Well I just finished watching the movie for the first time...and I was impressed.
Overall, I liked the finished film. I was expecting much worse. My family and friends watching the film with me thought it was horrible. Hard to follow...and had bad dialogue. But the locations, national guard, and props were great. Having two black hawk helicopters fly in over your head is really something when you are trying to hold down the camera equipment to keep it from being blown away.
Here are some qucik fun facts about my experience on set:
* I appear on screen when Gen. Cook and Jake walk in the Mining outpost office building. I'm the guardsman standing next to the enterence on the right. I was originally supposed to walk/cross in front of the camera as it trucked back into the scene. But I kept missing my cue so I was just told to "stand there" and do nothing.
* I appear 4 to 5 times in the office building in the backgound while Gen. Cook is talking with everyone. There were not enough soldiers for that scene so they had me walking "loops" in front of the camera. I ususally have a different object in my hands for each pass to make it look like a different soldier for each shot.
* I was on set for all cave and warehouse shots (Drake mining station). The first shot of the Indiana shoot was the interior shot of everyone in the helicopter. That was just a dark room with a OD green painted rug for a backdrop. The paint wasn't even dry when they started shooting. The last shot of the Indiana shoot was the scene with Jake and his friends jumping into the underground river.
* parts of my parents bedroom set (lamps, end tables, alarm clock, etc.) end up in the film. Used for a bedroom scene with Jake and his wife. Jake turns on my lamp to wake her.
*I armed all of the countdown timer shots. Nobody could get the countdown timer to work right. I worked and worked to get that to count right, it was by sheer luck we got the shots we did. There were 3-4 nukecases for the film including one hero prop. My camera was attached to all close up shots and I "think" my finger was shown arming the bomb in one of the tight close ups.
*For the last shot in the film. Jake and friends come over to meet the army guys and group hug. Notice how dry Jake is from just exiting the lake (two shots filmed in two different locations). The director is calling for more "water" to be dumped on Jake as he is too dry. It's the end of the filming day, it's starting to rain, no one can find water. I have a bottle of water left over from lunch left in my stuff so I run over to Jake and empty the bottle over his head and shirt. It wasn't much but it made the shot.
*my main jobs included: pulling focus on actors, helping unload reload film, using the clapstick, writing (bad) film usage reports, errand boy, setting up viewscreens for the DP and Directors, switching lenses, moving cameras into position, minor shot directing (one or two shots for B camera).
Thats pretty much it. Come it think of it...It must have been a Sorbo movie marathon on SyFy that day, 3 Sorbo movies back to back. This film will eventually make a "straight to DVD" release in the future. I'm getting this movie regardless...it's priceless in my book.