Sunday, June 12, 2016


This blog is now in its sixth year and I humbly appreciate all those who follow faithfully. There are many opining about the movie industry online, but here at The Establishing Shot the attempt is to not be just another voice in the wilderness. Rather, I truly try to blog about movies from atypical perspectives. I hope those of you reading my posts agree with such an assessment.

I have written more standard types of critiques about the movie industry elsewhere, namely in my weekly film reviews for the Examiner online. I'm in my fifth year writing for them, covering general cinema, as well as a concentration on the horror genre. And, as many of you know, I'm also a budding screenwriter. (My day job is in advertising where I've been working as a creative director for many years.) Speaking of an industry that's all about selling, I've gotten close to a few sales with some of the 10 scripts I've penned, and I continue to have faith that one of these days something will go before the cameras. Right now however, I'm an observer who's hoping to get into the game.  

It is that intersection of blog, Examiner reviews, and screenwriting (I've figured in the finals of 51 screenwriting contests in five years, and counting) that has attracted the attention of the powers that be who are running the International Screenwriters Association online. I'm a member of that prestigious group and last November they asked me to host a movie review program for them that they had in mind. Their desire was to showcase two members discussing a movie that had just opened from a screenwriter's perspective. I accepted their offer to host, and even came up with the name for it - PAGE 2 SCREEN. And I'm proud to say that we've been doing the show for over 7 months now, and we've just posted our 25th podcast, with many more to come. I wanted you to know about all this because I think you'll really enjoy the informative chats. 

Since launching in December, I've had the opportunity to talk to a lot of different writers as my guests, some who've even made movies. Most though are like me and are waiting for their "big break" from Hollywood. We see a lot of movies and are paying close attention to them, figuring out what works, what doesn't, and what is selling. It's been a ton of fun getting to know these talented writers I have the privilege to talk to, and I've enjoyed hearing their unique takes on all the various movies that have come out these past months. We've analyzed the good, the bad, and sometimes the ugly. But even when the films have been quite awful, we've examine them judiciously and with a mature eye. We're never been snarky for the sake of being snarky. Instead, bad movies are mournful if anything. They are cinematic opportunities that have been waylaid by misjudgments that hopefully the industry, and our listeners, can learn from. 

Each episode lasts between 30-40 minutes, and we rigorously dive into the weeds, but in a way that movie buffs will appreciate. As the saying goes, "If it ain't on the page, it ain't on the stage." That's where each review of PAGE 2 SCREEN starts. What is the story the filmmakers are trying to tell? And were they successful at it? That is really the only criteria I have as a film fan, critic and podcaster.

You can listen to all the podcasts of PAGE 2 SCREEN, and download them as well, for free on the site and at iTunes. We've reviewed everything from Oscar contenders like CAROL to tentpole hits like CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR to arthouse horror like THE WITCH. My guests never fail to surprise me with their passion for the medium, their clever insights into the writing, and their ability to say very witty things that make me guffaw. I hope you'll take a listen to what we're up to and see for yourself how educational and entertaining our podcasts are.  

You can subscribe to them both at and at iTunes if you'd like to get alerts about the latest one popping up. You can do that here too, as well as with my reviews on the Examiner. Love those following loyally and avidly, so please do. And please, if you have some thoughts about what I've written, do leave a comment below. I read and reply to all of them.

Movies are such a great pastime, allowing us to escape the normal daily existence and visit a whole new world up there on the big screen. Whether it be an action/adventure, drama, comedy or thriller, it's the best  ride going, and the cheapest. Moviegoing is also communal, incredibly social, and you never know what will happen when those lights in the theater go down. That's why people like me invest so much in the film industry. It's fun, and we could all use a little more of that in our lives, couldn't we? If you agree, I know you'll enjoy PAGE 2 SCREEN.  

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