Some may find this laborious but I liked the short-n-simple nature of this film. The mesh of animation and live-action works well (nice roto work) and I like the use of physical Wellington icons being the monster’s playthings and how it observes its surroundings. Though there isn’t really a story, it truly is nature running amok.
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Stupendous opening credits. Had me settled for a two-hour feature.
Lacks production polish in some areas. Contains some beautiful shots in other areas. (Did you use natural lighting for that opening shot? Because wow, that was pretty.) Moreover, has that head-down, high-energy, smash-through-the-wall 48 filmmaking that's infectiously funny to watch, with perfectly game actors and a silly but coherent plot unafraid to swerve in any ridiculous turn but paced well enough to swerve quickly into the next one.
I have one big setback: the film doesn't really commit to the 'Generation Gap' genre. Competition-wise, it's a key limitation. Entertainment-wise, it probably doesn't matter. I laughed heaps.
A nicely done 'try that again' time-travel short with a solid lead performance. Some very cool camera tricks present, especially in that initial bathroom scene.
Had the friendship been further developed and the consequences of constant travel been teased (rather than just vaguely explained through a line of dialogue), it would have given the ending much more of an emotional effect.
A very good effort.
Love me a Pac n Save robot. Thank you for doing this proud 48Hours tradition a valiant service.
Great shooting location for the given genre and really liked how blunt the human character was towards hopeless robo-romantic Nellie. It's effective comedy, but his apathy doesn't quite gel with the ending. The sound mix also wavered quite a bit between the two leads.
Nellie's a hell of a creation, though. I swear I could see a soul in those CD disc eyes.
I love me a black comedic take on grief and this nicely produced film delivered on that.
It’s largely on the shoulders of a very solid lead performance. Monologues are tough though, especially in 48Hours. I commend the attempt, and parts of it work well, but I found it just a bit too expositional and it detracted from the actual concept - which could have been explored to such great effect.
The ending hints at the potential that was lost. And I say this as a film that could have SLAYED the comp if it was given more time to develop.
Nevertheless, I thought it was a really good short.
Really, really liked this one. Superb take on the Coming-of-Age genre with two dynamite performances, aided by on-point wardrobe and makeup. Great shots of Auckland’s night-life too. Felt like it could have been part of K’rd Stories.
The middle section, where the lead gets cold feet, felt a bit too brief and could have used a stronger situation or more judgmental faces to really drive their insecurity to the ground. This would have really heightened the emotional payoff at the end.
It’s not that big of a deal though, since I still found the ending and its Oz references quite touching. Great stuff.
Beautifully shot with an iron-fist edit (you might be up for an editing nomination) and other nice production touches like the simple but effective VR Package prop.
Also presents a solid take on the Holiday genre, but the idea could have done more to stand out in this Black Mirror era. The concept of stress being a prison could have been fleshed out and used more foreshadowing to give the film the impact it’s missing. As it stands, the ending seems a bit too sudden.
Nevertheless, there’s some excellent craft here that was a pleasure to witness on the big screen.
Neat film, well produced and boosted by some very good lead performances. Especially liked the makeup: nothing that demanded studio professionals but for what was needed, couldn’t have been better.
Perhaps the only limitation was how the existence of the vlog played into the ending in a fairly obvious way. But that’s a minor quibble. I liked this short a lot.
Proof that you don’t need a traditional “plot” to make something very, very, very awesome that’s under five-minutes long. Really inventive approach to ‘Real-Time’ (I ain’t saying what it is) that just kept throwing things at the audience. Everything about the production is air-tight, but the sound design really won me over. Detailed, deliberate, and truly dictated the experience.
Bloody excellent stuff.
Very, very slick production here. Active camerawork, strong performances, smooth edit, and bang-on sound. Very impressive. Really liked the plot turns, too. Big fan of misdirects.
Unfortunately, ‘Musical / Dance’ isn’t really embraced here, which ultimately holds it back, though you have my sympathies for drawing that god-forsaken genre. The ‘Dance’ part comes off as just a technicality (as there’s no real dance sequence) for what is essentially a crime film.
But for what you ended up doing, it’s undeniably well-made and the final shot made great use of the technical element.
Fun film. Actors did a good job as mockumentary subjects and there were some playful uses of the format like the nighttime security cam scene.
I feel it’s let down by the core relationship though. There could have been a lot more done with the girlfriend’s discovery of her boyfriend’s fetish. Is she right to harass him? Or is she kink-shaming? It’s not explored as much as it could have been. And the boyfriend didn’t seem to have much invested in the relationship to begin with, which removes most of the comedic tension from the situation.
Still, there were things to like in this film and I admire the team’s restraint from telling an obvious eggplant joke.
I like this concept, the leads were sturdy, and the setting suited 48Hour filmmaking very well. It allowed for a very clean look and neat camerawork/editing tricks that effectively conveyed coffin life and the depth of the grave.
However, a conversation-focused short relies on sharp dialogue, and that's ultimately what's missing here.
There were numerous small lines that could have been boosted to show the older character's loneliness and/or time he's spent in the ground. Comments like "I think I'm next to you" for example could have instead played off how well he got to know the graveyard ("You're in allotment B5, segment 12 which puts me 45 degrees on your left"). The film also establishes that he died in 2013, which means he wouldn't know what the hell a Brexit was. That felt like an opportunity gone missing. (I did like the Batman Avengers line, though.) Also, when you have a subtitle that says 'Two Months Later', you don't need someone restating "We've been stuck here for two months now..." - just cut straight to "...you still haven't told me how you died."
That last point, in particular, could have been expanded on earlier with the character trying to bring the topic up but having the other guy avoid it. That would create a tease to make the audience wonder why he's holding that info back throughout the film. As it ends up though, it goes straight from 0 to 100 in a single instant, and is less effective as a result. It's also a pity that he mentions how he's had no one to talk to for years, and yet his first calm-and-collected interaction doesn't really reflect this.
I liked the ending though. It seems inevitable that these two characters would go into a verbal flurry about death, revival, and how much it sucks to be in their situation with no explanation. But, hey, they have each other, and that soothes the pain. I found that bittersweet. I just wish that when they went out to scare that person, we actually got to see that person being scared.
Wow, this was a production feast. Some superb grindhouse-y lighting (that cubical!), great camerawork (that night-day transition!), and a sound-score combo that's too slick to fault.
Unfortunately, it over-promises and under-delivers once the actual beast mode kicks in. Up until that point, the film did a great job making you wonder how far this guy would transform if he didn't receive his social media fix. The result, however, isn't really all that different from who he was. He's not dangerous. He doesn't completely lose his mind. He just goes from being kinda pathetic to being kinda pathetic but as a werewolf.
Having the monster squad explain the whole situation also felt needless since the visual storytelling already did a great conveying the concept.
Overall, because it's so well made, it makes me ache that the script didn't received a couple more passes, for this could have been a legendary 48 film. As it stands though, I still had fun watching this and the lead + makeup squad deserve big golden kudos for their efforts.
Thought this film did a clean job cutting through both the heist genre and the ULTRA condition. Sometimes the simplest approaches (a child plans to steal a chocolate bar) lead to the best outcomes and while there are things to be improved on, the efficiency of the plot gives this short a strong backbone.
I feel there are two things that could have elevated the story even more:
1) When the kid gives a rundown of his plan (great use of the silhouette, by the way), he immediately reveals that he's going to backstab his sister. Had the story kept this detail hidden until the ending, it would have made for an effective twist that would have REALLY made the audience go "what a little shit!" It's more effective to have the viewer come to this conclusion themselves, rather than have the main character state this out loud.
2) The point of the puddle was to make a big mess that got the mum pissed off. Unfortunately, by throwing the water outside on an already rainy-looking day, it doesn't really look like a mess. It would have been much more impactful to make a mess in, say, the living room or the bedroom (though, admittedly, it would undoubtedly be a pain in the ass to clean up afterwards).
I did love having a manly-as voice actor doing the audiowork for the child. Hearing that deep voice explain precise heist plans one minute and then say "mummy" the next is pure comedy, right there. It would have been great if the script extended that flipping between 'adult talk' and 'toddler talk' even further.
Also, don't know how you got that little girl to ball her eyes out, but holy moly that was some effective acting.
I dig the different approach to the 'Last Day on Earth' genre and I suspect not a lot of people will have gone for it. The actors do a solid job getting the script across the line.
Unfortunately, it does come across feeling a bit too exposition-heavy. It's more compelling to show the audience examples of the lead's behaviour rather than tell them.
I was worried this short was simply gonna take the piss out of Mormons for 5 minutes - a joke that expired 10 years ago. Fortunately, it doesn't quite do that, using its poor lead's faith and willingness to do right by people to send her to an awful/damn funny place that suited the genre. The flashforward at the start was used very well to sell the ensuing humour.
Both leads are great and have a superb contrast that powers the film. The ending was satisfying, too.
My biggest holdback was with the logic of the character. My suspension of disbelief has a bit of leeway, but not enough to stop me from thinking "Why doesn't she just call the police?" It may seem like a small thing to criticise, but if you were to clearly establish just how trapped this person was, it would add even more to the splatstick humour in the climax.
The blood also looked more like orange juice, but I thought that just added to the comedy.
My favourite film of the heat.
A mature, understated, bold interpretation of both 'Musical' and 'Monster' that successfully gets inside the character's head. By having this examine the everyday life of its lead, the film justifies a common 48hours location (i.e. someone's house) and pulls of a thought-provoking ending that doesn't explode with drama, but simmers on a sombre note that stuck with me.
If there's perhaps one thing that could have amplified this short, it's the design of the monster itself. There's nothing wrong with what's here and the performer does a lot of the heavy lifting, but the simplicity of the design did leave me wondering what could have been.
It's a minor quibble for an otherwise great short that I expect to see in the Auckland finals, along with a nomination for its superb lead.
My favourite performance of the night. This person really climbed the mountain of madness for this nicely-skewered take on the Last Day on Earth genre.
It started off pretty one-note, which had me worried, but edged closer and closer to satisfying surrealism.
No real flaws in this one per se (unless the frequently-random motorbike splice was unintentional, but I suspect it was). There are limitations, however. Some of it's in the production - lighting, camerawork, sound, etc - which limits almost all 48 filmmakers. Also, a more abundant assortment of locations could have done a lot to amplify the mania that the film was already doing so well.
Regardless, this was one of my faves of the heat.
I wish I could give a constructive review on this but, honestly, I struggled to follow what was going on. The moment I thought I had a clue, a seemingly random puff of smoke would throw me off.
Your credit sequences were hard out, though.
A lovely interpretation of the genre. They’re so close, yet so far away.
Absolutely loved the shots of them in their two separate elevators. Really gives you a sense of their intimacy but also their physical separation.
This premise leans heavily on the script, which isn’t as strong as it needed to be. Part of the issue is that the male character feels a touch overwritten at the start, interacting with the elevator operator in an overtly wordy manner that didn’t feel like a normal interaction.
Another issue is, I suspect, due to the 5min restriction. It’s deceptively difficult trying to get two strangers to have a meaningful connection in the span of minutes, and unfortunately their isn’t quite enough dialogue to effectively land the love-at-first-voice tale. Perhaps if we got a more convincing sense of time passing (eg. cut to a clock revealing the hours they’ve spent talking together), their bond would’ve been more prominent.
The bits of chemistry that was there, though, worked well. A testament to the leads and the moments of dialogue that shined.
The best production of the heat. The camerawork, clean grade, simple makeup effects, frenetic edit, and on-point performances combine to sell the elevating terror one guy goes through when a simple sneeze leads to something kinda horrifying. It reminded me of an old animated short called Banana Phone.
It’s a bummer, then, that the ending deflates the tension and doesn’t resolve its story. It really takes the thrill out of this technological thriller.
I did laugh, though.
Simple but really satisfying short that manages to go full Family Guy with an absurd tea gag. I cannot detail how much it made me chuckle.
There isn’t much to this outside of finding comedy from the small irritating things that can disrupt a person’s daily life, but it hits all its beats very well.
Shot and edited on an iPhone, it does nothing flashy on the filmmaking side of things, but it ticks all the boxes - something that’s hard enough to do in 48.
That final shot though... my god, that facial expression was flawless.
A very good opening shot, some simple but effective lighting, and a rock-solid editing/soundtrack job drive this straightforward what-went-bump-in-the-night mystery.
I wish the “monster” could have been teased a little bit more, whether through a more prominent shadow or a discomforting sound effect.
For gags like the toilet joke, it’ll work even better if you don’t have the character say “I was in the toilet.” We already saw him leave the toilet and heard the flush. Let the audience piece the rest together and the gag will work 300% better.
Overall, a neat short with likeable leads.
I give this team mad props for fully embracing the musical genre. The songs were neat and I like how the genre of music paired with the high-school “groups”. Having subtitles was a helpful, inspired touch.
The love story itself was cute but pretty shallow given they never actually interact until the very end. This is all clearly just for fun though, and I enjoyed this short.
Superbly ridiculous interpretation of the 10-year genre that tapped into a personal, reoccurring issue in my life.
Slick production all round that justified its otherwise common - but varied - urban Auckland locations. Leans on the performances of its leads and they do a damn good job of it.
And that Happy Birthday scene? Bloody ace.
The final location kinda tips off the final gag, but the end reveal was a satisfying capper to one of this heat’s strongest films.
Really like the take on the genre. Anything related to self-harm can feel grossly gimmicky in 48, but the out-of-reality setting and nightmarish vibe keeps the subject matter grounded and authentic.
The lead was good, her face conveying more anguish than her line delivery did, and for a mostly-one-location film, the cinematography and audible atmosphere did a hell of a lot to deliver a moody sense of limbo.
The big thing that held this film back for me was the other actor. The film does a great job making this looming character feel uncomfortably ominous, but the vocal performance just doesn't match that. He sounds like an everyday teenager, which takes a lot away from how the character was set up.
Regardless, the vague ending is strong and gives you enough to work with without over-explaining itself.
The big issue with this short is something you and the other reviewers are well aware of - the sound. It's why I've rated it as low as I have and probably don't need to restate what's already been covered, eh?
I'm 100% on board with the MS paint-style visuals and big-ups on your shadow shot - it looked cool. If there's one piece of advice I can give, it's that you should try with all your might to never have backgrounds that are pure black or pure grey. Even if it's space or simply a metal wall, take some time to paint a texture. Even 30 seconds will do. Make a rush-job out of it. It'll suit your style and make the overall short look much better.
My two fave gags: the robot having to lean to fit in the door and NZ being outrageously bigger than the rest of the world while AU drowns in the background. I trust those got a good response out of the audience. Wish I was there to see it.
It’s cool to see this sequel is an improvement over the first film. Having masked characters is a clever way to cut down on animation time and I personally love the movement of spaghetti arms. Works especially well for a space setting.
Moon nazis aren’t quite an original idea, but it helped up the stakes and the film didn’t linger. My big criticism is that the lead buddies don’t really try that hard to solve the issue together, something that could have made their friendship sparkle even more, and is instead solved by convenience.
But it was a funny end, nonetheless.
One of the things I loved most about the first ‘Shirt’ is how it went from ‘simmer’ to ‘batshit insane’ with a crazy ending and a philosophi-cool monologue. That payoff really knocked it home.
This sequel doesn’t have that ramp-up. Not that it was necessary, but without that lunacy, this follow-up feels a bit tame by comparison. The pace also isn’t as quick-footed, and I feel it’s because the character’s objective isn’t fully realised. Instead of finding a shirt, he’s trying to find out why he has these headaches, but moments like the bar scene don’t add to his progress and end up halting the story.
The style change-up was very cool, though. I’m big on that sort of blending. There are some simple things you can do to make the stills blend in with the live backgrounds even better, like add shadows or a bit of manufactured shaky cam added in post. You could even cut off a bit off his feet in some of the beach shots to make it look more like he’s standing in sand.
The re-issue of the 2014 line? Also very clever. And for what you ended up doing, the ‘alien’ genre was made to feel like a natural fit for The Shirt Cinematic Universe.
I bloody love DIY filmmaking like this in the comp. The lead is admirably all-in which helps the film so much and gags like the car jump and “hack.exe” had my ribs cracking.
For something as manic as this, it benefits from a tighter pace. Editing out some padding would have gone a long way, simple things like her putting golf clubs in the boot can be chopped from three shots to one just to speed things along. It would have also been cool if the 2nd car jump shot wasn’t the same as the first, gives some variety and is an opportunity to show us what else you could do with a mouse and the Move Tool.
And while that chewing gum gag was pretty funny, it stopped the story in a noticeable way. It could have either served more of a purpose or been cut entirely.
Really dug the zoom-in with the dude getting sawed, mainly because of the lead’s expression. Adds a lot of character to the scene and could have used more CUs throughout.
The confrontation was great, largely because the antagonist was just as outlandish as the lead. Also LOVED the triple-punch-cut before that - it’s a pity the final fight doesn’t go as bonkers.
A sweet film that finds a good excuse not to raid a makeup department to make the lead ‘alien-ish’.
I felt the narration to be overbearing, bluntly telling me how the character was feeling when the actor was already doing a decent job of that.
There was also an aspect about her magnified ability to hear that was a cool concept that wasn’t made the most of. Part of it was technical which is understandable - we’re not all studio teams - but the film would have been far more effective if it pulled more focus into this area. Specifically, more pleasurable sound design at the start to give the ending more impact and the indoor scene more contrast.
By going horns in with its costuming, props, VFX, and set, this is how you make a z-grade film look amazing. I especially appreciate the match cut from vagina to magical orb.
It's a simple, workable approach to the genre that holds a gaggle of gags - nothing being funnier that a mental breakdown of a character as she reads the same line over and over again. Having her friend step back in at the last minute is a nice way to cap it off.
I found the film within the film hard to follow though. That might be the point, but it causes most of the short to feel more like a random collection of jokes than a narrative. As wonderfully bizarre as those random cuts to a green screen orifice were, it did make me wonder what they had to do with the film.
It feels like a victim of the 5min limitation. Had this been 7mins long, I could totally see that film-within-a-film making more sense and SPACE PSUSY hitting even harder.
Lots of good stuff in this short.
The z-grade stuff in the bedroom - especially that quality boom mic gag - were well executed and had me chuckling.
The surrealist stuff on the beach had a bunch of cool moments like the backwards footage and the costuming.
Unfortunately, these two different aspects don't really work together. As cool as the beach stuff is, it feels like it ignores the z-grade elements the bedroom scene sets up. As a result, the whole short feels like two different films working against each other.
I think this team just got a difficult genre, because they've clearly got skill.
Good job embracing the evilly evil Musical genre. It's a catchy tune and I like the fact that he was more of a dick than the anti-christ. Got some good chuckles just from him being an asshole.
Some jokes didn't really feel like they had punchlines though, like the fidget spinner scene and the girl at the bus depot.
I'd be curious to see this one remade with better quality camera and audio equipment.
Some good shots in this one. It's always cool seeing everyday kids given the cinematic treatment.
It's obvious this team had the most fun with its chase scenes. It took a while to get there though. Given the reason for the chase is as simple as 'the boy stole her rat', the beginning could have been a lot shorter in order to literally cut-to-the-chase.
I'm all for a child fight scene, but the lack of sound effects really took the energy out of it - especially given it's a slo-mo scene. It'd be really cool to get some cartoonish "THWACK" sounds to aid the epic music.
Extra points for the grisly ending and for the dad drinking a beer on the mower.
This film is polished like a fresh bowling ball. The sound, music, edit, grade, cinematography - all on point. The acting from the two leads is also pretty great, doing the difficult balancing act between dramatic and comedic.
I liked the way it subverts the 'survival' genre, initially going from 'save your life' to 'save your failing relationship' - the jokes surrounding it were mostly solid. Though some gags about their flawed relationship felt like they've been recycled from old TV series, mainly the "I always faked it" line.
The scene where they sneak down the stairs stood out in a sort-of negative way (the exit was in plain sight and yet they chose to go for the golf clubs instead). To keep this kind of survival story in tune with its genre, I feel you need to keep cornering your protagonists until they've got absolutely no way out but to fight.
That end punchline was ace, though. The actor bloody nailed the delivery.
Handsomely shot and smartly edited for a film with little dialogue and jumping in and out of time.
Unfortunately, as it's already been stated, the sound mix needed more work. The colour grade also seemed a bit jumpy in parts, occasionally making the image a bit too saturated.
I got a bit confused with how he figured it all out. This could be just me missing something, but I feel it might be the film doesn't give the "a ha!" moment enough time to linger.
Had the idea been given more time to brew, allow its breadcrumbs to pave a more defined trailer, this could have been a real contender. As is, it's still a 48 film with a lot to admire.
Z-grade is a genre that can seem like a curse, but can be turned into a blessing for teams who don't have the production capabilities of studio teams. This film proves it.
Faking 'hilariously bad' is deceptively difficult, but this team nails it with purposefully hestitated line readings and inserted continuity mess-ups in the edit.
But what's most impressive is the pace and the action. The actors really commit to the fights as does the cameraperson. And the gags fill everything in between. If we're not seeing a punch, we're seeing a punchline.
This is a gem in my glowing eyes.
Solid performances in this one, especially from the dude with the glasses - he does so much to sell the goofiness of the concept. He's also just damn entertaining to watch.
I thought the angle of 'getting to know your alien gf's culture' was cool, but nothing really came of it. The conclusion didn't follow through on what he learned - if anything - or of it being part of the aliens' grand master plan. So it ended up feeling more like filler.
Great effort on the makeup and costume design for your alien though. Some lines gained some ace chuckles from me, too.
It's cool to see a 48 film seemingly built around the technical element. Jumping (or smashing) back and forth between different timelines is a smart way to make a dense 5min film and it did have me wondering what the lead was going to do to get out of the situation.
Unfortunately, that "get out" moment didn't feel very plausible given he'd already been beaten to a pulp (albeit with very convincing makeup) and how the action felt very staged.
'Action' is an annoying genre, to be fair. I don't think I've ever seen a well-choreographed fight scene in 48hours. But at the least, the editing helped a lot to convey chaos in some scenes with quit cuts and the close-ups did a lot to mask the rest while still feeling in-your-face.
The acting from the lead antagonist was very strong. The hero, not so much - he only really had one tone throughout.
Great costumes, makeup and acting in this piece. I'm semi with the Jodorowsky comparison mentioned before, though it seems more like his 5min adaptation of The Scientology Bible. You were obviously going for something "out there", so that's a compliment.
The choice of music felt out-of-place and a bit overbearing at times. The chirpy, mainstream tunes worked against the outlandishness of the concept. I also couldn't quite place the surgical scene near the end or why it was stretched out for so long in super slow motion.
But even if I couldn't make some sense of it all, the ending was satisfying and a solidly bizarre use of The Scream.
Superb character relationship piece with a great lead-by-example message that pays off. Clean production, sound, and edit, but it's the rich script and the leads performances that drive this home.
On first watch, the gym bait-n-switch feels like a very fresh and clever twist on "gym therapy", but on second watch, it does feel a bit odd that she would let the asshole instructor grill her pal for so long before intervening with why they're REALLY there. It's only a minor quibble, though.
That bloody goofy Wilhelm Sceam has been a thorn in many sides this comp, including this short. It sounds completely different from the actor's voice and doesn't fit at all.
That's the only rough in an otherwise treasure of a short film.
It's a pity you don't have access to better sound equipment or sound editing - decent sound and mixing really helps to elevate a short with outdoor sequences and fight scenes.
The story and end gag were simple, but effective - a wise choice for 48Hours.
If your next entry has another onfoot chase, get your actors to REALLY sprint. It'll look far more effective.
I loved what you were going for here but was bummed that it didn't quite come off. Even though it was intentionally meant to be green screen mania, a lot of moments didn't have much coordination and ended up looking like random shapes flying around a shaky screensaver.
A couple moments - the ones that were clear to comprehend - really worked though. I especially liked the head-chopping part and the end save. If the whole film kept that visual clarity, this could have amazed.
That plane set was choice, too. Though I wish you were able to film more of it as opposed to using the green screen to fit other characters in.
This is a great interpretation of the 'Survival' genre, a first-date scenario you desperately want to pull the parachute cord on.
The male lead was a touch wooden on his line deliveries, but did a very good job selling the agony through his expressions and movements. The female lead was superb, busting out that all-in energy the script demanded. That on-point cut to her laughing and the end facial expression cracked me up.
The flashback moment felt like a joke that was missing a punchline, putting a bump in the pacing (though it worked to fit in the Wilhelm Scream). The part with Susan mentioning that she was on a date didn't really add anything either. These are things that could either be reworked or sidelined to focus more on putting this guy through dating hell and him trying desperately to prolong his suffering. I would have liked different methods of escape explored - as it stands, he kinda goes back and forth from cafe to bathroom.
But for what you had, there were some really cool editing and camera tricks used to heighten the tension. I especially like the quick-cutting between close-up of the watch and close-up of her face smashing more food into her mouth. I reckon you could exploit that tension further if you gave the audience an idea of WHEN he was able to leave and turning the pressure up the minutes before he's "allowed" to leave.
The biggest thing holding this short back is the production (lighting, sound, etc), but there's nothing that can be done about that - we aren't all studio teams. Hopefully, in the future, you'll have access to that high-end equipment or someone will dump a buttload of money for you to hire it. I'd love to see what your team comes up with in the future.
You brace souls, doing stop-mo in 48. You've picked a clever style that looks good and is relatively simple to pull off. If you can, try make time to work on more backgrounds to really make it pop.
Also, don't be afraid to make your film even shorter if it could make it punchier. I liked the basic plot - woman gets rejected by dumb men, woman shows wrath - and it's one that benefits from getting in and getting out rather than being stretched in certain areas.
Overall, it gave me solid Monty Python animated vibes.
This was so good for most of it. Tight performance, classy cross-cutting that gets straight to the point, tailor-fit music and visually slicker than most 48 films.
It just doesn't stick the landing. As a lot of teams have suffered, that Wilhelm Scream doesn't quite work. It's too goofy of a sound to end on for something that builds genuine suspense. The blocking in that final scene also felt a bit off with the two goons standing right behind the guy when he's given a chance to leave.
I'm digging into that ending mainly because I was reeeeeeally jiving with this film for most of it.
I, too, would like an 'I am Ball' trilogy.
I'm really big on the use of cut-out animation here. It's both simple and classy and it kind of made me wish the whole film kept to that look.
It's also good to hear the Wilhelm Scream used in its best, most basic form.
I do, however, feel like this film is trying to test me. It's going to make me feel stupid to say this, but this series could reach its apex if you made me feel more for the ball. Understand the ball. Define the ball.
...yes, make a ball a more rounded character.
The production is off the damn hook. The costuming, locations, props and effects boost this short up a lot. It's as if you chose to make a sci-fi film.
The performances also kept things lively with nicely defined characters that beg for more screen time.
The big thing that limits this short is its world building. It has great ambitions, perhaps more than a 5min short would allow. It's evident in the dialogue, which is really heavy in exposition and could have benefited from streamlining it further. As it stands, it feels more like we're being told about a world rather than experiencing it.
Having said that, what there is to experience is very solid.
Good-looking film with some clever, simple tricks used to sell the sci-fi setting. The shot when she first opens the door is particularly well done.
The performances let it down a lot. The lead woman especially lacked energy to her line deliveries - and there are a lot of lines to deliver.
I saw this in the screening room with the adjusted audio and the music added a lot to the mood. Though I hadn't seen the original, the film drop enough hints as to how the world worked to give me a sense of what was going on but leaving enough mystery to keep me engaged.
I felt the ending would have had more punch if it just lingered on the lead contemplating on her decision rather than have the operator spell out her options.
Instant nominee for best child actor.
Liked a lot of the simple lighting tricks used to sell the supernatural parts of the film. It's a pity the lighting in the outside scenes weren't better.
Also felt more time could have been spent hinting at what the 'thing' actually was in order to get our imagination pumping.
It may not reach its potential, but the end result is still enjoyable.
The '48hours story' in 48hours has been done plenty of times before, but if you're going to do it, do it well. This was done well.
I can totally see how the panic button got hit the moment 'Musical' was announced. The improvise feel seemed calculated rather than forced, which is an impressive feat.
The edit was also tight. Things kept moving forward from scene to scene, location to location, which added to the mania of it all.
The conclusion didn't really gel with everything we saw before, but it was a lovely way to cool down with the characters/the team embracing their fate.
I liked the idea behind this one and the team went to good lengths in regards to costuming and makeup.
Unfortunately, I found it difficult to hear a lot of the dialogue, meaning that a number of gags flew past me.
It may have been the sound mix. Or the cinema. Or my dumb ears. But sound is a crucial part to making these films work.
Got some good chuckles from this film. The ciggy genie is a creative approach.
Doesn't really amount to much. A loser makes three dumb wishes and... the end. But it's fun and the final shot is a killer.
Liked this one a bit.
Night Movie is a devil of a genre if you don't have decent lights. The decision to film mostly at a bus stop was a clever move. Unfortunately, it looked a bit murky whenever the characters moved away from it.
But the simple meet-cute tale works very well for the genre, carrying an affectionate 'one magic night with a stranger' vibe that really kicked into gear with a well-planned bridge shot.
The ending confused me, though. Not a lot was explained and it kinda made me wish the story took a different, less dramatic route.
Cute and to-the-point. I'm easily charmed by teams who go all in with musical.
It's a shame this team doesn't have the production heft to really boost the music they created.
It could have been even mightier if we knew a bit more about the two male characters. It would have added a lot to the ending.
Good ending, though. It held the tension for the perfect amount of time.
Very cool idea but doesn't do a lot with its setup. The King and the Queen cards don't really come into play.
Some cool shots, especially the one of the circle of people. The use of black and white suited the bleak tone.
Felt a little unsatisfied with the ending. Seemed like it cut itself off a scene too soon.
Hope this team keeps practicing and entering - they've got potential.
This is the kind of homegrown 48 film that makes these heats fun.
It's constantly silly, throwing in a trolley and instant cancer just to keep the plot moving.
Hopefully the sound can be tuned up in this team's next entry. It really helps amp up your film's overall quality.
The strongest aspect of this film is the lead. She's manic, but not wild, and does a lot to carry the film/dead body.
You got musical, your lead can't sing, and you bloody went for it anyway. You automatically have my respect.
Some cool creative moments in this one. Though drone shots are heavy in this comp, I smiled big at this one.
For a film that ended up being about a guy trying to impress a girl, there's a lot of filler that could have been cut down - mainly the dialogue when they first met and established that they knew each other from high school. Given how it ends, it didn't add anything to the film.
That ending though. Wow, may have been the heartiest laugh I got from the heat.
I liked how short and simple this one was.
The setup gave me chuckles. I don't know why everyone in that group was so awkward, but it made me laugh.
Always cool to see basic trickery used to sell the "sci-fi" loophole that Bill discovered.
Next time, try to get the most out of your shots. The collision, especially, had the two people in the corner of the frame and made it difficult to see what happened.
I love you, Mad Scientists. It's insane how many high-end productions - from comedies to dramas - are coming out of this competition, but you remain rooted in the pure anarchistic joy this competition started off being.
A lot of teams shoot for the moon, but what gives yours the energy is the spazzy characters and costumes that the actors fully commit to as well as the 'cut to the chase' editing that never lets up.
I'd love the sound to be greatly touched up so it removes the wind and that we get juicier knife-slitting audio effects to compliment the gunfire. The split-screen was cool when done vertically (ie. near the end) but a little off when done horizontally (ie. in the middle). Also for next time, I'd recommend trying to amplify the action. Start off small then steadily increase the madness leading to a highway pile-up of a climax.
Very well made and even though we see heaps of flats and houses in 48Hours, you dressed yours up with significant amounts of effort. It really shows. Tight acting all 'round and the bizarro premise is aided by everyone going fully into it.
Some of the humour didn't work for me - partly because of my personal tastes, partly because some of the gags felt dated (especially the largely stereotyped effeminate flatmate). But the only significant hold-up I can say - and this is kinda difficult to express - is that it feels more could have been done with what was set up. I really like the idea of a flatmate being thrown into this mad world, but we don't see much madness actually happen. There's a conversation here and there and the climax rules, but we're not given many situations that show the lunacy each flatty has for getting these cookies.
Perhaps it's just a time thing, as 2 extra minutes could've helped get the most out of the concept.
My love goes out to you Sir Warwick Rule, a one-man animation army. Despite the minimalism, the design of the sheep was great and you do a lot with eye movements (and colour) to inject character where it's needed. I do wonder if you're able to add a few more touches to the background to really boost the overall look, just some texture on the mountains or the grass and add a few clouds or something. This may not be physically possible, of course - there's only so many minutes and cans of V one is provided.
Out of all the gags, the sudden sheep sheering at the end was my favourite. It's probably because it's so immediate, which made me realise that the second half of the short (after they jump the fence) could have cut quicker to the chase in order to add more urgency to the angry bull situation. The gag about Charlie being distracted by a butterfly doesn't quite work - probably because we don't actually get to see it. It was also a bit jarring to have the chilled out music still playing when the bull first charges.
Nevertheless, this is a cool addition to the 48Hours animation section.
(Actually, I lie - "weed..ses" was my favourite gag.)
I appreciate the concept, some of the solid editing choices, and the use of the fish-eye lens to make more use of a tight space. I also admire any 48Hours film that can transition seamlessly from night to day to night again.
Two things hold this short back. The acting isn't really there to sell the drama, as is often the case in 48Hours. Also, what we see the lead doing isn't all that relevant to the plot or the ending. We see him taking photos of the woman at work and at a cafe, but that's it - it doesn't really tie into the conclusion. If you could somehow work that in more with his suspicions - that she's the woman who his wife is cheating with - it would make the twist more powerful as opposed to it coming out of nowhere. The best clues are the ones hidden in plain sight. (Then again, maybe there's things on his board that hint out to this that I completely missed.)
You get bonus points for the original song and putting the line in a verse. "I'll murder you with love" is perfectly creepy.
I wish the production could mate the idea here, because the idea is gold. (The sound and lighting is on the lower end, but I get the feeling there was nothing that could be done about that.)
Giving life to a sentient killer cookie is entertaining as hell. And yet, dare I say, it feels like we hear too much of him. Having him explain the characters in this Russian roulette game was essential, but I feel we're robbed by not having the spotlight temporarily on each individual. (It's in the "Show, don't tell" ballpark, though in this case it should be "Tell AND show".) When the grand argument goes down, it can feel a bit sudden.
Fortunately, the actors play their roles so well that you don't feel at a loss. And although the very end comes almost out of nowhere, it's a good gag to end on.
PS - This this a Goddamn beautiful line: "...and amateur racist with professional ambition."
There are a number of cool things in this short (I'm a big fan of multiple versions of one dude in the same shot), the lead did well, and the concept introduces a good problem with having too many Charlies exist for the sole purpose of trying to say the right thing to a pretty girl.
It just feels like the multi-Charlie thing doesn't go anywhere. We see heaps of them descend from the sky as a suave Charlie laughs at his former self in the face - but then it cuts off. Maybe the intent was that space-time collapse, but there's no solid reason why.
If this danger was acknowledged at the start, it would add a lot of tension to the situation as it plays out. Just how desperate is this guy? How close to universal destruction is he willing to go to get this girl's attention? These are questions that could have been asked.
But don't get me wrong: what we've got here is still entertaining.
There's some good production muscle flexed here, especially that makeup - top marks for that department.
If there are two things a mostly-one-room short relies on, though, is writing and acting. Unfortunately, this short doesn't really smash either. Conceptually, the plot is fine, but the dialogue could have used a lot of tweaking so it went beyond 'describing the plot'. The performances are also pretty wooden, so having both those things in tandem drags the film down. But these are elements that evolve through experience, so just keep at it. You'll improve.
Straight out the gate, this one has me charmed with its one-man-army filmmaking tactic, its Windows 95 screensaver effects, and brütal soundtrack. I got pumped to see what was going to happen next. Unfortunately, half of that was just a comedic conversation, and some of the attempts at humour were pretty obvious - "Got any bogeys?" "Just the ones up Dumdum's nose."
The setup is brilliantly silly, as is having one person play multiple characters in cockpits. Given this build-up, it could have benefited if Karl Burnett OVER-acted the roles. If this short had an equally silly plot (one that constantly pushed forward), it would have helped sustained the energy this short had at the beginning.
I'll get my main issue out of the way: we don't see enough of the lead's face. In terms of his hatred for his co-workers, the only thing we have to go on is his internal monologue. There's that rule - "Show, don't tell" - that applies here. While the story does demand you "tell" us his specific frustrations in his mind, you still need to "show" this to us through his expressions. It would allow us better access to this character, especially given what transpires.
But holy hell, what does transpire is great, and the way things keep escalating is superbly done. The final moment doesn't quite work - it seems quite tame given the violence we just saw - but that's a minor point.
Solid acting, ranging from OK to great, and the overall production was very nice. The camera absorbs the locations without ever trying to be flashy. I appreciate that.
What I think lets this down though is the script and especially the horror aspect. The twist seems completely random because we spend so much time on the victims and little time on the perpetrators, stopping us from getting a decent hint that they would commit the acts they do. Foreshadowing is a valuable skill that isn't easy to pull off - especially in 48 hours and when you don't want to give the game away - but if you can crack that nut, you'll be finalist contenders.
The strongest elements of this short were the editing and shot choices. It's like you fell in love with the match cutting from last year and wanted to use it again with more purpose. I dig that.
At the start, I wasn't liking the music cutting with the shots - it felt jarring in the wrong way. It's also a shame you didn't have access to better audio equipment (most of us don't) because that blasted wind gets in the way a number of times.
I wasn't that big on the trip-n-fall ending, either. It came off feeling like you weren't sure how to end it. Nevertheless, a solid idea.
Clever idea for a time travel film and it gets a lot mileage out of the concept. Pretty sure the pirate got me every single time.
Some gags worked better than others - the "others" being the caveman (who never goes full caveman) and the American farmer who cuts a sweet scene at the knees with a luke-warm line.
That sweet scene, however, was a very good resolution. The writing wasn't quite sharp enough to sting, but it made me feel warm.
This is insensitive to those with mental disabilities.
Jokes. I chuckled in this. Especially that gag with the second tye-dye shirt. Ace.
I feel there was a better story you NEARLY told in this, if only you explored why he wanted to be a Guess Who? champ. This could have been an interesting development if he was somehow good at the game. Or if he took pathetic pride in beating a little girl. Or just something that saw our lead actually overcome something. As it is, he's a guy with a stink condition who tries to face his issue head-on only to end up worse - the end.
As a punchline to one joke, I can appreciate that - and that might be what you were going for. But we spent a bit of time with this character only to end up nowhere, and that can be a bit frustrating.
This is bloody slick in the technical department - the music, the edit, the acting, the camerawork, all on point. The pace as well was mightily impressive, showing urgency and restraint at just the right moments. For a five-minute film, that's hellishly skillful.
However, the tension created by the filmmaking isn't all that reflective in the characters. Neither of them felt like much of a danger to each other, removing most of the suspense a cat-n-mouse film of this sort relies on. It feels like there are arcs missing, or something specific about these characters that we never see. This lack of malicious motive means we recognise the beats of tension but don't feel it. Two moments feel especially jarring: the part where he picks up the wrench, and the ending.
Perhaps with two added minutes, those particular character traits could have been hinted at. Nevertheless, this was great to watch. Also, THAT shot. Holy wow.
Man, I can see something great in this, but every part just falls a bit short.
I can appreciate a bottle movie set in a dystopian world, and the radio setup was simple and effective. But the situation itself doesn't say anything about the state of the world.
The sound was a bit on the fritz, as mentioned before, but for what camera abilities you had on offer, I thought some of your choices were really on-point - especially the cut to handheld the moment things went haywire. And the acting from the main fellow trying to get the gun back was impressive.
The editing wasn't as sturdy as it could have been. The part where he pockets the ammo and drops it was hard to decipher.
By the end, I was wishing for the writing, the sound, the editing, and some of the acting to be tighter.
A solid noir look and a fine flip on the genre gets this across the line. For an animated film carried largely by its dialogue though, the characters could really use more facial expressions. As it stands, their eyes barely take any shape beyond wide. Do more work on the faces and it'll do wonders for you.
I bloody loved this line: "...or was she a rat? It was all so confusing."
The young lead girl gave a good performance and I like the setup. I feel the electrician could have been given more to do - especially with what transpires. As it is, the ending plays out in a way that makes me feel more afraid of the boy, which I don't think was the intention.
If it was though, shut me up and add another star.
I really like the idea, especially in the context of real-time, but like the other reviews have stated, the audio really sinks this one.
From what I could pick up though, the lead gave a sturdy performance as the interviewee. I also thought the reason for the rush was pretty damn funny.
Incredibly Strange by design, and I dig that. The Tim & Eric-ness telemarketing angle did a damn good job of communicating the dystopia while hitting some chuckle-worthy WTF-ery.
It all kind of halts with the news anchor bit explaining "the supreme leader" in an abruptly straightforward fashion, but the wrap-up is on point.
Holy balls, how did they pull this off? The number of backgrounds, designs, and animation styles bursting out of this thing is like a confetti cannon on spin-cycle. I loved watching this, and the transitions from style to style were fantastically creative.
I can only think of two limitations: one is the sound which someone has already mentioned; two is with the occasional use of still imagery which, for a film intended to have a fast pace, can halt its verve.
This story didn't feel complete, which is the biggest letdown this short has. Aside from that, the acting's great and that final pregnancy gag was too damn good.
There isn't much to the premise (genre + popular TV show) but this team got some solid gags out of it. My favourites were the stealing of the construction vehicles and the Inception of interns. That last one was one of the heartiest laughs I got in our heat.
As the previous fellow said, sound was a major letdown here. I could follow the rom but had no clue on the com. At least I could see the acting was above par.
I'm a grinch when it comes to spontaneous dance numbers. That's all I'll say on that matter.
This has me tickled. The two leads were great, some of their lines were golden, and the finalè was horrifically hilarious.
There wasn't much more to it. Works very well as a skit or a webisode.
Drama in 48 is really, REALLY hard (I have felt this pain). This short has some very heavy subject matter that demands quite a lot in every filmmaking department to make it function. Unfortunately, that didn't show in this short. It's a shame, because I liked the story's twist on the Lovers on the Run genre.
We see skit-based mockumentaries a lot in this comp, and this team did enough with a solid premise and some hearty jokes to make me chuckle quite a bit.
In the future, I'd recommend working more on a conclusion - it'll make your short stand out far more.
Laura Daniel gave the best performance of the night. She played her ghost character with such believable melancholy that is impossible not to feel for her. This good amount of sweetness to the rom-com horror premise adds a lot, because this team already had the comedy down pat.
It was a bit of a bummer that the ending felt more like a punchline to a long joke than a conclusion to a sweet story. But perhaps I say that because I was so invested in the setup.
Also, that legless ghost effect was stupendous.
PickleThugs grabbed the genre with a clenched fist and smashed it. The use of contrivance for comedy is some of the best I've seen in the comp. The lead played the straight man well, allowing the absurdity around him to shine.
The only set-back I have is with the narration, which I felt didn't add anything and even took away a little bit from the superb ironic ending with a throwaway line.
Damn, this was funny. Really liked the domino effect of bad luck that kept the comedy rolling in this - the theft, the trolley, the hilarious Siri - culminating to a banger of an end gag.
It's a pity about the sound mix, as it was hard to hear some of the dialogue and the super soft music didn't quite mesh with the edginess of the black comedy.
Nevertheless, a very strong, inventive short had had me laughing more than most 48Hours shorts.
This could have been a 'rom-com' or a 'black comedy', not that it matters because this short does both genres pretty damn well, using the idea that the partners want to kill each other as a bait-n-switch into darker, weirder, way more awesomer territory.
The lead couple deliver some great performances that power the comedy, as well as the nicely brewed tension at the end. The home invasion scene was also very nicely shot, making their spousal problems even funnier when they turn up during the "cleansing".
Sure, their romantic resolution was kinda tacked on, but this short was a lot of fun regardless.
Well, if anything, this film did jolt me into a blushing, chuckling "oh, hell no!" response with its big twist partway through. Unfortunately, that's all that this short had going for it as the gags and complications that could have risen from this situation simply didn't surface. Instead, we're shown some pretty ineffective scenes of a church and a counselor simply reiterating the one joke. The resolution also came out of no where and felt way too convenient, even for a comedy.
Kudos to the lead duo though - their performances were the strongest aspect of the film.
There's a lot of great stuff in this short - the cinematography is drop dead gorgeous at points, the music and sound design are on point and the editing has some great tricks up its sleeve (especially the fast forwarding coordination shown at the start).
Unfortunately, I just don't think those elements have a lot to work with. It's never nice to say this, but the lead didn't do well to portray a man with a voice in his head - most noticeably when he says "Leave me alone" with no change in expression.
The vagueness of the ending works well, adding an extra level of creepiness to the story.
For a two person crew, this is a darn good effort. Hannah and Josh have got quite a good wit between them too, delivering a state-housing politics comedy that - appropriately - ends with absolutely nothing getting done. Though I have to admit - the funniest part to me was their team intro.
If there are two things this short could have benefited greatly from, it's...
1) Tighter editing. By cutting out needless shots (e.g. drone shots of Harper walking), you'll get to the gags quicker. This 7 minute short could have been 4.5 minutes long and the pacing would've thanked you for it.
2) Staying true to your mockumentary roots. Having only two people, there was no way you could have kept the mockumentary handheld look, which is a pity, because that inconsistency is very noticeable.
Still, I had a solid couple of laughs watching this.
A nice, simple, effective skit that doesn't quite nail the landing. But still entertaining thanks to a solid lead performance and chuckle-worthy moments - yeah, the gum-in-the-pubs got me good.
The switch between "fantasy" and "reality" doesn't quite work at the end though, and the girl's final remark doesn't quite ring true to me, especially when she's been explaining the lead's "identity" to her boyfriend.
I wish this short got more time to knock it home.
This feels like a first-draft film, which is very common in 48Hours. The lead character is too difficult to root for (I found Harper too thoughtless to be a fit parent), the antagonist's motive could have been a little more justified (though his one annoyance was really damn funny) and the long exchange Harper had with her neighbour really could have been cut down to contain the urgency of the situation. When things needed to be tense, I didn't feel it, partly because the score is either too acoustically soft or completely non-existent.
Nevertheless, the short still functions well enough and is lighthearted in the right areas. It's also shot cleanly with some tight editing (nice match cut!).
Great sound design is often not praised in 48, but Traces of Nut's film hinges on it - and my golly gosh, what a fine film this is.
Though the mystery isn't really one you can piece together yourself before the conclusion, the pieces it does present certainly hint that something is not quite right. So when the twist occurs, it earns it, leading to a very satisfying end that makes the transition from comedic to dramatic flawlessly (aided by a stupendous score and beautiful cinematography).
My only big qualm was with two sounds in particular that I won't spoil, but they sound very similar to each other. I mentally tripped up a bit figuring out which sound match to which action, but that might just be a sign that I should get an earwax cleansing.
This film's big trick works really damn well for the mystery genre, and it certainly kept me fixated throughout most of it. The fantastic music had a really cool, foreboding, sombre, elusive sound to it which really suited the situation.
My only big problem with this short is the first scene. Had it not been for the match cut element, it could have been cut entirely and made the whole piece tighter. As it is, the switch is tonally awkward.
Well, if you're going to deliver a cargo plane full of "WHAT?", you've gotta pilot it with plenty of moxie, and that's pretty much what CRAB CRAB CRAB did. For the most part.
The warping of the music really helped to get that spiraling sense of crazy the film progresses to and Bread World becomes more and more like Silent Hill. The performances and the costuming aid it (especially Bread Man's highly unsettling face near the end), but with a premise as absurd as Wheat, Myself and Rye, I didn't feel it quite hit 'overdrive'. I was expecting Harper to suffer more consequences or go through some 2001 madness, but the conclusion kinda just settles down anticlimactically.
But hey, killer song at the end.
A good lead performance and solid cinematography help keep this short fueled for its 7 minute running time. However, I felt it could have been edited down quite a bit as there were a few flat gags (like the photo frame used for the match cut) and the final confrontation dragged on in the puddle longer than it needed to (once the character's free, the rest becomes padding).
Although the main character was starting to get on my nerves, her total survival incompetence was pretty damn funny to me in a number of occasions - warming up bath water via toaster got me good.
Sure, the plot was extremely light, but Sinistral's concept didn't need to rely on a complex story - observing a smart phone-powered man who is completely oblivious to his last-man status kept me engaged for the whole 7 minutes.
When the film wasn't making me think "How in the hell did they shoot that!?" - and I was thinking that A LOT - it was making me laugh at the main character's very nature. Despite being the only person on Earth, he seemed completely happy and content with his false sense of socialness online via Instagram, texting and Facebook updates - even when no one was liking or replying. Executing this one idea kept 'Harping On (lol)' focused, delivering something rare in 48Hours - smart satire.
One of my favourite shorts from this year.
I adore Goodfellas, so I say this with a heavy heart: I felt let down by their entry this year.
It was still a very solid short with on-point performances and sturdy plotting that pulls off the titular 'full circle'. However, tonally I felt this film was off. I know, it sounds like a dumb thing for me to criticise, but Goodfellas have always been so sharp with the different tones of their films.
From the first (and final) excellent drone shot, there's an ominous mood surrounding the film - one that gets cut down by an odd comedic turn that never quite glued.
A fun, nicely shot short with a creative concept done very well. The lead was great as the straight hero carving through the goofy underworld The Good Kuntz created - this was a short powered largely by its performances.
I feel 'Interloafer' was held back by its editing though, with some sudden transitions to locations feeling awkwardly wedged in. The song also felt out-of-place at times, although the song by itself is a good song.
Beautifully shot with FANTASTIC duel performances and well-written characters to boot, 'Tide' easily earned its position in the Auckland City finals.
However, with the subject matter King Gains-Bury & Biches wanted to tackle at the end, 7 minutes really doesn't feel like enough time to sell it. It was done as well as it could, but I felt pretty emotionally distant from the conclusion.
As a minor note: That line about "Growing some balls" has also been taken from somewhere else - felt it could have been modified or ditched.
This was damn funny, taking the living-vicariously-parent plot through the means of cheap internet fame. Most of the jokes click thanks to snappy performances - especially the little girl who carved through with great subtlety.
This film very, very, nearly achieves what it sets out to do, and given its ambitions, I was rooting for it all the way. Unfortunately, it falls short, which is a damn shame.
The script needed to be tighter in order to feel properly invested. The BBQ flashback was one of the biggest sags: it was a bit on the cheesy side and the couple's relationship isn't wasn't highlighted very well, which was the supposed purpose of the scene. There was also a lot of mcguffin talk about data, devices and news networks that lacked context - it all seemed like jargon to me. Perhaps I'm wrong about that, and if I am, I would recommend directing the actors with a bit more verve to put emphasis on more important pieces of exposition. A lot of the delivery bordered on monotone.
It bums me out to say all this because I felt the rifting mechanic, with all its simplicity, was really well done. And I mean every single time it was used. The first jump looked convincing as hell (with appropriate sound FXs to boot). Then there's the casual 'throwaway' jump which really sets the tone that these 'rifts' are an everyday factor to these characters. But it's the ending jump - and what happens to the jumper - that really impressed me. It was cool as hell, and it made me wish that this short achieved more with its idea.
A murderous sharp-shooter helps a meek young lad to find out what he's doing wrong with the ladies. Why? I haven't a clue, but Brothers in Crime sells the goofiness with plenty of off-the-wall gusto. From the sensei's claim that he's "the greatest gunman in the central to central-west Auckland region" to an awesome dolly zoom of him sniffing, the short rides on Tane Huata's comedic charisma. I like the dude a lot, and he's great in this.
I'm not sure there's much more too the film than that. The mystery is basically an outline to service the jokes, with a resolution that hinges a character we hardly met. And while I can easily forgive noticeable CGI blood in a comedy like this (I actually think it adds to the charm), the editing could have been far tighter. The first cut is the most troublesome: it abruptly ends the music and rushes into the next scene to haphazard effect. It's understandable - this is the kind of issue that occurs in 48Hours all the time.
Still, it's a damn fun watch, if just to see the hilarious hissing douchebag or the priceless introduction to Harper Harrison.
Though it's more of a skit than a story, UNE has made one of the slickest shorts in the competition. I love how the concept is powered by the genre and technical element, though the Harper Harrison character felt a bit crowbarred in. But this is only noticeable because of how solid the rest of the script is.
Every shot (both of them) looks immaculate and the lead played out the mundane scenario perfectly. A pity about the mic issue (it's been mentioned above).
Having seen 'Ballsed Up' last year, I get the feeling UNE used two shots this year begrudgingly, simply because of the 'match cut' element. It's a hellova cut, though.
Though it's not the most original concept, this was very nicely done. A lot of the under-the-skin moodiness it evokes is largely due to the reverberating soundtrack - which was excellent.
Unfortunately, the lead's performance was too subdued to really draw you into his unusual circumstances. It's also a shame 'Flashes' weren't able to gain access to better audio equipment or utilise a greater sound mix - would have really elevated the piece. And while some shots looked great (including great re-uses of the 'match cut' element), there were other shots that could have served the 'glitch' world more (e.g. the playground scene that lingers with seemingly no purpose).
Nevertheless, this short is effective. It might turn some people off, those who "don't get it", but I felt it hit a good midground between exposition and intrigue.
It's difficult to judge this film - all we're really doing is watching a guy watching an infomercial. Got some good chuckles at the purposely lo-fi effects.
Clever interpretation of the Other Dimension genre, and PickleThugs take their premise to some very inspired places. Beautifully shot, too.
The only big drawback for me was the lead's sudden turn in believing everyone was after his drink, which felt like it came out of nowhere.
Nevertheless, this was a very strong short.
'Pffft! Rubik's Cube?' made me feel like a right asshole for laughing as hard as I did at some of the vile stuff their characters do in this short. That should tell you how well they nailed the Black Comedy genre.
I liked the premise of a public flasher moving onto more despicable acts in the name of love, but it did feel like things escalated too quickly. It's most noticeable in the ending, but it's a drawback I say with a shrug rather than sternly crossed arms - I got many hearty chuckles from this film regardless.
Solid, well-written, witty musical wrapped around love and YouTube sensationalism, carried by a very good lead performance. This easily wins the award for Best Psychedelic Use of Green Screen.
There wasn't much to the romance itself, making the end feel a tad weak. But that weakness only stands out because the rest of the short was so damn strong.
EDIT: I saw it again. Had to give it another star.
A decent premise is done well in parts, but could have been handled better as a whole. The music played over the ending in a way that made that whole short feel anti-climactic.
If I had to give one piece of advice to this team, it's to spare your use of music. The constant, brooding score was really off-putting and should have really only been placed in moments that ramp up the tension - not the entire first half of the short.
Have to say, I was genuinely creeped out at the sight of the silhouette ghost.
Opening a rom-com with a nasty break-up can cause a few issues - mainly that it can present our leads in a negative light and make it difficult to root for their happiness. I have to admit: I felt this drawback for the first few minutes of the film.
However, it's a film of three parts - different moments that tent-pole the relationship's end. The second scenario makes the most of the typical rom-com contrivance, handling its numerous actors' interactions gracefully. It's a shame the 'hotel' didn't really convince as a hotel.
The ending is easily the strongest segment of 'Ladies First', a one-shot meet-cute that feels extremely organic. It's a great counter to what preceded it, easing our lead out of the nastiness.
Additional props to Miss Fire for the smart handling of its LGBT characters - a trait that would have been blown up and exploited in less capable hands.
Simplicity can stand out when done right, and this was one of the most memorable films of the heat. What is essentially a one-man short about a dude trying to get his sandwich, the lead had me hooked from the start with a constantly humorous, laid-back charisma as he talks to his mate over the phone about his sandwich.
Best of all, it never oversteps the mark by going preposterous or drawing it out. There might not be much technical flair to see 'Entre-pruner' into the finals (felt there were two too many underwater shots), but it's a damn fine piece of filmmaking.
A solid premise that is done well in parts. Especially liked the way the shooting style differed from found-footage-like vlog to cinematic "real life".
Unfortunately, it fumbles the landing quite a bit. The lead - while good for the most part - couldn't sell me on the ending, which felt like a last-minute change in the script.
Nicely shot, well-produced business comedy powered by some really high-class performances - especially from the actor playing Harper Harrison.
The only big drawback for me was the ending - it seemed far too convenient and rewarding for a group of characters who didn't quite earn it.
The performer of 'the last man' in this short smashed into this role from a cannon, giving the film most of its energy (even his co-lead couldn't keep a straight face at some points). He does the 'desperate try-hard' character really well, earning a good number of laughs from the 'Big Brother' premise.
I certainly didn't see that ending coming, either - probably the smartest gag in the entire film.
My one big issue with this film was the middle - going from one location to another and back again really added nothing to the story.
It's a decent short, nonetheless, with a poke at Taken that's very well handled.
Every entry from Dogs Breakfast Gobsmacks me - making a functional stop-mo LEGO short in 48 hours is a work of warlocks. 'Barry's World' is a notch above amusing, animated and paced better than their entry last year.
But with an ending that puts a harsh handbreak on the plot, I just don't think it really went anywhere. Maybe I'm being a bit harsh, for you could argue that it's a slice-of-life story from an alternate dimension.
Although I didn't feel the lead characters had much... well... character (aside from the missing man and the suspect), the story was sturdy enough with a reasonable and funny explanation to it all. The whole short was fun in parts, but it could have been a whole load of fun with tighter pacing and writing.
I'm still a bit unsure how the blood got on the knife - that might be a plot-hole or perhaps I missed something.
Technical woes aside, I wasn't really into the story on offer. The two never "clicked" on the date - she was downright repulsed by his dwebishness - making me want them to break it off rather than root for their happiness together. When the ending tried to sell you on a potential bond, I just couldn't buy it.
I enjoyed the robbery scene, however, That was well done.
Great camera moves on display here (most especially the high-speed panning), popping even more with the bold choice to shoot it in black-n-white. Though the 'shock' ending wasn't anything that took me by surprise, it still worked to complete the short.
I'm with spanky_the_dolphin about that fence scene though... it really made me think "why would he risk alerting his pursuer when he quite clearly had so much open space to choose from?" The acting also wasn't as lively as DokoUso's previous effort The Island Job - the guy giving chase didn't seem that upset or angry about getting his bag stolen - but this is nonetheless a very sturdy chase film from a team I'm keeping an enthusiastic eye on.
There were a bunch of technical issues that held this short back immensely, but I'm sure Dash of Red are aware of them. If there was one thing I had to recommend improving, it's pacing - some of those shots lingered on way longer than they needed to.
Still, there were a number of nice touches (obscuring the menace's face to dehumanise him, the solid match cut near the end) that shows this team has something going for them.
Maybe it's because I've seen a LOT of films that go in the direction where this mystery goes, but I'm with 'Dogs Breakfast' here. There aren't really characters in the film, which means the film doesn't go deeper than the 'confinement' scenario placed side-by-side with a seemingly innocuous kitchen scene. Given the thinness of the plot, the Dark Room Affair made the right choice by not drawing it out - aside from the credits.
The two leads were in complete charge of this comedy (in uniquely interpreted roles 'Harper' and 'Harrison') thanks to a killer premise, doses of witty lines and a duo that bounced humour off each other like a pong match between two brick walls.
With no interest in showing off flashy lighting, cinematography or sound work, it's a short that would feel more at home on YouTube than the big screen. But I get the feeling that the Danny Tanner Fan Club 2.0 ever only had one job in mind - to make everyone in the theatre laugh their asses off. And by George, there wasn't an ass left to salvage once they were done.
There was some great editing and lighting in this piece, and I especially like how the sound mix got chopped in a beautiful psycho frenzy along with the visual cutting.
I just wasn't too sure what was going on. Some of that would have been the point (it's a drug thriller, after all), but other dialog-driven moments of exposition were hard to follow due to a heavily subdued sound mix and undercooked deliveries.
I wish we could have given Cut N' Run an extra day of filmmaking.
Very nicely done comedy about a man and his loyalty to Harper (Bernie) Harrison. His to-do list didn't seem all that exciting, but it's largely in service of some good humour.
The ending montage left me a tad confused - wasn't entirely sure what it was going for (and I can't quite explain it further without going into spoiler territory).
Really slick short, produced to pristine quality on all fronts - directing, writing, cinematography, sound, music, the bloody makeup. The two leads hit their comedic marks with absolute gusto, giving the film a lot of its drive.
The flashback seemed a bit too brief, begging to either be expanded upon or to be cut entirely.
If you ever wanted to see a healthy Zach Galifianakis and Cillian Murphy lead a Les Miserable revenge musical about the last loaf of Vogels at Countdown, Chess Club headed straight towards your request like a fired bullet. Superb songwriting, tightly paced, on-point comedic timing from the actors and a match cut I wanted to give a standing ovation to.
Not sure what inspired the foreign semi-art-haus style, but clearly Mexico knows how to do it extremely well. With numerous visual flourishes that isolate key plot aspects to single still shots, breezing through its simple story of attraction while nailing the twist.
As calculating as its concept, 'A Lesson on Probability' delivered quality on all fronts. I love it when 48Hours films embrace their genres this tightly.
For a school team, making an exam for the premise of a race-against-the-clock film was a quality idea.
There are a number of neat visual touches (like the figment of an intimidating teacher hovering our protagonist in a suddenly-emptied exam hall while she succumbs to exam-fright) that vividly represents such pressure. It's just a pity the ending seemed so timid in comparison.
Marck Wan Productions don't have flashy equipment, but if they did, they could move bloody mountains in the following years.
A witty-as-all-hell mockumentary on a bunch of wannabe film-makers that are colossally up themselves, and the comedic lead eats up every scene he's in as directing thunder-douche Pierre. Can't wait to see what this team brings to the next 48Hours.
Cutesy films starring toddlers can often be cringe-inducing, but 'Balls' made me straighten my back and take notice while making me chuckle to every punch-to-the-groin gag it had.
It uses simple perspective shot to giggle-inducing effect, really adding to the child-like nature of the young fibber's story. Simple, solid and charming.
A straightforward, cheeky existential fantasy that did well to personify a ball as the "know-er of all things," including how corn cob pipes are not the route to classiness (great comedic use of the line).
If Indecisive Productions had a tighter script, a sharper edit and access to better equipment, it would have lent a lot to these young film-makers.
There was a bit too much exposition going on this one, which is a shame, because they had some rad throat-slitting and face-shooting scenes that I would have liked to have seen more of, just to inject some more fun into it.
I really admired the lead's performance and their implementation of the leaf was genuinely clever.
I didn't buy into the end twist's quick shift in tone and the beginning kind of dragged, but holy crap they had me laughing hard. Every gag, no matter how absurd, was performed totally on key and timed to comedic perfection. Enjoyed this one a lot.
This was a solid crime film that told its story well, had good performances and managed to get a pretty primo house to heist. It could have use a punchier script and and a bit more character, but overall, I liked it.
The two crims she hired were the highlight for me. And the awesomely awesome way they implemented the slo-mo.
This may have had possibly the best opening of any 48 Hours short I've ever seen, essentially forcing Fleet St to make two short films. The genre-flipping set-up is also full of class, with Nicky Brick being a motivational trainer trying to inspire people to be less motivated. Well written, A-grade acting, minor sound issues but still professionally told.
The only big problem I had was with its conclusion. The characters' "inspirational" turning point doesn't really have a trigger. It sort of just happens because the film needs it to, rather than finding quirky and genuine reasons for the characters to lower their expectations in life.
Nevertheless, another fantastic entry from Fleet Street.
I can't criticize this short to any high-end degree (it's more of a skit than a story). These two puppeteers had one objective: to make us laugh. Judging by the roaring crowd reaction and my currently sore throat, mission f**king accomplished. Excruciatingly funny.
I nearly lost it with how they subtly used the leaf near the end. I tip my hat to you, Frauleins.
This one held a special place in my heart because of how neatly planned this one-shot film was, giving it a very smooth quality to it. Having the commentary of the two cops was a brilliant mechanic, and aside from the odd line, their dialog was on key.
There wasn't really anything going on plot-wise with this film, it lingered in the middle and the "how can they NOT see the thief?" question did spring into my mind, but given the bastard genre, I was willing to be lenient.
Dug this one a lot. I want to see this one again.
What a great way to incorporate the character Nicky Brick into a horror, making his horrible luck turn him into an accidental serial killer. I really dug the middle of this short and how it cut between different time-stamped scenarios, plus it had a great lead.
There are only three things that disappointed me:
1) It really could have used an event that triggered Nicky's stroke of deadly unluckiness.
2) The date scene could have brought out some great tense situations but it only hinted at it.
3) That it was disqualified, because I enjoyed this one a lot.
A "is he? Isn't he?" superhero mystery that isn't told particularly well. Some of the actors try their hardest to make the script work but it really never pulls through. The way it was shot left a lot to be desired.
I got the biggest laugh of the night from the start of this movie. It surprised me with a few more decent laughs. The camera and audio quality was extremely poor, but it wasn't the filmmakers' fault. Still, the story was hard to follow regardless.
I had a soft spot for this short because I could see exactly what they were going for. Unfortunately, it wasn't told very well. The ending, while delightfully cheeky, makes half of what happens in the film even more puzzling (e.g. the random wizerd-esque guy). Nevertheless, some gags hit and it was very well acted.
Mystery's always going to be difficult in 48hours. Fix It In Post filmed their short competently. However, the story pieces itself in a convoluted manner, and the acting ranged from above decent to completely wooden. Still, the ending made me smile.
Fun Run, for lack of a better word, is a fun short. Fleet Street clearly wanted to announce to the audience that this was a "Quest" to the finish line, and it's easy to buy into the concept. The thin plot is easy to overlook when the characters are so likeable (a particular female cyclist was one highlight). There are some obvious technical shortcomings, but overall, I enjoyed it.