beauty within
My name is Rachel Ann Cauilan and I just want to make a testament of my life growing up, from all the people, places, things, and feelings I’ve known, and to give a little piece of myself, and my love, to you. I hope you enjoy.

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🎥📝 It is FINISHED! So proud of our baby… Ready to present. “She’s connected, but not when it comes to people.” #TechnicalDifficulties #screenplay #screenwriting #UCI

🎥📝 It is FINISHED! So proud of our baby… Ready to present. “She’s connected, but not when it comes to people.” #TechnicalDifficulties #screenplay #screenwriting #UCI

Out of pure, crazy love for this thing, I am once again attempt Heart’s “Crazy On You” after some years. Nancy Wilson is a guitar goddess and I wish I could play even just half as well as her.

Cheers to this wonderful, awesome and rocking tune and to one of the best classic rock (and still rocking) bands out there.

Leave some love and let’s start a conversation. Requests and suggestions are taken graciously. As a guitar lover seeking some new and compelling material, let me know if you’ve any suggestions or even some tutorials you’d like to have me do. I’d love to help out and share the music!

Please excuse my disgruntled face throughout the video.

"Boyhood" is a must-see, complex and so very mesmerizing journey of growing up

"Boyhood." IFC Films.

Boyhood is one of those special movies that only comes once in a lifetime—or maybe just the first time in cinematic history.

Filmed over a span of 12 years, Richard Linklater captures the real aging process of a fictional boy named Mason Evans (Ellar Coltrane) and his surrounding family, including his struggling single mother Olivia (Patricia Arquette), older sister Samantha (Lorelai Linklater) and a few timely visits from his rock-and-roll ex-father (Ethan Hawke). It’s amazing to see these characters age right before our eyes, naturally—without any makeup or prosthetics—in just under a mere 3-hours in our seats. We are taken on a compelling and heartfelt adventure as we experience the process of growing up while revisiting moments in our not-so-distant pasts that feel all the more familiar to us.

Whether you remember playing Halo on your first XBOX gaming system, busting out to Britney Spears’ “Oops! I Did It Again,” dancing along to High School Musical or waiting in line for the massive Harry Potter premiere, these priceless moments literally take us back to those moments in history with the characters. I don’t know about you, but I remember these key moments in popular culture that, while in my seat, I found myself asking, “Where was I during this moment? How old was I again?”

As the film takes you from 6-year-old Mason to just after his high school graduation when he moves onto college, it’s amazing to see the progression of the kids as they get moodier, grow into their awkward adolescent years and teen angst, all while the mother bends her left leg finding and losing love, going back to school and—heartwarmingly—changing the life of a passerby who remembers her from years before saying, “Thank you for changing my life.” He also looks to her kids and says, “Listen to your mother, she knows what she’s talking about.”

Ethan Hawke as the Dad was a treat to witness as well as, although he is easy-going and relatable to his kids, we can see how unprepared and unfit for fatherhood he is to raise them with Olivia. As he still supports his kids one-hundred percent throughout the years, it’s touching to see how he himself ages and matures over the years, helping us to realize that age and maturity is a progression in life. We all grow in our own separate and distinct ways.

But, perhaps most compelling is the story of the Mother. For me, this film spoke deeply as to how easy it is to miss much of our own parents’ efforts and sacrifices in raising their children (something that made me feel a little guilty myself).

As the brunt of parenting fell on the Mother’s part, it was amazing to see Arquette allow herself to age and grow on-screen—with her hair changing, weight fluctuating, small facial expressions and attitudes naturally transforming over the years. Arquette had even gotten pregnant in her own life, which gave the film a genuine reality of motherhood; you could feel her sincerity, stress and aging beauty as it mirrored moments in the film where Olivia would experience marital and financial problems. Motherhood gracefully surfaced on her face, which Linklater allowed his film to recognize over the course of 12 years.

In the end, as Mason and his sister go through their awkward years and begin to fall in and out of teenage love, it paints a genuine picture of what kids—we ourselves—feel in those days. Watching these events happen before our eyes helps us to take these moments in our lives in hindsight. It is almost like we are watching ourselves unravel on-screen. And it feels mesmerizingly familiar, painful, funny and personal.

When Mason goes off to college and doesn’t thank his mom for her sacrifices—something all us excited young adolescents have felt at some time—the moment is almost heartbreaking. Having had her trials exposed through a lens to us throughout the film, we totally feel her when she says, “Is that all there is? I thought there would be more.”

And that’s where Boyhood is a gem. The passage of time here is real—something not a lot of films have had the luxury, time or patience of doing. It feels loose, natural and looks and feels real to us because, in a way, it kind of is. We watch boyhood, girlhood, motherhood, fatherhood—whatever it may be—naturally unravel on-screen. And that’s what makes this film special. It’s incredibly real.

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My “Lost Stars” from “Begin Again” Acoustic Guitar Instrumental Cover + Chords + Tutorial

Because I’ve been able to spend some time away from this song and really capture the right chords and spirit (as inspired by Adam Levine’s version).

But, it’s strange how, over time, you begin to really get to know yourself and what moves you and what feels right to you. As my interests seem to always drift and fleet–as one day I want to be playing music for the rest of my life, to the other my wanting to write a screenplay, to my wanting to constantly perform and write and connect with individuals–it seems that, at the very heart of it all, writing is what feels right and music is what nourishes me.

So here I am doing what feels most right to me.

I’d love to know what moves you, so please share some stories, passions, or even weird interests of yours. And I won’t judge you if you have a weird fascination with everything 80′s (I myself am victim to it).

Keep in touch. Keep doing what moves your soul. Stay true to you. Do you. And love you.

Say hi sometime!

Read my review of “Begin Again” the movie here.
And feel free to peruse my review of the soundtrack to the film here.

Dia Frampton and Josh Kaufman (The Voice) take on “Poison & Wine” by the Civil Wars

As a long time fan of Dia Frampton for what seems like my entire childhood/adolescence growing up, this cover with The Voice-tourmate Josh Kaufmanis so refreshing to hear. I personally have been in love with this Civil Wars tune for years–as it has become one of my favorites–and I feel their vocal pairing captures the spirit of this song so well.

“Poison & Wine” is one of those sweet and hauntingly beautiful ballads that speaks about the pains of loving when you know you shouldn’t; the idea that loving can both heal and hurt; and when you think you know how one feels, the burdens still hunt you down. It’s not quite about “feeling” love as it is in choosing to love.

The song begins with a slow and steady rhythmic pattern as the male voice (Kaufman) slowly comes in to match it. Holding as a conversation between two souls, the female voice (Frampton) croons in as a reply, offering a lighter, wispier tone that dares make the rather steadier, low tone more angelic.

The two voices begin to croon together in harmonious fashion at the chorus when they say, “Oh I don’t love you, but I always will.” And the song begins and continuously builds and pulls at you.

As the guitar becomes increasingly louder and soars over their voices, Dia beautifully recites, “I wish you’d hold me when I turn my back,” as Josh replies, “The less I give the more I get back.” And when Dia says, “Oh your hands can heal, your hands can bruise,” her voice gently pulls at your soul, creating an astonishingly dissonant and cringeworthy heart tug, as Josh’s voice harmonizes with her at the end of “bruise.”

The song builds more and more harmonious tension, creating a painfully beautiful ballad in which Josh’s warm voice matches Dia’s sweet yet husky tone well. And, their vocal talent and ability to emit emotion is obviously felt here.

Let this song envelop you, and you will see what I mean.


I’ve always wished I could cover this song myself, but I just don’t quite have the natural vocal talent and pairing to do so. But, when I find ones who are able to do this song justice, my heart just soars. And, almost makes me cry. That’s when you know you’re hearing real music: when it hits you, here, here and here—your heart, mind and ears.

Pssst. Anyone else who knows of my terrible flat/foot tan see Dia’s here? Mine is obviously worse but HA! I’m not the only one!

You need to see &#8220;Boyhood.&#8221; Genuine. Warm. Lovely. Heartfelt. It says so much without saying much at all. And it&#8217;s a thrill to watch right before your eyes.

You need to see “Boyhood.” Genuine. Warm. Lovely. Heartfelt. It says so much without saying much at all. And it’s a thrill to watch right before your eyes.

🎥✏ I don&#8217;t mean to brag but can I just say that my screenwriting group and I just KILLED our project?! I couldn&#8217;t be more than happy with the response and solid first draft of our screenplay #TechnicalDifficulties. If you don&#8217;t want in on our story about a typecast &#8220;player&#8221; girl/magazine writer who goes on several dates only to uncover a hidden past of broken connections, loneliness and her unwillingness to connect, you&#8217;re missing out. | &#8220;She&#8217;s connected, but not when it comes to people.&#8221; #screenwriting #screenwriters #screenplay #script #pitch #poster #coverage #treatment #60beatoutline #futurestoryanalysts?

🎥✏ I don’t mean to brag but can I just say that my screenwriting group and I just KILLED our project?! I couldn’t be more than happy with the response and solid first draft of our screenplay #TechnicalDifficulties. If you don’t want in on our story about a typecast “player” girl/magazine writer who goes on several dates only to uncover a hidden past of broken connections, loneliness and her unwillingness to connect, you’re missing out. | “She’s connected, but not when it comes to people.” #screenwriting #screenwriters #screenplay #script #pitch #poster #coverage #treatment #60beatoutline #futurestoryanalysts?

We&#8217;ve all had those people we looked up to growing up, ya? In light of #WCW posts, let me rant to you on my un/healthy obsession with Olivia Wilde (and on having role models when you&#8217;re young). Also, did I say there will be some wisdom on love, career, philanthropy and beer?

Empower yourself. 🙏 | @oliviawilde #oliviawilde #feminist #feminism #quote #woman #women #rolemodel #rolemodels #celebrity #celebrities #hollywood #wordpress #blog #love #career #relationships #philanthropy #beer #wisdom #empower #inspire #elitedaily

We’ve all had those people we looked up to growing up, ya? In light of #WCW posts, let me rant to you on my un/healthy obsession with Olivia Wilde (and on having role models when you’re young). Also, did I say there will be some wisdom on love, career, philanthropy and beer?

Empower yourself. 🙏 | @oliviawilde #oliviawilde #feminist #feminism #quote #woman #women #rolemodel #rolemodels #celebrity #celebrities #hollywood #wordpress #blog #love #career #relationships #philanthropy #beer #wisdom #empower #inspire #elitedaily

My Un/healthy Obsession with Olivia Wilde (and Celebrity Role Models)


I think I have been growing an unhealthy obsession with Olivia Wilde.

But, if I may shamelessly defend myself, was it ever bad to take on too many role models?

People can inspire you. Individuals can empower you. And when you are able to pick out a good person from a bad and surround yourself with positive thoughts, ideas and individuals, it can actually prove to be a worthy investment of your time (and strained eyeballs via the Internet).

I like to say that I am in a period of absorption. As a young, hopeful 20-something year-old girl/woman-child, I am and always have been curious about the world. From a young age, I was always excited to learn new things, experience new adventures and find individuals I could connect with.

When we are young and in our most formative years, we all want somebody to look up to. We want someone to kind of “show us the ropes” on how to be and deal with this little thing called life.


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Is there a “How I Met Your Mother?” reference I don’t get? It was nice to meet you Mister Lam, who totally got set up by his friends to hit on me. #denied #sorrynotsorry
Outfest 2014 Opening Night “Life Partners” Premiere + After Party: A Screenwriting Class Gone Hollywood

I never thought a five-week summer class at UC Irvine would turn out to be my favorite class of my entire college career.

Outfest 2014 - OrpheumUpon entering the 15 or so person screenwriting/workshop-style class, splitting up into 4-person groups reading, watching and talking about famous screenplays, and soon writing our very own screenplays of our own, I was quite thrilled that Dr. Marie Cartier required us all to volunteer at Outfest 2014 with her, Los Angeles’ LGBT Film Festival. So-called the “Cannes” of the LGBT community, it was quite an eye-opening and inspiring night.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my fair share of “big” events. I’ve been able to attend concerts and meet/interview musicians like the Framptons and Kina Grannis; I’ve been able to cover a red carpet event and hear from the likes of and Jessica Sanchez; but, it was quite different being in a room and sharing the space with professionals within the film industry, from Gary Oldman to familiar TV-stars like Leighton Meester (“Gossip Girl”), Adam Brody (“The OC”), Gillian Jacobs (“Community”) and Greer Grammer (“Awkward.”).

Music is and always has been my first love. Whether it was dancing to cultural rhythms at 12 or picking up the guitar and recording awkward videos at 15, music was a godsend to me, calling to my heart, mind and ears. Writing was always a natural space for me to communicate thoughts and ideas; and when I was able to infuse what I love into it, I soon found myself doing more journalistic-esque writing, communicating to more people and audiences.

As with any art comes the need for luck and being in the right place, making it an industry that you can do “all the right things” but still find it tough paying for your meal at the end of the day. But, as an artist, you work project-to-project, hoping to get hired onto something, happy to even be doing what you love in the first place (I’d rather be poor doing what I love than robotically rotting my life away).

Outfest 2014 - Orpheum 2And so, as my professor has allowed us to see the struggles of being a screenwriter, being the first one on the job who creates the movie–and sets up the blueprint, so to speak–it was awesome to see the entire spectrum of a film’s birth to its end at the screening at the Opening Night “Life Partners” Premiere and Gala After Party this past Thursday night.

Having received a bit of “special treatment” as our professor’s students, we arrived on-scene around 6pm at the Orpheum in Los Angeles. Though our shifts were scattered throughout the night, a few coordinators ended up taking us in as their own, having us wristband and ID the audience for entrance into the 21+ after party, and personally usher the crowd throughout the theater. We had it lucky, I’d say, since we got to personally interact with all of the guests and attend the entire screening itself, together. We had no set shift time, except to work until the lights went out and the program began.

Outfest 2014 - Life PartnersExecutive Director Kirsten Schaffer provided an opening speech. Later came special guest Gary Oldman. Then James Schamus, having produced famous films such as “Brokeback Mountain,” “Milk,” “Lost In Translation,” “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” “The Kids Are All Right” and so much more, as recipient of the Outfest Achievement Award. And then came the cast and crew of “Life Partners” (Susanna Fogel, Joni Lefkowitz, Gillian Jacobs, Greer Grammar, etc.), which was being premiered that night.

I have to say the movie was thoroughly funny. As it opened with a sequence of best friends Paige (Gillian Jacobs)–a strong, straight A-type personality woman–and Sasha (Leighton Meester)–a lesbian, guitar-strung slacker–yelling at each other in traffic, later only to hug and laugh about the situation, the entire audience was already in as we knew what this film was going to entail.


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Truth speaks from Olivia Wilde. I think I have been growing an un/healthy obsession with her. @oliviawilde #oliviawilde #alone #healthy #independent #independence #marriage #divorce #relationship #single #dateyourself #knowyourself

Truth speaks from Olivia Wilde. I think I have been growing an un/healthy obsession with her. @oliviawilde #oliviawilde #alone #healthy #independent #independence #marriage #divorce #relationship #single #dateyourself #knowyourself

The mark of a good marriage is partnership and continuing to feel inspired by your spouse. I had that with Tao. But the end is not necessarily the tragedy. Staying in a relationship that is no longer working is the tragedy. Living unhappily—that’s the tragedy.
— Olivia Wilde
"Third Person" Review: Deeply dark, reflective and leaves you feeling perfectly flawed (Olivia Wilde, Mila Kunis, Liam Neeson)


In love and relationships, there is always a third person involved, as writer-director Paul Haggis makes known in his film Third Person.

With three seemingly disparate relationships, all seem to echo parallels with each other that are more familiar to us than we may think.

First off, the work of the actors and actresses in this film is something that needs to be applauded. Haggis…

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Over the progression of the year, I’ve found that I have developed an increasing interest in seeing how films/movies/productions are created from their very raw, bare days into final products, including the following press and marketing for promotion.

Having been involved in small theater productions to producing larger-scale student productions today, as well as having intimately followed the personal lives of musicians through making a record and learning how to read films as a text, it’s interesting to see how these once “fairy-like” individuals whom people see as ethereal objects, pictures and poster-bodies are people just like us.

More and more as I go on with my days, I find myself saying, “I understand how that works. That’s something I could do.”

All these individuals working in all of these different fields aren’t covered up in their “glam” anymore, but rather are people just like us. They do this for work. This is their job. This is a project they’ve taken on.

And though as a student, I’ve only done so little but absorbed so much information, I can see how artists/writers/entertainers go from project to project, hoping to find that job to take on to work, and then take a breather (if you so wish).

This video covers the press conference at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) last September of 2013 for the cast and crew involved in the film, “Third Person.” And, I think this one is particularly special because, not only does it cover quite a beautiful premise about damaged, flawed characters, I loved how intimate writer-director Paul Haggis was with his cast—and vice-versa. These roles tended to have them need to break down and show insecurities and flaws—which was scary for all cast members. It was a heavy topic and required heavy-duty work to bring out of them, but I love how Mila Kunis, especially, said that she admired how he was able to tell them when they were “great” and when they were “shit,” for “that’s the only way you can grow.” So, the work in this seemed to be very collaborative between director and actor, as he only wanted the best out of his characters, but knew when his idea was wrong as well.

I am just awestruck at how professional and hard-working this cast is, and, although the reviews for this film aren’t entirely wonderful, the basic premise intrigues me so much—it seems to be very dark yet beautifully flawed. And, with a cast as hard-working and genuine as this, there were lots of walls to be broken and fears to get over, but a lot of heart put in.

This movie just opened up last June 20/a few weeks ago, so, I am now more intrigued to see this one.

And, as Olivia Wilde stated in another interview with Vanity Fair, she was just so nervous and wanted to cringe during her first viewing of this film that she had fuchsia lipstick on that her friends say was spread all over her face when she got out from all her face-covering. She claims this role, as from this press conference, as being the one that took the most out of her but that she “feel[s] the most proud of.”

I’ll let y’all know how much I like this film when I get to it!