Movie Magic (A Haiku)

In a darkened room

Images and sounds combine.

Oh, the joys of film!

A screengrab from Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. (C) 2019 Lucasfilm Ltd.

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

13 thoughts on “Movie Magic (A Haiku)

      1. I did not see it before but I saw it now. I think the movie was about an important topic and the dialogue and the movie script was excellent. I have to admit I thought the acting was a bit amateurish. I realize you wrote it and that part I loved.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well, considering that the tone of the movie was supposed to mimic that of a 1970s sitcom (think “All in the Family”), I think the acting was above average, considering that we were constrained with a budget of only $150. Plus, much of it was improvised because (for financial reasons) I could not go to New York City and work on-site with my friends.

        The only scene in the movie I have issues with is when the two guys get into a scuffle. The idea was good, even though I didn’t come up with it. The execution is a bit rough. But…again. We only had $150 in the budget.

        I recommend that, should you decide to do a review, you watch a couple of episodes of “All in the Family” to see what we were trying to go for.


      3. Yes, you are right of course. With $150 you can’t get Rob Reiner, and for the circumstances, you not being there to supervise and the low budget, the actors did a good job. I can definitely easily see the “all in the family” resemblance. In any case, the story line was great and I will certainly write a positive review for it sometime in the near future.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Writing a script that blends humor and social commentary is hard. I did my best to make the conservative father and the liberal son true to their beliefs, but at the same time believable as individuals.

        Fun fact: Because the budget was so low, Adria and Juan froze the burned meat in case they had to redo the shot where Ronnie (Adria) says, “Here’s your dinner.”

        Another fun fact: I wanted to name the movie “Happy Days Are Here Again” (which was FDR’s campaign song either in 1932 or ’36), and the song for the main title. The NYC team tried it that way, but it didn’t work well. Also, the original script gave Ronnie little to do, so the beginning was changed, as was her profession.


      5. It is…challenging.

        The hardest thing, really, is thinking on purely visual terms. You can’t, in a screenplay, rely on “internal dialogue” or any of the other narrative techniques you’ll see either in fiction or non-fiction. You have to focus on what you see and hear, and hope that the actors and director can interpret what you wrote in a way that adds the emotional context.

        Plus, since I have not taken any courses in film appreciation, screenwriting, or film production, I am an autodidact. I do have two good “how-to” books on screenwriting, plus I have a few screenplays from the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises to read and learn from, so it’s not like there’s no way to learn outside of film school.

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    1. I wish I had been able to go to New York and be on location to help with the changes that were made to my original screenplay; Juan and Adria wanted me there, but I didn’t have the money for an airplane ticket or a hotel room, so we had to do the best with what we had. I wish one scene (which is what the muffins were intended for) had been kept as I wrote it; even the director thought it would have been hilarious, but the NYC folks wanted to get the movie done and Juan, who directed, just forgot about that scene.

      It is what it is, right?

      Liked by 2 people

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