If you’ve been a regular visitor for the last year or so, maybe you’ve noticed that content here has thinned out a little. Ordinarily, I’d just chalk that up to my own laziness and I think for a good portion of this time, I have. I think the reality of what was going on hit me this past weekend during the Blood Bath 3 film festival. It all started with an innocuous enough statement from my friend Tammy Dupal of Twisted Central fame. She tweeted:
Because of the obvious conflict of interest I will not be reviewing any films played during @doabloodbath.
Even then, I didn’t recognize the statement for what it was. Maybe it was later that it started to seep in. Maybe it was when Andrew Rose asked me if making a film had changed the way I review films. Of course, I responded that it hadn’t: no, it still hadn’t kicked in. It wasn’t until later as I sat at the bar, my face not nearly as red as it was earlier from overexposure to positive reinforcement, that it finally hit me.
I couldn’t do it anymore.
I couldn’t sit in judgement of who were now becoming my peers.
My peers? Yeah, I went and said it. My peers. I kinda consider myself a film maker now. Quite bluntly, I feel a bit shitty when I’m sitting in a theater picking a movie apart, writing it down and putting that criticism up to the world when what I may be watching may very well be a films I could be in competition with at a festival. To that end, it’s ends up being a conflict of interest. Otherwise, it feels the same as a beer-league hockey player telling Gretzky how to play the game. OK, maybe not Gretzky but certainly some level of professional. It just doesn’t feel right to me.
So, what am I going to do now?
Well, I can still turned my patented “Jaundiced Eye” to studio fare. There is still a pretty big difference between a film made for a few thousand dollars and one made for a few million dollars. I don’t have a problem speaking out on that. Beyond that, I’m not sure. I guess I can pontificate on the journey of a budding film maker. It’s already been a strange and wondrous journey. Maybe I can even find the words to do it justice. Whatever happens, please stick around. I promise to make it interesting.