|The Louise Log: A Web Comedy Series|
Guest post written by Anne Flournoy.
Back in the early 90’s when making an indie feature film was the standard NY indie filmmaker route to a career as a writer/director, I got bogged down for more than a decade in rewriting my second feature. Hey, my first one had been in competition at Sundance, how could this be so hard? Seventeen years later, I gave up, picked up a camcorder and started shooting something, anything.
Six months later and less than a week away from my sixth attempt at a self-imposed deadline, the ‘something, anything’ subject matter, even with a heart-breaking Enrico Caruso soundtrack, was long and boring at 80 seconds.
Anyone who knows anything about screenwriting will tell you to avoid voice-overs. It’s a last resort to be used sparingly and only by people who know what they’re doing. I’d heard Godard’s whispered voice-over in 2 or 3 Things I Know About Her and had been browbeating friends to use it for years. What a great device! No one is doing this!
Up against my deadline, I was down to my last resort: over this long and boring 80-second video I’d whisper what Louise was thinking.
Stealing wholesale from my 3-page free-writing scribbles, I started whispering into my Macbook. I called it The Louise Log. A month later, due to popular demand for more of actor Christine Cook, it was followed by The Louise Log #2. Today there are 34 episodes available at http://thelouiselog.com and we’re crowdfunding on Seed&Spark to shoot Season 3. After five long years under the radar, BuzzFeed recently compared the series favorably to Louie and Curb Your Enthusiasm, and it was a 2013 Finalist in the Shorty Awards.
So what’s it about? As one of my kids summed it up, “Louise has issues.” Yes, she has a high-maintenance husband, and a lot of other very difficult characters in her life, but it’s her over-active inner voice that is her biggest problem. It’s also her salvation.
And it turns out to be the core of the series.
|Louise and Raj in episode 13|
When I was growing up, Bitch Flicks would have meant porn or something so redneck and gross that if I ever mentioned it, it would have been in a whisper to a friend. The gap between what I was raised to be (a young lady who was careful to keep her knees together when sitting in a dress) and the leather bomber jacket-wearing indie filmmaker I became, caused a certain tension. That tension is the essence of Louise’s inner voice.
Her eidetic image of what a real woman is is at the core of who Louise is, and it causes her a lot of problems. A ‘real woman’ is someone who could have lunch with the Queen of England and have, not only a grasp of which fork to use, but also a sense of self sufficiency to carry on in sort of a peer relationship with the Queen. Marlene Dietrich plays the role to a T. Louise, on the other hand, falls far short. Not that she doesn’t wear a good mask and appear to carry it off some of the time, but we know what she’s really going through–the self-criticism, the expectations, the dashed hopes, the paranoid rape fantasies.
I flatter myself to think that Louise is a lot more neurotic than I am, but the truth is that her inner-thought loop is closer to home than I’d like to admit.
Watch “How To Take It Like A Girl: The Louise Log #4”