Picture Lock Radio Show
This week I chatted with Kevin Sampson on the Picture Lock show about being a YouTube film critic and how I got started in the online movie reviewing world. We talked about my favourite movie of all time (come on... you already know what that is! Don't you?!) as well as my first job working in the local video store.
"...they'd come back the next week and they'd bring back the video and they'd tell me they loved it and that was just everything to me. Looking back on it now I can see that's where it all began but of course as a 15 year old I didn't think it would turn into all of this."
KS: Welcome to Picture Lock
AD: Thank you so much for having me, I'm really excited
KS: I'm really excited too, we'll get into when I first started following you and all that stuff but the first question I always start with is when did you first fall in love with film?
AD: The best question. This is my favourite question because I think that this just gets a great insight into any person and I Iove it when people ask me this question because I get excited just talking about my answer. For me, the movie that made me fall in love with movies was at age 12, the most impressionable age I walked into a screening of The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and was changed. Fully changed. I'd never seen anything so magical and eye-opening. It just made me fall in love with movie making.
KS: So at the age of 12, the movie wasn't too long for you, you were just lost in it?
AD: I was lost in it. I'd never seen anything like it. Well I think also it was the most grown-up film maybe that I'd seen. I don't think I really went to the cinema that often as a kid. I just think it was at that time where I went with my family and my dad was such a LOTR fan when he was a kid and he'd talked so much about it with me. I just loved how... I can't even begin, I loved it all.
KS: Makes sense, and as you said about going with your family. I think there is something to be said about that in terms of our communal experience, right. Especially when you go with the people that you love and experience that so I get it. You're so giddy about it you don't have words. It makes sense.
AD: Haha, I don't
KS: So if you could, let's get a little history lesson, how did you actually get into the industry. In this interview we're approaching it from you as a movie reviewer and YouTuber but if you could just give us your history lesson of after the LOTR what happened to that little girl that grew up to become this movie reviewer?
AD: That's a great way of putting it, I like that. Ok so I'd always loved movies but I didn't know how to make anything of it, make a career of it. My first high school job was at a video store and that definitely helped solidify my love of movies. The big thing that now looking back with perspective 15 years ago but at the time I didn't realise that I was recommending customers movies to watch. Every day they'd come into the video store they'd tell me what's the latest out, what should I watch and I would love telling them and chatting with them and they'd come back the next week and they'd bring back the video and they'd tell me they loved it and that was just everything to me. Looking back on it now I can see that's where it all began but of course as a 15 year old I didn't think it would turn into all of this. After the video store I went on to university and majored in Film & TV and wrote a lot of papers and dissertations and then decided I wanted to make my own movies so then I went to Film School to be a writer and director but just didn't quite find my groove there. So decided I wanted to work in production so in the back end of producing movies. Currently I work for a production company and mainly we produce commercials and that kind of thing and I love it. I just love working in that space that is between the concept of the content and the creation of the content and everything that goes between the idea from the conception to the completion and then suddenly you're watching something that you helped produce on TV, it's pretty cool.
KS: It's Picture Lock, I'm your host Kevin Sampson and I'm talking with the woman who's got a similar story to Quentin Tarantino, started from the video shop now she's here - it's Adelle Drover of Roll Credits. You know that's amazing, I love that story, the fact that you actually worked in a video rental shop. What happened to those? Was it Blockbuster?
AD: It was a competitor, an Australian direct competitor to Blockbuster. It was called Video Ezy, that's E. Z. Y.
KS: Wow, yeah I found my Blockbuster card not too long ago and it's just one of those things you've got to put in a frame now.
KS: Ok, now Adelle if we could, when did you get into Roll Credits? When did you start it and why?
AD: So like I said I work in the production side of the film industry but always I love talking about movies, I love watching movies, and that's just my favourite thing. After the movie's over and the credits have rolled I really love walking out of the cinema, with my friend or whoever I saw the movie with and just dissecting it all. So that always was kind of with me. At the time I was living in a different city and I didn't have many friends but I was seeing a lot of movies so the whole Roll Credits thing really started when I was looking for an outlet and I was looking for other people to talk with about the movies I was watching. And some of the movies were quite female-centric, with female lead characters and a little bit arthouse and honestly 4 years ago I was searching online, the movie I can remember, it was very specific it was Nymphomaniac which was arthouse, quite intense, female lead character. I just couldn't really see any females talking about this movie and really dissecting it and that's when I thought that maybe I could talk about it, maybe I could add my voice to the space and people similar to me would be interested in what I was saying about it. And that's really how it all started.
KS: Wow, so this is my story about how I came across Roll Credits. For YouTubers Chris Stuckmann is my go-to dude, only because he's about as calm as me, no shade, he's just calm in his delivery and the same kind of film nerd as I am. So one day Chris just recommends all these other different movie YouTubers and I promise I don't remember anyone else. I guess I looked at everybody but I followed yours because again I gravitated towards: 'I get her style, she's not yelling at me.' It was good. So that was my story about how I came across you. It's been fun to watch you grow and you're doing red carpets and all this kind of stuff it's pretty awesome.
AD: Yeah, Kevin that's actually so cool that that's the story because Chris Stuckmann shouting me out on his channel and talking about my channel as another great resource for movie lovers was the most flattering thing ever. Really, it honestly validated everything I was doing up until that point. I was like, oh my gosh, he's this really big movie reviewer online who's saying what I'm doing is great... Maybe what I'm doing is great. I should keep doing it!
AD: It was the most inspiring thing to continue my journey on YouTube, for sure.
KS: That's pretty awesome. You know I'm a big Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee fan and I think on the Margret episode she was talking about how she got done on an open mic night and Seinfeld was there and afterwards he told her something along the lines of 'you got what it takes,' or whatever and that just meant everything, it validated it. Sometimes you need that. I'm sure you knew that you had something special but at the same time it's that 'oh snap!'
AD: Exactly right. Well I was growing a small following. Everyday maybe I'd have 1 maybe 2 people subscribe to the channel and that was enough to let me know, 'ok I'm doing something right if I'm growing by 1 or 2 a day.' Then, yeah when Chris Stuckmann shouted me out that was all I needed to be like OK I'm going to run with this and get serious about it because I love it and clearly that's translating in some way and people are coming to the channel and enjoying it too so that's all I need, I'm off!
KS: It's Picture Lock I'm your host Kevin Sampson, I'm talking with Adelle Drover she helms Roll Credits over on YouTube you definitely want to go check her out and subscribe. So Adelle, enough about Chris let's get back to you. In terms of what you do and what you have to offer, you have movie reviews but then you also dig into specific TV shows and things like that. If you could for the audience just let them know what they can expect to find at your channel.
AD: So I do specialise in the latest reviews, I do look at the big blockbuster movies but my passion really lies in those small indie films, the ones that are hard to find that are spread by word of mouth that you might not have heard of. So I love digging those out, sharing them around and having people come to me and tell me that they've seen them and they never would have heard of it if not for me or if they hadn't heard me talking about it. So you can definitely find the bigger movies I talk about, like the Black Panther, the big Marvel's releases and that kind of thing but I'll definitely speak about those smaller indie movies. And I also have a series called Foreign Film Friday which on the first Friday of every month, I'll review a new release foreign language film. And I really enjoy that and have built a great community of people who love foreign films, so you can definitely find that kind of thing as well, along with top 5 countdown lists, I do also look at TV reviews, new series and what's going on on Netflix and that kind of thing.
KS: Yeah that's pretty awesome, so one of the things that we talked about previously in terms of being a YouTube personality and building an audience. Could you talk a little bit about what it's like to be out there, right, so it's not like it's somebody else and your reading from a script. It's you. Then, also the audience engagement you have.
AD: Yeah you're right, there's nobody else. It's you. It's your face. You're writing everything, producing everything. It's your face putting it out there online and that can be really intimidating not having any second opinion before you blast out your personal opinions to the internet - to be critiqued and picked apart. Especially as a film critic, if you don't like a movie, you better have good reasons to why you don't like it because I guarantee someone else loved it. That's kind of interesting too. I love that about movies, you can both walk into the exact same movie and take away completely different things from it. I like that discussion.
See full episode details and listen to the episode over at The Picture Lock Radio Show