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#1 Mario C Jackson

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 11:10 PM

Hey Fellow cinematographers
Below is a link to a short film I recently co-dp'd.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vlkNcvAylAs&feature=youtu.be Give me your honest opinion on lighting and camera work. It was shot on dslr's. Somehow the colors seem to bleed in my opinion. Nevertheless, I await your thoughts.

Here is the link
Thanks
Mario C. Jackson

Edited by Mario C Jackson, 18 June 2012 - 11:13 PM.

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#2 Mario C Jackson

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 04:44 PM

Come on fellas, someone critique.
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#3 Freya Black

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 07:40 PM

Love the end credits- cute!

Technically I'm not a fella but I'm what ya got, so there ya go.

Opening shots are nice colours. I like that bit.
Some nice movement in the shots.

Shots of the awards or whatever are poor. I suggest to you that you could have arranged them however you wanted to get a great shot, and nice framing. There was nothing to stop you doing that, nothing about the location, no performers involved but for some reason you didn't. The close up of the wedding dress is a bit better OTOH.

Well the otherworldly bit is a bit too cream walls and nasty. Seeing as it's supposed to be a bit otherworldly I suppose you could have tried to overexpose it a bit or something to try and play it down, Looks like you tried to filter it a bit. Best of all would have been a different location, especially as theres no reason I can see that it has to be shot in an apartment/apartment corridor! ;) The bit in the exterior was there and to be honest you could have shot more of it in that exterior. The door could have been a door leading outside without even having to change the dialogue. On the upside using the blind was a good move but you could have used it more to avoid showing the rest of the room. It's a bit too close up too I think and the framing isn't all that. Having said that I really like the shot at 3.17

The other location looks GREAT in comparison. The framing in this location tends to be a lot better too. Maybe it wasn't as cramped in there! ;) I like the way it cuts to a close up at 1:05 ish. The stuff in the green room is the highlight of the film. That section isn't perfect but it works really well.

love

Freya
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#4 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:43 PM

After watching I noticed that it was a 48 hour film. I hate the 48 hour idea. Is this why you had so many operators? It's quite a normal and predictable feeling film to me. Under imagined. Inconsistently framed, commonly off or aimless in the framing. Being of very conventional form, it needs accurate compositions.

The therapist's office had odd red skin tones. Otherwise I quite liked the light, colour, shadows there. The other world (therapy experience) was definately to me under imagined. Normal life with a filter. And even in this excursion into consciousnes, words and the actors faces stay glued together. More expressive and imaginative stuff please.

The concept is ok, with potential to be quite nice. The actors basically have to carry the whole thing. They do quite well.

But I don't know if any critique of a film made in 48 hours is really meaningfull. It's just such a bizare time constraint to accept. Why do it?

Cheers,
Gregg.
PS. Did not enjoy the piano, especially in the other world part.
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#5 Freya Black

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 03:35 AM

But I don't know if any critique of a film made in 48 hours is really meaningfull. It's just such a bizare time constraint to accept. Why do it?


I know what you mean! I signed up to one of these because I was sick of doing NOTHING for 2 years except fill in government forms, have meetings and applying for jobs. I couldn't make it to the actual announcement thing as I had a work programme meeting in fact. It was a nightmare to cram into my schedule and by the time of the shoot I was a mess. I shot something in the space of a little over an hour and spent all night trying to make it into something workable and turned up at the hand in ready to pass out and feeling very trippy.

The whole thing is a bit like a sack race or an egg and spoon race. You are so glad to see the other filmmakers make it over the line.

Why do it? I bizzarely got more interest in employment out of that, then from all the CV's I sent out over and over. Action = good. I also got to meet some great acting talent.

I definitely agree with you that it's really difficult to judge a video that has been cobbled together in such extreme circumstances.

I learnt a lot from doing it and it was definitely time to do something extreme in my life.

PS. Did not enjoy the piano, especially in the other world part.


It's true. The piano is really, really horrible and annoying.

love

Freya
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#6 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 02:01 PM

The concept is ok, with potential to be quite nice. The actors basically have to carry the whole thing. They do quite well.


Yes, I agree there is a sweet concept at the heart of this but I completely DISAGREE that the actors "do quite well." The guy who played her father seemed like he did not even want to be on the set, never mind playing the character.

I thought the piano fit well with the mood you were trying to create, as did the soft-filtering in the dream sequence.

As for the camera work, my biggest gripe (with ALL filmmakers and with this particular film) is this over-reliance on some kind of floating, Steadicam-like camera. Pick a spot, plant the tripod on the floor and shoot. If you want to see some examples of both kinds of camera techniques that were used judiciously in the same films, take a look at Stanley Kubrick's work starting with Paths of Glory. Although the Steadicam had not yet been invented, you will see how Kubrick created the same effect and used it to accentuate the dramatic narrative. Pay attention to his compositions in that film.

All in all, I've seen worse shorts (especially if this was done in 48 hours.) But this could be better. The key is WATCH MORE OLD FILMS.
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#7 Mario C Jackson

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 02:52 PM

Thanks everyone for your critique of my work. I was the dp and it was a short time span to shoot but it was fun. I will be behind the camera again in a few weeks and I will hopefully improve on this next project. This community is an excellent resource for me and I really do appreciate your honesty. I would love to collaborate and build a relationship with a gaffer, so if you are and live in VA hit me up.
Mario Concepcion Jackson
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#8 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 05:42 PM

Yes, I agree there is a sweet concept at the heart of this but I completely DISAGREE that the actors "do quite well." The guy who played her father seemed like he did not even want to be on the set, never mind playing the character.......


Hey Bill,
I decided not to re-watch the film, so leaving my original impressions intact.

As Mr Darcey says in Joe Wright's sublime Pride and Prejudice, "quite well is not very well" or something like that. I thought they almost had to carry this film on their own, so I'm not surprised that some one finds fault in the acting. Imagining if Robert Redford played the Dad or the Therapist or both and probably him giving notes on script and camera. Could be a nice little film.

My personal re-imagined version of a film like this turns the actors almost into movable non speaking props that become part of expressive tableaus and sources of often minute expressive details. Overlaid with words as required to maintain the narrative.

Cheers,
Gregg.
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#9 Robert G Andrews

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 07:05 PM

The opening shots were all shaky and hand-held. Why pan too high over what was written on cardboard box? Aren't shots like that supposed to allow viewers read?

Two shots of his face at 1.03 and 1.04... why?

Was it that she had the wrong make up on or was it bad lighting that also created (shadows) on her face?

The flashback at the door was okay, but maybe there should be a bit of a pause before he steps into frame and says "hello Christy"

Why are they both wearing black trousers and same blue shirt? looks odd.

When she said, "and I felt like I could do anything"... didn't you think of a close-up of her expression to emphasise that?

The stuff around 2.00 is okay.

Overall, the story made more sense to me towards the end and then I like it a lot more and thought this had a nice feeling to it which is important, but some changes would improve net result, including the script and on a smaller scale that may be when he says "close your eyes"... she should close them in slow motion.
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Opal

Metropolis Post

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Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

CineTape

Technodolly

CineLab

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Glidecam

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Ritter Battery

Abel Cine

The Slider

Willys Widgets

Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

Paralinx LLC