There is a lot of focus on horror movies which inspire what I do with Autumns Eyes, but there are plenty of films from other genres which can have just as strong an impact on my creativity. With song writing, I always tend to look in the opposite direction when it comes to sparking an idea. The same formula applies to visual inspiration, and often times a movie you’d never expect to influence a heavy metal band, will do so in a way horror movies could never come close to. These are just a few movies I can always reference for inspiration during a strong case of writers block.
The Virgin Suicides
I remember watching this with a friend, and after the film ended they asked what the purpose of this movie was. The question threw me off guard at the time, but my answer should have been that not all films have such a straight and narrow purpose behind them. Granted its a horribly depressing story, but the way everything here is crafted from the set design to the music is nothing short of brilliant. When everything falls perfectly into place like that, it provides a seamless transition for the viewer to feel like they are part of the story.
No Country For Old Men
The one aspect I took away from this movie was silence. Its a perfect example of how taking something away can add so much more in the overall scheme of things. Plenty of films feature a sadistic killer who’s hellbent on revenge, but the killer in this movie is much more unique and believable. His oddly shaped haircut, his denim wardrobe, and his disgustingly effective weapon are three unforgettable traits that stick with you long after the movie is over. Not a slew of one-liners or an abundance of quick cut action scenes. The use of silence in the dialogue is also matched in the vast baron landscapes which surround the characters. Yet another detail which makes this film stand on its own, and even sets itself apart from having a specific genre tagged to it.
It took a lot of guts to make a film like this, especially in a time when comic book movies were straying so far from the original source material. Movies like X-Men were afraid to have their characters dress exactly how they were in the comics in fear of them looking horribly silly. Sin City went the opposite direction, and embraced the look which made the series so notable in the first place. Not only did they create similar characters with the actors they cast, but also in the set direction and shooting the picture in black and white. Bold decisions like that will always garner respect, and always serve as inspiration to those who choose to take the fearless route when it comes to creativity.
Hollywood is notorious for churning out repetitive nonsense every year with an abundance of remakes and ideas we have all seen before. Inception was a game changer not only with its unique story, but even the trailer which started the awful trend of other movie previews using the loud “BRAAAAAAMMMM” sound. Whats even more inspiring here is director Christopher Nolan’s decision to use practical effects for the majority of such a visually striking movie. Many filmmakers and studios would opt for using computers since they are cheaper and faster, but digital effects will never compare to the real thing. Which is why the hallway fight scene remains one of the best visual effects we’ve ever seen.
The NeverEnding Story
This is one of the first movies I remember watching as a kid, and while it surely scared the living shit out of me in some parts, I believe its easy to say this movie was the reason I opted to show interest towards the darker side of life. There were a lot of fantasy based movies during the eighties, but NeverEnding Story was the one film I often wished would come true. So many nights were spent hidden under a blanket with a flashlight reading fictional stories till my eyes could barely stay open. To see that same scenario unfold on screen, and have those stories come to life, was simply awe inspiring.
There are a few memories in our childhood that stick out as life changing moments, and Tim Burtons Batman was without question the most notable in my youth. I had always been a fan of the character in comic books, but never imagined he would be visualized with such brutal honesty until I saw the first trailer for this movie. Soon after, there would be multiple trips to the theater so I could study this fascinating person. He was psychotic enough to embrace darkness and run towards it, rather than fear it and run away as most of us would. Thats the main inspiration I found in the movie, not just the cool visuals, but the fact that someone opened up my brain and told me its okay to embrace what scares you.