Zac Neill


Member for
6 years 2 months

Another strong film from Foreign Objects, you guys have a consistent style and it's always a joy to see you push creative boundaries. As another commenter has already pointed out - a guy vomiting into another dude's excrement (and the scene being excruciatingly long for both actors and audience) is peak gross out.

This goes close to eclipsing FO's magnum opus "Wonderbread" for sure

Strong film, the comedic timing and pacing of this film really set it apart from the others of the evening.

Elephant in the room is the last part of the film, while good on paper, audio issues and an unconvincing performance (perhaps due to the audio) stopped this film from being at the very top of the pile.

May see the film at the finals.

Strong stylistic choices suited you guys really well here.
The silhouette sequence was one of the most clever storytelling devices of the night.

Shame to hear about the DQ.

I enjoyed the acting from the three leads, the writing and performance from the lead male was very convincing in your role.

Agree with MistaTeas here, the end really did scream cop out. Challenge yourself to tell a convincing story, cause the rest of the film showed a lot of promise!~

Excited to see what you do next time

Audio issues let down the overall film. Very strong opening sequence of shots, and I'm a huge sucker for a cute cat.

I appreciate the ULTRA struggle you guys had. How do you tell a story about a cat when its owner can't be a main character? I wish we'd seen more grief from the handler (audio issues may be to blame for that), but maybe that pushes the boundaries of main characterness?

Who knows, but there was obviously a lot of good moments in this film.

The most CRAB CRAB CRAB film I've seen.

After your lobster film I knew exactly which direction we were going here - and loved every second of it.

Really strong comedic timing, more of a skit than an actual story (narrative was weak) but the audience loved it and I'm sure it'll get a finals nod.

You guys ran into the classic 48 hours trap - you tried to fit a feature length film in 5 minutes.

Too much narrative, not enough character or story development meant that the audience couldn't invest in the story in front of them.

Whether you could've told a simpler version of this story so that characters could be established and your filmmaking prowess could be shown is another issue, but oftentimes less is more!

FUCK YES FUCK YES. Holy shit this is the kind of film you promised us with your entry last year.

The first thing to note is the lighting - it's perfect the whole way through. Dusk on the road, the lights around the outside of the tent are so good.
It's beautifully shot; very competent filmmakers who, like last year, make us connect with the characters on screen. We feel for them.
Then there's the narrator (think James Rolleston from Boy), who beautifully presents the chasm between what we hear and what we see on screen.

Easily the best film of the night, lowkey hoping this gets to Nationals and beyond. All aboard the hype train.

Another team that had issues with ULTRA by the looks of it.

Strong start, coudlv'e become a cult classic if you had the same calibre of jokes in both halves oif the film (even fro this type of film the second half was definitely flat)

My favourite type of 48 hour film - everyone is just having good fun doing crazy things they normally wouldn't.

Translated really well onto the screen, hope to see you guys again!

How good is this for a musical attempt????

Great commitment from the lead, first musical number is very much a highlight. Ending felt rushed (and I lowkey wished he was still like the worst singer out there but the girl realised that singing wasn't everything and fell for him instead)(am I describing a Disney movie I'm not sure).

Could be one of the top films of the genre, given how historically hit and miss musicals are.

I loved this film a lot.

Very very good perfomance by the lead, not cliche'd over the top dramatic acting, lines didn't feel scripted most of the time.

Only detraction was the ending, was the only part of the entire thing that wasn't tight (shaky camera pan, date hitting you over the head).

Got one of my audience votes.

Strongest lead actor in this heat for sure.

I feel like the definition at the end detracted from the punchline of the film, but overall a good effort!

Really really strong premise here team, with a couple of years under the belt big things could happen for you guys!

Audio issues plagued the film, but good acting and a clear narrative carried you through.

Not the biggest fan of "I'm gay" as the film's punchline, some tighter dialogue could've garnered a bigger laugh!

Groundhog day strikes at just the right time for our lead actor!

Although somewhat cliche, a strong beginning, middle and end to the film.

Audio definitely an issue, if all else fails just blame the sound guy! (my team does the same)

Hard to hear the dialogue at times, unclear plot and an abrupt ending!

I think the premise is really strong, a series of unfortunate events that led the characters to where they are at the moment, looking forward to your next effort.

Slightly biased review cause the server jokes were my niche, but it was a nice movie that had a good ending.

The transition editing was tight, sound and cinematography held it back tho. Also there wasn't HEAPS of plot, which normally is a good thing for school teams, but I reckon you guys are good enough to aim even higher.

Can't wait to see next year's film.

I loved this film so much. You guys were having a blast and so was the audience.

Some slick editing as well throughout, just needed a crisper ending.

A fun tale of mishearings! A couple of notes here:

1. Less can be more. Try to be a little more nuanced in your storytelling (maybe the genie doesn't have bollywood as a backing track for example), it makes the audience connect with the characters more, which makes the laughs even louder!
2. Plan your scenes and shot selection in advance, and think what each shot is to convey to the audience! I can guarantee you'll be able to find heaps of good laughs even in just how you shoot things!

Can't wait to see what you guys cook up next year.

You guys had fun making this and the audience had fun watching.

Hopefully you guys got to see the laughter to the film in person!

One of the rare school teams in this heat that showed that less if oftentimes more.

Very strong sense of style, the sound editing at the beginning of the film is some of the best of the night (all three heats).

The only part that detracted from a very strong film was the ending with the note (maybe the reveal as a whole) as it felt like the easiest storytelling option.

My favourite film of this heat.

I've just realised that I'm trailing MistaTeas in these reviews which is both a blessing because of the synopsis but also a curse cause he nails the review everytime.

Firstly, the scream made me jump out of my seat like nothing else, I hope you guys got a kick out of seeing the entire theatre do that haha

I also agree that there were too many long shots used. The one during the climax of the film needed some sort of cut to the actors scared faces, or something to show the heightened sense of panic, because the scariness fell flat as a result.

A strong premise with lots of laughs, would've loved to see you guys experiment more with your shot selection and take some more risks.

I personally loved the laugh track and am definitely storing the idea away in my back pocket for future competitions.

Got one of my audience votes!

I really liked the style choice here, certainly one that I have yet to see at 48Hours.
A little hard to understand the story and motivations through the middle of the film - but something tells me that's just how you wanted it.

A laugh-out-loud end to the heat, please review my film kindly tho Stu.

Strong commitment to the role from the leads, you guys knew the tone you were looking for and it was evident that you were striving to create an emotionally charged short.
The one critique I have is the lighting; the room lighting seemed to take away from this dark and mysterious tale.

A refreshing short from a heat filled with lighter topics.

A do have a soft spot for film where the big reveal is that it's a porno, here is no different.
I imagine that you guys had a blast filming it and it was an enjoyable watch for us in the audience!

Loved the attention to detail with all the props in this film - looks like you raided the Christmas decorations a few months early!
A nice, succinct story told with lots of enthusiasm.

Can't wait to see next year's effort!

We return to the bear - which I admit I forgot was a DvM film.
I'm guessing you didn't have access to the bear, a nice innovation to turn him into a dude, and a strong female lead performance carried this film.
The on-the-nose use of some of the elements was funny as a gag but might harm future success of the film.

Very enjoyable!

A fun story - audio issues let you down a little, especially that telephone scene where the audio levelling was very loud.
Looks like you guys had a blast making it and the audience really enjoyed watching it!

Clever idea! But quite a lot of story and narrative for the 5 minutes you guys had, some of the good ideas got lost in it all.

Looking forward to see what you guys come up with next year!

Dude this film is actually so strong in its premise, especially for the musical genre which can so often get bogged down by pacing issues.
I laughed so hard at this, as a millennial who gets tagged in every single NZHerald fucking article about avocadoes, millennials and home ownership (with a BA too lol), this hits home.

Only a couple of issues with the syncing of audio, the end felt a little too forced etc., but still an outside shot of making the regional finals I think (based on previous years' quality).

Got one of my audience votes!

In only CRAB CRAB CRAB style, a bold concept executed really well, much to the audience's delight.
The leads performed their roles well, only setback was the audio of the slime monster (?) at the end got eaten up.

A film that doesn't take itself too seriously from a team that doesn't take itself too seriously, really good stuff!

Really sweet story was told, the ending was a nice touch.
Unfortunately the impact of the monologue was lost, so a lot of character motivations were difficult to understand.

The location (and weather) really set the scene for the film, kudos for having a strong theme and sticking to it.

Good comedic timing from strong lead performers made this film standout.
A tight script with good editing made up for what this story perhaps lacked in depth.

Well done! (I can't remember the first 2 films in a heat being as strong as these two for a long time)

Strong start to the night. Loved the soundtrack, added another element and was really really well executed.
I felt the end was a little rushed; we had a great middle of the film to set up the ending, just felt like it lacked something.

Got one of my audience votes nonetheless!

Agree with Rowan here; cinematography was really strong in everything but the handheld, which for me detracted more than it did help the overall film.

I enjoyed the concept once I picked up on it halfway through, maybe an outside chance for CHCH finals? For sure a cinematography nod.

Really torn with this film. I loved the idea, a clever take on the time travel genre without having to use time travel tropes.

The thing that always keeps me coming back for Les Cousins films are the iconic lines or themes (I re-watched your 2014 entry and couldn't help singing along).

For me, this lacked that, and whilst well-shot and acted, I feel that the storyline lets you down, premise was good more than executioon I feel.

Might just make finals from the films that I have seen, best of luck anyway!

Surprisingly weird film, like Alex I could imagine you picking up a couple of awards for the sheer commitment to your overall theme.

I see what you tried to do with the storyline, and it is an interesting take on the genre, but I feel so much more could've been done if you didn't find yourselves bound by Bechdel styles.

A strong direectorial style and vivid colour contrast were the highlights for me here, definitely style over substance I feel.

Simple premise, well executed, strong female lead as you had in the last two films.

Only issue was the last scene, really enjoyed the neck snapping but I feel the understated reaction of the secondary character left an emptier feeling at the end.
In saying that, still expect to see you featured in the finals!

I enjoyed this film for what it was! Getting the references definitely added to the film, I thought that if you wanted to make a film like this you could've gone even further/more niche anime references.

Not a winner in my book, but was definitely one of the funniest films (for me at least) of the first three heats, well done!

I honestly think that the plotline with the style really had the potential to be a really solid film.
Unfortunately, much of the plot is missed by the speed and the style, which left me with an idea of what was happening but not the emotions you wanted with it.
Still, solid acting, good cinematography and an engaging score redeemed some of the aforementioned.

A really nice film that was a lovely end to the night.
Class was exhibited at the end leaving it as it ambiguous as to how the eventual meeting goes.
An interesting concept that I think was explored to its limits in this film.

Potential was shown in this film.
Match cut was my favourite of the heat, and it was clear that the lead male was comfortable in his character which made the relationship believable and carried the film.
As one of the poor souls who received this genre last (worst genre two years in a row in my opinion), you were obviously at odds with trying to beat our expectations of what the shock ending is.
Upon reflection, the ending somewhat contextualises what was going on and I commend you for that.
Looking forward to a strong future from this team.

Cleanly shot and executed film - one expects nothing less from this team.
Like a previous review has said, I never felt anything for the lead, which really set this team apart last year.

Good enough to get an audience vote out of me though, Hamish's acting as the Hard-X saved it for me.

Best worst film candidate PLEASE.

To be brutally honest, your film lacked a real storyline - of what it did have the real storyline (stopping the eating of animals I think) was rushed through and made me really not follow what was happening.
That being said, this is the first 48HOURS film I have seen in my 5 years of being a part of this competition that made me cry with laughter - the end was tu meke.

I don't know if your intention was best worst film but the bread shot at the end makes me suspicious.

EDIT 25/6/19: It's rare that a short film like this sticks so vividly in the memory as Wonderbread. It's fun, creative, and definitely got better with age. If you read this before the 2020 comp I implore you to really lean into these strong creative choices and really produce something off the wall.

This film played on an interesting subject matter on a hard genre to pull off convincingly.
Using bread to transfer between dimensions is so 48HOURS I loved it.
Try varying your shot selection more to try to focus the audience on what you want; it will add to the story and keep viewers glued to the screen.

A strong idea, just lacked the execution to make it one of the top films.

A classic bumbling protagonist trope.
Needed some work on the audio again, a couple of the shots had way too much background noise (ie the scene where like 3 cars go past). This is surprising given you have a boom, might be worth testing to see at what range the audio is best, as it appears not to be optimised here.
Other than that, a nice storyline, but with a better execution I would be rating this higher.

Favourite use of prop from this heat for sure - once I realised what I was watching.
Albeit a strange story (gum red herring?), the ending gave a hearty chuckle or two.
Because of the lack of storyline in favour of some gags it is a little lower than some other films I found equally as humorous, nonethless enjoyed most of what I saw (although I think the screaming of "Harper" was a tad much).

A warming story was told here - or so I hoped!
Was really rooting for a happy end in this one, but was not to be.
The lead was very convincing in his role and alongside the female lead had on screen chemistry which was nice to see.
The main let down of your film was the audio, often the characters would have their conversations drowned out by background music, again just a levels issue.

Oh boy, where do I start.
This film had me cracking up from start to finish. As a man who appreciates a good pun or two, this film was great.
It obviously had it's flaws - the puppetry was less than flawless and sound levels in particular were varied - but you looked past that and made a film that people, like me, can get a hearty chuckle out of.
Well done, keep the puns flowing!

A film with a simple, well-executed concept.
The acting was good, but the character development seemed slightly on the extreme side; done for comedic effect.
The audio quality was a little lacking in some areas, but pleasing camera angles, particularly the framing during the mound scene.

Enjoyed the concept, difficult to find originality in the horror genre but you have made a good effort.
Shots were pleasing, it flowed nicely, but I feel like time was being filled during the electrician setup.

One of the better films of the heat, got my 2 points worth of an audience vote.

I like the inclusion of the film within a film in this, and love how real the blood looked!

I would try to work on making the story slightly more believable - I think you fell into the trap of trying to make a thirty minute film in 7 minutes.

I loved the intense style of the film, heaps going on.

The lead was a loveable goof (typecast Elliot?), who really brought the film up a notch.

Overall it was refreshing to see a film that was different from the rest - would watch again.

Simple concept, well executed.

Enjoyable commitment from the lead, an interesting take on the genre!

Overall enjoyed the film, really clever use of the genre - I enjoyed the comedic horror element, and the cinematography was sharp.

In saying that, I wasn't sure how funny you wanted us to find it. Was the line delivery deliberate? At times seemed very forced, I didn't know if this was intentional or not.

Good way to start the night, keep it up!