Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Snowed In With The Flow

I'm sitting here drinking a new batch of black gold. It's snowing. While looking out the window, a fond memory flashed in on me and said hello. That memory has made me smile and laugh many times.

It all began during the fall/winter of 2010. I had been meeting weekly with Frederick, Maryland artist, Charles Forsythe, to make a film about him and his art. Months later, I premiered it in Frederick. You can read more about that time in my past posts, but for now, I'd like to share the film with everyone who didn't have a chance to see.

So, grab your favorite snacks and beverages, get all cozy, and tune in to the "Flow":

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A New 5-Pounder Brew Arrives!

Back in August  I posted about my purchase of a David Lynch 5-pounder bag of brew. That's been long gone. This morning I received a new batch that was roasted on November 8. There's a pot brewing now. I'm sure a second one will be in the works. The day will be fine and that's such a beautiful thing.

Monday, August 19, 2013

"Nadine" Rumbles Around The Web

On June 29, 2013, I premiered my short film, Nadine, at the Frederick Film Festival in Frederick, Maryland (See July 2, 2013 posting). I'd like to share the film with you. Hope you enjoy the ride:

Music was composed and performed by Jamie Garonzik.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Starting My Day The Right Way!

Oh yes. Inhale. Hold...ahh. That's right, it's a David Lynch 5-pounder. I'm diggin' in for another sniff. This morning was fine. I can't wait for tomorrow's brew. Hold on. Hell with tomorrow, what am I thinking...I'm brewing one now!

Friday, July 19, 2013

"My Friend Hugo"

Photo by Nancy Chester

In the midst of promoting my newest short film, Nadine, I have also been working on another short film, My Friend Hugo. This film, however, has a longer history. I wanted to fill you in on the latest and provide a little background about how the film came about.

It was the summer of 2007. I had just purchased my new camera, a Sony PD170. Hungry to begin a new project, I was actively searching for subject matter. By chance, I ended up going to a Polo match not far from my home, held nearby in Harford County, Maryland.  I had never been to a Polo match , nor had I been around that many horses. Once there, I found the experience exhilarating.

Everything about the game of polo was new to me. It was a world I had never given my attention, other than maybe seeing a still picture or two, or catching a quick glimpse on television. As I sat there watching the game that day, thrilled by the action, one player caught my attention. His name is Hugo Pasten, a semi-professional polo player from Chile, who was at that time playing for a local team.

Hugo was mesmerizing to watch. For me, he clearly stood out among all the fine players that day, and by game's end, I had found my subject matter for a new film. Convinced I had nothing to lose, I walked over to where Hugo was resting and introduced myself. I explained to him  that I was inspired by his performance that day and asked if I could make a documentary about him. Hugo only paused a few seconds before saying yes. Though we didn't know each other, it was a very quick and easy agreement. All felt right. We talked for a while before Hugo resumed playing. As he rode onto the field, I stood their watching and thinking about my next move. I was off and running.

Throughout the the summer and Fall of 2008, I followed Hugo around to his games and visited him at his home on the farm where he trained and groomed the horses. But after months of filming, I had decided to shelve the project. Unexpectedly, my course changed.  I began diving into a feature-length documentary, The Skeptics In A World Of Their Own, about a garage band from my home town in Frederick, Maryland. This was something I didn't want to pass up.  It was a chance opportunity that fell into place and I was very excited about the project (See my early Blog entries, beginning on February 14, 2011 . The Skeptics In A World Of Their Own was followed by The Flow Of Forsythe (2012) and Nadine (2013), all of which I had the fortune to premiere at the Frederick Film Festival.

Now back to My Friend Hugo. Soon after beginning the documentary about The Skeptics, I lost interest in the film about Hugo. Then in the summer of 2012, I changed the film's direction. It was no longer going to be a documentary. I then began shooting some new scenes.

I'm very pleased about the film's direction and how it's turning out. Currently, it runs around 22 minutes and I'm fine tuning the edit, plus awaiting some music for the soundtrack from a friend, Brian Forsythe. Brian composed the music for the documentary about his father, The Flow Of Forsythe. If all goes as planned, I should have my first cut this summer.

Until my next posting, keep the coffee flowing, my friends.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Thank You Frederick Film Festival!

I would like to thank Walter Chalkley and associated staff, especially Stacy Budd, of the Frederick Film Festival F3 for such a great time this past weekend. The festival was great. I loved the experience and it was much fun seeing the other film entries and meeting so many really cool people associated with the films.

                              With Walter Chalkley                                                                     Photo by Nancy Chester

My arrival on Friday at the festival started off on a good note. I was greeted by television reporter Shayna Halper of WHAG-TV and briefly spoke with her about the festival: Festival Brings Local and International Artists Together .

On Friday, one of the first films I saw was Nextnik, but I'll discuss that later. That night, the highlight, for me, was John Krulik's, Led Zeppelin Played Here, a documentary about discovering the truth about whether the newly named band Led Zeppelin played at the Weaton, Maryland Youth Center on January 20, 1969. While there is no documentary proof the band played there, the circumstances surrounding the event, and the fact there are eye witnesses, provide much food for thought and decent case the event took place. For the record, after viewing the film, my opinion is the Led Zeppelin did play there. If you get a chance, check out this film and decide for yourself. Nonetheless, a worthy documentary about an iconic band during its first U.S. tour.

The after party at Frederick's downtown restaurant, Brewer's Alley, was fun. I mingled and met some really cool people, talking about their films while soaking in some good music provide by Hard Swimmin' Fish, who were dynamite! Very cool, they were.

Saturday was the screening of my film, Nadine:


I'd like to thank all who attended the screening and I appreciate all your comments. As I mentioned in the WHAG-TV interview, I always try to premiere my films at the Frederick Film Festival. Though I live in Bel Air, Maryland, Frederick is home for me. I'm certainly happy I was given the opportunity to present Nadine at this year's festival, making it my third year in a row.

Saturday morning I attended the local high school competition. Had a fun time seeing the ten films selected. Lots of talent out there. The competition was judged by The Blair Witch Project Director Eduardo Sanchez, and the winner won a Professional Sony editing software package. Not bad. It's the same editing software I use. 

While I was unable to attend Thursday night's screening of Eduardo's new horror film V/H/S/2 at the Weinberg Center, followed by a Q&A, I was happy to get a chance to hear him speak before the young filmmakers about his experience. He was friendly and supportive of their work and made himself available for their questions. I, too, was able to grab a moment of his time and exchange a few words. Very cool guy. I wish him the best with all his upcoming projects and really dig the fact he stays local and films around the Frederick area. Currently, he's trying to obtain permission to shoot a new horror film at the abandoned Fredericktowne Mall. Good Luck, Eduardo! I hope this happens.

                      Eduardo Sanchez                                                          Photo by Nancy Chester

Saturday evening marked another highlight for me with the screening of Erik Greenberg Anjou's documentary, The Klezmatics: On Holy Ground, followed by an amazing performance by the band. Presented in the majestic ambiance of the Weinberg Center (an experience in and of itself), I was introduced to this band and was blown away by their music and musicianship. The band has been around for a quarter century, and while I admit I've never heard of them, discovering their story and music has left an indelible mark on me, one that's tickled my soul. Their music should be heard and shared by all, no matter what your background. In essence, their music speaks to the hearts of us all around the globe. 

                                                                                                                                 Photo by Nancy Chester

As mentioned, I met some really cool people at the festival, but there were two who stuck out: Rick Kain and Dan Franko. Both are accomplished actors and they are very friendly and grounded. They both live in Frederick area, opting out of the Hollywood grind, and are very enthusiastic and passionate about their acting. Both were very generous with their time and they spoke at length with me about their experiences in film and television. I hope to see more of their work in the coming years. 

In short, Rick and Dan are great guys who are genuine and I had fun spending some time with them. In fact, on Friday I got the chance to watch Rick star in Michael Kravinski's latest film, Nexnik , screen that afternoon. I really enjoyed the film's story - something many of us can relate to nowadays- and got to see Rick's acting chops in action. Nice job, Rick!

   Dan Franco and Rick Kain                                                                                     Photo by Nancy Chester

So ends another fun Frederick Film Festival. Again, I'd like to thank Walter Chalkley for putting on such a fine gig and let him know that I - and I'm sure all this year's participants - really appreciate all the hard work and time he and all the other associated staff and volunteers put into making this festival a must attend event. 

I'm already looking forward to next year's festival and my fingers are crossed that my new film, currently being edited, My Friend Hugo, will meet the grade and get selected for screening at next year's festival. More on this film later.

In the meantime, I'll be submitting Nadine in other festivals around the country. Wish me luck.

Friday, June 21, 2013

"Nadine" At The Frederick Film Festival

Just a week away until the Frederick Film Festival Frederick Film Festival (F3) is upon us. I'm certainly looking forward to it again. This will be the third year I've been fortunate enough to have one of my films selected for screening.

This year, I submitted a short experimental film, Nadine. It's about a clairvoyant, found object, and one man's tale of a 1947 "Knucklehead". The film is 14 minutes long and will screen at the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center , one of the two venues screening films. Nadine will screen on Saturday, June 29, at 12:30.

Nadine trailer:

If you're in town this weekend, and tired of the Hollywood fare, stop by and check out some unique films, that are little known or completely under the radar.

See you there!

The Best Entertainment Deal in Frederick History: The F3 Weekend Pass
Ok…I’m going to save you some time reading this post and just say NOW that if you don’t have your F3 Weekend Pass, go HERE and get it now. Then you don’t need to read any further. If you need further convincing…or just like to read…carry on.
Ok…what is self-promotion without a healthy helping of hyperbole? It’s just in the nature of proclaiming how great your events are.
EXCEPT in this case. We here at the F3 honestly believe that pound-for-pound, you will NOT find a better entertainment value in Frederick…EVER…than the Frederick Film Festival Weekend Pass.
Let me repeat that: EVER

We’re not the type of folk who just toss something like that out there without anything to back it up. So, we’re going to take a little bit of time to go over what exactly the F3 Weekend pass gets YOU, the intelligent, price-savvy, F3 Weekend Pass purchaser.

1. F3 Eve

new-vhs2-one-sheetWe don’t always have an F3 Eve at the Frederick Film Festival. Only when it’s justified. It’s generally designed to be something of a treat for folks in town early for the festival or folks who live in town. Previous years’ F3 Eve events have included a concert by, and documentary about, Frederick’s own The Skeptics back in 2010 or a screening of the cult favorite Heavy Metal Parking Lot and concert afterwards in 2011. It’s a fun little bonus event that takes place just before all the REAL work begins for the festival.
This year, we have a special F3 Eve event on Thursday night, June 27. A pre-theatrical screening of the anthology horror film V/H/S/2 hosted by one of the film’s directors, Frederick’s own Eduardo Sanchez. Other cast and crew members will also be on hand for some q&a afterward and it promises to be a great night. Now…the difference between this F3 Eve and previous F3 Eves is that we are limited by the film’s distributor to only 200 seats. That’s it. 200. Weekend pass holders must call the box office in advance and request their free ticket. Anyone not purchasing a Weekend Pass (though, really, why would you not?) can still get a ticket while they last for $10.

2. Friday Movies/Opening Night/Afterparty

Ok, the cost of the F3 Weekend Pass SHOULD just cover Friday. Here’s why: The F3 Weekend pass gets you access all day on Friday, June 28 starting at 2pm. Afternoon films include guests as well, includledzeppelin-poster-for-Frederickwo-texting John Putch who will be on hand to answer questions about his film Route 30, Too!
Then there are the opening night festivities, with guests from the movie Led Zeppelin Played Here including director Jeff Krulik!
THEN, after all THAT, there’s the F3 Opening Night Afterparty upstairs imageat Brewer’s Alley. Mix with filmmakers, film fans, cast, crew, eat some great food, have some great beverages, all to the beat of the music from Hard Swimmin’ Fish!

3. Saturday Films/Klezmatics Concert

FirstFourFeaturesOk, the gold mine day. Saturday. Scads of films and filmmakers in two different venues. We’ve got things starting at 10am at the Weinberg and the Delaplaine. klez-posterMultiple guests at both locations. US premieres!
Then, that evening, we screen the documentary The Klezmatics: On Holy Ground (with director Erik Anjou in attendance) followed by a concert by the Klezmatics themselves. The Grammy-winning act, live on the F3 stage at the Weinberg.
klezmatics20091That’s like 20 hours of entertainment over two venues, a world-class concert, and a bunch of US premiere movies…again, worth MUCH more than the F3 Weekend Pass should be allowed to cost.

4. Sunday films/Americana music with Hugh & Zane Campbell

postcard_new_glorious_deserter_april_2012After all the excitement of Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night, we’re toning it down a bit for Sunday. All films and events Sunday will be in the intimate confines of the Pavilion at the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center. media_httpwwwamerican_zEsoz.jpg.scaled600
Films on Sunday include not only US Premieres, but also a documentary entitled New River: A Family Musical History Tour and tells the story of Americana music families the Brooks and the Campbells. Filmmaker Tom Sims will be on hand for this screening and, following the film, yet ANOTHER musical event HughZaneCampbellwhen the latest in the long line of musicians in these family, Hugh and Zane Campbell, will perform and talk about their family and their music.
A great way to wrap up a great festival.
So, to recap, the 2013 F3 Weekend Pass gets you access to:
  • F3 Eve on Thursday Night
  • Friday Afternoon films and guests
  • Friday Opening Night feature and guests
  • Friday Opening Night AFTERPARTY
  • Saturday films starting at 10am at both the Delaplaine and the Weinberg
  • Saturday night special film event with director Erik Anjou
  • Saturday night concert with the Grammy-winning KLEZMATICS
  • Sunday films all day
  • Sunday special film screening of New River with Tom Sims
  • Sunday afternoon performance of Hugh and Zane Campbell
FOUR days of entertainment, 3 musical acts, an afterparty with food and drink, 56 films, and the opportunity to meet scads of guests.
NO…wait…I left something out…all for only $30.00!!
I know, right? The second price seems crazier than the first! That’s what we meant by the BEST ENTERTAINMENT DEAL IN FREDERICK HISTORY. No hype! We weren’t just whistling Dixie on that, we meant it! If you can find anything that even comes close to that, you need to drop us a line and tell us what it is and we’ll go there some other weekend because the weekend of the 28th-30th we’re at the Frederick Film Festival…and if you’re not…you’re just missing it.
TixStripSeriously…buy your tickets…some things are going to fill up…you don’t want to be that guy do you? For the rest of your life, you’ll be the person who didn’t get F3 Weekend Passes in 2013. I wouldn’t wish that on anyone.
Metalic logoSo go HERE and get your tickets NOW. Or call the Weinberg box office at 301.600.2828 and order by phone. OR, drop by there and get them in person sometime before the fest starts. You’ll be glad you did.
Frederick Film Festival Blog

Monday, April 22, 2013

"Nadine" Rumbles Into Frederick

I'd like to thank the staff of the Frederick Film Festival (F3) for selecting my new short documentary, Nadine, to screen at this year's event. I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of their past festivals and look forward to another memorable time on the weekend of June 28 - 30.

Nadine is about a clairvoyant, a found object, and one man's tale of a 1947 "Knucklehead". A "Knucklehead" is a Harley Davidson motorcycle. In this short documentary, we hear from Nadine's owner, Joe Loiero. We catch a glimpse of his world. Learn a few of his thoughts. His ideas. But more importantly, we discover memories can be stored anywhere and last forever.

Further details will be posted in the weeks to come.

For more information about the festival: Frederick Film Festival (F3) - Nadine

Follow the festival on Facebook: Frederick Film Festival (F3)