Sunday, October 31, 2010

Amelie Short Film Critique

Me and Luke Gray made a comical movie about a man seeking love and pleasure with an already taken girl. The movie revolves around the boy's awkwardness because this awkwardness provides humor to the film, but it also is a common trait that most guys have but try to conceal. This shows what the real boy is like, and that he is not typical cute and perfect boy in regular movies. This film provides humor and romanticism in a way that has only been done in Amelie before, but we believe our film touches more on teenager's outlooks on love.


My job in this project was writer and editor, although both my partner and I edited two different versions of the project. As a writer, i shared my ideas with my partner on how the film should be done and be based upon. The title of my version, "Let me Love You" is also the title of a love song. The lyrics of this song gave me inspiration to what our film should be like. I proposed this idea to my partner and he created a rough draft of the overall story of the film. From there i refined the ideas and gave the main character his awkwardness, which in turn added humor to the film. I will speak of the edits of my film later on in this critique. Additionally, both me and my partner directed the film and put equal contributions to the project and both put an equal amount of time filming.

The main problem that our project encountered was acting issues and being able to acquire actors for the film. If everything had gone accordingly well then my version of the project should have been finished about a week earlier than it was. However, for the first week we weren't able to get any concrete footage. This was because our actors flaked on us during the weekend which was when the majority of filming was supposed to be made. The following Tuesday i found a new actress, but after having read the script she decided not to proceed with the film. Again we had no actor nor actress. Fortunately the following weekend two of our friends decided to act, along with my partner, Luke. Still, we were a week behind the edit and had to dedicate our time to edit outside of class. Also, we had problems with continuity since the weather during the week was quite random -- one day it rained and the next it was sunny. As an editor and writer no extreme problems were presented to me. Editing my only problem was that the film we had captured was both in widescreen and then in 3:4. Luckily my teacher helped me fix this problem and i began editing right away with only amount of time lost.


The actors we chose do present the comical feel to the movie. Also the male actor excellently portrays the awkward and lustful character we created. However, neither of the two main actors portrayed a loving character or a love struck character so it was difficult to grasp that from our film even though it was one of our intended characterizations. All of our characters are easily distinguishable from one another so character confusion is not an issue.


Our actors easily added comedy to the film. Unfortunately they didn't add romanticism to the film because they couldn't act as a romantic couple. They were too awkward, which was somewhat good since it was an aspect we sought after, but since they were so awkward they weren't able to emulate romantic feels towards one another. It was difficult since the male actor was in a relationship and since they weren't trained actors but simply friends of ours. Still, they did a good job to creating a comical film which was the main aspect that we sought for.

Music was difficult to find because i had to sort through several amounts of untitled loops and songs to find something that may only be used for about 10 seconds. After about two nonconsecutive hours all of my music was found and i believe that it does add the appropriate tone to my film. There were tones of fear, love, excitement, and goofiness which i believed to be adequate to my film. In my version of the film no sound effects were added. This was because i believe that certain sound effects distract the audience from the video so i didn't use and sound effects. That is why i chose to stick with mood appropriate sound tracks.

Mis en Scene:

In our production we stuck to locations that were familiar to all people like libraries and schools. This adds to the realism of the film. We didn't go to and sewers or closed off locations because that wouldn't fit our film. For example the chances of two different people coincidentally going to the same secluded area or minimal. So we stuck to places that people usually go to. Also, me and my partner were keen to keep certain props out of our shots. Most notably we kept all film equipment out, and we tried to keep our shadows as contained as possible. However, for one certain scene we couldn't keep the shadows out but it isn't very noticeable. Still, it is present and that was an issue that did arise.


I wasn't the cinematography my partner was and i believe he did an excellent job. In short, he was able to capture a lot of coverage and the shots he made were nicely filmed. I filmed certain shots that he was in but he checked in with me to make sure that the shot was appropriate. Also he did a good job of shooting with the right lighting. He fixed the exposure when needed and we decided to film during the afternoon and morning of days -- when natural illumination is at its peak.


Despite having a pretty good cinematographer, there were certain scenes that were too dark to view. So in my edit i added filters to these scenes to brighten them up. In a classroom scene there are extras in the back ground. Extras who we could not control and who tried to ruin the film by making inappropriate gestures and moving in on the back ground of the shots.

So in that sequence i decided to add the video filter "soft edges" to conceal the nuisance. Slowly i increased the density of the edges, and surprisingly, the result made it seem as if the soft edges were intentionally done to add a dream effect to the film. This was perfect since the following scene was indeed a dream sequence. In terms of cutting i made faster cuts than my partner. I did this because i found it boring to keep a static shot on an actor for too long. Boring and unnecessary so i made faster cuts and manipulated speed to minimize the duration of certain long clips. Additionally, i added several cross fade and fades to convey a change in time and a change in scene. Lastly i added certain visual filters to a couple of shots to give them a more dramatic and magical appeal. To the female actor i added soft edges and a glow to give her a majestic and beautiful look. This gave reason to why the boy thought of her, he was attracted to her.

Vector Transition: