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Archive for the Category "My Experiences"

MoviePass – Is It Worth It? Oct 17

What is it?

MoviePass is a service that allows you to see as many movies as you like (but only one movie per day) for a flat monthly fee. So in a 31 day month, you could conceivably see 31 different movies… or one movie 31 times, if that’s your thing.

When the service was first introduced several years ago, it was quite pricey. But now that there are new investors, including the co-founder of Netflix, it has an incredible new price tag — just $9.95 per month!

That’s right, for the price of less than one movie ticket in many cities, you can see an “unlimited” number of movies.

How does it work?

After you’ve purchased your MoviePass subscription, you wait for your card to arrive in the mail. Due to the rush of new subscribers, there have been some frustrating delays — up to six weeks or more. So manage your expectations accordingly.

When your MoviePass card (a Mastercard debit card) arrives, you’ll need to download the MoviePass app and enter your card number.

Next, you pick a local theater, and it will display a list of the eligible movies playing. (Currently, you can only see 2D movies in a standard cinema — no 3D, no IMAX, no RPX, etc. Any showings that are ineligible will be grayed out.)

I would make sure you open your app before you leave for the theater — just to make sure the movie/showtime you want to see is available on the MoviePass app.

Sadly, you cannot reserve your ticket in advance; you have to be within 100 yards of the theater to use the app to check in. That means you’ll need your MoviePass card and a functioning smart phone with cell phone service.

The first time you select a movie showtime and click “CHECK IN,” it will try to authorize your account. When I tried this, the app just churned and churned for five minutes, waiting for the authorization. I’m the impatient type (and also know that some apps are buggy), so I simply exited the app, then reopened it again, and poof — I had been authorized and checked in!

“Checking in” is a bit misleading. You’re not actually checked in to anything. What happens is that behind the scenes, MoviePass adds the funds to see the movie to your MoviePass debit card. It doesn’t mean you have your ticket yet or that there are actually tickets left for the show you want to see. You still need to go to the ticket window or kiosk to purchase your ticket.

You simply tell them what movie you want to see, hand them your MoviePass card (and theater rewards card if you have one), and that’s it! If the showing is sold out, the app has some functionality that allows you to select another movie. I haven’t encountered that situation yet, so you’ll have to tell me what that experience is like.

Is it worth it?

$9.95 per month to see as many movies as you like? Of course it’s worth it!!

But there are a few things to keep in mind. Here’s a quick list of the current pros and cons:

PROS

  • One low $9.95 monthly price.
  • See a new movie every day.
  • No blackout dates or movies.
  • Can be used at 91% of theaters nationwide.
  • Inspires you to see a whole host of movies you may not ordinarily want to shell out the bucks for.

CONS

  • It might take a while for your MoviePass card to arrive.
  • While it can be used at thousands of theaters nationwide, it may not include your favorite theater (but it probably does).
  • Can only buy one ticket at a time. No biggie though — if you want to pay for two or more people, just make two separate transactions.
  • The app may be a little buggy. Just keep trying. (That’s your only recourse — customer service for MoviePass is notoriously non-existent.)
  • Cannot reserve movie seats in advance. You have to be at the theater and hope the showing hasn’t sold out yet.
  • Cannot see anything other than a 2D movie in a standard cinema.

SUMMARY

If you’re like me and love to see movies, don’t let a few Negative Nellies online dissuade you from getting MoviePass. It’s a fantastic bargain!

Do you have MoviePass? How has your experience been?

The Making of a VFX Shot Mar 19

Tim-GreenScreenA lotta work for a few seconds of screen time

Thought I’d share a behind the scenes “making of” video for a VFX shot we couldn’t fit into the TRIPLE TIMe pitch video.

Speaking of TRIPLE TIMe, if you’d like to contribute to the making of the actual short film, the time is now! Only one day left to help us reach our funding goal, and earn my eternal gratitude. Every little bit helps tremendously.

TRIPLE TIMe Crowdfunding Campaign Now Live! Mar 01

clock-r4What is TRIPLE TIMe?

TRIPLE TIMe is the next short film I’ll be writing/directing (and doing the visual effects for) with filming slated to begin at the end of March.

It’s a sci-fi, time travel extravaganza that tells the story of Tim, a theoretical physicist, who discovers his life is in danger when he comes home to find two future versions of himself.

If you love time travel movies like I do, or just want to see how weird I look in real life, please head over to the TRIPLE TIMe Indiegogo Crowdfunding page to watch the video.

I’ve been posting to Scriptwrecked for over five years now. If you’ve ever learned something important or picked up a great nugget of advice from my blog, contributing to this campaign would be an amazing way to say thanks. I know most screenwriters (like myself) aren’t made of money, so even if you can’t afford to contribute, simply sharing the campaign link with your friends will help tremendously.

The ultimate goal is to turn some heads in Hollywood and turn TRIPLE TIMe into a single-location feature film. That it all begins with a kick-ass short film. I’d love for you to be a part of the journey with me. Please click the campaign link below to find out more about TRIPLE TIMe and all the cool perks we’ve set up for contributors.

Crowdfunding Campaign Page
http://igg.me/at/tripletime

TRIPLE TIMe Facebook Page
https://facebook.com/tripletimefilm

My team and I will be providing updates on the crowdfuding campaign, and all things production related, right here (and on our Facebook page). So stay tuned and thank you for your support!

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MY DEMON GIRLFRIEND – Teaser Trailer Feb 06

Here’s the teaser trailer for a short film I wrote and directed, called My Demon Girlfriend. It will be released next week in time for Valentine’s Day.

My Demon Girlfriend is a horror comedy short about a lovable loser looking to introduce his friends to his new date… only to discover that there may be more to her than meets the eyes.

#KrillithIsComing

Still from My Demon Girlfriend

The Hobbit and High Frame Rate Dec 22

Legolas or just Orlando Bloom?Liked the movie. Hated the high frame rate.

In select IMAX theaters they’re showing the The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug with the higher frame rate (48 frames per second vs. the standard 24 frames per second). Having never seen a movie with this controversial format before, I was excited to experience the high frame rate (HFR), which promised more vivid and realistic images.

Within the first few moments of the film (and Peter Jackson cameo), I immediately understood why there was so much controversy over this format. The images were crisp and life-like… and didn’t look like a movie.

What was it like?

My brother said it was like watching a televised BBC production (TV has a higher frame rate than movies). Some people liken the experience to watching a play. I’d go one step further. It was like watching really clear behind the scenes footage of a movie, where you see the actor in costume rehearsing their lines — and at no time confuse them for their characters.

And that’s the problem. It looked too realistic. In many cases, I stopped seeing a character, and started seeing an actor with imperfect skin and contact lenses. I stopped seeing an Elf Forest, and started seeing fake tree props.

If you’ve ever been on a movie set, you’ll quickly notice how fake everything looks in real life. Why the hell would I want that? I want LARGER than life for my movie experience, thank you very much!

The Art Form

I’m always an early adopter of technology. I love innovation and applaud Peter Jackson for trying this new format out. You never know when something new will resonate with audiences. Believe it or not, “talkies” (i.e. modern movies where you can hear the actors’ voices as they say their lines, instead of reading their dialogue in subtitles) were controversial when they first came out.

But I can’t help but feel like HFR is a solution to a problem that didn’t exist. Movies aren’t reality. They’re heightened reality. The paradox is that making films look more “real” may actually compromise our ability to suspend our disbelief.

If the goal is to make the movie-going experience more like real life, perhaps we should get rid of the score in scenes where there wouldn’t normally be music playing. Or maybe we should shoot all of the scenes from one camera angle. All this jumping from angle to angle stuff isn’t how we view the world.

And when is that smell-o-vision gonna get here? I’m sure audiences would love that. I can think of one scene in particular from Slumdog Millionaire that would be especially… powerful.

Did you see The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug in its higher frame rate? (If you’re unsure, then you probably saw it at one of the majority of theaters where it was played in its converted and standard 24 fps.) What did you think of the format?

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