The Scott Shaw Blog Be Positive

Reading Between the Lines

“Are their hidden meanings in your movies?” “If there are, they’re too hidden to find.”
This was a question asked and jokingly answered and presented in the Zen Documentary,
Interview: The Roller Blade Seven Documentary.
If you want to get some insight into Zen Filmmaking, the ideology and the practice, you should check out that doc. It’s up on YouTube. Chick on the title if you feel like it. Of course, it’s a mocumentary. But, there’s some deep insight to be had within its presentation.
As someone who has created a lot of STUFF throughout my life, I am often made aware about what other people think and feel about my creations. Keep in mind, I don’t seek any of that stuff out. Good or bad I actually don’t really care what people think as long as it doesn’t affect my life in some negative manner. But, by hook or by crook, sometimes I am forced to encounter the thoughts, ideas, and reaction(s) of others.  
Wrong, yes. Most of the time they are. But, that’s not really the point of this point. This point is about the subtleties that people never seem to see.
For example, one of the beginning elements of the Zen Films,
Super Hero Central, (which you can also view on YouTube), and its offshoots: The Adventures of Ace X and Kid Velvet and Super Hero Central: The Extended Remix, which can be seen on Amazon Prime Video, there is a character, played by Donald G. Jackson, who is bound by a wheelchair. His character is confronted with going down this long flight of stairs. Because of this, he must tie a rope onto the wheelchair and slowly lower it down in front of him, as he bounces on his butt, one stair at a time, all the way down the flight of stairs that comes off of the 6th Street Bridge in DTLA. Finally, he reaches the bottom. There, his character pulls himself up and back into the chair and rolls off.
There have been a number of people that have commented about that scene. But, not one, at least not one of the comments I have encountered, even comes close to understanding the meaning of that scene.
What it is explaining is multifold. One is the reality of what physically challenged people must overcome in life just to get from point A to point B. The second is the determination of spirit that some people possess to make their reality happen, no matter what the cost.
If you’ve seen that Zen Film, did you ever even think about that as you were viewing it? Or, were you solely focused on the simply reality of visual images that were presented to you on the screen—causing you to like or dislike what was taking place?

That’s just one example. In all of my Zen Films there are sublet hidden depictions that can only be realized by those with an eye for such things. There’s subtle life melodramas depicted to provide the viewer with a deeper understanding of life and the elements of the human condition, ultimately leading the observer towards cinematic and life enlightenment. But, how few people watch a movie with that as their basis for their viewing experience?
This is the thing about life. Most people only study the obvious. They never read between the lines. They never even attempt to look deeply into the motivation and reasoning behind why an Artist or any Doer is doing what they do. They just view the surface and believe they know what they know, causing them to like or dislike and then ultimately judge anything they are presented with.
How about you? Do you read between the lines? Do you look for the deeper meaning in anything you see, read, or hear? If not, why not?
I believe this is a very important point in the living of life. Do you want to know the truth? Do you want to understand the motivation(s) of the creator? Do you wish to understand the subtleties behind the obvious? Or, do you just want to be the judge and jury of all you encounter? Do you feel you possess that right?
Think about it.