The Story Beyond the Still
February 5, 2011 8:25 PM   Subscribe

The Story Beyond the Still began with a film by Pulitzer Prize winner Vincent Laforet who was given a still image to interpret into a short film shot with the Canon 7D. This film became the first chapter in the Story Beyond The Still contest which also ended on a still photograph for contest goers to interpret into the next chapter of the story. This pattern continued for another six user-generated chapters with each chapter winner continuing the story by interpreting the previous chapter's ending still image. Now, a year and over 275 submissions later, the contest has come to a close and the final chapter is complete and premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
posted by netbros (8 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
I know a lot of people will probably disagree with me on this, but I was a huge fan of Vince's work for a long time - until he got so wrapped up in film. As someone in the same business, I can appreciate wanting to do new things but he's totally lost me with this film stuff. Kind of disappointing, because its like when your favorite band decides to go in a new direction. You WANT to like them, but just don't anymore.
posted by blaneyphoto at 9:11 PM on February 5, 2011 [1 favorite]

I'll agree with you, blaneyphoto. Laforet is out of his league in cinema. He really does not know what he's doing.

Laforet's films make me want to puke. I mean that quite literally. I watched one of his showpieces, with lengthy helicopter shots zooming low over the landscape jump cutting to rapid pans with a telephoto, suddenly I was dizzy and nauseated. The problem was obvious, a cinematographer's problem known since the days of Edison: strobing. I had to turn off the film, I didn't feel well for another couple of hours.

Now admittedly, I am susceptible to this sort of problem (I have some inner ear problems). But if I'm watching a film and have to suppress the urge to vomit after 30 seconds, there is a major problem. I am sure his films are causing problems for other viewers, although probably to a lesser degree. Perhaps they feel something is wrong, but they don't know what.

So I wrote to Laforet and told this to him, and briefly explained what strobing is and why it is so important to avoid it. He said he never heard of strobing and denied that any such problem could exist. I suggested he should consult a professional cinematographer.

Still photographers are crappy cinematographers. There is more to cinema than moving a camera between still photo posiitons.
posted by charlie don't surf at 9:13 PM on February 5, 2011

I liked the film. In the making of doc, he says the ending seems nonsensical, but it makes sense if you can find the "ultimate clue".
posted by stbalbach at 9:29 PM on February 5, 2011

Let's be clear -- this is a commercial for Canon DSLRs, not ground-breaking short filmmaking. As a commercial, it appears to operate rather well. We're talking about it here, I suppose, and I was interested enough to watch, but as narrative or filmmaking, it's pretty bush-league. Sundance showed this because of Canon's involvement, not because it's great filmmaking.
posted by incessant at 9:57 PM on February 5, 2011 [2 favorites]

Boy them HD cameras sure do look AMAZIN' don't theys? I can't wait until every single darn movie looks this GOOD. I mean, the clarity! The low-light quality! Just breathtaking. Never has a rainswept street made me want to pop a huge ciné-boner! Yes siree, I sure do find them cameras amazin'.
posted by ReeMonster at 5:37 AM on February 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

I was expecting a movie about bootleggers.
posted by Jode at 5:41 AM on February 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

What this is about is egalitarianism in film making. Consumer-grade camera used to make professional-looking film in a Wikipedia shared writing style. It's novel and interesting.
posted by stbalbach at 8:48 AM on February 6, 2011

There is nothing egalitarian about any of this. The Canon 7D is not a consumer-grade camera in any way, shape or form. It is extremely high end and even professionals have difficulty operating it. Wikipedia writing is similarly non-egalitarian, I would characterize its users as self-selected elites (they certainly think they are).
posted by charlie don't surf at 12:52 AM on February 8, 2011

« Older "I've Been Thrown Out of Some of the Best Churches...   |   The Air Chief Marshall wants to shake hands Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments