Just finished reading the last couple of posts.....here are some thoughts:
1) Abby is right. This was not an editing class. This was a project-based class, one where the learning is supposed to come from the doing, as opposed to exercises or lectures. Hopefully Abby, you have picked up more than you think about Final Cut. At the very least, you now know what the process of filmmaking involves, and how hard it is in a collaborative process to keep everything organized and moving forward.
2) Wonderfool....what an awesome reflection! I am not surprised to hear that you are both demoralized and energized by what you learned. You are exactly right that anyone who actually manages to finish a film deserves to be recognized for the stunning accomplishment it is, even if the film itself is horrible. I mean, just go watch "Plan 9 From Outer Space." Spectacularly bad!! But they did it! They made a movie. And even Tim Burton tipped his hat to that awesomely horrible film (Ed Wood).
Even with all the money, time and talent in the world, films that should be great turn out to be horrible. As a fan of "The Lord of The Rings" books, I was both excited and scared when I heard Peter Jackson was going to make those movies. But I thought they were great, even if he DID cut out Tom Bombadil.
But then he went and re-made "King Kong." Loads of money. Big stars. All the time in the world. And it stunk...about 1 1/2 hours too long, boring, etc.
So it's great that you now appreciate movies even more...and I like your analogy of feeling the energy of the people coming through in the film.
And THAT, Christina, is a sign that you understand what it takes to be a director. It is your job to channel that energy in the right way, in the service of a compelling story, to make the audience feel the power of the people behind it. You get it!!!
Now, if only it was easy to do. But I guess if it were easy, we'd all be doing it. And I would be re-making "Plan 9 From Outer Space" just for the sheer joy of it.