Tag Archives: The Three Tenners

Corman Meets Poe

It feels like a country age since I last put up a post of substance. Please accept my apologies for the slackness on the blog front as I’m writing my dissertation and the treatment / script for the next flick which will be shooting sometime around March / April. We’re currently in the process of cleaning up The Three Tenners for entry into next years Edinburgh International Film Festival so everything that can be crossed, is crossed for that.

The dissertation is on the subject of adaptation which has meant watching tons of interesting flicks. I’m on a little strand of the Roger Corman / Edgar Allan Poe adaptations so it’s maybe right I should bring some of this stuff to your attention, should you have seen them or not. There’s 8 of them in total which Corman made between 1960 and 1964….. That’s almost 2 flicks a year, and he was making films in between! 5 day features man, bring em’ back. Well I suppose Shane Meadows already has with Le Donk.

Anyway, here they are in chronological order….. Seek them out!

House of Usher (1960)

Pit and the Pendulum (1961)

The Premature Burial (1962)

Tales of Terror (1962)

The Raven (1963)

The Haunted Palace (1963)

The Masque of the Red Death (1964)

The Tomb of Ligeia (1964)


The Slacker’s Back

Well it’s been a while innit?

There have been genuine reasons for the extreme lack of activity on the blog (It’s not laziness, honestly) and it’s cool that people are still dropping by despite having chuff all new to read.

Firstly, work on THE THREE TENNERS continues. I’m almost done with recording the sounds I need. All that will be required then is to lovingly complete the aural design and get a hand with colour correction. I really don’t want to rush this film as it’s my EIFF entry for next year and those people go for quality…… usually.

We also had a fantastic directing workshop with up and coming Scottish director Morag McKinnon. Morag has just finished her first feature and was extremely helpful, friendly and informative. It was great to direct in front of a working director as what your doing really comes under scrutiny, even more so than it does when on set. Anyway, it went well and a certain amount of confidence was taken from the feedback.

Last weekend I was in Manchester letting off some major steam and what better way to do this than by going to an Oasis gig. They’re not everybody’s cup of tea, granted, but were the band of my adolescence and in some strange way, helped me through some even stranger times. I’ll always have a special place in my heart for those lads. I can’t wait to bounce my grandkids on my knee and enthrall them with tales of being halfway into a coma alongside 50,000 people in a field by Loch Lomond in 1995.

Manchester was like being back in 91’…. Falling out of clubs at 6 in the morning in the arms of 100 mates you’ll never meet again only to get get right back on it and basically kick your body all over the shop.

There’s a nice documentary about the whole Britpop era, as told by the protagonists themselves.


This well crafted film takes us from the Stone Roses gig at Spike Island, through the grunge invasion, into the rise of Britpop, Blur V Oasis, New Labour, Pulp’s rise from a decade of obscurity to the record breaking Oasis Knebworth gigs and finally, the crash of the dream round about their Be Here Now album. It’s not just a film about the music, but the impact it had on a society screaming out for something new.

I have to say, I was well placed for all those movements of the youth, being the age I am now. One doesn’t miss being 18 these days knowing what the kids have missed out on. I really hope they can get off their arses and get something going that isn’t comodified as soon as it becomes vaguely popular like some Simon Cowell inspired sell out fest.

If you were around at the time, whether you were into the music or not, you should check out this film. There’s some great moments with a beatifully lucid and retrospective Jarvis Cocker with alternative, leftfield views being provided by trip hop efficienado 3D from Massive Attack and Louise Wener. Hell, even Damon Alburn is tollerable.

Jarvis Cocker in what I genuinely believe, is his own bedroom

I’ll leave you, for now, with a couple of clips from the aforementioned documentary. First up is a little section on the birth of Oasis, secondly is some comment on how New Labour weren’t shy on jumping on the “Cool Britannia” bandwagon.

I won’t leave it so long next time.

Summer Lovin’

The sun is out and the darkness has gone. It only seems like yesterday that we were huddled round a cigarette in the grips of winter, wondering with pleading eyes if we’d see another dawn.

Things have been busy and posting has been as sparse as a good Guy Ritchie movie. Notice how I don’t tag Guy Ritchie on this post, the man is loathsome. THE THREE TENNERS is now at the latter stages of post production. This evening I’ve been creeping around the streets of Ravelston (the place where I live) like Walter Murch trying to find the wonderful nuance of sound that will bring my film to life. Where in this picture can I find a place for a boiler sparking into life? I swear to god it’s like a post apocalyptic rescue ship taking off from the dusty, barren remains of the earth, or at least it sounds like it.

Murch at work

Last night I returned to watching films like a Charlton Heston slurping water unknowingly from Jesus in BEN HUR. It was a magic feast which included the following picture.

8 1-2 poster

Now this to me was a bit of an achievement. YES Fellini is one of the finest, most technically gifted filmmakers to have ever walked the earth, YES 8 1/2 is always in the top five, usually top 2 of the best films ever but do you think I could get through this thing without falling asleep?….. No. it may be that there is some kind of subliminal hypnotic thing going on with his pacing, lighting and camera moves because his films always have a valium type affect on me. Last night I pumped myself with enough caffeine to keep an elephant awake and sat through it……… The picture is tremendous.

8 1-2]

Marcello Mastroianni is Guido, a film director trying to get to grips with his creativity, His many women and the array “guiding” voices that surround him, confusing his work with either simplistic babbling or pretentious over analysis. He slips into many dreams of childhood exposure to sex, religion and his experience of life with dazzling imagery and incredibly staged scenes. This is truly filmmaker’s film. I found myself rewinding scenes, playing them slow, examining cuts, moves and lighting with intense precision. I can feel a Fellini spell coming on which could blow my admiration gaskets after just coming out of a Josef Von Sternberg marathon. Incredible stuff, seriously, get a hold of it, you WON’T be disappointed.

I have to show a scene and what better than a big old slice of Saraghina. The only shame about this clip is you don’t see the horrific dressing down Guido suffers after satisfying his boyish curiosity. The priests are not as harsh as his Mother who comes close to disowning the boy. And what about Saraghina herself?? What a woman!! There she is just hanging about the beach doing the rumba for anyone who happens to be carrying some change. She reminds me of an ex I once had, the only difference is she’d rumba for free.

I’d love to post some more of this film as there’s so much great stuff. I don’t have the time so we’re on Youtube existing stock tonight folks, do enjoy though…….

Gone Shooting

Today sees the first day of principle photography on my new film THE THREE TENNERS. I’m half an hour away from “leaving the house” time so, having checked, rechecked, then rechecked again, equipment, actors and crew, I thought I’d calm the old brain down by firing up a post.


Last night I took at the 1967 “freak out” movie THE TRIP for some low budget inspiration and Roger Corman, true to form, didn’t dissapoint. Peter Fonda plays Paul Groves, a television commercial director who, following a split with his wife, enlists the help of a friend to guide him through the kaleidoscope of confusion and weirdness that is your average LSD experience. I’d write more about it as it’s interesting stuff but my pc has dragged its heels and now I’m off to shoot a picture.

Here’s the trailer, you can watch the whole thing on Youtube right now!

For Every Up……..

Filmmaking is the last refuge of the bi-polar insomniac.

The day before last I lost a location, yesterday I secured one, not the location I’d lost but an important location all the same. Today I’m going to try and secure another location (not the original one I’d lost but equally important) as well as going to see a guy about an alternative location to replace the one lost the day before yesterday……..

I got drunk yesterday after saying I was forever off the booze. It was only to celebrate getting the location……. it is a pub after all.

Next time I’m getting a producer, this is too much.


…………. You’re wrong Matt, It’s a great picture.


11 Days and Counting

The blog has taken a back seat of late as I’m in crazy pre production preparation for my upcoming film THE THREE TENNERS which starts shooting in 11 DAYS!!!

The loacations are almost locked, the cast is almost….. well….. cast, the crew are on board and ready to go. This is the most involved and complex picture I’ve attempted by far so everthing is crossed for its wellbeing.

Progress updates and posts about good movies to follow real soon!