October 19, 2004

Rustlin’ Up Respect

Well, we did it again. The National Film Challenge rolled around two weeks ago, so we got the gang together and made another film during a sleepless weekend. It was the usual deal, at 7pm on Friday your team is given a genre, character, line of dialogue, and a prop, all of which must be represented in a 4-8 minute film by the end of the weekend. Just like when we did Dial-a-Spy and Lunch Break, we loaded up on coffee and settled in for a long weekend. Here’s the criteria we drew:

  • Genre - Western or Musical
  • Character - J. Upton, Dog-walker
  • Line of Dialogue - “You caught me at a bad time”.
  • Prop - Map

Yes, the astute among you will notice the NFC has a grand sense of humor and decided to have their way with us and give us Western or Musical again. Sumbitch. In my opinion, out of all the possible genres, this is the shittiest. Not only does the prospect of making a western or a musical usually fall flat with a resounding thud, let alone the prospect of making a SECOND one, but you are cursed with actually obtaining TWO genres. The process of making a film in a weekend is already daunting enough, but I have discovered this to be an extra monkey-wrench in the toolbox. For the second time we spent half the night brainstorming both genres, splitting our efforts, and making the job tougher. When time is that tight, resources are that low, you really can’t rule out any potential ideas right away. Even if you don’t want to make a musical, you still have to consider it. We did consider it… then we chose to do another western. We had already exhausted most of the ideas we had when brainstorming Lunch Break (which was mostly a western in spirit), we decided to take a different angle with this one. Rather than going the narrative route, we decided to make an industrial educational film on sexual harassment, hosted by a cowboy of course!

The filming went pretty smoothly, despite us all being fairly inept with lighting equipment when deprived of our usual lighting man. This film in particular was especially lo-fi, which luckily aided the film’s concept in the form of low production value hilarity (as does using the given character’s occupation as his last name).

For those of you who just can’t wrap your head around work-place etiquette, saddle up with J. Upton Dogwalker and watch Rustlin’ Up Respect.

Commentary (19):

1. RJ Hampden says… oct 19, 2004 | 9:13 am

Man, it’s awesome to see you in a movie. It’s like seeing Tom Waits in a movie. Keep up the great work! Funny [non-western] stuff!

2. Joaquin says… oct 19, 2004 | 10:44 am

It’s great how you kinda dodged the whole western thing!

3. Jason Santa Maria says… oct 19, 2004 | 10:48 am

Yes, for the second time :D

We had decided early on that if we were going to make a real western, we wanted to do it the right way, and at this time we just didn’t have the resources. So, we had to come up with creative ways to be western-esque, or include western elements.

4. Matt Widmann says… oct 19, 2004 | 11:22 am

Awesome movie Jason. I thought the western segments were pretty well done and the dialogue was extremely witty. Music coulda used some work to fit the theme better, but I did like that tune. Very catchy.

All-around, a mighty fine picture you got there.

5. Mike D. says… oct 19, 2004 | 11:27 am

Retardedly spectacular stuff. Where is the NC-17 director’s cut where things go “a little too far”.

Next stop, Cannes.

6. Peter Santa Maria says… oct 19, 2004 | 11:34 am


Too damn funny, the funniest movie you bredstikers have made yet! Rob was perfectly cast as the cowboy host. And the music was great in that sorta PBS late nite improvement video sorta way (Mr. Show did a spoff of that kinda stuff on their show).

Hopefully next time you will get a better topic and break free of this cursed Western / Musical rut. Although, I think you guys COULD do a kick as Musical!

7. Ian says… oct 19, 2004 | 12:16 pm

Those photos make the undisclosed office building look like even more of a cave than it is.
Good for the retinas, bad for the XL1.

8. Terrence Ryan says… oct 19, 2004 | 2:44 pm

Brilliantly ridiculous concept - awesome job.
This had me laughing in my office.

9. Ojt says… oct 20, 2004 | 5:46 am

Haha, that’s real funny :D

Cheered up my day at least. And this happens to be one of those days one should just stay home.

Congrats for that awesome movie and thanks for cheering me up :)

10. wayne says… oct 20, 2004 | 11:55 am

very educational. here’s what i learned from the film: a) every instructional video should be narrated by a cowboy, b) the devils suck, c) no matter how much i want to the opposite to be true, stan is not into guys, d) liz has a price. i almost hope you draw western/musical again—i’d love to see a musical.

11. Rob Weychert says… oct 20, 2004 | 12:03 pm

Well, Wayne, if we get Musical or Western again, I think we really don’t have a choice but to do a musical.

12. sutter says… oct 20, 2004 | 1:42 pm

if we get Musical/Western again the NFC will be murdered. By Me. In LESS than 48 hours.

13. John Whittet says… oct 20, 2004 | 2:42 pm

Very nice, and quite funny. Personally, I didn’t notice and lighting problems caused by your mysteriously absent lighting guy. An amusing look at sexual hee-rassment, and some of the western references were just so off the wall I just had to shake my head and smile. Excellent job, though for NFC’s sake I hope you don’t get western again. Out of curiosity, what are some other categories?

14. Ian says… oct 20, 2004 | 2:46 pm

I’ll spend the rest of the year preparing musical music that has a Western feel. Just in case.

The music will also have an NFC McGuillicuddy is a dead man feel.

15. Jason Santa Maria says… oct 20, 2004 | 3:13 pm

Yes, here is the full list of genres:
- Comedy
- Romance
- Science Fiction
- Spy
- Action/Adventure
- Detective/cop
- Horror
- Mockumentary
- Western or Musical
- Fantasy
- Superhero
- Mystery

(and due to the large volume of participants, the NFC added 3 new genres):
- Coming-of-age Drama
- Buddy Movie
- Black Comedy

So, as you can see, there is a healthy list. We were very optimistic about not getting a repeat genre (Spy, Western or Musical… though spy would have even been more welcome at the time). Regardless, we pulled off a funny film and are all happy about it.

16. mary says… oct 20, 2004 | 3:25 pm

The casio keyboard soundtrack reminded me of 336 songs and ian’s mack on jason made me laugh out loud. That film was awesome.

17. Tim C K says… oct 20, 2004 | 3:57 pm

Now, as a bunch of white guys, what in hell would you do if you drew “black comedy?” Not that you don’t know anyone who could help out, but that would be interesting.

18. Jason Santa Maria says… oct 20, 2004 | 4:00 pm

Well, I think what they are referring to is:

A comedy that uses death and morbid doings as the root of its humor. The plots of these films usually revolve around some grotesque, violent, and taboo subject matter.

…not so much what you are thinking :D

19. Tim C K says… oct 20, 2004 | 5:40 pm

Ah, yes. And now I’ve really put my foot in my mouth.