Trailer for “Captain”

Posted in Uncategorized on April 27th, 2012 by Dave

I’ve posted a trailer for my upcoming documentary Captain. Comments are welcome!


A Visit to the Military History Society of Rochester…

Posted in Captain, Documentary on April 25th, 2012 by Dave

My wife and I were out an about Saturday afternoon and we decided to stop by  the “Cultural Crawl” over at the Anderson Alley artist studios in downtown Rochester. The large old factory building has a number of artists/craftspeople doing their thing. The variety and quality of the works on display were very high and we took it all in as we strolled from floor to floor and from studio to studio. So it was a surprise amidst all the artists and craftspeople to come upon the Military History Society of Rochester at the end of one floor. I walked in and was amazed at the well thought out displays and the sheer amount of exhibits on display in, I’m guessing, a 20×40 foot area. Weaponry, photographs, flags, and two interesting gentleman; Director Chuck Baylis was on hand to show me around and although I spoke at length to the fellow on the right, I don’t have his name.                     .


I would have probably walked in and out of this museum a year ago, but things have changed since I began my film project Captain.  Hollywood and other cultural institutions may be accused at times of glorifying war, but these places are not about that.   It is to remind people, (me at least), of what those who served gave up for others. Good war, bad war, it doesn’t affect how I feel about the people who have gone through the most extreme of human experiences with honor.


Two amazing films…

Posted in Documentary on April 23rd, 2012 by Dave

I view many, many, films for enjoyment and to learn from other filmmakers. I found these on the internet recently, both amazing, and both with the common denominator of poverty and the struggle to overcome real hardhship and pain.

…an I believe the film below is about as perfect as a film can get…

Production near complete for “Captain”

Posted in Uncategorized on April 11th, 2012 by Dave

April 9th was a busy day of filming for myself and Captain Richard Updaw, USMC, Ret., who is  my film subject for an upcoming documentary entitled Captain. With the film about 80 percent edited, I’ve been able to identify areas in need of additional filming and so, with list in hand, Dick and I set out.



First stop was the Rush Public Library where we filmed Dick doing research in his quest to memorialize Cpl. Robert Hodes, who died at the Battle Of Iwo Jima in 1945 at the age of 19.



We had great cooperation from Linda Repka, Library Clerk, standing to the left of Dick,  and  Library Director Kirsten Flass. They asked how they could be of help, cleared tables for us, and showed a real interest and enthusiasm for the project. Thank you Linda and Kirsten!





We left the library and headed over to the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial off of South Avenue in Rochester. I  wanted a shot of Dick approaching the site and then looking at the granite memorial with the names of those soldiers from the Rochester area who were killed in the war. It is a beautiful memorial, (my first time there), and it reminds one of the courage and sacrifice of the those who gave their lives.

Then we pressed north to Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester where Cpl. Hodes is buried. I have been to this cemetery half a dozen times now to try and create images that will cause viewers of the film to reflect on the theme of remembrance that is at the core of Dick Updaw’s quest . In some ways I feel this graveside is the main character in this film…So easy to walk right past and to overlook,  but unforgettable once its story is known.  Of course,hundreds of  veterans are buried at Holy Sepulchre – as are tens of thousands elsewhere. For me, Robert Hodes is their representative .

Finally we arrived at a blustery Lake Ontario where I filmed Dick walking along the beach with a backpack filled with about 80 pounds of sand.  To explain: I was hoping to evoke Dick’s trip to Iwo Jima in 2004, where  he  filled his backpack with black, volcanic sand, and walked the entire route that Cpl. Hodes would have walked  from the beach where he landed, to a ridge on  the northern part of the island where he was killed. I’m not trying to fool anyone into believing that this footage was shot on Iwo Jima, (for one thing, the sand is white here!), but rather to evoke a memory – and the sense of brotherhood that this walk suggests…

And finally, a little bit of filming back at Dick’s farm on West Henrietta Rd. These shots may appear in the film’s opening – and I’m hoping will set the stage for what I hope is a very interesting story to follow…I’m aiming for a Memorial Day, 2012 release for this film.