RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARCHIVE: Portland Exposé (Harold Schuster, 1957)

This week, continuing in the Noirvember theme, our world takes on a distinctly darker tone and embraces illegal pinball machines the corrupted Portland that found its way into hearing rooms in D.C. before the likes of  J. Edgar Hoover and Bobby Kennedy (under the aegis of the McClellan Committee). This is decades before The Polybius Conspiracy took hold of the local gaming world and with much more visceral and evil intents. Raider/Contributor Phil Oppenheim takes us behind the dark and dirty veil of Portland Exposé.

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“Paint Your Wagon” and Its Place in Oregon’s Cinematic History

On Thursday, Nov. 16, Oregon Film, Kickass Oregon History, the Baker Heritage Museum and the Hollywood Theatre screen PAINT YOUR WAGON (1969), one of the most spectacular movies in Oregon’s long, rich, and varied film history.  

As the story goes – Gov. McCall appointed Warren Merrill, Oregon Film’s first director, in 1968 specifically to ensure that the permitting and transportation process for the Paramount feature shooting in Baker County went as smoothly as possible. This means as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the production of the film, we also celebrate 50 years of the Oregon Film Office.

To help better contextualize this, Oregon Confluence sat down, by email, with Anne Richardson of Oregon Cartoon Institute/Oregon Movies, A to Z, to talk a bit about the place PAINT YOUR WAGON has in film history.

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“Chasing Grace”: A New Docu-Series About Women In Tech, Filming In Portland

U of O grad, and reTHINKit Founder, Jennifer Cloer, is shooting part one of her docu-series, “Chasing Grace” in Portland this week, and took some time out from filming to talk to the Portland Business Journal  .

The Chasing Grace Project, is a six-part documentary series “that brings together a community that is creating change for women in tech – – right now” and is an initiative to give a voice to women in tech and to keep the conversation going as a way to create change.

Check them out. #OregonMade

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Kickass Oregon History Takes on “Paint Your Wagon” Turning 50

Earlier this year KAOH‘s Doug Kenck-Crispen came to us and said “we need to do something on ‘Paint Your Wagon’,” and we said “heck ya, Pardner!” Then, in August and October we made separate trips out over rough roads into the wilds of the Eagle Cap Wilderness to find what remains of the shooting location for the 1968 production which built not one but two No Name cities. KAOH went even deeper, camping on site, digging into the location remnants, the people, the history, the stories and the amazing scenery about 30 miles outside of Baker City and the result is this podcast and the upcoming screening of “Paint Your Wagon” at the Hollywood Theatre on November 16 with all proceeds going to the Baker Heritage Museum who have a great PYW exhibit all of their own in Baker City.

Legend has it that Oregon Film was formed by Gov. McCall (with the help of Warren Merrill) around the needs and aspirations of PYW, and so we’ll be celebrating our own 50th anniversary next year as well. We thank our partners at KAOH, The Hollywood Theatre and the Baker Heritage Museum for helping us kick off our 50th and we hope you not only get some fascinating insights from KAOH but also join us at The Hollywood on the 16th where you’ll have a chance to win a Weekend in Baker City courtesy of our partners there: Blue Door Inn, Sweet Wife Baking, Lone Pine Cafe, Bella and the We Like ’em Short Film Festival. If you’ve been to Baker City, you’ll know why we’re excited about this prize, but, if you haven’t, this may be just the excuse to go there.

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RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARCHIVE: The Darkest Corner of Paradise (Henry Weintraub, 2010)

This week our intrepid Raider moves us into Noirvember and coins another term for calendar-based genre. This time we embrace true micro-budget filmmaking and the creative genius of necessity coming out of Eugene. Oregon’s cinematic history is long but its Eugene chapter is deep and varied – Five Easy Pieces, Animal House and, with the Kesey Connection, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Sometimes a Great Notion happening not too far afield.

This time Raider/Contributor Phil Oppenheim takes us into the more opaque nooks and crannies with….

It’s dark outside.  With the end of Daylight Saving Time and the coming of fall, Oregon’s nights are finally getting longer and colder; we’re turning up our collars and bracing ourselves against the wind, steeling ourselves against streets that seem to be getting darker, colder, and lonelier by the hour.  It’s a perfect time to celebrate film noir, those films that turn towards the dark streets and darker motives of people flung against each other in cities and small towns.  We’ll be celebrating Noirvember all month long here at Raiders of the Lost Archive; today we’re daring to peek into The Darkest Corner of Paradise, a microbudgeted neo-noir created by Eugene’s Henry Weintraub.  Read More »

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Spotlight On Location Scout – Brian McElroy

“A Haunting At Silver Falls 2” at Linfield College (photo: Brian McElroy)

Brian McElroy has been working in location management for over two decades and has had an interesting career path that ultimately led him to Oregon.  We caught up with him after he had finished working on “Woodstock or Bust” – an indy film written and directed by Leslie Bloom, a Lake Oswego native.

Brian started in location management in LA where he worked on shows like “Beverly Hills 90210” and “Melrose Place”.  Twenty years ago, he left the film and TV business completely and found steady work as an engineer in New York but after his first trip to Oregon on vacation, he made a family decision to make a permanent move and now calls West Linn home.  Things have come full circle as now Brian is back scouting for movies that he says have,  “really helped me learn my way around this state, same way I once learned Los Angeles when I was fresh out of college and new to that town in the early 1990s.”  Brian says he enjoys location managing the most when he is, “educating the public about film activity. Here in Oregon, I find there is a lot of excitement and anticipation, and I enjoy teaching and translating what the filming days will be like. People want to ask questions and understand what impact a production may create. If the job is done right, I’ve already gone over these things in a production meeting and explained the same to a film permit office, and maybe to police, traffic or fire departments, etc., so that nothing is coming out of left field. Location managing is 99% prepping–preparing. The key is to be very honest but to stay positive. I never sugarcoat what can be a very intrusive process.” Some of Brian’s favorite and most welcoming locations from recent work have been Silver Falls State Park and Conference Center, Maupin, Estacada, Warm Springs, and West Linn’s city parks.”

When Brian is not scouting he assists the NBA at some Trailblazers games, and is a West Linn track and youth baseball coach. He lives with his wife in West Linn with their four children. Welcome, Brian!

For more information, contact Brian directly,or at 845-240-2366.

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Film Workshop Seeking Teachers

The Menucha Retreat and Conference Center is a non-profit organization which hosts adult retreats, workshops, and conferences. It is located approximately 20 miles outside Portland, Oregon in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge. This particular workshop will be an intense one-week course in TV/film production.  We are looking for professionals who have TV/film credits in their particular field of expertise.  We currently have an instructor for directing TV/film, and a writing instructor, and are looking for an acting instructor, a DP to teach TV/film camerawork, and an editing instructor. We would like working professionals, or retired professionals who must be willing to commit to the week of July 1-6, 2018. Instructors will receive a stipend, room and board, and a travel allowance.  The course will be limited to 35-40 students.

More specific information about Menucha Center can be found here.

You can respond at:   [email protected]

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OMPA Members in Focus: The Benefits of Alicia J. Rose


Introducing Oregon Media Production Association’s

first series: Members in Focus.

The Oregon Media Production Association is a 35 year old non-profit, which boasts a collective of Oregon’s finest in film and television. We are a unique group made up of producers and directors, grips, set designers, cinematographers, make-up artists and so much more. We work to perfect our craft and contribute our expertise to elevate the film and media industry on productions both large and small within the borders of beautiful Oregon.

The OMPA Members in Focus series seeks to demonstrate the above and more, one member at a time. Our first episode features director, producer and all-star content creator Alicia J. Rose. In this episode, she discusses and demonstrates her spectrum of talent as both musician and creative in between personal stories of how and why she got into filmmaking.  Read More »

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Raiders of the Lost Archive: Movie Madness – SAVED! But there’s more work to be done …

This week we go to the most local, most extensive VHS/DVD archive we have (although if you ever have a chance to look into the film and video archives that the Oregon Historical Society has, that’s just as great, but in a uniquely different way) – Portland’s own Movie Madness. As some of you may know, The Hollywood Theatre is currently in the midst of a Kickstarter Campaign to “save” Movie Madness – but they’ve blown past the “saving” and are now looking to “enhance.” This is good news and Raider/Contributor Phil Oppenheim has a chance to sit down a speak with Movie Madness founder Mike Clark and Hollywood Theatre Head Programmer Dan Halsted.

Thanks to the good will and deep-pocketed generosity of more than four thousand movie lovers, Movie Madness, Portland’s legendary video store, is safe.  As the Confluence reported on October 12, the Hollywood Theatre — Portland’s historic, community-centered non-profit movie palace — had campaigned with Movie Madness’s owner, Mike Clark, to buy the store out and welcome it under its marquee, with the assistance of funds raised via its Kickstarter crowd-sourcing.  The fund drive was a huge success, with “Save Movie Madness” easily blowing past its aggressive $250,000 goal.  Fans’ enthusiasm proved to be so strong that the drive has set itself a new stretch goal: if the theatre and video store can raise another $100,000 by November 10, it will build a new Screening Room within Movie Madness, combining the Hollywood’s curatorial genius with the vast library of DVDs and VHSs, creating a vibrant space for Portland’s film-loving community.

The Confluence recently caught up with Clark and Dan Halsted, Head Film Programmer at the Hollywood, to talk about the fund drive’s success and the joint-venture’s plans for the future.  Read More »

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#OregonMade “Brown’s Canyon” To World Premiere At Portland Film Fest

BROWN’S CANYON – Official Trailer

A group of friends, a mudslide, and a tainted bowl of chili. What could possibly go wrong? Find out this Friday at 6:30pm when Brown’s Canyon, the new indie drama from director John Helde, makes its world premiere at the 2017 Portland Film Festival.More information, trailer, and advance tickets available.

In this smart comedy-drama, two life coaches head into the Utah wilderness to launch a women’s mindfulness retreat, only to have their own lives unravel over one awkward weekend.

BROWN’S CANYON was made in an unusual, improvisational fashion: director John Helde developed the script collaboratively with the cast, developing the characters over several months.

Says director John Helde, “We started not with a script, but with the actors. Through several months of improvisation work, I work with the cast to create first their characters, and then the content of story that forms the shooting script. I love this process because it gives me the opportunity to work with the cast for a much longer period than usual, and because it brings the energy and spontaneity of multiple creative minds to the story.”

Don’t miss the World Premiere this Friday at the Portland Film Festival! Director John Helde and producers/actors Lisa Every and Jenn Ruzumna will be in attendance. The Portland Film Festival takes place Oct 30 – Nov 5.

Screening November 3 at 6:30pm
Laurelhurst Theater
2735 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214

Watch the trailer!

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