Rey’s Parents – My Theory

Well, I am watching Star Wars The Force Awakens and I just blew my own mind! I have come up with a theory to who Rey parents are…well at least her dad.

LorSanTekkaI think Rey’s dad is…Lor San Tekka. If you don’t remember him, he is the guy who gives Poe the missing piece of the map to find Luke at the start of the film before being killed by Kylo Ren.

I don’t know how I though about it but it came to me…like a force vision I guess [sic]. I then checked the bio of the character and thought about the comments J.J. Abrams said over the last week and the potential plot potentials. So lets discuss the “clues”.

Bio – Lor San Tekka (according to starwarswikia) is a human explorer and member of the Church of the Force. He apparently helped Luke during the Rebellion (after Endor) and lives now on Jakku. He would be the right age to be her Rey’s dad and hiding ‘in plain sight’ might not be as silly as you think, as she was young when she was abandoned and maybe he looked after her/watched over her from a far.

As Lor knows Luke and worked with the New Republic, it would also be safe to assume Leia know him (and Rey) too and that explain the hug Leia gave Rey!

It may also explain why Luke’s lightsabre ‘reached out’ to her as she knew Luke (she was probably a baby when he met her) and the “Force” knew she would find him. Her ability with the “Force” could be the result of the level of spirituality that Lor found, in the Church of the Force.

Side note – There is also reference to a “sacred egg” when he was the with the Crèche. They believed ‘egg’ would hatch the salvation to the galaxy…Is Rey the egg?

-J.J. Abrams has helped spark a lot of speculation with these comments to EntertainmentWeekly : “Rey’s parents are not in Episode VII,” he told the audience. “So I can’t possibly say in this moment who they are. But I will say it is something that Rey thinks about, too.”

And then clarifies with this statement:“What I meant was that she doesn’t discover them in Episode VII. Not that they may not already be in her world.”

Now, these may seem contradictory but everyone seems to think “Rey” will meet her parents but what if they are dead (well her dad at least). Is this what he meant when he says “Not that they may not already be in her world”. This leads no to the last and I think from a  filmmakers perspective one of the most important…plot!

-Plot – My last part of the theory is best explained with a few short sentences and  rhetorical questions… Finn saw her Lor get killed on Jakku. He stood by and did nothing. What if Lor was her dad? What would happen if this ‘news’ came out? Would Rey trust Finn? Would she be angry? What would she do? How about Ren/Ben? Will she want revenge and maybe tempted to the dark side?

The above is a writers dream…certainly mine! And I cannot believe this was over looked as the dramatic potential is massive! And this would echo the Amidala/Anakain story – where she could not believe the “things” Anakin had done).

Well, thats my theory. A big part of this relies on the ‘biography’ that may be made up mind.

I am a geek yes. Who’s the mother? I don’t know…perhaps I have too much time on my hand…guess I need to watch it again! What are your thoughts?

 

 

 

 

Spring is in the air!

Well, spring is here! The days are getting longer…birds are singing in the air…blah blah blah! haha

Although there are some changes, some things remain the same. I am super busy at work and have not had much chance to work on my film (it sucks really!). I come home from work and I need to relax and unwind…weekends are spent doing chores round the house. I need to starting work on it. I just need to find some motivation!

I completed my last online course last week and I have to say I have really enjoyed all 3. They were refreshing and have honestly held me get back into the swing in some regards.

I am very excited about going on holiday in May as I know I will likely get some writing done and will get a few ideas sorted out.

I have also decided that I need to start work on another project I have been playing around with but it’s super secret. But I will leave you a couple of clues. It will be a documentary and about a ‘beloved’ football team…Barça! [sic]

I have not been to the cinema over the last month but I am sure glad I am not Ben Affleck! I am personally looking forward to seeing Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016).  The pressure of playing a Batman/Bruce Wayne is enough but after the disaster that was Daredevil (Daredevil 2003) and the fact that the film  is setting up the Justice League…well, that takes a a lot go guts! I am know he has come into some criticism so far but I will reserve judgement until I see the film.

However, I have some observations about actors who play iconic film characters. Like with James Bond, each actor has a different spin on the persona they play. Sean Connery was cool and sophisticated, Roger Moore brought humour. An actor takes what they need from previous version and try to build or add their own take onto to develop and evolve the character. The same can be said for Batman each Batman/Bruce Wayne has been different and each film has been different. For example, you can’t compare Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) to Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins (2005).

For Affleck, he is following – in my opinion – one of the most complete Batman/Bruce Wayne performance ever by Christian Bale. He ‘owned’ both in all 3 films and I think some people are finding it hard to imagine anyone in the role. It is a tough act to follow and I think everyone should take a step back and judge his ‘incarnation’ on its own merits. The same can be said for Zach Snyder. He is a good director and I know he will definitely have added his mark onto the film.

Anyway back to sleep…I mean work! haha I am going to relax…will probably do some more post this months…take care everyone!

Springwatch!

Hello! It’s been a while. March has been extremely busy at work so I have not been trying to relax and have taken a break from working on my film. This probably won’t be a good idea as I will need to make up the time…but I don’t know when!

I have been thinking a lot about the film and story though and visualising elements in my head – types of shots/framing, ideas for sound, dialogue etc – and I am generally happy with the story. I will probably take my laptop on holiday and will make lots of notes etc then.

I have also been keeping up with my course and have 2 weeks left of my 3 and final online course. All have been very interesting and useful in refreshing my knowledge and have provided me some useful tips.

Spring has started and it is dawning on me on how much work I need to do. I need to get a script finished as soon as possible to allow me chance to get a producer on board to work with.

I may do some work over easter weekend and with a bit of luck, I might make some real progress. And with spring starting and the weather improving the change will give me a added spring in my step no doubt and I might find the energy to do some afterwork writing too!

February – A short Update

Progress on my film has  almost come to a halt. I am not making the progress I would like. I know I will get there eventually but it is frustrating. I am just too tired after work to think and I am just relaxing/sleeping.

The weather is also not helping as is really cold. In March, the weather should improve and hopefully work will be calmer as well and I can play catch up.

I have managed to complete 2 of my 3 the online courses and I have enjoyed them. Start the last one next week, a six week course – script to screen.

The BAFTAs took place on Sunday and there were no real surprises. Leonardo DiCaprio won Best Actor (finally!) and I he should now win the Oscar. I personally feel he should have won for Blood Diamond (2006) as I thought he was brilliant.

Best Film and Best Director for The Revenant (2015) and Alejandro G. Iñárritu was the only winner there could be. I still need to watch Spotlight but after watching The Revenant I just knew I had watched something amazing! As for the other categories, I thought Tom Hardy deserved Best Supporting Actor.

Looking to the Oscars I think there will be some different winners in some categories. I think Saoirse Ronan will win Best Actress for Brooklyn (2015). I have not see Room (2015) but I just think  Hollywood will favour Brooklyn over Room and to be fair she is brilliant.

I would also like Shaun the Sheep Movie (2015) to win an Oscar for Best Animation. Come on Aardman!

Looking ahead, Star Wars Episode VIII has started filming this week. Can’t wait to see what they do with story and hope they answer all those questions!

 

January is over already!

Well January has been and gone! What a fast month it has been…I hope the rest of the year is not like this. For me, January has been quite a mixed month. It started well, but has been consumed by work as usual. I am still seeking that ideal work/life balance. I will get there one day!

To be honest, the last 2 weeks have been very productive on my film. This is because I will likely be working Saturdays for the foreseeable future and I need a day off to relax. I have lots of ideas and thoughts but I have simply been to tired to get them down on paper. In February, I plan to spend a few hours during the week writing instead of the weekend – so I can relax on Sunday’s.

Last week I started the first of 3 online courses I have signed up to for refreshing my filmmaking knowledge. The first course on Unlocking Film Rights (Copyright law etc) finish this week and the next course starts (general Filmmaking). I am surprised how much I remember but at the end of the day the best way to learn is to make a film.

I hope January has been a good month for all of you too.

 

 

The Revenant (2015)

The_Revenant_2015_film_posterWell, I have been very busy lately but decided to go to the cinema today and watch The Revenant. And I have to say the film is amazing. Very atmospheric and visceral.

Set in the 1823, where some trappers are hunting for pelts in the unsettled lands of North America. Over the course of the film we follow 4 groups/individuals as they live and survive in this dangerous land.

The main focus of the film is Hugh (played by Leonardo Di Caprio) who is a guide for the American trappers. They are attacked by some Native American Indians who are hunting them, looking for the daughter of their Chief, who they believe has been kidnaped by them. The trappers escape and decide to head home, but they are hunted by the indians.

Hugh is joined by his son, Hawk. Both have already had a tough life and through dreams/flashbacks we see glimpse of what they have come through. But what lies ahead of them is something else. After being mauled by a bear, Hugh watches his son get killed by a trapper (Fitzgerald) and then left for dead and half buried in a shallow grave – in the cold, wintery American wilderness – treks back to civilisation to find his revenge…I won’t spoil the rest of the film…

DiCaprio is brilliant. As he spends much of the film alone – trying to survive and make his way back to civilisation – he has a hard job but through out the film you feel engaged and connected to Hugh.

The Cinematography is amazing. Emmanuel Lubezki truly is a genius and I would love to him one day. I have had a look at his IMDB page most of the films he has worked on I have loved (especially the Malick film!). In The Revenant, the camera really helps make you feel like you were there and part of the action. The Indian’s attack at the start of the film for example. Breathtaking stuff!

I also have to mention the sound design. Along with the Cinematography, the sound truly helps makes the film immersive. There were times I thought I was in the wild wilderness – scared a bear would attack me! Sound is half the experience of a film and its great to see – and hear!

Iñárritu is arguably the best director in Hollywood at the moment. Following on from Birman (2014) he is sure to win more accolades. The film is going to do very well at the BAFTAs and the Oscars. I also believe that this is the year Leonardo DiCaprio finally gets his hands on a little gold statuette.

I also want to mention Tom Hardy (who plays Fitzgerald). I thought his performance was amazing – as we have come to expect from him. Is he the best British actor around at the moment?

To sum up. Best film of 2015 by a mile. Watch it.

Rating – 4.5/5

Progress!

Good evening! Today has been very productive for me as I have written a short treatment for my feature film. It is only half a page, with the the main plot point’s fleshed out.

I still have a lot of work to do but I am very happy with the direction I am going in and have a few more ideas to look at.

Next, I I am going to start developing characters and ideas for scenes. When I do start to write the script I a going to look at the narrative to see if it would work in a non-linear structure.

Writing is something I have always found hard as I have a very active imagination and ‘dream big’. It is probably why I have struggled to ever get an idea for a short film finished. My ambitions and exceptions are to large.

I know with more time, practice and patience I will get better at developing my ideas.

Apart from that, I have spent the weekend relaxing with my parents in Bath and with Game of Thrones on Blu-Ray – managed to watch series 2 and start series 3. I might finally catch up before season 6 starts!

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone has enjoyed the holidays and had fun over the festive period. I hope everyone is ready for a fresh clean start and are starting the year full of optimism like me. I wish everyone the best with their plans for the New Year.

I am focused on my goal of making a feature film this year and focusing on me for a change. That may seem selfish, but I have spent the last 10 years doing what other people want or expect of me and I honestly feel I have missed opportunities to do things I have wanted to. But that’s life and it is time to make a change.

I have lots to look forward to this year:

  • Spain in May
  • 10 Year Reunion for University (pencilled in for July in London)
  • The Locarno Film Festival (including Milan, Lake Como and Zurich) in August

I would like to make it out to Spain again in October (perhaps Seville) but I doubt I will get chance but you never know…

To help get back in the filmmaking mindset I have enrolled on some online course about filmmaking to refresh my mind and focus on filmmaking. I have also been reading lots and making lots of notes and ideas.

The ‘goal’ is to start filming in September (after Locarno). Over the next few months I have lots to do and it is going to keep mr very busy.

 

Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens Review (Spoiler Free)

star-wars-force-awakens-official-posterSorry it has been a while, but the last few weeks have been chaos. However, I am back with a vengeance now…much like a beloved film franchise (see what I did there? haha)

Yes, Thursday 17th saw the return of Star Wars to the big screen in Episode VII – The Force Awakens. In Star Wars Episode IV, George Lucas also created a universe that was immersive and gorgeous in it’s authenticity. This continued through to Return of the Jedi. In the prequel’s, CGI took over t
o much and the universe did not feel ‘real’. There are other issues with the prequels…but that another story…However, in The Force Awakens the universe ‘feels real’. It’s a gorgeous film to watch.

A Star Wars film throws the audience into the story straight away. Lets take Episode IV A New Hope as an example. How many films start with a space battle? This is one reason why I have always loved Star Wars films, they are an adrenaline pumped thrill ride from start to finish.

The Force Awakens has a lot to live up to – nothing bigger than the expiation of millions of fans around the world. I think the the film more than deliver’s what the fans want. It cast’s off the issues the prequels have thanks to J.J. Abrams at the helm. He has chosen to shoot in 35mm/IMAX and has used his usual bag of in camera tricks (lens flare, shaky camera, dolly shots, snap zooms) to energise the audience and show us the remarkable world the story is set in.

I won’t give too much of the plot away but essentially after the Return of the Jedi, ‘The Empire’ have reformed as ‘The First Order‘ and want to control the galaxy. ‘The Rebellion‘, has become the ‘The Resistance‘ and like any fantasy film, some heroes need to go on a quest to save the day…

The audience are thrown into the story straight away from the very start of The Force Awakens. The story moves at a decent pace and this also keeps the audience engaged. There quieter scenes are punctuated with some genuine funny moments. Tension is also built up incredibly well and there are moments where the audience are genuinely left clutching their seats.

The film is fantastic – not perfect – but it’s everything you could hope for. It has action, laughs and shock twists. The cast are brilliant and the new characters really love up to the expectations and legacy of the ‘older’ generation. John Boyega particular impressed me in his role as Finn.

J.J. Abrams has used the same magic that he used to invigorate Star Trek here and it is extraordinary how the same ‘basic’ tricks work here. There is nothing new but what he does do is simply faultless as a director. Most directors would be scared to do what he has done with Star Trek but to then go an do it for Star Wars…Wow! What’s next…Indiana Jones (I sure hope so!)

However, the most important film about a Star Wars film – and the ultimate test of The Force Awakens – is the power that the original films had to make full grown men feel 12 years old again. The Force Awakens passes this test with flying colours.

If you are a Star Wars fan, you will love the film. If you are not a fan, go an watch it and you might understand all the hype. Even if you are not a fan to have no interest in Science Fiction, the film is with the ticket price as it is genially entertaining.

Episode VIII is released on 26th May 2017 – in 523 days time and I can’t wait. There are so many unanswered questions and I am sure there will be more plots twists and surprises too! And as a tantalising teaser for this, next Christmas we have the first of the Star Wars Anthology films being released – Rouge One – Directed by Gareth Edwards (Monsters 2010 and, Godzilla 2014).

4.5/5 – Wow! OMG!! AMAZING!!!

December 6th 2015…

The last 2 weeks have been really busy at work and things look like they will be for the next few weeks at least. However, I have been thinking and writing about my feature film.

I have spend the last couple of weeks working through various ideas in my head for settings, scenarios and scenes – to get a basic structure. I have some great ideas and now just need to get them down on paper.

I have also been thinking about the type ad size of production it will be. As I will have a no-low budget production, I am going have to beg, borrow and steal (joke!) to get what I want. I am planning on having a very small crew (4-5) and I will do the post-production my self.

I have decided I want to shoot in 4K but may settle for 2-2.5K but I want to get a 35mm digital print of the film to get that genuine celluloid ‘feel’. I am looking at cameras I could use (I will need to rent – so price is a factor) and I am considering either:

  • Sony PMW-F5 (CineAlta)
  • D16 Digital Bolex
  • Blackmagic URSA Mini 4K

All the camera’s are small (to work with the ‘style’ I want to use), offer a great image and relatively inexpensive. The plan is to spend the next few weeks and first part of the new year writing a script.

(More about my ‘style’ shortly…)

One last thing. Friday night was my works Christmas party and it was a great night – chance to relax and forget the troubles of work.
Shout out to my friends and colleagues at work – you all rock!