Monday, January 30, 2012

Video of the Day: Little Black Boxes

Video of the Day
Little Black Boxes

Courtesy of the YoungCuts Film Festival

What's It Called?  Little Black Boxes

Who Made It? Written and Directed by Sophie Choquette

Where Is It From? Montreal, Quebec, Canada

How Old Is the Director? 19 (18 at time of production)

What Is It?  Claymation Music Video

How Long Is It?  4:23

What Is It About?  This claymation video was done by a John Abbott student. It explores the relationships this generation has with technology, and how relationship with living beings is compromised by an addiction to technology. The piece follows a young man as his relationships with loved ones are replaced by devices and he betrays them. Technology ends up betraying him in the end.

When Did YoungCuts Play It?  2011

What Awards Did It Win?  Top 100 Short Films 2011 YoungCuts Film Festival.

Why Did We Play It?  We get a lot of films submitted to the Festival that break your heart, because the filmmaker went to a lot of trouble to create a film that only works because of music that they don't have the rights to use. This is heartbreaking for three reasons, first it severely limits what the filmmaker can do to showcase their talent, second, the music chosen almost always comes across as an inauthentic choice, not appropriate for what the filmmaker was trying to do. Finally, for every great young filmmaker looking for musical inspiration, there are great young musicians looking for opportunities to create music.

Sophie did it exactly right. She found a band at her school with a great song, raw with the passion of youth and she created a fantastic animated video to accompany that song. The raw energy of her animation (or if you prefer the raw inertia of her animation) matched the raw energy of the music because they were coming from the same place. The film is authentic in the way that a film by a young filmmaker that uses a 30 year old David Bowie song can never be.

Also, you have to admire a filmmaker who literally burns down her sets.

YoungCuts Statement  As a quick follow-up, we should maybe explain how we ended up finding Little Black Boxes. The Festival Director Michael Ryan was invited to lead a discussion about Best Practices for Festival Submissions during the Concordia Film Festival on the Thursday afternoon that the festival started. This lead to an invitation to take part in a panel early that Saturday morning during the festival about the future of short film. One of the other panellists was Daniel Schorr who teaches animation at CEGEP John Abbott. He invited Michael to attend their end-of-year screening that was taking place at Cinema du Parc that Sunday evening.

We mention this as a tip to student filmmakers and their teachers. If you are doing an end-of-year screening, invite film festivals like ours to come. If we can send someone to watch the films we will. And we will frequently tell young filmmakers on the spot what films we are interested in (and sometimes what films need more work.)

It does help to give us more than 24 hours notice though!


You can watch more videos HERE!


If you are a young filmmaker and would like to submit your short film to the 2012 YoungCuts Film Festival, HERE'S HOW!


Video of the day is brought to you in part by Canadian Heritage.

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