"It's a unicorn"
April 7, 2010 4:31 PM   Subscribe

Five lines. That's how long the script handed to five different directors who made five vastly different short films from it for Philips Cinema was. The Gift has robots. Dark Room has assasins. El Secreto de Mateo has heart. Jun and the Hidden Skies has children's imagination. The Hunt has nature.

Previously on the blue from Philips Carousel, which raked home the advertising awards last summer.
posted by dabitch (7 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
This reminds me of The Five Obstructions, where Lars von Trier challenged his favourite filmmaker to remake a particular short film five times, under different (and frequently absurd) restrictions. The results are stunning. The point of the exercise being that creativity flourishes under limitations.

The TV-screen-view is an unnecessary and obnoxious bit of marketing, though.
posted by mek at 6:17 PM on April 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

I love the robot. Cyborg?
posted by Malla at 7:58 PM on April 7, 2010

Wonderful visuals. But i found the stories not that striking.
posted by storybored at 8:08 PM on April 7, 2010

Heh, I was about to complain about how the unicorn wasn't a unicorn in any of them, until I got to the last one. Awesome.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:26 PM on April 7, 2010

After seeing the first two, I was impressed by the lack of actual unicorn. "That's why I'll never be asked to do an ad campaign for Philips," I thought. "I'm way too literal. These guys are so creative. This is awesome."

I'm also not a director, which is the other reason no one calls me for these jobs.

But I mapped out a script anyway. It went something like:


Two men - a young city dude and an old, wizened cowboy - lean against the fence. A unicorn is peacefully eating grass on the other side. We hear some low key banjo playing in the background.

DUDE What is that?

COWBOY It's a unicorn.

DUDE Never seen one up close before. (beat) Beautiful.

Dude ducks under the top wire and walks over towards the unicorn. Without warning, the music picks up. African drums and showtunes style brass kick in.

snorts. Paws the ground like a bull.

Dude slowly walks closer when


the unicorn is off running towards him, horn pointed start at his heart.

COWBOY (waving arms) Get away! Get Away!


And then it gets a little weird. I'm not sure what the screenplay indicator of this is, but the live-action footage seamlessly gives way to Charlie/Candy Mountain style animation, and the unicorn stomps the two men to death. The low-budget animation makes it uncomfortably humorous.

And then..

CAMERA cuts in close towards UNICORN

UNICORN (pouting) I'm sorry.


And then I saw the last movie. It's like the director read my mind. Seriously? An actual unicorn?

Philips: I'm no professional, but I think I could hack this. Next time you mount a huge campaign for a TV, shoot me an email and I'll pull something together in a third of the time and way under budget.

(and hey, if you don't want me, I'm not worried. Because let's be honest - I think I can come up with something better than a giant fish for Sharp.)
posted by niles at 8:31 PM on April 7, 2010 [2 favorites]

Apparently there's talk of there being a feature version of The Gift with Fox winning a bidding war (The director Carl Erik Rinsch was down to direct the Alien prequel until Scott was brought in)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:49 PM on April 8, 2010 [1 favorite]

Oh that would please me so, I love "the gift". Really nicely done, that one - and Erik Rinsch has shown real talent in his reel. I hope that rumor is true.
posted by dabitch at 11:33 AM on April 10, 2010

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