among Those Happy Few with a documentary I was going to develop at one point, but it didn’t pan out. I haven’t given up the desire to make something. Something. Feature, documentary, whatever. If the material’s right, I’m in.

But there’s the waiting. Oh, the waiting. And all the while I still examine all those interviews, and listen close during all those talks. You should’ve seen me post Source Code screening, after getting an autograph from Duncan Jones. (That’s right, David Bowie’s boy.) I was giddy. I’m not ashamed of that either.

It’s good to see those things, because it reminds you that it can be done. Even on a godawful budget, where it’s all about just how fast and how well you can beg, borrow, and steal.

I will do it. I’ve even got a nice wide timeline to make it happen. A, a good friend of mine who’s a second grade teacher, told her class one of her friends wanted to be a filmmaker.

The kids flipped. One girl in particular though it was beyond great. And was so sure, without ever having met me or knowing fact one about me aside from the aforementioned, couldn’t wait to see my movies.

She’s seven. So I’ve got ten years.

I think I can make that work.

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~ by Sara on November 15, 2011.

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