My wife called me the other day -- a copy of People's Sexiest Man Alive issue happened to arrive at our place. Anyway, in the magazine was a sneak peak at the animated movie Cars 2. You know, Lightning McQueen, Mater, Sally, Doc, etc...
I am making a predicition now that Cars 2 will gross over 1 billion dollars.
I was listening to North Dakota Public Radio the other day when the arts and entertainment critic came on -- a local guy I think. Anyway, after tearing apart the new movie Megamind, the critic mentioned a two day film event at the Fargo Theatre called '''REEL MENTAL ILLNESS': Depictions in the movies'. According to Mental Health America of North Dakota, who sponsored the event, they would in fact show movies that depicted mental illness and then 'facilitate audience disucussion on the authenticity' of the the particular mental illness displayed in the movie.
I found this very interesting. Why? Because the movie's shown were a means to an end and not an end in itself. The first movie shown was 'Fisher King' with Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges -- a movie. The synopsis goes:
Jeff Bridges is shock radio DJ Jack Lucas, whose low opinion of humanity lends itself well to his radio talk show, where the enmity rubs off on his listeners. One fan in particular takes Jack's rants to heart and goes to a fancy restaurant with a gun, murdering innocent diners. Jack is so distraught at what his on-air suggestion wrought that he sinks into a three-year depression, drinking himself to sleep and mooching off of his girlfriend Anne Napolitano (Mercedes Ruehl, in an Oscar-winning performance), an attractive owner of a video store. Hitting bottom, Jack slumps to the river, prepared to commit suicide. To his rescue comes a crazed but witty homeless man named Parry (Robin Williams), who tells Jack he's destined for great things -- all his has to do is find the Holy Grail (conveniently located in mid-town Manhattan) and save Parry's soul. He also wants Jack to help him out with the woman of his dreams, Lydia Sinclair (Amanda Plummer), a shy type who works at a publishing company. Parry was once a university professor became unglued by a tragic event in his past; Jack soon realizes that to save himself, he first must save Parry.
For Mental Health America of North Dakota, 'Fisher King' represented a means to discuss schizophrenia. The film became secondary to the issue(s) within it.
I view NoDak Films in a similar way -- we are not making a movie that depicts mental illness, we are making a movie that depicts North Dakota and a creative contribution model and North Dakota actors, music in the soundtrack, North Dakota locations, resources, crew etc...
Oh yeah! and it's a movie too. A good movie. I tell people that what happens behind the camera is just as important as what happens in front of the camera and like Mental Health America of North Dakota illustrated, both can generate a meaningful discussion.
todd holdman Tuesday, October 9, 2012, 09:41 AM Great story.
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