Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Look at my links on the left-hand side of the page. cylentlark has changed. No more Xanga. It's on blogger.

I'm tired of Xanga. Yes, it's cool that you get email updates. But every now and then you just need to do something to refresh yourself.

My blogs needed a breath of fresh air, so here it is.

Monday, December 04, 2006

So Much To Say

And so little time to say it...

Check this out... It's long, but a great read on Christian Art...



So one of the books I bought on Friday was on acting. It's something I know next to nothing about. Kind of sad if I'm wanting to direct a movie. So the remedy - by a book!

Pretty interesting stuff... Want to get some thoughts on it...

This is a pretty odd book on acting. Sadly it's not the kind of theory that many actors today believe in. You hear about all of these method actors, people who literally become their characters and never shut it off. That's extremely unhealthy.

It's this school of acting that has led many people like myself to believe that acting is really all about deception. It's professional lying. At least, that's what I think about that particular theory.

But this book has a pretty fresh approach. Now, all books on filmmaking must be taken with a grain of salt. It is written by people who by and large do not have any sort of Christian worldview. So for the Christian who is serious about trying out this whole filmmaking thing like myself, just reading the material is a challenge to keep your sanity. But back to my whole home builder analogy, anyone interested in making his career building homes has to do research and learn a lot of things, and many times that information comes from the world.

The craft itself is neutral. What we have to guard ourselves against is the worldviews that others pursuing the craft may propose.

But, I digress. (What else is new, huh?)

I came across a new concept in this book on acting. Acting is about truth, not deception. Think about it. If you were an actor, which would you rather do... Take a role that is inherently lying about yourself and who you are, or one that allows you to explore yourself for who you really are... If you play the role of a villian, you are able to examine whether or not any of the evil lies within you. If you play Christ, you are able to see how far you have to go to really be like Him.

I think there is a shortage of good Christian actors just like there is a shortage of good Christian films. Who else in this messed up world is more equipped to give us a glimpse of truth, beauty, and excellence than Christians?

Why then is our art aesthetically inferior? Why do the Christian actors come across as worse than the old sc-fi B-movie actors? Why do they make Bruce Campbell seem like Tom Hanks by comparison?

Where is the art that competes with everything the world is throwing at us?

I'm never going to get tired of posing this question. Maybe in simply asking it I can stay motivated to do something about it myself, and hopefully others will take it upon themselves to change things as well.

It's time we had more than just the Hallmark Channel movie with a Christian theme. It's time for movies and stories that move and inspire like Shawshank and Forrest Gump, yet are true to what Christians really believe.

Ok, ok, ok... It's obvious I'm on my soap box now... I'll stop... But when you've taught yourself to shut down everything that makes you really passionate, and conditioned yourself to accept the status quo, then when something inside of you awakens to the truth about yourself and you see that you really do have the capacity to try to awaken change in a culture that desperately needs it, how can you possibly shut up?

Friday, December 01, 2006

The Wii Rebellion, My Film Script, and Incoherent, Random Babblings

I'm sick of it all. The manufactured hype. The secrecy. The greed.

So I'm protesting. I'm not even going to try to buy a Wii until way after Christmas. Maybe early spring. I don't know. Just whenever this madness dies down.

The good news is that I spent some of the money I was saving on something that will keep my busy for now, and provide a lot of material for this blog - Movies and Books! Books on Movies! Movies on Books!

I bought some of my favorite films of all time:

The Shawshank Redemption
The Green Mile
The Truman Show
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Big Fish
Fellowship of the Ring (Why I ever sold it I don't know... For a film junkie like me it's near blasphemous)

The books I racked up on:

The Unusual Suspect by Stephen Baldwin (Yes, that Stephen Baldwin. His conversion tale and an insider's look at the corruption of Hollywood)

A book on acting (Recommended by Director David Mamet, author of On Directing Film that I'm about to finish)

A book on camera shots and terminology

There and Back Again: An Actor's Tale by Sean Astin. (His personal account of the making of LOTR)

Needless to say, I've got a lot to keep me busy honing my craft and simply having fun reading for a change. Every now and then you just need a break from deep stuff to read something for fun. I'm not very good at making myself do that. I guess that's when I start to get burned out, when I push myself like that.

Also, if you got my script, know that I'm going to make MAJOR changes to it. After reading one of my books, I realized I have a long way to go to make it a GOOD movie. If you didn't get it, email me and I'll email it to you. (Photog3535@yahoo.com)

I'll stop this random babbling with this thought... Why do Christians give a pass to Christian movies that are terrible and say they are good just because they have a message? If a Christian home builder built a house with John 3:16 plastered on the roof for every single airplane flying overhead to check out and hear (see?) the gospel, but the roof was so badly constructed that your grandmother sleeping in the spare bedroom would be crushed when it caves in simply from the vibrations of the above mentioned plane flying overhead, would we give him a pass and say that it's a great home, just because he invoked John 3:16?

Is it any different with movies?