Friday, April 8, 2011

The premiere of Martyr

The premiere of Martyr went swimmingly Wednesday night, April 6th. Afterward, I had a hard time shaking off the tension that I get when I see the movie. In fact, this is the fourth time I've seen Martyr, the first being in 2005 in the film festival "Diablo de Oro" in Oruro, Bolivia.

When I first saw the movie it impacted me in a way that changed the very direction of my life. I loved the story, the acting, the cinematography, the music. Really, I loved it all. I loved it so much that I decided to drop everything in my life, stay in Bolivia and make movies with the director, Jac Avila.

From this incredible movie came the beginning of my life as a film director. I saw that one could make personal movies, beautiful works of art, living paintings, and with very little money. Something that I simply didn't think was possible before seeing this movie. It was the best movie that I had ever seen that was filmed on digital, and not even HD, because HD didn't exist yet. I believe that this movie is a revolution for cinema simply from that fact, being filmed in digital video, from which the result is nothing but pure beauty.

It is a sign to all of us that one can produce movies, personal movies, movies that we care about, which before wasn't possible with 35mm. Every time I see Martyr it makes me think about how lucky I am to be working with Pachamama Films and making works of art using the medium of cinema.

And then there's the story. A story that I think is universal. Today we had a meeting of our cast/crew whom we regularly work with and one of them went on and on about how the message of the film touched him, how he respected and identified with Camille in her journey to develop this "thing" that she has inside of herself. He talked about how he knows so many men and women who have fantasies, dreams, and who don't do anything about them. Their dreams remain dreams for the rest of their lives, because they're too afraid to take them from deep inside of themselves and show them in the light of day, or to others. I hope that with us, he is able to make his hopes and dreams a reality, that we can all make our creative fantasies into realities together as a team.

There is something in the character of Camille that speaks to all of us. The fear of rejection, the need to part of something, but at the same time to feel special. The feeling that we have something to offer the world.

For me, the moral of the story in Martyr is that we should show our true selves to others, regardless of whether or not anyone likes it, because there will be some that do like you for who you are, and those are the people you want to know.

Today was a day to just sit back and see how extremely lucky I am to be in a group with such wonderful, creative, talented individuals.

And to think about my next movie...

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