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"INSTEAD" - a short scene

matt35mm · 4 · 1190

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on: April 15, 2007, 10:59:27 PM

A short scene (a little over 5 minutes) that my pals and I shot fairly impromptu as a test/exercise to wet our feet before jumping into a larger project that we're doing.

As we've been coming up with irregular approaches to filmmaking, breaking down traditional roles and methods and reinventing them, and we wanted to have a sense of how that would feel in practice.  We talked about this scene for a couple of hours and then shot it in a couple of hours.

I'm pretty happy with this little scene, as I think it's actually more interesting than we anticipated for such a lark.  I'm very excited to see how our upcoming collaboration, which is going to go further in discovering new approaches, will be, especially since we'll have a lot more time.

I've been very curious as to how this scene plays to people, so I'd greatly appreciate any responses here.


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Reply #1 on: April 28, 2007, 06:13:27 AM
I understood what you were going for, and I was with you up 'til a point.  however, I felt like the actors were not convincing enough, I never really felt tension between them, and even though the final revelation was poignant, the whole scene for me never rose beyond an argument.  the structure seemed pretty clear to me after watching it.  the ending did not have any emotional resonance with me though, I'm sad to say.  I wish I could be moved, and I understood the drama behind the guy's words, but the script and his performance never really seemed to connect.
as for the technical aspect--the sound is great, but the camerawork was really sloppy at times.  I understand there is a fine line between naturalistic and amatuerish.
I'm curious to hear about your "reinvention" and the other things you were talking about--elaborate please.
“Tragedy is a close-up; comedy, a long shot.”
- Buster Keaton


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Reply #2 on: April 28, 2007, 08:51:23 AM
i think it sucks that we don't give each other more feedback around here. 

on that note, i watched it a while back but i wasn't sure what to say.  the thing i've noticed about your stuff (this and thomas edison - i won't mention poof), is that your material requires a lot from the actors, and thats really risky.  i thought the guy had a brian atene thing going on in some parts. 

i thought the camerawork and editing was generally pretty effective, except for one really awkward cut at about 1:38.  you cut to an expression of the girl's face, and i don't know what necessitated that cut.  the shot you cut away from was nice. 

i liked it pretty well. 


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Reply #3 on: May 06, 2007, 03:41:26 PM
I watched this when you first posted it, didn't get around to commenting on it, and watched it again just now.

I liked this scene a lot, although I would in my criticism of it echo a lot of the sentiments expressed above (particularly in regards to the acting, which is almost there most of the time - a probalem I feel like I run into a lot myself). It's engaging, even though it isn't completely successful; there's clearly something very interesting going on (formally and narratively), even though I don't feel like I'm left with much. I did like the camerawork, although I think you could have gotten away - and made a better film - had you used less cuts. The kitchen scene, for example. And the last exchange goes from sounding completely written to completely real - it almost sounds like they're talking about two different things, and the fact that it's done in two separate shots exacerbates this. I understand the necessity for closeups with this sort of material, but I'd have loved to see how it played in a shot that managed to get both of them in there.

But as an experiment, I think it's great. You try these things out, and then you improve upon them -- I can't wait to see the results.