Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Low Budget Eye Candy

This is brilliant stuff: a video essay on a well-made chase sequence. Thank the makers.

I'll vouch for this—George Lucas's expansion of his USC Final Project is one of my favorite films for its low-budget maximization of existing elements to produce its dystopian environment. Imagination, rather than unlimited funds, fuels this movie and I found it inspiring then, as now.

Lucas got way-laid from being a film-maker to an entrepreneur by the simple desire to maintain control over his artistry. Now, with unlimited funds at his disposal, his product is technically brilliant, but hollow at its core. His "Star Wars" prequels seemed more concerned with how his space-ships landed, than why his characters made those journeys.

Supposedly, there will be other Lucasfilm projects besides recycled "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" product,* but I am no longer anticipating them, doubting they will ever be made. (George, give "Tuskeegee Airmen" to Spike Lee...let the man have the luxury of making it with your money. You did it for Coppola and Schrader and Kurosawa. C'mon.)

* My favorite line at the AFI Lifetime Achievement Award ceremony for Lucas (Probably the first time the staff had to scramble to find clips!) was Carrie Fisher's: "I was young, I didn't know what I was signing! Now, every time I look in the mirror I owe George a quarter!"

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