Short Film Reviews By Navpreet Grewal and Megan Shepherd
Plastic Bag It is directed by Ramin Bahrani. There is a variety of camera angles and shots: Close ups, Long shots, High angle shot, Mid shot, Extreme close –up. It is a story of a plastic bag and the journey that the bag takes is of self discovery. It is narrated and the bag has been personified due to having a voice. Also the use of tracking as when the bag moves out of the shot the bag follows. There is non-diegetic sound. There is a soundtrack. Audience sympathise with the plastic bag as they can see life from the bags point of view.
Tia and Marco The shots vary from close-ups to extreme close-ups and mid –shots. All the shots are positioned with the main characters in the middle of the shot. In some certain scenes there is the use of tracking. It is directed by Anni J.Howell Both diegetic and non diegetic sound has been used. The music creates tension and suspense. There is also the use of dialogue between the two main characters and that is what pieces the movie together. There is no particular target audience. The audience they most probably trying to reach would be late teens and/or people in their twenties. It is set in the future of 2025.
Kiwi The film is a animation. These range of shots show the emotion and actions of the character. There is non- diegetic sound. The camera zooms in one the main character. The range of shots that have been used is Extreme close up long shot, low angle high angle, close –ups and mid shots. There is no dialogue. The camera also tracks the characters movements. There is one scene where there is no sound and it just is silent. The target audience is young children mostly as it is animated so would keep them intrigued.
Non –diegetic sound and the use of dialogue between the characters which tells the narrative. Tent City Directed by Aldo Velasco. The story is of Tent City is set in the near future during a time of economic collapse. Unemployment is in the double digits, and block after block of businesses and homes have been foreclosed and abandoned. Only the powerful few live in homes, while the rest must survive in the tent cities cropping up everywhere. Father and son relationship helps him understand what he needs to do. The shots vary between close –ups and mid shots from the beginning to middle and near the end as well. The film fades in to black every time a new scene is about to start. Also some scenes have been done through using photographs. There is also the distorted images with extreme close ups near the middle end. At the beginning the camera is tracking. Show a whole tow. The titles emerge half way through the beginning and they pan forward. There is also a high angle shot to make him look superior which gets contrasted with a low angle. There is a Point of view shot.
It is set in Los Angeles which is the heart of all main brands and logos. Logorama Directed by H5/ François Alaux, Hervé de Crécy and Ludovic Houplain Has brought logos alive. As being based round Ronald McDonald as a criminal and Michelin as the police. Non –diegetic sound. Also the use of dialogue as that is what takes the story along. There is a range of shots such as extreme close-ups, low angle shots, mid shots and close ups. There is also a bird’s eye view shot. Which shows the whole of the location and all the brand logos. The logos have come to life through the animation which took them six years to craft. There is also the use of a pan shot. The camera in the film also moves up towards to look at the “Green Giant” to show his point of view. The film has won an award at the Oscars 2010 for best short film.
Play Directed by David Kaplan and Eric Zimmerman Tracking shot as it follows a character Close up and point of view from the character who is shot. Non –diegetic sound with the soundtrack. Also the use of dialogue between characters. Diegetic sound when they start to play the game. Writing next to each character as if they were in a game. Has their name, what they are supposed to do but also there energy levels as if in a game. In one scene when the character says the words ‘resit’ the old character would disappear and bring in anew one as if he is controlling them. Extreme close up to show emotion but also get the audience involved. Shot reverse shot when characters are talking to each other. All the scenes are interlinked and it seems like everyone is programmed as if they still in a game. Play imagines a not-too-distant future where video games have become indistinguishable from reality. These fully immersive games are nested inside each other
Pia Non –diegtic sound which is quite electronic. Directed by Tanuj Chopra There is pictures at the beginning with some writing on top of it at the beginning of the film. Use of dialogue between the characters. It is set in San Francisco of the year 2063. In certain scenes one of the characters has a flashback and the way it is represented is through a video so the can go forward an backwards at times. In one shot the character is walking towards the camera. Close –ups to show emotion , mid shots to reveal the distance , long shots and also shot reverse shot when the characters are talking to each other. Both of the characters at the beginning are in the middle of the shot so the audience know what the focus is going to be around.
High angle , long shot, close ups and mid shots. To reveal the emotion but also so that the audience can relate with the characters and have a shared frame of reference. The Rise Non diegtic sound of the sea at the end of the film. Also there is the use of dialogue between the characters. Directed by Garret Williams. At the end of the film their is an extreme close up of the baby and that could suggest that the future is all about the young child. The Rise is a story in the not-so-distant future about a generation letting go of the American Dream and a new generation adapting to life on the edge. There is diegetic sound of at the beginning of wrapping paper and also some walking.
Black Box Fast cuts – pace is increased and tension is built as the film goes on. Shot reverse shot is used in the convocation when exchanging dialogue . Like an interrogation. Straight cuts – seem somewhat realistic and straight forward. Fades to flashback.. Diegetic sound – dialogue. Non diegetic – music. The music is used well, its got a beat, keeping the story flowing, slowly speeding it up in pace. Again, building tension. Mostly mid shots, close ups at first. Showing the reactions and building tension through facial expressions. Both are equal in shot. Whip pans and panning up is used to build tension when he is about to click the button. Slow zoom to face – reaction. No specific regional accents, seem to speak the queens English to branch to a wider audience. Set in a plain white room, one desk, two chairs and a button on a stand. Makes you pay more attention to the characters. Costumes are suits, for working and a formal event. Judge is in judge attire. Lighting is bright, making it have a surreal effect. Film starts with biblical references, in a religious font. Its in black and white, which hints to us what may happen. Audience Teens + Messages of peer pressure, temptation and decision making. Students will relate.
Wrong side of the Bed His clothing is relatable too. We’ve all seen office wear, and there is a certain stereotype with offices, and bad days. Or perhaps just working. The lighting is natural in most shots. In the morning, its dark, since he has just woken up, however its also a symbol of a fresh new start, and perhaps a hint of foreboding for one side of average Joe. However, the light in the bedroom also hints at the good day too. Its showing Binary oppositions. (picture above) Split screen showing 2 narratives of “Average Joe’s” day – Good and Bad. Its relatable since we as an audience all have good and bad days. It uses props such as Toast, curtains, apples taps and scarf's to emphasise how even little things can cause problems. Its open to all audiences, however I believe that a slightly older, into the teenage years would understand the concept a little more. We all have bad days, and half of the stuff in this film has happened to us, more than once. There is no dialogue, because there doesn’t need to be. Its all shown through the shots. The upbeat music keeps the pace flowing and the Mostly used mid / long shots of “Joe” show us his body language and how it differs. It uses straight cuts, keeping it naturalistic, however, its jumps to different times of the morning making the pace fast. This film won the one minute wonder award. His house looks basic and simple, making it easily relatable and understandable. The genre would appear to be comedy, with a touch of slice of life. The music tells us this. Its a upbeat piece of music. When both sides switch over, it tricks the audience into thinking that there will be a shift, but makes it funny by continuing the characters bad day, by a woman slapping him, and helping the other. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uR_PzFZgsHU&feature=related
SNAP Director – ManoloCeli. Action - quick cuts. In editing. Tracking shots. (stolen shots) Music cuts out when kids skipping, comic effect. Music then returns after photographer and tourist appear in the frame. Its an artistic film. There is upbeat music throughout the film, however it is relaxed at the start. When the action begins, its builds up in pace. It uses electric guitars and drums, sounding a little like rock music almost. The main character is nearly always in the centre of the frame – showing he is most important, he is the artist. Cafe is a casual setting, and relatable. The streets are too. It was filmed in Florida. His clothing is average too, they change through the shots when he is running and changing corners. It symbolises a change in time, showing a new person. It shows the audience that he has done that kind of thing before. There is what looks like a camera bag on his back, showing he is perhaps a photographer. The film pace shifts from slow motion at some points./ Such as when they run through the pigeons. Over head shot was used in the gallery, showing people admiring his photographs of angry people. In the credits, it shows him training on a tread mill, he has sports achievements on his wall, and hockey stick, showing he was ready to take those photos. He then fades out of the shot, ending the story. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmxX2r-uD8I
Teeth Teeth, "Short films" Directed by John kennedy & Ruairi 'O' brain. Under water shot is used, to look up at the teeth. Mostly mid shots and close ups are used. Since they are on a small boat, confined. A long shot is used (upper right) to show the two characters, in a sillouhette. An establishing shot (Lower left) is used to give the audience a idea of where they are being taken with this film The film is in black and white, giving it the effect of an old photograph. Like a memory. Its shot in one setting the whole way through. On a boat, in the middle of a lake. With 2 characters. The two old men, dressed in clothing which make them seem like gentlemen and kind hearted characters. . Main props are false teeth, rods, net. Boat. They are all simple, fishing things. Apart from the teeth, The teeth are the key item in the comedy. At the beginning It fades to title screen. (black) . “Teeth” is in a fancy font. The only dialogue is Laughing, from the old men. It gives it a light hearted feel to it. No dialogue is needed really. Its a comedy, shown through action. (Like throwing the teeth away, and putting them in a fish.) The music is relaxed and simple. It keeps a steady pace throughout the film. Its tranquil, like the setting. They use straight cuts, to make it realistic and easy to understand with the lack of dialogue. Realistic setting. All natural and tranquil. The moral is “What goes around, comes around.”
Her morning elegance The music (Her morning elegance) relaxing, chill out tunes. Its got a nice medium rhythm , the pace is set to match the music. Her Morning Elegance video Directed by: Oren Lavie, Yuval & Merav Nathan Featuring: ShirShomron Photography: EyalLandesman The photos flow naturally, the pace is fast. Straight cuts are used to keep the pace flowing. The bed is the setting, the covers and other things such as clothing change the atmosphere. Her bed covers move to make it look like she is underwater (lower right) to on a train or in a sky scraper. Clothing becomes fish etc. She is in her nightwear the entire time. The man, (the Oren lavie) is in a suit, looking like her “dream man” Stop motion film, all made with photographs. Over head shot, looking down the whole time. Birds eye view. We watch her as she sleeps, in her journey through her multiple bed covers and clothing. The man grabs her leg, pulling her down like a protective figure. The film acts like a music video, the man sings along to the song, while she dreams. The lighting is bright, like a morning, when you first wake up. The beam from the window stays in the same place , until she wakes up, again, symbolising its a dream. When she wakes up, its back to reality.
Oktapodi This short SGI animated film, won an Oscar. The moral is “Love overcomes everything.” Its relatable to the audience, since people are in relationships, and we all go through rough patches. But if you overcome them, Everything works out in the end. Shot looking out of the tank, out at the world. Under water shots are used since its based on 2 sea creatures. (One shown top left). Gives the audience an insight to their lives. You see it from their point of view. Music cuts out as the driver crashes through the wall. Adding a comical effect to it. It then restarts as he drops into the water. All straight cuts. Nothing fancy. Pan up to see the pools in peoples gardens. It maps out the route they take for the audience. (Lower right). The music seems French, (makes sense because it was made by French students). Its fast pace and dramatic at times. Its keeps the action flowing. There is no dialogue, its all shown through the octopuses facial expressions and eyes. The only speech heard is screams from he delivery man. The SGI cuts to a cartoon image, its showing us how the octopus is thinking, and the horror of what might happen if he doesn't save his love. Relationship shown through he hug and adoring stare (top left). The font of the title screen is specialised, the letters for an octopus tentacle. (below).
Links to Our film Tia and Marco- We could use a variety of shots as is done in this short film to see what would best suit our film. Plastic bag- The use of giving the bag a voice which is what we could do with the books and technology that could be done by personifying it. Kiwi- As being an animated film the use of it only being one character could be quite useful as then the audience can relate with the character. Tent City- The use of non- diegtic sound as it can reveal a lot about the film. Through a soundtrack. Pia- The way that the flashbacks are used as they are like a video. So we could something similar like that by having the books look back on their lives and remembering all the good times that they had. The Rise- The narrative as well because it is about moving on and how we all have to let go sometimes. So the books could reflect on having to let go and accept their fate. Play- The narrative as it based on how technology has taken over. As all the characters play the same game and they can not differentiate between what’s reality and not. Logorama- Bring things to life. As the logos have a voice and are play certain people according to society. Which is good as then the books and technology can come to life as well.
Links to Our film. Wrong side of the bed – Slice of life. Following a day of a character. Black box – decision making. Peer pressure. In our film, its technology under pressure. Teeth – Lack of dialogue. Comedy shown through action. We will narrate to personify our objects, like he personified the fish with the teeth. Snap – photos. Planning ahead for the future. Having something stolen. In our film, technology outdates itself. Its “pride” and sense of “uniqueness” is being stolen. Oktapodi – Showing a relationship through gestures and expression. We are personifying objects. ( like in plastic bag) and spreading their opinions. They loved their owners too. Her morning Elegance – Shot in stop motion. Most of our film will be in stop motion too.