Near the end of the short film's production, I finally regretted the decision to make it.
We humans can be so afraid of being wrong that, even when we make an initial wrong decision, we stand by it in order to somehow prove, by certain results, that we made the right decision after all. But living under sovereign justice, we simply can't expect to avoid reaping what we sow.
The workload drained me and left me for dead. I didn't have the time or mind to do anything for the fellowship to try and tie up some loose ends for the end of this year. I began to backslide. Bye bye Bible reading and prayer. I became obsessed with success, I wanted so bad for this to work out.
Thank God it didn't. In the end, I didn't really like my own production. Sure, there are things about it I'm satisfied with, but as a whole it did not achieve the standard I hoped for it to achieve. And in the end, I'm reminded of how liberating it is to not fall in love with my own filthy rags.
Wanting to believe that I've overcome my questions regarding how I am to pursue such a vocation with a right Christian attitude, I did not allow my conscience's warnings about my attitude to bother me, which is kind of ironic since the protagonist in my short film also ignored his voice of conscience and fell into a worse form of worldly pursuit. It's the notion that since I've struggled about this, I probably have a correct mindset now when making films. But I still fell prey to my pride.
It was certainly rigorous training for my writing skill. I'm quite upset about the dialogue, but I can't change it anymore. But I've learned a couple of tricks to keep a smooth flow of theme throughout a film, so that's a gain right there. And, as usual, after writing a script, I'm once again repeatedly inspired by things around me to write. There is so much I can write about. So many perspectives and themes from which we can explore the truths of God.
The completed short film differs dramatically from its initial inspiration. Originally, I planned to make a short film stylistically titled "#Deconstruction #In #Progress", using the hashtag as a symbol of postmodern disintegration of ideas. The original idea was to make a loosely structured story, where the life of the protagonist is depicted the way he sees it, in bits and pieces and moments, and the protagonist slowly realizes the vanity of it all, with the philosophical questions of temporariness (represented by clocks) and self-identity (represented by mirror reflections) bearing down upon him. But, afraid that this is all too centered on the pitiful condition of his life, and wanting to show the root of the problem, which is rebellion against God, I made that a theme.
Perceiving how rock music can be representative the spirit of rebellion in today's age, I first attempted to incorporate Queen's music into the work, but then I decided that the Beatles were a better choice, with seemingly more diversity in their music, and seeing as they are so representative of the counterculture of the 1960s. Contemplating the theme of rebellion caused me to use Nietzsche's philosophy ("God is dead") as an overarching theme, and led me to write the subplot regarding the assassination of the Emperor in the online game. Seeing how the thematic emphasis of the story was altered, I changed the title to "#Absolute #Anarchy".
A character, originally named Robin, was created to symbolize the shame that plagued the life of the protagonist. I later took an interest in naming the characters according to what they symbolized, and so Robin became Aeschylus (the name Aeschylus apparently originated from the Greek word for "shame"). The voice of conscience in the film was named Jeremy (from Jeremiah). I also decided that the protagonist was named Louis ("famous ruler"), and his name only mentioned at the end of the film, to symbolize that he "found his place in the real world".
Although there was the concern that our homeschool center only had five male students, a desire to depict the conflicting passions and insecurities of teenagers gave birth to the character of Lucy, for whom I later had to seek out an ex-student to fill in the role. The character was named Lucy because I hoped to use the song "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", which I thought was very suitable for the film. The name Lucy means "light", thus there's a specific mention of how the devil masquerades as an angel of light, so that Lucy is not seen as representing a positive influence, but one that parallels the role of Snake in the online game.
In the end, I dropped the hashtag reference, because I could not use it frequently enough in the film. I also decided that the title Absolute Anarchy was not representative enough of the film, so it was simply changed to Chroniac & Christ.
Once again, this particular work is heavily influenced by other works of art I've come across around that time. The writing draws upon the allegorical and metaphorical nature of the books Pilgrim's Progress and The Old Man and The Sea, certain unconventional ways of arranging scenes in the movie Pulp Fiction, and the multifaceted nature of the greatest literary masterpiece ever written, the Bible, which mixes thematic and narrative elements in the most perfectly divine way (literally).
During the video editing process, I listened to rock music in order to "get in the mood". After growing tired of repeatedly listening to the Beatles, I listened to Paramore, which was even more rebellious-sounding, and lyrically provided me with more reasons for overthrowing authority. I also listened to electronic music, namely Daft Punk, out of curiosity, and finally understood the sentiment it contained. Their song "Touch" especially inspired me to put more emphasis on the theme of reality with its skeptic/subjectivity philosophical ideas, even causing me to film one extra scene, the nightmare scene, when we were near the end of the filming process.
I chose wrong, but God graciously gave me some gains, and still leads me.
Though it feels really great to make movies, I've decided I need to be more theologically and spiritually rooted before I even begin my next creative work.