Saturday, May 23, 2009

Training with a stuntman: Louis Moncivias Gutierrez

Louis Moncivias Gutierrez and Danny Trejo
Louis with Danny Trejo
I'm currently training with stuntman Louis Moncivias Gutierrez. Louis is not only a stuntman, but also a stunt coordinator and choreographer. He's been in movies such as The Alamo (2004) and the upcoming Snuff (2010). He doubled for Danny Trejo in Machete (2010). He also did the fight stunts in the University of Texas Film Institute (UTFI)'s first feature-length film Dance with the one. Louis does a ton of different types of stunts - horse, explosive, high falls, etc. We're of course concentrating on fight scene style stunts and choreography.

I've been using my method developed in my post on fight choreography notation to document our movements. This was the precise application I was looking for to use the notation system. Here's a sample of part of one of our scenes that uses weapons:

Louis Jesse
a12 a12
spin 300 kick
a4 lowline block
a4 lowline block
spin a3 lowline block
spin a3 lowline block
roof block a0
hollow out a3
left front kick to belly double over
a12 a2

It's proved to be incredibly easy to use. I can take notes swiftly with it with pen and paper as we do the movements. Used in conjunction with video recording it will be invaluable to our own choreography and, as I hope and believe, the future of fight choreography in general.

Fighting in a manner that is not designed to really kill the other person is tripping me up quite a bit. Things such as following through with motions and using full-power strikes is not as easily done. Telegraphing motion (mildly) is useful rather than bad technique, at least during initial training.

Regardless of all this, coming in near-full-contact is a great training mechanism for myself as a martial artist.

We're going to be doing some rather cool stuff. Louis will be doing most (if not all) the more dangerous aspects of this (not that fighting with metal blades at full speed isn't dangerous). I'll take some photos/videos as we go along and keep you updated.


Aaron Charlton said...

Wow, I could've sworn that was Danny Trejo. I guess that's the point.

Aaron Charlton said...

Oh hell. I just read that that actually is Danny Trejo. Nevermind.

Danny Trejo said...

Fighting in a manner that is not designed to really kill the other person is tripping me up quite a bit. - I guess i feel the same way. Good stunt man. I like Danny Trejo.. he's good with stunts and so as Louis.

Anonymous said...

Look, I appreciate entertainment as much as anyone else and I give mega props and acknowledgement to those (stunt people) who put in their work to contribute to a movie/show. But at the same time, there is a such thing as going too far. I think anyone risking his or her life just for the sake of entertainment is just insane and unessecary. With all of the tricks, props and technology that movie/show crews have they can still create an illusion to capture the audience. Like I said, I love entertainment-but a person's well being/health should always come first and foremost.

Andover MA roofing said...

Louis sounds like he knows what he's doing! Cool blog.

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