Scientific Study Proves That Indie Films Make Youths Smarter

Well, it would be nice if such a study existed, but I guess everyone figures "why bother to fund what we already know". Ahem... Classical music sales did skyrocket though when a study found it made kids smarter. The state of Georgia even passed a law providing classical music CDs for every newborn child. Imagine that, with each new spawn, parents would be given a copy of Hal Hartley's entire catalogue. Harvey Pekar could be come a household name if the standard baby gift was American Splendor. Okay, maybe such greats as Ballast, Wendy & Lucy, Goodbye Solo and the such may not be so good for teen psyches, but hey Stranger Than Paradise is still a good primer in on studied cool and Primer will surely drive a few truly innovative business ideas (and innovative filmmaking at that).

But isn't it time that we all came up with some good plans to encourage greater appreciation? I am all in favor helping to up the ante in terms of originality, resonance, artistry, and ambition -- and I do believe that better films yields more better films along with greater attendance and all related windfalls -- but I also believe that the more auteur related films someone consumes or is even exposed to, the more they want to experience more of the same. Where's the indie film promotion corner in our public libraries? Where's the list of recommend films for high school curriculums? Anyone care to start these projects, or is everyone to busy writing their screenplays? I can't believe anyone is still dreaming of fame or fortune and the reality of the hardship of the life of creative individual in this country is well known -- so what's the hold up to such action? Isn't it in our interest to encourage deeper appreciation of the art and craft we have given our lives to?

The Effect Of The Vanishing Film Critics

This is an earlier post from Let's Make Better Films.  I started that blog to discuss the films and filmmaking process.  Sometimes we all just feel like we want to bury our head and avoid the biz altogether.  I started TFF to help build and rebuild the infrastructure to support those better films.

We started Hammer To Nail because we found it hard to get go analysis of what Truly Free films that were out there were truly worth watching. The mainstream critics had stopped covering the smaller films.

Ad Age is now running an article on the effect of all the firings of the established critics on the specialized film business. The loss of established voices has brought a serious drop at the box office.

"It's the consistent relationship [with a critic] that gets people to go to these movies," said Mr. Bernard. "[Editors] felt they should get critics that connect to that younger audience that's getting its news online, but they're not looking at how the box office is affected when the critic changes."

Of course, the loss of these critics had no effect on the revenues of all the interesting and great films that weren't getting the theaters or coverage in the first place. For those films, just go to Hammer To Nail.

For a discussion on the state of film criticism, check out Greencine's podcast here
And to keep a vast and diversified culture alive, vote with your dollars, and go out to see a movie today. Seriously. We will lose it otherwise.

There's a great new program in NYC that bumps the film experience up a notch with direct contact with the filmmakers and a post screening celebration. It also confronts head-on the over emphasis the exhibition biz puts on the first weekend revenues.

Credit the IFP and Michelle Byrd with putting their money where their mouth is an truly supporting both Independent and Truly Free films with their new First Weekend series (all done without corporate backing -- c'mon you sponsors, follow suit!). Read about it here.

And guess what their inaugural film is? BALLAST! Did I tell you how much I admire this film? How great it is? How much I like it? I think I have. Go see it.

The Effect Of The Vanishing Film Critics

We interrupt our discussion on the films themselves, for a brief journey into the business of it all.  Here at LMBFilms I (and I want that to be a "we") want to focus on the movies and not the industry, but until I (hopefully "we") launch the better business site, please pardon the interruption...

We started Hammer To Nail because we found it hard to get go analysis of what Truly Free films that were out there were truly worth watching.  The mainstream critics had stopped covering the smaller films.
Ad Age is now running an article on the effect of all the firings of the established critics on the specialized film business.  The loss of established voices has brought a serious drop at the box office.
"It's the consistent relationship [with a critic] that gets people to go to these movies," said Mr. Bernard. "[Editors] felt they should get critics that connect to that younger audience that's getting its news online, but they're not looking at how the box office is affected when the critic changes." 

Of course, the loss of these critics had no effect on the revenues of all the interesting and great films that weren't getting the theaters or coverage in the first place.  For those films, just go to Hammer To Nail.
And to keep a vast and diversified culture alive, vote with your dollars, and go out to see a movie today.  Seriously.  We will lose it otherwise.
There's a great new program in NYC that bumps the film experience up a notch with direct contact with the filmmakers and a post screening celebration.  It also confronts head-on the over emphasis the exhibition biz puts on the first weekend revenues.  
Credit the IFP and Michelle Byrd with putting their money where their mouth is an truly supporting both Independent and Truly Free films with their new First Weekend series (all done without corporate backing -- c'mon you sponsors, follow suit!).  Read about here.
And guess what their inaugural film is?  BALLAST!  Did I tell you how much I admire this film?  How great it is?  How much I like it?  I think I have.  Go see it.