THE BLACK DOVE was many years in the making. Written originally in 1996, the story metamorphasized through 19 versions to the one we see today on the screen.The actors were allowed a wide berth in interpreting the script, and while they all remained true to their lines, many improvs added to the natural feel and the humor of the film.
present day detroit:Ner-do-well Jake Williams, recently released from an 18 year prison term, is on a quest to recover his long-lost black Gibson Dove guitar. One of only two such guitars manufactured in the 70’s (the other belonged to Elvis) Jake seeks to resurrect his musical career by reuniting with his old guitar, currently in the possession of his estranged daughter, Jackie. Ah, but She's a modern woman with values quite different from Jake’s and whose own musical career is on the rise. But first Jake must integrate himself into the community, with his outdated ways fueling a wild and hilarious romp. Teetering on self-destruction, he navigates the search with utter chaos and finds instead something unexpected… himself. John Savage makes Jake’s transformation compelling and memorable, a must-see, perhaps the best performance of his career.
Hearing from the critics is always a great experience. I love to learn how others see my film, both the good and the bad. Everyone comes from a different place and sees things in different and unexpected ways. Some of the criticism of the film is very astute and tells me the the critic understood the film and was able to spot the shortcomings of production, budget and in general the many compromises made in filmmaking, especially regarding indie films.
Other critics, prefer to write about the film that was not made, as if that was a missed opportunity. Whether the film was shot in one city or another has more to do with budget than any importance to the core of the story. Whether the film is about one city and one point in time or is about timeless relationships and universal truths using any city to host the story, is just a different perspective. It's not a documentary. Every dollar is on the screen and we could not have made this film any other way--no apologies and no looking back. The real questions are "could it have been more accurate to reality?" and "does that really matter?" I've made that mistake myself many times watching films with my overly critical eye--a door closer on a hospital door in the 50's is really one from the 70's or a toy gun in an Oliver Stone film is not correct for the period. Hmmm, maybe I just know too much about production to sit and enjoy.
A lot of players come on to the scene to facilitate distribution. Somewhere along the way, between the distributor and the various platforms, someone writes a logline to inform potential viewers what the film is generally about and distributes that to the media platforms. Unfortunately, whoever our longline got it very wrong. On nearly every site it says the Jake Williams was convicted of a crime he did not commit. That is false. It is central to the story that Jake did indeed commit the crime. Next it says he first needs to clear his name before seeking to recover his guitar. Again, false. Jake cares only about recovering his old guitar and has no need to clear his name because he knows he is guilty.