Hello Mr. Longley-
I too have found your work profoundly inspirational. I have finally obtained my DVX 100b and have several documentaries ready to be actualized, as it were.
In fact you were a key reason why I joined this group about a year ago. Somehow I learned you were in it.
I wanted to commend you for one aspect of your work which I have not seen publicly acknowledged.
That is the fantastic music that you score for your films. As if it were not enough to do so much fantastic solo work on courageous topics, when I learned you did the music as well, that just took the cake!
I have a few questions. Do you ever shoot footage with a particular tune or tone piece in mind? The syncopation of your edits goes so well with your music. It seems likely that you score the music last, but I wondered if you ever made the visual image fit the music, a la Fantasia.
I'd even be interested in conducting an interview with you on this subject for a good magazine. I'm confident that this topic and aspect of your work has not been adequately explored by others and it would help to justifiably broaden your brand. I put you right up there with Vertov, Bunuel and Kurosawa (whom I have totally immersed myself in pending acquisition of the DVX 100b).
I imagine Russian film school must have really been amazing. Since I learned of your attendance there, I decided to immerse myself in a fair amount of Russian montage and I remain stupefied and in awe of Vertov, especially The Man With the Movie Camera.
I've been meaning to ask you, do you know any way how I might obtain a DVD of Vertov's "A Sixth of the World" or "A History of the Revolution"? These seem like essential items for me to study, especially the former. It's been a pretty solitary journey for me, everyone has been very nice, but nobody seems to know much about Vertov (or Kurosawa for that matter). Perhaps I am in the wrong circles.
I picked up a copy of Constructivism in Film by Vlada Petric (50 bucks!) and it was a revelation for me. As you probably know, this contains a frame by frame analysis of Man With the Movie Camera. Incredible.
I eagerly await your next film and hope that some day you feel my films are worth watching. I'm an extremely serious student. My motto is "Film that Matters, Films that Matter".
My first film will be complete by August 2009. The way things are flowing it seems likely it will be televised on HBO or The Documentary Channel or some such. I have some very good momentum established.