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Reviewed by Sierra Blasko for Readers' Favorite
Don’t F*ck Up Your No-Budget Movie! by Ivan Peric features useful advice from an experienced filmmaker, told in a candid voice that feels like having a conversation with a friend or mentor. The book is full to bursting with good advice and helpful footnotes, denoting terminology and background information so that this book can be read and understood by anyone, no matter their prior experience with the filmmaking medium. Containing both practical advice, methodology, and theory, this is an excellent resource for anyone looking for a starting point in the world of no-budget filmmaking, and, I would even go so far as to say, is an essential one.
As an aspiring director and short filmmaker myself, the title immediately grabbed me! I found the content inside engaging and easy to understand. The author, Ivan Peric, does a great job of making his tips and suggestions reach a layman audience, and I was also pleasantly surprised to see references to modern social media and app platforms like TikTok, without any of the condescension and snark which some other authors might’ve inserted. It indicates Peric’s knowledge, competence, and love of his craft that he can admire the beauty and success of social media video content while acknowledging the drawbacks and abundance of bad content out there.
I appreciated the emphasis Peric placed on treating actors, cast, and crew well and with respect, and I found it interesting to learn a bit more about the history and mechanics of filmmaking, especially in relation to the advancement of the digital era. And at the end of the day, the book effectively conveys the message that even if you do “fuck up,” as the author puts it, that’s still okay. It’s a learning curve and a process, and you can always try again. The author focuses on encouragement and practical steps, which makes this book a refreshing look at a process that is, at the end of the day, a beautiful thing.