Wednesday, April 18, 2007

High Concept or the lowest of lows?

I've had a lot of trouble this week trying to think of something to blog about. Usually I'm choosing between ideas. Hmmm... Maybe I should start writing those ideas down. LOL. (Actually, I'm just feeling too lazy to think about or research some of those topics.)

So let's talk about Grindhouse.

Has anyone else seen this? It's Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino's ode to 1970's movie going experiences.

First, I grew up in the 1970's and I don't remember anything like this. I guess I was going to the wrong movies. But seriously. I don't even remember posters or ads and I certainly don't remember theatres where the film was so scratched and damaged it was distracting or entire reels (containing the sex scenes and lap dances) were missing. But I was laughing along, anyway. I found things like that, in particular, very funny. I mean, lets you create a whole back story around the movie theatre and the projectionist that those reels were missing.

If you've got a strong stomach and have 3 1/2 hours to devote to a silly fun time, I'd recommend seeing Grindhouse and seeing in the theatre. I can't imagine how annoying the digitally "scratched" film stock will look on a smaller screen. The first movie's gore makes zombie movies look like the Teletubbies and the second has some pretty amazing car chases and stunts, not to mention Tarantino's patented great dialogue amongst friends who work together in interesting job we get a peek into. Short aside. Zoe Bell, stunt woman extraordinaire, plays herself in the Tarantino movie. She's great. and the stunts she does in this movie are quite mind blowing. If you get a chance, rent Double Dare, a great documentary I saw at the 2004 film festival which featured an aging stunt woman, Jeannie Epper, who broke ground for women in that industry (and was Wonder Woman's stunt double, actually having to land from high jumps in high heels and slide across pavement in those ridiculously short shorts) and Zoe, who as a gymnast not really trained as a stunt woman, was Xena's stunt double in New Zealand, and then moved to the US after Xena ended, hoping to break into the Hollywood stunt world. She actually gets "the call" during the documentary from Tarantino, offering her the job to be Uma Thurman in the Kill Bill movies and you get to see the day she first meets Tarantino and starts to audition for the role. It really changed how I watched those movies the second time, knowing most of those action scenes were played by Zoe, not Uma.

But all this is not what I was planning to blog about. I was planning to blog about high concept. And I really don't have time (or the inclination) to do the topic justice today... But what got me thinking about it, was these fake movie trailers featured before and during Grindhouse.

Hobo with a Shot Gun (wish I could remember the tagline for this one... but really, the title says it all)

Machete -- If you're going to hire Machete to kill the bad guys, make sure you're not one of them. (Genius)

Werewolf Women of the SS -- (Okay the tagline for this one was funny too... Something about Hitler's diabolical plan to change unsuspecting young women into werewolf fighting machines. But I didn't have any paper and obvioiusly am having short term memory issues.)

Not sure if these are high concept, or about as low as you can get. But you understand exactly what these concepts are (low brow though they may be) in just a few words. To me, that encapsulates the idea of high concept.

4 comments:

Kimber said...

That's one thing I bite at...high concept.

I should think of it as a tagline but somehow its easy to come up with a tagline for other products than my own writing.

I think I'm too close to it.

Sinead M said...

Great post, and torn on whether I want to see Grindhouse.
High concept is a tough subject. You're right though, those tag lines are high concept. But high concept doesn't always mean saleable..
although Werewomen of the SS does sound like something that might be interesting/funny to see..

Molly O'Keefe said...

low brow high concept is something I can totally get behind!!

Not sure about seeing it either -- I think our next night at the movies will be a Ryan Gosling event!!!

HEY!!! Did anyone else hear that they cancelled Dexter?????????? Please tell me this is false!!

Sinead M said...

What?

I'd heard that they had already committed to season two.

But now I'm deeply concerned..

And have no access to the Showtime site, cause I'm Canadian.

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