A Machine For Boredom
Director: Marc Cartwright
United States, 2021, 4 min
Cast:Baker Chase Powell
Crew:Writer: Marc Cartwright. Producer: Marc Cartwright.
Isolation drives a man to rethink his position within a capitalistic society.
About the director
MARC CARTWRIGHT is based in Los Angeles.
Marc grew up in New York on Long Island's East End. Partially raised by his grandparents, who were avid fans of Hollywood classics, he developed a passion for the entertainment industry.
A graduate of NYU, Marc runs a successful photography business, where he photographs established, as well as up-and-coming talents in Film and Television.
With his experience behind the camera as a photographer, Marc founded motion picture production company Glass Cabin Films, to direct and produce short and feature length content.
My curiosity and love for experimental film was sparked about a year ago during a bout of writer's block. I needed a different, nonlinear method to think about narratives and construct stories. Being a photographer, I started to use images to put together the general feeling I wanted for a film and would let the story develop from there.
I came up with the idea for A Machine for Boredom while snapping photos on a morning walk about two weeks into the Covid-19 lockdown. The typically bustling streets of Los Angeles were eerily peaceful during what would have been the Monday morning rush hour. Billboards and storefronts around me demanded the masses buy their "life changing" products. The aging messages now feel like a sad cry out for the return of yesterday's rampant consumerism and a normalcy that may be forever transformed.
The marketing and advertising got me thinking about how, in a search for validation and self-esteem, people can hand a lot of power over to inanimate objects. Buying symbols of stability and happiness that they can't afford so that their peers can see them as happy, successful or "good enough". This type of validation requires the presence of other people. Enter Covid-19.
I have always been a home body, so social distancing wasn't that difficult for me. I actually enjoyed the quieter, more peaceful Los Angeles. The circumstance has forced us all to focus on ourselves, our relationships, the structure of our life choices and maybe even the nature of how we experience belonging in the world. It certainly opened my eyes to how and where I spend money. Life is about choices and with this film I wanted to compare and contrast the lifestyle I choose to create for myself vs the one I am sold as a consumer.
Due to the lockdown, there was no crew to make this film besides myself and the lead actor (which to me, lends itself to creating a movie about isolation and self-reflection.). I did learn a lot about my own values and also my voice as a filmmaker.
I hope you enjoy A Machine for Boredom and are staying safe, healthy.