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Last Day

I finished my last class, so I can cast off the shackles of the oppressive dictatorship I call college.

For one week.

But today actually wasn’t so bad. I sold back my books and made a whopping $117.25. Wow!

And then I wandered over to my screenwriting class. The last day. Sigh. I’m gonna kinda miss it, although not that much. Today, instead of just dropping off our scripts and leaving, our professor decided it would be in our best interest to sit around talking about our “writing process.” My lengthy, detailed explanation of my writing process did not impress my peers or professor. I should have just said, “I write the ending first and work my way back.”

That, believe it or not, took roughly an hour and a half, so we had our standard break, during with the professor took myself and several other students out into the hall and explained, in hushed tones, that some new class is looking for good short scripts, and that we should all submit ours. Wow! I feel so elite. I think I actually will submit my script. I sincerely doubt I’d ever shoot it, so I may as well hand it off to somebody who will. It’s nice for the ol’ portfolio.

After the break came the real fun. We watched several student films. It’s amazing the pride they all took in the Production I finals. I hated my final film so much, I set fire to it. Okay, I didn’t really. I just left it with my professor and never picked it up. It is either rotting away in her “out” box, or she’s thrown it out. Either way, I will never touch it again.

Of the films we watched, I only liked two. One was a Production II final about how hard it is to come up with an idea for the Production II final. The main character kept coming up with original ideas, only to realize they actually come directly from other movies. There were extremely well done parodies of Reservoir Dogs, Run Lola Run (leading to the classic line: “Why are they all speaking German? I don’t even know German!”), Requiem For a Dream, and Memento. In the end, of course, it all turned out to be an elaborate parody of Adaptation.

It was really fucking well done.

The other one I liked came out of some sort of workshop. Apparently, the entire thing was conceived, written, shot, and edited in 20 hours. Part of the gimmick is that they were supplied an opening and closing shot, which they are required to build the film around. It was all about a pretentious artist dictating a letter to a benefactor, demanding more money. The caveat: the typewriter has no letter “J,” but the artist insists on calling his piece “Jennifer,” and the benefactor is named “Jackson.”

Okay, it amused me.

Two others were unimpressive; actually, I zoned out during one of them, so I don’t know if it was impressive or not. I was too busy thinking that I need to cut my fingernails and write my novel. The other one was a pretty standard ghost story, which is a Production I staple. It wasn’t badly done, but it wasn’t really thrilling, either.

The final two were a perfect way to end the semester. The first was the final film of The Filmmaker. It was a strange statement about the cruelty of animal testing. It actually had a lot of impressive shots, and he did a lot of stuff that most Production I students don’t do. Call it ambition, call it cheating; it all turned out pretty damn well. I don’t particularly like the subject matter, but it was really well-made. Either he got a maximum-strength dosage of competence, or it’s just a lot easier to deal with pretentious filmmakers when you aren’t an actor. I’m not sure which.

And then, rounding out the day and the semester in the greatest way possible, we got to my screenwriting partner’s Production I magnum opus: Chaser: The Movie, graphically portraying the even more graphic screenplay of the same name. Unfortunately, since it was silent, he cut out the lines that made it an instant comedy classic over at 8-bits. He didn’t even have a title card saying “Based on the true story of bug chasing.” I was highly disappointed.

However, he made up for this with an excess of bug-chasing IM conversations and a lot of footage of I guess the world balances out in the end.

Overall, I have this to say: BEST SEMESTER EVAR!#!@$!@#! Except for several days in there that I would rather do without.

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