Private Project

Trouble with Johnny

Trouble with Johnny explores the recurrence of loop, tempo, and flicker. The project uses found footage as a method for emphasizing the cinematic collisions between audio and visual composition. Working within the margins of structural filmmaking, Trouble with Johnny creates a visceral experience of fragmented sounds and cyclical imagery.

Likewise, Trouble with Johnny functions as a parody of the mainstream movie industry. The source material derives from the 1980’s coming of age film, The Karate Kid. Throughout the story, the main antagonist, a bully who goes by the name “Johnny”, is revered by a dedicated clique of subservient underlings. Applied as an experimental technique, the repetitive use of the word “Johnny” draws attention to the stereotypical and recurring tropes found in many teen movies.

In addition, the character name “Johnny” occupies a consistent prominence within many works of 80’s cinema. Upon reflection, the name calls to mind an intriguing array of 80’s era character types, including the outsider, the renegade, the bully, the cool kid, and the boy next door. A partial list of films that employ the moniker include, The Outsiders, Johnny Dangerously, The Breakfast Club, Dirty Dancing, Johnny Be Good, Johnny Handsome, and Point Break. By delving into this peculiar fascination with naming conventions, the filmmaker presents a revised interpretation of industry generated characterization. Overall, Trouble with Johnny offers an alternative version of this memorable character type. The film intends to highlight the enigmatic traces between tribute and critique.

  • Paul Echeverria
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Short, Web / New Media
  • Runtime:
    4 minutes 33 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 1, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Paul Echeverria

Paul Echeverria is a filmmaker, digital artist, and educator. His research and creative practice examine the formative dynamics between childhood, parenthood, and the family structure. In addition, he produces work that contemplates the inevitable collision between humans and technology.

Echeverria's films, installations, and performances have been exhibited at multiple venues including MoMA, the Bronx Museum of the Arts, Angelika Film Center, Anthology Film Archives, Other Cinema, FRACTO Experimental Film Encounter, Festival Internacional de Videoarte de Camagüey, Experiments in Cinema, and the Echo Park Film Center.

He currently serves as board member for the Millennium Film Workshop and has worked on curatorial committees for the Ann Arbor Film Festival and Experiments in Cinema. He is an Assistant Professor of Digital and Emerging Media at Wayne State University.

Add Director Biography