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Cushy: A Pull Story

3.854545
Average: 3.9 (11 votes)
The Film That Spans More Than 10 Years
Christchurch > 09
This is our team’s first time doing 48HOURS (although one of us has been involved with a different team previously), and we had a blast. The film spans more than ten years, and we all felt like we’d aged about that much by the end of the weekend too. No children were harmed in the making of this movie (can’t say the same for furniture).
kiwidoc
5.04

Really enjoyable, great scenes in the life of the couch, some really funny stuff in party scenes. Good idea on how to use the genre. Not sure if character at end was supposed to be girl from start but cute idea.

I really appreciate the effort this team went through to achieve their storytelling.
In particular:
-Moving not just a couch to various locations, but it looked like a whole lot of other stuff as well
-Intercutting day/night sequences to show passages of time
-Helping a couch to drink- and being brave about the continuity if there was a mistake.
-Party times!
If the girl used a mini-gun to get her tooth out after the door slam attempt failed, that is the only thing missing in order to earn full marks from me.
Well done!

greywacke
5.04

Fantastic opening scene to get you hooked and great concept right through. Wonderful use of short, quick cuts to tell the story. Really enjoyed the heart of this movie but also really appreciated the humour in the second act! Terrific use of the genre. Well done all!!!

MistaTeas
5.04

We take a journey with the life of a couch over the course of 10 years.

This was a nicely crafted story that completed an arc for I guess both the character and the inanimate object (the couch) that was the lead in the film. There were some nice sequences, especially the flat party which was full of energy. Visually you did well in keeping the framing of the couch consistent during the film. I still can't decide if the audio was deliberately quiet on occasions or not, in a kind of the people are not the important ones here approach. I also wonder if there was just one too many recyclings of the couch to new owners but I wouldn't have missed the flat sequence for anything. Spoiler, but it was clear that the tooth would be found at some stage, otherwise the opening scene was irrelevant, so the reveal was a little ho-hum. There are quite a few of these "journey of an inanimate object" films (usually involving money or rocks) out there on the web so the only note for "Cushy" is that it's not an especially new approach. That said, I'd be surprised if this wasn't a finalist. It's the sort of cleanly constructed short judges go for.

Man I loved how committed you were in getting this couch from place to place, so awesome! Definitely more of an artistic film than one with a complete story, I was hoping the lady at the end would have smiled revealing some sort of odd gap in her teeth (But I understand that would have been pretty silly haha) This is an incredible effort as a first timer team, can't wait to see what you do in the future!

The best take on the genre I saw. As far as i can recall) this is the only film where the time spanned the whole film, rather than just a 10 year time jump at some point. This film felt really informed by the genre

Great work pulling off your concept so well.

To say it’s a simple idea done well or that less is more does the whole film a disservice. (Even if the film is a great example both those points) The pace at which things keep happening and variety of imagery we get is to be applauded and no doubt kept you very busy over the shoot weekend.

Lots of delightful moments. Lots of funny developments, the balance between story and comedy was perfect.

It’s also film that really works visually without being flashy about it. This film would probably be just as effective with the sound off.

City finalist for absolutely sure.

Great score too.

This was a very cool and very ambitious film that was well executed. I thoroughly enjoyed this film from start to finish. Excellent cinematography. The matching shots of the couch in the same position every shot was very cool. Providing as many laughs as it did with an inanimate lead actor was amazing. The only flaw in this film for me perhaps was the ending. It was a really nice, sweet ending but sadly a bit predictable from the opening scene. I'm not sure what I wanted as an ending but I kept waiting for there to be some extra level of reason WHY the little girl *spoilers* would want to find her couch and tooth again. Without a solid emotional connection between the two it seemed more like a moment of "oh hey. This is my couch" as opposed to a long lost journey/ redemption arc of some kind. But overall an excellent short film and easily a city finalist and can't wait to see more from South Jersey Ghost Research in the future.

Pretty faultless movie for 48 hours. Great clear story arc and very engaging. I did feel the couch lost some of its status at the end after been the main focus. Great job - look forward to seeing it in the finals.

Such a beautiful film, and one of my personal favourites of the competition so far. Not much else to say here but great job, and can’t wait to see what you come up with in the future!

nshady
4.06

This was nicely executed in a hard genre. I like that you committed to showing all the years pass and did some proper damage to a real couch across that time. Some nice technical work across the film, with lots of cast, consistent direction, and a terrifying door slam. Ultimately, it didn't quite land with too much impact mostly because it's more of a fly on the wall story than anything with narrative purpose. When it gets to the end, all you think is, 'yep, that was 10 years'. There's not really a journey to invest in. But again - that's potentially a symptom of a hard genre. Nice work with your first film, and I look forward to seeing what you do next!

Alexander Jones
city manager

This film is GREAT.

A lot of my thoughts have already been said here by other reviewers, so I'm just gonna rattle off some things I loved and a couple of things I think could have been improved.

I love the devotion to the 10 years + genre, which is evident in you guys actually taking home the award. I've seen a couple teams struggle with the problem of needing to age up their characters, so for this film to just follow a couch was a great idea, and it has this kind of weird "I'd never actually thought about this" quality to it too, like yeah, I guess that couch I picked up for my flat from that random trademe user's house would have had a pretty interesting life span up until now.

Great call as well, having all of Cushy's dwellings be different from each other, was a great excuse to take the audience on a journey, as well as give you guys as filmmakers a nice adventure for the Saturday shooting sessions, racing a couch across town to different locations. I love that we end up in a storage unit too, it could have been there for most of the decade plus that this story covers, but we don't need to be told this. Loved it.

I think what really sold the film in the end for me, is the fact that Cushy gets a face by the end, complete with flappy mouth. The film would have felt incomplete without this, without this couch I'd grown to love over the past ten years finally being able to express his emotions. It seems like an obvious choice, to give your inanimate object a face to make them more relatable, but here in "Cushy: A Pull Story" it's just shy of being treated as a twist or a reveal. Excellent stuff.

Biggest things to improve on for next year would be the technical side- particularly camera work and audio, if anything held this film back from the coveted top 3 spots, it would have been this kinda stuff. I think ten years ago, a film like "Cushy: A Pull Story" could have taken out the whole comp, but in 2018 films with a higher quality production tend to pop equally as with story, which wasn't always the way, but in my opinion filmmaking is equal parts story and the technical means with which you tell it.

It would have been nice as well if in the party scene, we had a few party goers loitering just at the edge of frame, everyone in this scene looks kinda cramped into the shot as to not miss anything, but it just looks a touch staged.

Also, that pregnant belly, fwoarr. When she showed up on screen with what was clearly a fake baby bump, the whole cinema giggled, which was a shame because it is a detractor from the film, and it wouldn't have been with a bit more creative effort to make her belly look genuine. A small gripe for sure, but something that I think definitely needed to be mentioned- though I'm sure you're well aware already.

As for your title, is "Cushy: A Pull Story" a pun on "Upholstery"? If it is, then well done, if it isn't, then what the hell is a "pull story"? :P

Fantastic job team, I cannot wait to see what SJGR bring us next year.

ProfessorM
5.04

If there was an award for Best Accidental Art Direction, then it would HAVE to be awarded to the spill on the cushion. Seriously, a unicorn-shaped puddle?

Cushy is a light wee film that absolutely nailed it's genre, (hence taking home the Christchurch award) and should be a real contender for Best Use of Genre at the Grand Finals.
As others have commented, the story was a little...cushy...overall. But for a feel-good flick with no real tension, it's lovely.

Looking forward to seeing what SJGR produce in the future!