Oh hey. I'm Anna, a working girl in Grand Rapids, Michigan, blogging about nostalgia, creativity, and societal woes. My vices include soda, nail-biting, and sarcasm.
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Posts tagged "film"


DON’T MAKE ME EAT ANY MORE CAKE: White Male Narratives as the Default

Last week, one of the screenwriters of Aronofsky’s Noah, Ari Handel, gave an interview, with some illuminating statements about race in film… (read more)


[photo source]

Today’s Friday Digs are brought to you by the word Play… (read more)

Hey I made a thing! 

I had a blast shooting behind the scenes footage on Burst Theory. Check out the first of many videos pulling back the curtain on the production. 

They’re currently in the middle of a crucial IndieGogo campaign to help the film get to festivals and in front of peoples’ faces. Please give them a hand and/or signal boost!


Last night I attended a red carpet, cast and crew premiere for Burst Theory, a film Craig and I worked on in the Summer of 2012. I use “worked on” generously for myself…(read more)

“You shall love whether you like it or not. Emotions, they come and go like clouds. Love is not only a feeling; you shall love. To love is to run the risk of failure, the risk of betrayal. You fear your love has died; perhaps it is waiting to be transformed into something higher. Awaken the divine presence which sleeps in each man, each woman. Know each other in that love that never changes.” - To The Wonder (2013)

I can tell from that left-middle frame alone that this film is going to destroy me. 

My love for Malick’s films is increasing by the day. I’m glad he’s releasing them more frequently. (And also a little concerned. He releases six films in 40 years, and now he’s got three in post-production. What is going on?)

His films aren’t for everyone. To some they feel heavy handed or emotionally manipulative, and I get that, but they’re just amazing pieces of poetry to me. 

Roger Ebert wrote the following about Tree of Life, and it’s become one of my favorite quotes.

Many films diminish us. They cheapen us, masturbate our senses, hammer us with shabby thrills, diminish the value of life. Some few films evoke the wonderment of life’s experience, and those I consider a form of prayer. Not prayer “to” anyone or anything, but prayer “about” everyone and everything. I believe prayer that makes requests is pointless. What will be, will be. But I value the kind of prayer when you stand at the edge of the sea, or beneath a tree, or smell a flower, or love someone, or do a good thing. Those prayers validate existence and snatch it away from meaningless routine.”

In other Malicky things, I watched Badlands this weekend for the first time. Holy Moonrise Kingdom, Batman. Homage much? It’s almost too exact for me to even call it an ode. Check it out.

It’s that time of year again, kids! Just a friendly reminder that The Oscars are not the end-all-be-all of good films, k? 

I joined in a great twitter discussion yesterday on the topic of Women at the Oscars hosted by Women’s Media Center, Bitch Flicks, and Melissa Silverstein from Indiewire. A great little roundup of the convo is here. (I’m the first tweet!)

This is just a tiny piece of the issue I’ve been wrestling with for well over a year now. Underrepresentation in media, not just for women, but for POC and LGBT populations as well (and all the places these intersect), is the #1 thing I find myself wanting to fight for. 

I’m not ready to dive into my manifesto yet, but here are a few bits to chew on since it’s Oscar season…

5 Female-Directed Films that Deserved Oscar Nominations

How Female Directors Could At Last Infiltrate Hollywood: Go Indie

2013 Oscar Week: Feminism, Gender Stats and the Bechdel Test in this Year’s Best Picture Nominees

Fun facts:

Women make up 51% of the US population and purchase 50% of movie tickets.

Only one woman (and only one person of color) have ever won the award for Best Director. 

Women directed 5% of the top grossing films of 2011.

But here’s the thing, having women in front of or behind the camera has no effect on box office gross. Only budget does.

(Stats from studies here

I think it’s easy for film-people to say, “The Oscars don’t even really matter. It’s all politics.” Well, that’s nice that you know that, but to most of our culture, that awards show IS film. This season is the time of the year when a lot of people make an effort to see “real film” in theaters. 

I’m not saying the films featured at the Oscars are bad, nor that the people who made them are not good filmmakers. (Although, do we really need to give Spielberg a nod every time he farts out an epic? Sorry, sorry. /snark.) But we NEED more representation in front of and behind the camera. Why? Why does this even matter? Why can’t we just see films as stories, no matter who is in them or making them?

Well that is a whole ‘nother enormous issue that I will write about at length later. 


Shoreline Shoot 5x5 - Just five, five-second clips from last Wednesday.

Two weeks of shooting wrapped on Burst Theory Monday night. Even though I was only there part of the time shooting behind the scenes footage, I’ve still got that post-project melancholy. I’m sure my sleep-deprived body wouldn’t have made it many more days, but it’s a bittersweet ending. I’ll have to be satisfied with seeing the wonderful crew on my computer screen for the next month or so while I sort through and edit the footage. But I miss them already.

Last Wednesday, we shot at a beautiful beach location in Muskegon. Zac and Craig couldn’t have prayed for a better sunset backdrop.

The crew broke for lunch around 10pm, and I walked down to the shoreline to finally dip my feet in the water. My feet sank into the sand and I didn’t roll my jeans up far enough. The warm waves sloshed up around my knees. The moon was a perfect crescent and the stars were free of city-haze.

And my incredibly talented friends were behind me, preparing for five or six more hours of the exhausting work they thrive on.

Working on: everything!

Last weekend, my job had me on the east side of the state for a few days for the Pure Michigan 400 Nascar race. It was… an eye-opening experience. (I have extensive insights that I will share with you if you so desire.)

In addition, some friends of mine are shooting a feature-length film in town and asked me to shoot behind the scenes video. It’s been a blast. I’ve missed being on film sets.

I’m getting dangerously close to burnout, though. Between my job and BTS shooting, I’ve worked about 70 hours in the past week. Woof.


After five years of commuting over an hour to a job that was really not the greatest, my dad got a job that is right in Kalamazoo and just plain perfect for him. Hallelujah.

My sister had another baby! Little Esme Jane. I just call her Ezzie J. That’s what cool aunts do, right? 


Going to see said sister and her family in New York City! I bought tickets yesterday to fly out in October. My brother-in-law also suggested that we go to NY Comic Con while I’m there, which I am ridiculously excited about. It’ll be my first. Plus, Central Park in the Fall, duh.

Also, in two weeks, I’ll be getting my first tattoo. I already met with the artist and put a deposit down. Life changes, I tell ya. 


Three words: Friday. Night. Lights.

Tim Riggins! Matt Saracen! Landry Clark! Oh my goodness, I have fallen in love with these characters and all the rest. I’m almost finished with season three. 

Listening to:

The Chromatics

Perfect for both getting work done and driving which is most of what I’ve been doing lately. Focused. Intense. Also a little nostalgic. <3

Another batch of the 35mm photos from my Pentax. Shake off your jackets and enjoy the warmth.

[Top to Bottom: Purple Flowers, Kodak 200 // Pippin, Kodak 200 // Summer Shoes, Kodak 200 // Nate and Abby on the Roof, Fuji 400 // Twist with Sprinkles, Fuji 400]

I recently borrowed stole my folks’ old Pentax K1000 35mm camera. I’ve snapped three rolls of film so far this year, two Fuji 400 and one Kodak 200.

I know it’s sort of becoming a cliché, but there really is something wonderful about shooting film. Not knowing exactly what you just shot, having to wait for the development (a whole hour, heaven forbid), seeing the photos first as prints in your hands.

Analog, man. The imperfection is key.

So I thought I’d spend a few posts sharing my exploits. First up: portraits.

[Top to bottom: Derik at Yesterdog, Fuji 400 // Sara, Fuji 400 // Kevin, Fuji 400 // Annie at One Stop Coney, Kodak 200 // Craig playing with fire, Fuji 400 // Batman cuddles, Fuji 400]