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UFO Over Santa Clarita, ALIENS IN MEXICO !!!
February 7, 2013 9:35 PM   Subscribe

"Shot October 2012 while driving through Santa Clarita. There were two crafts. After sighting the first I stopped the car and ran into a field for a better look. What happened next was unbelievable." Except the unbelievable thing is that everything was faked, not just the too-real looking UFO, as Wired breaks down the elements in the video. But if you're excited about this video, watch out! ALIENS IN MEXICO !!! And Dominican Republic! More than five years ago! Except, it wasn't real then, either.

Bonus links: Here is a Vue 6 demo and the CG UFO over Paris clip that were mentioned LA Times article. It looks like barzolff814 took down the original self-debunking video, but he put up a weird little UFO Haiti "HOAXER COMES CLEAN" animated video. barzolff made another UFO clip last year, UFO over belgium filmed from plane, but by this time, he was more forthright about the thing being fake, and there are ample UFO Haiti hoax videos to keep people skeptical of his UFO clips.

And if you'd like a different source for the Santa Clara clip, or if you want to know what software was used to make the clip, both are available in this Vimeo video.
posted by filthy light thief (22 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Is "its a streetlight" a well known enough UFO sighting related comment for MetaFilter readers to understand?
posted by mediocre at 9:46 PM on February 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I think the ones in Mexico were more realistic than the Santa Clarita or the Dominican Republic ones. At least they got blurry for a bit, as though it were being shot on a hand held camcorder. The first link looked just like a movie.
posted by Metro Gnome at 10:23 PM on February 7, 2013


for frack's sake i hope some aliens are coming to help us out
posted by localhuman at 10:41 PM on February 7, 2013


I've always loved how, visually, UFO trends seem to follow earth trends.
posted by The Potate at 10:59 PM on February 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


That first link is really a technical achievement... it looks like a fake spaceship superimposed over a real video, doesn‘t it?
posted by Jughead at 10:59 PM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


That's really nicely done!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:13 PM on February 7, 2013


UFO styles sure have changed over the years.
The aliens must have some creative designers.
What happened to the good old days when they
made them look like hubcaps.
posted by quazichimp at 11:30 PM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


I may be confused. Am I to be led to believe that anyone thought that any of these clips were authentic footage?

I can understand the appeal of lots of "UFO footage," but this just isn't even close. I don't get it.
posted by cmoj at 11:34 PM on February 7, 2013


cmoj, the point is that the first video looks like a fake UFO over handheld camera footage — but in fact even the handheld camera footage is all CGI.
posted by FrereKhan at 12:55 AM on February 8, 2013


Yeah, I think it's interesting and the fakeness of the CGI spaceships was actually intentional misdirection.
posted by dhartung at 1:59 AM on February 8, 2013


What a great achievement in CGI. That looked really good.
posted by zombieApoc at 5:11 AM on February 8, 2013


Of course, the key to making cgi believable, especially in the case of the first video, is to keep everything moving and jostling around, so that the viewer never has a moment in which to hold focus on any detail.

In fact, I think the first video seems to be going a bit too far, in that the constant "hand" motion felt too exaggerated. Maybe that will be the new "I can tell because pixels!"...I can tell because parkinsons!
posted by Thorzdad at 5:33 AM on February 8, 2013


I can tell because cheap handheld cameras don't expose like that.
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:37 AM on February 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I've always loved how, visually, UFO trends seem to follow earth trends.
posted by The Potate at 10:59 PM on February 7 [2 favorites +] [!]


The depressing thing is that TV and Hollywood are well on the way to standardising the way we all imagine an alien being would look. Everywhere in the world now, no matter the local culture or its specific folklore, aliens tend to be pictured as standard-issue Close Encounters/X- Files "greys".

This thought struck me about a decade ago when I saw a UFO-themed nightclub in Kingston, Jamaica promoting itself with the standard "grey" image. How much more interesting it would have been if the artist had drawn inspiration from something specific to the island, such as traditional depictions of Anansi or another local god.
posted by Paul Slade at 5:49 AM on February 8, 2013


In fact, I think the first video seems to be going a bit too far, in that the constant "hand" motion felt too exaggerated. Maybe that will be the new "I can tell because pixels!"...I can tell because parkinsons!

I thought the jostling was excessive, but I also found it added to the authenticity. If I've learned nothing else from the various news stories posted here and elsewhere that are centered around cell-phone cam footage, it's that people do not know how to hold still when filming something. Like, I get that you're excited by whatever is happening, but seriously, it's like comedians who can't stop themselves from gesticulating when they're using a microphone.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 6:08 AM on February 8, 2013


The best idea, then, was to contact the posters of several of the earliest "UFO Haiti" videos, including barzolff814, whose 2.2 million-view video was listed as the fourth to be posted under that name.

Within an hour, I got a message back from a 17-year-old Irish girl named Heather. It read as follows:

"umm yeah. whatever. you people are stupid. find something better to do with your time. and get a life."


Being an internet detective just isn't as glamorous as the offline thing.
posted by Panjandrum at 6:09 AM on February 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I thought the jostling was excessive, but I also found it added to the authenticity.

I think that it added to the illusion of authenticity. Or, more accurately, what we imagine to be authentic. To me, the excessive motion was the first tip-off that this definitely was a set-up. Of course, I wasn't expecting everything to be revealed as CG. That part was impressive.

It's sort of the same concept that CG artists lean on when attempting to convincingly animate human beings. CG people are almost always, annoyingly, in motion, even when standing still. While it's true that people rarely stand rock still, they also don't engage in the sort of excessive motion that so often is seen in CG people.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:31 AM on February 8, 2013


An interesting side-discussion is how decent looking fake UFO videos are making people too skeptical, so when real UFO videos come along, no one will believe them. And apparently some people were trying to debunk the debunking videos from the Haiti/ Dominican Republic/ Mexico videos, clinging to the hope that the videos were really real.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:00 AM on February 8, 2013


I'd love to see what this guy can do with more ambient illumination. I love that the Santa Clara video turns out to be ALL fake, but I wonder if that is due in part to the fact that is is being shot at "sundown" where the darkness of the shadows in the car hide detail that might make the CGI origin of the shot more evident to the casual viewer.
posted by hwestiii at 7:26 AM on February 8, 2013


My favorite thing about this was the use of dead chickens as the model for the ships. However, I wonder about the overwhelming insistence on symmetry in these, and other designs. Would asymmetry add or detract from most viewers believing that these were real?
posted by Enron Hubbard at 7:39 AM on February 8, 2013


The CGI is amazing in that first video. I thought the point was to seem like it was real, and it failed that just because of the actions and reactions of the driver, not visually. But 99.999% of movies fail that test too, so I guess it accomplishes everything it intended too. Nice work.
posted by bongo_x at 10:54 AM on February 8, 2013


To me, the excessive motion was the first tip-off that this definitely was a set-up. Of course, I wasn't expecting everything to be revealed as CG. That part was impressive.

I'll agree there, I'm mostly just using this video as an excuse to complain about the fact that people with cell phone cameras can't seem to film things without pointing it at everything but the interesting part, like a Batman Begins fight scene. Doubly so, since such videos are the only footage we have of historic events more and more often these days.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 12:44 PM on February 8, 2013


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