Mow Them Down Dream

Last night I had a vivid dream which has stayed with me. These are the details:

I am the director of a feature film production. We are shooting a zombie movie on park grounds on a bright summer day. We are setting up for the climatic scene wherein the hero will commandeer a machine gun on a hill overlooking the park. He will mow down the zombies as they wander aimlessly across the lawn. It is an homage to what Michael Caine does at the conclusion of “The Island.”

The extras are picnicking elsewhere in the park. I wander for some time looking for them in order to call them back personally to the set. I finally find them, and speaking through a bullhorn I urge them back as soon as possible. The extras disregard me, for they would rather continue with their lunch. Perturbed, I scream out an ultimatum over the bullhorn to the effect that if they do not get back to the set in five minutes they will be taken off of the film project. That seems to do the trick. They eye me with disgust, but slowly start to walk back towards the set.

Back at the set, I watch from the director’s chair while the special effects people put the squibs on the extras. Most of them are being affixed to the chests, but some to the knees or the foreheads. I show the extras how they are supposed to spasm as if they are being shot with multiple bullets at once. They will spasm with their arms up, wander about for a few steps, and then fall at once to the ground when the squib explodes and drenches them with fake blood. I also explain that the machine gun will be moving from the left to the right, so the extras on the left side of the grounds should start to spasm before those on the right side. Everything has to be timed just right, so that the extras on the far right are careful not to spasm before the machine gun has had a chance to shower them with bullets. Everyone seems to take seriously my instructions, and I feel like we are going to do a good job. I awaken before we shoot the first take.

Published by Michael Sean Erickson

I write, act, and produce films in Los Angeles. Everything else is conjecture.

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