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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 6 December 2014
SATURDAY 6 DECEMBER 2014 13 until I had the idea of a manifesto," he says. Done on a shoestring budget, the film also sees Pakis take on the lead role, which garnered him a best actor award in 2013. "I find it quite easy to write, direct and star in my own film if I am well prepared," he says, "The two narrative features I have made took me between three to six years to write, so when it got to being on set, clicking in and out of the characters was easy because I was so familiar with them." The Joe Manifesto explicitly states that sometimes one may need to hit rock bottom before they can really grow. One must strip themselves of many layers of their social identity, then put themselves back together in a more integrated way that possibly incorporates some of their darker inclinations, but perhaps in a more balanced way. "For me, The Joe Manifesto is about what can happen if someone consciously decides to express the repressed," he says. "Of course this decision would do the obvious damage, but could they learn anything from it? Could their life benefit from it? Could this so called ‘negative behaviour’ also affect people they know in positive ways?" The one major topic that instigated criticism is the way Pakis chose to portray women, yet the film seems to be more about how Joe subconsciously sees women, as the film is from Joe's subconscious point of view. "Joe is an early 30s middle class conformist male, and if anyone knows anything about the male psyche, there is the sometimes suppressed sexual desire for women," Pakis explains. "The film is about many dark urges and sexual impulses that males and females cover up, so the film is focusing on some dark uncomfortable issues r and monogamy, but to say this is the way the film, or we as filmmakers see women per se, would be inac The female lead, Vee (Chloe Gardner), r the unconscious. She is impulsive and unr When Joe meets someone like Vee, something is bound to happen. Joe's fiancée Marg (Fiona Macys-Marzo) represents the conscious, in that she is part of the conventional and order of Joe's life. She is the ideal token wife, so to speak - good-willed, genuine, and provides a secure base for Joe. Some of the females at Joe's work are also given to sexual temptation, and become embroiled in Joe's exploits into the unc "It all comes down to 'how honest c really be in life?'," Pakis concludes. While the portrayal of women might have its critics, the film does touch on very universal topics. "Why do we enjoy seeing characters do these so-c 'bad things'? Is there ultimately something right about so-called ‘negative behaviour’? The Joe Manifesto explores what is possibly right about wrong behaviour," Pakis muses. For Pakis, the film is different because at the end, the main character is mostly unrepentant. He walked a path into darkness, as it gave him the opportunity to learn something about himself. In similar films such as Fatal Attraction (1989) or American Beauty (1999), the protagonist is punished at the end of the film with death or is remorseful that he did the 'wrong thing'. Pakis finds this to be very contradictory as the film enjoyed the entertainment value of watching the character doing these darker things. The film had some stumbling blocks to overcome, mostly thanks to the limited budget. Post production was done at a snail's pace, relying partly on the favours and time of others but it was also about taking the time to do it right, so to speak, so everyone was very happy with the results they achieved with their editor, Alister Robbie. "Technically it would be a low/no budget film in that it was made for $50,000, but if you added up the value of all the favours, discounted gear, free locations we were able to wrangle, it would probably be a $500,000 film," Pakis explains. The Joe Manifesto will screen at The Dan O'Connell, 225 Canning St, Carlton on Sunday 7 December at 1.00 pm. Screenings are also scheduled for Monday 8 December at 7.30 pm, Sunday 14 December 1.00 pm and Monday 15 December at 7.30 pm. To view the trailer and find out more information about the screenings visit www. thejoemanifesto.com There is also a VOD (VIDEOON-DEMAND) release of the film on www.amazon.com Gregory Pakis shot by Michael Oulton on set. Vee (Chloe Gardner) and Joe (Gregory Pakis). A still from the film, shot by Maria Poletti.
29 November 2014
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