Lights, camera, action! We have an exciting film to discuss today that will surely tug at your heartstrings and leave you pondering the complexities of family dynamics. "Going to Roost," directed by the talented filmmaker Matt Jacobs, is a captivating short film that delves into the generational communication between a father and his son. This quiet coming-of-age drama beautifully showcases the contrasting interests and passions of two individuals, exploring the depths of their relationship.
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MEET THE DIRECTOR
Drawing inspiration from his personal journey as a filmmaker, Matt Jacobs masterfully weaves a semi-autobiographical tale that reflects his own experiences with his father. The film depicts their differing interests, with Matt gravitating towards the artistic and creative realm, while his dad finds solace in the great outdoors, particularly hunting and fishing.
As Matt puts it:
"He would much rather be sitting in the woods, hunting in silence, while I would prefer to be playing with my camera – and that's essentially what the film is about."
The story behind the story of "Going to Roost" is as intriguing as the film itself. Originally conceived for a college film project, this remarkable short quickly outgrew its initial scope. Matt's directing professor, Pearl Gluck, challenged him to create a three-minute "super short" with no dialogue. Embracing the opportunity to explore the father-son relationship, Matt chose hunting as the perfect backdrop for a story devoid of words.
The decision to cast a child actor, Nathan Pencek, and an adult actor, Mike Waldhier, added another layer of complexity to the project, challenging Matt to work with different age groups. Additionally, filming entirely outdoors added an element of unpredictability to the shoot, with weather and lighting playing crucial roles in capturing the desired atmosphere.
Behind every great film is a dedicated team, and "Going to Roost" is no exception. Matt assembled a brilliant group of filmmakers to bring his vision to life. Zeke Winitsky, the assistant director, played a crucial role in supporting Matt's directorial vision. Jiuze "George" Liu, the boom operator and sound designer, ensured the audio elements were pristine. Mason Keeler's musical score added depth and emotion to the film, while Pablo Lopez, the producer from Dark Mind Productions, brought invaluable expertise to the project.
Despite the challenges inherent in filmmaking, Matt fondly recalls some memorable and fun moments on set. Working with Nathan, the young actor portraying the son, was an absolute joy. It was Nathan's first acting project, and Matt was determined to create a comfortable and encouraging environment for him.
Spending time to build a rapport with the cast and crew, Matt made sure everyone felt at ease. And when the camera started rolling, Nathan's acting abilities stunned the entire team. As a promise made earlier in the day, Matt took Nathan on his first-ever four-wheeler ride after wrapping up the shoot—an unforgettable experience for the budding actor.
Crafting the unique visual style and atmosphere of "Going to Roost" was no small feat. Matt's upbringing in a house surrounded by open land provided an unexpected canvas for his artistic endeavors. Contrary to his younger belief that he needed to move to a city for artistic inspiration, Matt discovered the stunning beauty of his own backyard. The wide shots used in the film served to anchor the characters in the vast and serene world Matt had created.
Like any production, "Going to Roost" encountered its fair share of challenges and mishaps. Filming scenes depicting the passage of time within a single shoot proved to be demanding. As the evening scenes were captured, the sun had already set, necessitating additional lighting to maintain the desired visual quality. Moreover the filmmaking process itself was an arduous journey. Matt emphasizes the famous saying,
"You're never done working on your film."
From start to finish, this five-minute short took months of dedication, including multiple exports and collaborations for color grading, sound design, visual effects, and scoring. The final result stands as a testament to the unwavering commitment and passion poured into every frame.
So, what keeps Matt motivated and passionate about storytelling in the ever-evolving world of filmmaking? The answer lies in his artistic soul. As an artist, he finds inspiration in the ability to create something that touches people emotionally. The profound impact that storytelling can have on individuals is a constant source of inspiration, driving Matt to continue exploring the depths of human experiences through his craft.
With "Going to Roost" now making waves, we can't help but wonder about Matt's future endeavors. Currently focused on promoting his recent short film and another college final project called "Astroweb", Matt envisions himself writing and shooting another personal drama in the near future. Additionally, he's intrigued by the idea of venturing into the horror genre, showcasing his versatility as a filmmaker.
Like any passionate filmmaker, Matt has been influenced by an array of directors, films, and movements throughout his artistic journey. Ang Lee's directorial style, Quentin Tarantino's cinematography, and Stanley Kubrick's visual aesthetics have all left a profound impact on his approach to storytelling. Drawing inspiration from these masters, Matt incorporates their techniques and sensibilities into his own work, allowing his unique voice to shine through.
THE MESSAGE FOR THE AUDIENCE
Ultimately, what message does Matt hope the audience takes away from "Going to Roost"? His desire is for viewers to accept their friends and family for who they are, embracing the differences that make each person unique. Love and understanding are at the heart of the film, transcending the challenges and conflicts that may arise within relationships. By immersing themselves in the story of this father and son, Matt hopes that audiences will be moved and reminded of the importance of cherishing those we hold dear.
"Going to Roost" is a labor of love—a personal journey transformed into a compelling and introspective film. Matt Jacobs' dedication, combined with the talents of his incredible team, has given birth to a truly captivating piece of cinema. As the credits roll and the lights dim, we are left contemplating the intricacies of familial connections and the unbreakable bonds that endure despite our differences.
So, grab some popcorn, settle into your favorite chair, and prepare to be transported into the world of "Going to Roost." Join Matt Jacobs on this emotional rollercoaster ride as he invites you to experience the power of generational communication, the beauty of contrasting passions, and the enduring love between a father and his son. Get ready for an unforgettable cinematic experience that will leave you pondering the depths of human connection long after the credits have rolled.
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