I have had a breakthrough with my ability to convert my DVDs to files I can manipulate on the laptop
When I first got the laptop, I had some people give me some programs that they thought might work for my simple basic needs
In this case it was a DVD decrypter and an Mpeg streamer
decrypt, then stream, then you get a file in your “videos”
However, the streamer was fickle and didn’t always wanna work on certain discs with copy protection or those that were just too scratched or from weird sources
I thought to myself that one day I would get something that would rip any disc I put in the laptop
I didn’t know I already had it

Fast forward to a few months ago and I have just installed the VLC Media player
This thing plays waaay more types of files than my basic windows media player
However, I was still under the impression that I was gonna have to use the same decrypt/ streamer combo
Halloween is coming up and I have grand plans
Unfortunately, those plans rely heavily upon the DVDs that I have tried to rip but have been blocked by the streamer
I had resigned myself to the fact that I was going to have to put out a sub-standard show that wasn’t what I wanted
But things changed the other day when I was trying to make room on the laptop hard drive
I found some old decrypted files from a dvd that wouldn’t work in the streamer
I clicked on a few just to see what would happen and one of them was the entire freaking movie!!!
The VLC player was playing the raw file
I immediately pulled up movie maker and, lo and behold, it ACCEPTED the file
That was a very sweet moment for me because that was the moment when I realized that my entire DVD collection was now at my disposal (and for fewer steps than the old way)

The past weekend has been spent ripping DVDs, trimming all of the fat (menus, non video files etc…) then moving them over to the tearabyte
I have also been condensing entire films down to their essence
I watch the movie and cut out all but the most interesting parts of the film
Since the Halloween season is coming up, I have concentrated mostly on horror
So far, most horror films cook down to about 15-20 minutes
Texas Chainsaw Massacre part 2 has 35 minutes
These mixes are temporary and serve as a way to let the contents stew in my brain for a while as I mentally digest the parts I wanna use
Later, I will go back and fragment the parts into what will appear in the show
Thanks to the terrabyte, I can store the 20 minute condensed version as well (instead of having to delete all of that work because I don’t have the space)

Not only do I take a step back to think about what clips will be used from the condensed mixes, but I also have time to cross reference the material in my head in order to mix them together in a semi-coherent way
There are several themes that I wanna explore in the barrage edit and I have a couple of films already staked out for use
This concept is what I think separates the editors from the aritsts
Anyone can put footage in a machine and make it jump around just like anyone can develop simple double bass drum skills by practicing on a double pedal
The artistry lies in your ability to use it as a refernce point to other images and clips
Sure, you can string together a bunch ov violent clips,
But can you give it conceptual continuity?

Look for The Halloween Episode of Countrockula’s Theater for the Insane! to be a real seizure inducer


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