I have never watched a movie, short film or clip that did not entertain me on some level. Either I lock onto a particular actor or actress and study their performance (or their physique), or I let the art direction and cinematography wash over me, or I become absorbed in the plot or a character arc.
Most often though, I try to put myself into the mind of the filmmaker. I try to see the world as he (or she) sees it, or atleast how they choose to express it via the options available to them at the time. Ultimately, that is what a restricted budget does… it limits your options. You can either accept those limitations and aim low… or you can fight them every step of the way and try to tell the story that you want to tell, in any way that you can tell it.
Can you guess which approach we value most?
It’s easy to pan Roger Corman’s 1994 Fantastic Four movie… but give it a second look and try to put yourself into the mindset of a cast and crew working with a $1.4 million budget trying to tell a $40 million story. There is some serious passion and heart at work here and you can see everyone in front of and behind the camera doing the best that they possibly can to turn this dream into a reality.
Roger Corman’s Fantastic Four was never (and likely will never be) released, but it is rumored to be the bestselling bootleg DVD of all time. Check it out and enjoy a Poser CGI Human Torch, The Thing by way of Toxic Avenger, Mr. Fantastic with hydraulic arms, Rebecca Staab in spandex (hot!… and looking more like Sue Storm than Jessica Alba ever could) and a Dr. Doom with more majesty and manace than anything Fox would later provide in the 2005 Fantastic Four film or the 2007 sequel Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.