Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Don't "Suck" Or You'll Be "Kut"...by Jim Terry

Happy Post Oscars!  How many of you have seen the new movie Gravity with Sandra Bullock? Did you like it? What are your thoughts? 

I was amazed to see the use of special effects in the movie but more so…the acting.  I was impressed by the remarkable job Sandra did to convince us that she might NOT make it back to earth and how scary that would have been if you or I were faced with the exact same situation.   How many of us could act out the depth of fear Sandra did while simply sitting in front of a green screen or on the stage that she was on?  To pretend that you are spinning out of control towards the emptiness of space all the while knowing you are safe at Hollywood studios in California…I simply could NOT do it!  

Each and every movie has what I call an "Oscar Moment."  It's the moment within the movie that generally draws the audience more into the movie by facilitating an emotional response from the viewer.  In Gravity, I believe that moment was achieved and tugged at our heartstrings when Sandra or Dr. Stone began to give up hope while on her way to the Chinese Space station named Tiangong.  She started thinking about her deceased daughter and her life back on earth and finally resigns herself to being stranded in space and shuts down the cabin’s oxygen supply in order to take her own life.  Remember the tears that gently started to flow from Sandra’s eyes and became airborne simulating the vacuum of space?  Which got me thinking…how do actors cry spontaneously on command and create that "moment" that may win them that golden statue? 

As I was compiling information on learning how to “cry” on command to further my acting career--"yeah, right"-- I found out that the number one recommendation to help one “cry” is to use a “tear stick.”  How many of you have heard about a “tear stick?”  It literally is something you can buy that contains a form of menthol that you rub underneath your eyes to stimulate the tears ducts to duplicate the act of crying.  Other methods mentioned were to “tap into your memory driven tears”.   Really? Who wants to be sad when you are an Oscar nominee and making millions of dollars?  “Tap into your fears”, “Be in the moment” or "gently splash" some water into your eyes were a couple of other recommendations.  ...I have to laugh at the last recommendation regarding the water in the eyes because I have used this method a couple of times in my life before. I am not one to be too serious so I would "ham up" the "crying" by using this particular method in order to try and get out of a date, a commitment or something else I didn't particularly care to do and create my own "Oscar Moment" very similar to this clip here. ;)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKbZEzDlZZ0 

Doesn’t this “crying” stuff sound like it is just too much work?  …I definitely agree!  So if I am going to be an “actor” I have decided to only act in movies or reality TV that are all about comedy. Laughing is just so much more fun and as the doctor says, “is the best medicine.” 

My advice for today..."know your limitations."  Because while attempting to do a dramatic part like Sandra Bullock did in Gravity, I wouldn’t want the director do come to me and say Jim you “suck" and then proceed to say “kut" to his supporting staff unless it was in the same exact FUN context as this video listed below.  Happy Tuesday and remember to LAUGH.