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Something in Common

Like Albert Brooks whose movies, “reflect what’s going on in [his head] and preoccupying him,” my first video for COMM261 was also about what was on my mind at the time (Smith 18). Brooks had enough experience with a situation to, “be able to write and do that, so for comedic purposes, [he] takes behavior that [he] might do and squares it. And then you have a performance; you have a movie” (Smith 17). Although my film was a fictional scenario, I based the dialogue on the way I felt during my past romantic and work relationships. I wanted my video to be a statement for myself, which metaphorically showcases the character’s strength and courage to break free from the sources causing his inner rage.


My first video challenged my creative expression. Since my previous video projects were works of nonfiction, blending personal experiences with a fictional scenario made it easier to write, direct, and edit. Brooks mentioned, “I don’t think I could play a character that I didn’t have something in common with” (Smith 18). I tried to draw upon my actor’s personal experiences with similar situations to help articulate my writing and directing style to manifest in the character’s performance. My characters reflected some aspect of myself at one point in life, which may not always be relatable to others. Moving forward, I want to shift my mindset to create videos for an audience, but according to Brooks, “Unless you play something so bizarre and unrealistic, you’re always going to get mixed up with your work, which is just the way it is” (Smith 17).


Brooks also mentions how making films with personal attachment is like “working in a time machine” (Smith 18). By the time I filmed, edited, and watched my video, I had a similar experience to Brooks when he said, “because movies take so long to make, [often] by that time the movie comes out you’ve dealt with that issue already” (Smith 18). I used the scriptwriting process to explain one’s inner transformation. Therefore, when it came time to filming and editing, it became harder to convey the way I wanted the characters to act because I couldn’t channel the same feeling of resentment I had. For me, the writing was a way for me to process, so I can relate to Brooks’ sense of “weirdness” while I watched the video back and not wanting to rehash the emotions I have come to terms with.

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