Old Chestnut

A forum for sharing views on the art of film, video and AV sequence making as well as on competitions, judging and festivals.
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Reg Lancs

Old Chestnut

Post by Reg Lancs » Tue Apr 15, 2003 10:05 pm

In the general discussion about judges, and judging, it has to be said that
we in the UK are spoilt.It seems to be only here
that judges commit themselves to paper with the result that they get slagged
off by all and sundry, for their pains.
In the ten UNICAS I've been to, and the six or seven other overseas Festivals
I have been on the jury at, it was never at any time expected of the jury
to give written comments. Spoken, maybe, but written never.
The jury sits in the audience,at overseas Festivals, getting the feel of
the reception the film is getting, etc. In the UK, for some reason,we prefer
to stick three bods in a darkened room on a Sunday morning, with a VCR and
a telly, and expect them to get the correct impression of, say, the sense
of comedic timing in a comedy! It is quite impossible to successfully guess
how the
film viewed in those circumstances, will play in a large room with 120 laughing
people.
So, spare a moment for the poor old UK judges who try to assess films in
a totally alien atmosphere, write down their thoughts, and get slagged off
for it. They must be mad to do it.
Who would support us showing all the films, and having the judges in the
audience, and no comments apart from an oral summing up at the end of the
session?
Not many UK entrants I fear. We enjoy the moan a bit too much, don't we?

Reg, having his cake, and yummee, eating it too.

Dave Watterson

Mood music and another pair of chestnuts

Post by Dave Watterson » Tue Apr 15, 2003 11:38 pm

I know what Albert means about mood music that is ladled on, but sometimes
music adds enormously. I have been assembling in Premiere hundreds of holiday
pics (for our private viewing so don't panic) and bashing on music in a rough-and-ready
fashion.

The plan is to become totally familiar with all the material so that Jan
and I can then edit it down.

It is fascinating to note that sequences work much better with "real music"
than mood music. This might be because the mood stuff is intended to play
under dialogue and effects rather than to stand alone. I think, however,
that much of it has to do with the mechanic of mood music. It has to be
eminently fadeable so that you can use exactly the length you need. When
played straight this becomes obvious. Real music, on the other hand, is usually
well shaped and adds a forward impetus of its own.

Ol Chestnuts

Anyone else remember Fougasse & McCullough? I was reminded of their cartoons
of the naked Briton (skinny pale body with baggy shorts and bowler hat)when
viewing slides of myself heading for a swim in the Pacific. Except for the
slim bit.

McDave of the new McDiet

Ken Wilson

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by Ken Wilson » Wed Apr 16, 2003 2:27 am

"Reg Lancs" <forums@theiac.org.uk> wrote:
In the general discussion about judges, and judging, it has to be said that
we in the UK are spoilt.
In the UK, for some reason,we prefer
to stick three bods in a darkened room on a Sunday morning, with a VCR and
a telly, and expect them to get the correct impression of, say, the sense
of comedic timing in a comedy! It is quite impossible to successfully guess
how the
film viewed in those circumstances, will play in a large room with 120 laughing
people.
So, spare a moment for the poor old UK judges who try to assess films in
a totally alien atmosphere, write down their thoughts, and get slagged off
for it.
I do sypathise as on 3 occassions I have been a judge too. It is a fairly
thankless task as you are accosted by the disgruntled entrant who feels wronged.
I think the system of intensive judging and as Reg says, watching comedy
early on a Sunday morning on a TV, is not the best way to do it. At least
the last time I judged it was on a big screen.I appreciate that with a couple
of hundred films there seems little alternative.
However, my true allegiance has to be with the film MAKER. After all, he
(or she) has probably spent months on their precious work, battling the odds
to create something unique. If we feel that our work is being dismissed in
2 sentences, we are bound to feel agrieved. Then there are the incorrect
assumptions! I was once told that the flat tyre in one film was from another
car- WRONG. It was my car and I let it down for the shot. I was told that
the car clock/radio was showing the wrong time. WRONG! It was the radio wavelength.
I was told that the railway tracks from the bridge were not the ones in use.
Yes they were. So sometimes it`s good to have the right of reply. Hurray
for the IAC forum. It`s been very interesting lately. Ken.

Daved Watterson

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by Daved Watterson » Wed Apr 16, 2003 1:09 pm

It is worth remembering that IAC's purpose as an educational charity is to
help movie makers improve in whatever level of movie making they engage.
Writing judges notes is part of that process.

I wonder if more use might be made of the IAC's arrangements for awarding
FACI(M) awards. At present the applicant submits a programme of their movies
and this is assessed by an expert panel. BUT the panel "does not enter into
correspondence". That's understandable in many ways - they just issue a
yea or nay.

How might it be to have this panel provide intelligent comment on programmes
of movies submitted by people willing to accept that they might hear as much
bad as good about their work?

Dave McStir

AN

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by AN » Fri Apr 18, 2003 9:14 am

"Daved Watterson" <working.away@kind.client> wrote:
I wonder if more use might be made of the IAC's arrangements for awarding
FACI(M) awards. At present the applicant submits a programme of their movies
and this is assessed by an expert panel
Have you noticed that the FACI(M) 'program' shall be 45 to 60 minutes long
of material made within the last 7 years? The ol' documentary/drama film
maker can reasonably meet this target, but we poor ol animators would be
hard pressed to turn out 7 minutes plus per year, consistantly for 7 years.
Don't read into this that I am interested in FACI(M) cos I ain't! Just
an interesting observation to show that those who judge the FACI(M)
don't give much consideration to animators.....
....who does anyway! :-)
Albert.....being inconsiderate?

Dave Watterson

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by Dave Watterson » Sun Apr 20, 2003 12:03 am

Good point, Albert. I had not realised how the FACI(M) rules would impact
on animators. Nor, I suspect, did IAC Council.

We know that IAC Chairman, Reg Lancaster, reads these dialogues and I will
drop a line to Phillip Collins who is Fellowships Officer to ask if the rule
might be reconsidered to account for animators.

Don't hold your breath, but something might happen eventually.

McDave of McDoing

AN

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by AN » Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:16 am

"Dave Watterson" <any.email@some.address> wrote:
Good point, Albert. I had not realised how the FACI(M) rules would impact
on animators. Nor, I suspect, did IAC Council.

We know that IAC Chairman, Reg Lancaster, reads these dialogues and I will
drop a line to Phillip Collins who is Fellowships Officer to ask if the
rule
might be reconsidered to account for animators.
As I said Dave, I am not interested myself, but I always tend to look at
things from an animators point of view....
......guess I'm a bit of a 'jerk'!

I spotted this IAC business of the FACI(M) some years ago but your letter
re fellowships gave me the opportunity to mention it.

Maybe the solution would be to have one production per year for seven years
as a submission target....a committee should see the abilities or otherwise
of a film maker in 7 films I would have thought. Making someone turn out
up to 60 minutes of film in 7 years is a bit like wishing to have sausage
machines instead of serious film makers isn't it?
Albert....being serious.

AN

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by AN » Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:02 pm

"Dave Watterson" <any.email@some.address> wrote:
Good point, Albert. I had not realised how the FACI(M) rules would impact
on animators.
Hee, hee, here's another point to bother you!
Rule 6 says .......

6. Copyright clearance of all material used, audio, visual or story line,
is the responsibility of the maker and must be authenticated.

As I write all my own music, how would I get my own music cleared?
Maybe sign a piece of paper saying that I'm honest! ....
.."I hereby declare that this Beethoven sonata
was writen by me."

Albert.....stirring it up. :-)

atta chui

Re: Old Chestnut

Post by atta chui » Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:47 pm

I agree that we should declare it if we have used other people's music. However,
i wonder if "clearance" is really required as applying a fellowship is not
a business activity. luckily IAC can deal with music clearance for us anyway...
is it expensive?

"AN" <AnimatioN@btopenworld.com> wrote:
Hee, hee, here's another point to bother you!
Rule 6 says .......

6. Copyright clearance of all material used, audio, visual or story line,
is the responsibility of the maker and must be authenticated.

Dave Watterson

FACI(M) and all that

Post by Dave Watterson » Mon Apr 21, 2003 10:37 pm

Yes, the rules around FACI(M) are a bit fussy - it is partly the nature of
the folk who devised them and partly the result of practical problems which
have arisen over the years.

You see a lot of this if you check out competition rules. People go to extraordinary
lengths to spell out details which seem trivial to most of us most of the
time. I think much of it has to do with our unwillingness to trust the judgement
of individuals - even ourselves. It is MUCH easier to follow a rule than
to make up your own mind about things.

So ... faced with a movie whose strength lies largely in music how do you
credit the moviemaker? Is it worth a few notional points to have found and
chosen the right piece? That's one question.

Did the moviemaker - if s/he did not write or commission the music specially
- at least have the grace to clear formalities and make appropriate payment
for the use of it? That's another.

And what about the small flood of movies that used footage from the Imperial
War Museum when that became available on video? How much of their impact
depended on the borrowed material?

Dave McQuestioning

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