Friday, July 16, 2010

A killer opening!

Hey there Ricketeers! It's been awhile since I've had a post, but I return bearing progress! I finally finished the animatic of the opening title sequence. Check it out!

This is only a preliminary animatic. I like where it's going, but I already feel it's going too fast. It should probably be at least another minute longer, but for that I'm having my sound guy do it. There's only so many different punches and "ahs" I can take. Although, I do like adding different cartoony sound effects to it and making the audience go, "Pop? What the hell went pop? What are they doing to this poor guy? Was that a frying pan I heard?"

Also, the music is Big Shell West Bristol from the amazing BenCousins at It's just a placeholder for now until my sound guy comes up with a killer theme, but this is one of my all time favorite Trip Hop songs. Actually, it's the song that turned me on to Trip Hop and bands like Portishead, Massive Attack, and Hooverphonic. Ahhh memories.

I think I'll ace the posters. Not that I won't do them, but maybe one a week. There's too many to catch up on.

So finally I'm bringing back Noir Review! This week, a double helping of Ernest Hemingway's The Killers!

I got a chance to look at both the 1946 and 1964 versions of The Killers and I'm REALLY leading towards the 1946 version. Two hired killers come to town and off some guy, but the guy doesn't run, almost like he's expecting it. The whole movie is the mystery behind why this man was killed and why he was so accepting of it.

In the 1946 version, it opens with a great dramatic score and introduces us to the actual killers as they talk about who they're going to kill in a quaint little diner. These are my two favorite characters in the entire movie, and I was really hoping the entire movie was going to revolve around them planning and murdering the guy. They're menacing and psychotic, the kind of unique characters you don't see in normal life. "What're we gonna do? I'll tell ya. We're gonna kill the Sweed." Sadly, they kill the guy and go off screen after twenty minutes, only to return an hour later for a short (though easily the most dramatic)scene near the end.

The rest of the movie involves an insurance agent tracking down people connected with "The Sweed" and piecing together a tale of a robbery gone wrong. Each character he meets has a little flashback of what happened. They handle this in a great way, not making the flashbacks too long and are careful to make sure the audience only sees what the person flashbacking(is that a word?) sees. It's a nice little noir story with a couple of great characters, a good twisting story, and some nice camera work. I would wholly recommend checking it out. I think I'd give it a solid 32 out of 39.

Then I started to watch the 1964 version. I say started because I honestly couldn't get through the first hour. And no, not because it's in color. Similar to the first movie, the killers off their target, but almost as reluctant heroes they go, "Hmmm, he didn't run. How odd. Perhaps we should investigate this mystery." which seems rather strange to me. What kind of hired killers are these? They do the job, it's an easy job, and they want to find out more? If they were so curious, why didn't they do this before?

So they find a mechanic that's connected to the guy they just offed and ask him what happened. And so begins the real movie, a love story involving race cars. What? Didn't I sign up for a noir? Why is everyone so bright and lovy dovy? The flashback goes on for way too long and the mechanic suffers from "And this part I wasn't there for but I remember it perfectly" syndrome, which I can't stand.

It seems like the noir mystery was just a framing device for the movie they really wanted to make(or the movie they though audiences would really want to see). I just stopped caring. I can't really recommend it for hardcore noir fans.

Hmm. Would anyone want to become an actual Ricketeer if I made an official fan page? I think it would be an interesting promotional idea. Now, how could I make it viral?

See you next time folks!

Friday, July 2, 2010

animatic on the way!

Hey Ricketeers! Sorry for the late post, but I'm considering moving Rickety Rat Update day to Fridays. Also, I don't really have anything this week. I haven't had much time to work on any more posters or concept art, but I have scanned in all my storyboards and am in the process of making an animatic. Actually, several animatics. Since it's such a big one, I figure I'll break it into scenes (also some scenes have alternates), then splice it together in one huge monstrous animatic.

And then I have to remember how After effects works. Yay.

See you next week folks!