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The Winner Of The Inaugural Shadow & Act, AvenueTV Fantastical Short Films Contest Is...

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by Tambay A. Obenson
January 14, 2014 10:49 AM
310 Comments
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12. The Shadows of Strangers – “The Story of a Mistress“ (web series, episode 1), by The Robinson Brothers. Synopsis: Naomi discovers her boyfriend would not leave his other family for her, so she decides to seek revenge.


13. Spotlight by Steven Caple. Synopsis: A conventional tap dancer is about to end his last night performing at a whole-in-the-wall theatre. As he's gearing up for his final routine and about to hit the stage. He's surprised with an unexpected visit from his long time, more flashy and eccentric competitor, his Alter Ego. His old-fashioned ways our challenged when his inevitable urge starts to steal the spotlight of his last performance.


14. Transporter, by Damon Colquhoun. Synopsis: A new breed of criminals have created a network of human traffickers. In that network, nothing is more valuable than a transporter. Transporter, a sci-fi thriller, tells the story of an introverted Harlem teen on a mission to escape his dysfunctional family and their monstrous family business. However, his manipulative mother is convinced that he has what it takes to be the transporter she covets.

15. Buster Jones: The Movie details the adventures of an African-American minor league basketball star that is also trained in the martial arts. After his cousin Bootsy is murdered by weapons dealers from Asia, Buster finds himself thrown into a turbulent battle with an organized terrorist ring. These pursuits lead Buster to the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles where he finds himself plunged into the ultimate fight to save the fate of the free world. Directed by Dylan Hobor.


16. Steamfunk & Rococoa: A Black Victorian Fantasy by Briaan L. Barron. Synopsis: Steamfunk & Rococoa: A Black Victorian Fantasy is a mixed-media documentary short that explores the esoteric aesthetic of Steampunk, and more specifically how people of color are engaging the aesthetic in creative ways. The intersection between past and future, technology and maker culture, and identity all appear in this unique science-fiction genre, and many artists of color are using it as a venue to inventively interact with historical narratives of slavery and oppression. A combination of digitally-animated hand-drawn images, photographs, and live-action footage give a short-form introduction to this subject.


17. Deceit by Mark KaiyareSynopsis: A thrilling Drama places you in the home of TED, 29 as he walks into their bedroom and locks the door. It's too clean, with a sense of structure and order. SHEILA, his wife, seems to prep for bed. He approaches her standing close but with a noticeable distance. Sheila seems disturbed, struggling to keep calm. Ted has never lost control of anything in his life until now.


18. Silent Hunger by Stanford GibsonSynopsis: Silent Vampire thriller produced for the 48 Hour Film Project during 2012. The poor and unskilled labour force are starved by the more affluent in society while the Government demands its pound of flesh from all citizens. Like the un-dead, the poor will one day rise.

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310 Comments

  • mary ellen | January 22, 2014 1:24 PMReply

    The owners of the website have imposed a password on the winning film! can someone ask them to please keep it available for a little while?

  • Aton | January 17, 2014 11:57 PMReply

    good job my friend!

  • the robinson brothers | January 15, 2014 10:00 PMReply

    Shout out to the winner director nice work and thanks to shadow and act for having the contest. I really enjoyed watching my fellow directors work, keep filming everyone.

  • AMIRAL GASPARD | January 15, 2014 7:32 PMReply

    First I want to congratulate and greet each participant who participated in this contest and also to thank Shadow and Act for organizing it. I want to say, no matter the winner, the main thing is that we dared and we will continue to learn, experiment and come up with new ideas and impress the world with our talents. The film "the bad, the good and the apprentice" is a model for me. I can see my weaknesses, my strengths and what I need to improve. Keep on doing guys, people are waiting to see our films, challenge yourself, listen to the comments and learn from them.
    At the end, I want to thank everyone who have participated in the movie, from people who lent us their home, the actors, the team, to the teachers for their advice and suggestions.

  • Roudie Rigaud MARCELIN | January 18, 2014 7:32 PM

    I congratulated the team of SHADOW & ACT for this great initiative. I salute encourages each participant could participate to show the world their work in this contest. No shouts of victory! But rather to use this remark set us even more essential to continue what advantage to experiment inover new premises CONCEPTS (Haitian), in BLACK MOVIES, and ride the rest of the world, especially to our dear people, if we put together, WE CAN!

    As an editor on his film "the bad, the good and the apprentice," I can say that it is a great experience, a well-deserved opportunity to work with AMIRAL GASPARD. With him I learned. Our determination is "MAKING FILM FOR OUR PEOPLE, THEN THE WORLD." The road is not easy, but we advance "I'll never forget the night on offices in CINE INSTITUTE Editing's Room, just to sleep. Because we could not get to the house, we had a deadline to finalize everything. I can say that I learned more from this film. "

    Thank you GOD and all the team of the production of this film. Thank you to Professors, thanks to the actors. The battle has begun! To all of Courage, the Will, Patience, and especially the love for what we do. God bless you all!

  • Bullethead | January 15, 2014 4:59 PMReply

    First, I would like to thank Shadow and Act for holding the contest, I know it takes a lot of time and energy to see projects like these though. Also, I would have to agree with Carey Carey, a recording of the panel's decision would have made for a great podcast, a podcast with a "Siskel and Ebert" type rating system for the entries... even better. Also, congratulations to Amiral Gaspard. It doesn't take a genius to see why the panel chose his film. Technically his film is clean. Lighting, camerawork, and sound design all work well together in his film. Most of the entries were lacking in one or more of these areas. But where his film is far superior than the rest is his storytelling. His theme was clear, it had a beginning, middle and end, and a active protagonist. Most of the protagonist in the entries had no goals, they just wandered through events aimlessly, causing unmotivated conflicts with things and people.

    I hope Shadow and Act continues this quarterly because it has the potential to become something great, a training ground for black filmmakers all over the world. Some of the feedback I read in these forums are "expensive," and could only be obtained in film school, which I pay for like a dummy! Shout out to all the filmmakers who participated because it takes a lot of courage to put something out there!

  • Ryan C. Khan | January 14, 2014 10:46 PMReply

    Well look at ting...Forget to check in for the year and competition done! Congrats to the winning filmmaker and to all the others that participated in this competition. For me, I was actually glad to find some love for one of my first short films and was happy for all the feedback....so I don't consider it a loss...just no bonus cash. Added to that I am happy it was a Caribbean film as well. I made a new penpal too...right CC? Lol...been meaning to get around to your blog and will keep in touch....otherwise keep filming everyone, peace!

  • CareyCarey | January 14, 2014 9:20 PMReply

    Slam bam thank you maam and close the door on your way out.

    I am suggesting that the ending to this months long affair was woefully anti-climatic. There was no special shout-outs or thank yous to any of the other films, nor was there any mention of the films that were in the running for the grand prize. To that point, it would have been nice to know what specific aspects of the winning film took it over that top. Having said that, it would have also been nice to know how each of the staff members voted. I mean, I can't help but believe this film was not a unanimous decision?

    Speaking of this film, not taking anything away from it, but I believe a film in a foreign language (with subtitles) has somewhat of an unfair advantage. It's very difficult to judge an actor's performance ( i.e, realness, sincerity, honesty, pace, delivery, believability, etc) when one doesn't understand the words they're saying. Consequently, the actors in this film all get a pass.

    I guess, in short, it would have been nice to know what specifically the voters were looking for and which films, other than the winner, were knocking at the door. You know, give the drummers some, even if they ain't the lead singers.

    And, I'm going to go out on a limb and say, based on what I've come to know about the man from the years I've been reading him, this film was not Sergio's first choice? So come on Shadow and Act, open the door and tell us all the news. As it stands, it smells like SLAM-BAM thank you maam and politics may have again ruled the day. Yes, that's right, I am suggesting that as long as the winning criteria is not fully defined and the votes (and voting process) remains a secret, the "best" film will...

  • CareyCarey | January 16, 2014 2:35 AM

    Well Carl, considering the fact that your contribution to the conversations consists of foul language, disrespectful comments and name calling, I feel blessed not to have you as a friend.

  • Carl | January 15, 2014 8:06 PM

    And as usual, your opinion means NOTHING.

  • Lawrence Lee Wallace | January 14, 2014 11:37 AMReply

    Congrats! Great film!
    youtube/llw777

  • AK | January 13, 2014 7:38 PMReply

    Excellent winner. A simple story full of atmosphere.

  • Mark and Darla | January 13, 2014 5:11 PMReply

    The day is almost over, who is the winner, stop milking this it is not the oscar.

  • CareyCarey | January 6, 2014 10:32 PMReply

    Go Florida State! They are down by 11 at the half.

    Anyway, when can we expect the announcement of the winner?

    Hey, as witnessed by my numerous posts, I am all up in this contest so I'm gonna put my money where my mouth is. If Tambay will accept it, I'd like to match the $500.00 winning prize in the next contest. My only requirement is I have a vote on the winning film.

    Now back to the game.... GO FLORIDA STATE!

  • . | January 6, 2014 9:25 PMReply

    .

  • Abayomi | January 1, 2014 2:48 PMReply

    So when will you announce your winner? I'm really curious to see who going to win this thing, and on a side note np Robinson Brothers, I really enjoyed you guys film.

  • CC | January 5, 2014 8:45 PM

    **sticking my tongue out @ Abayomi** LOL

  • ABAYOMI | January 1, 2014 2:49 PM

    I see that CC is back at it again lol

  • Elle BeEss | December 28, 2013 4:42 AMReply

    Villains! My vote is for Villains. Very cool.

  • The Robinson Brothers | December 23, 2013 2:32 PMReply

    I didn't know the contest was push back, but that's a good thing. I want to thank all the people that voted for me and my bro, and I also wanted to thanks Abayomi for the feed back and kind words, and a shout out to CC. I haven't been on here in a long time and I was reading all your old comments this morning. Not sure if it to late but yeah you can give me feed back on our film as well. I thought you already done it at first. I kinda have a idea what you don't like about it, when you were talking to Abayomi but I wouldn't mind hearing it from you. So go for it, let me know.

    As a film maker me and my bro learned how to take the good with the bad, it can be upsetting at time, when you put your blood sweat and tears into something you love just to have someone tell you, sorry you f#@$ up start over lol, but at the sametime it makes you fight even harder on your next project.

  • The Robinson Brothers | January 7, 2014 11:17 AM

    It's was nice talking to you man, and sorry to hear about her dieing from cancer... quick question how old was she, if you don't mind me asking?

  • CareyCarey | January 7, 2014 2:42 AM

    Okay Mister RM, it's late and I hear the sandman (Tambay) coming down the hall. You know, he did say " I want to keep the comment section as free of unnecessary comments as possible". Yep, my friend, we've beat this to death. So before he smacks me upside my head and give you a slap on the hand, it's time to say it's all over. We've both got our roll out and now it's in the hands of the judges.

    But do tell Jonathan not to pay any attention to that man behind the screen. He knows what he's doing and he can't help but get better as long as he never settles for "good enough".... and is open to "change". Also, tell Samantha this old school fool thinks she's very attractive... and with the right guidance and proper training she could actually be the next "it". Seriously, although I didn't find reasons to praise this performance, I see potential if she chooses to stay in the game.

    Thanks for the memories.

  • CareyCarey | January 7, 2014 1:41 AM

    Mark & Darla, yes I was a bad boy lol... But there is a happy ending to that story. Me and the woman you said "snapped" shared many years together until her passing. Cancer took her away.

    "But Carey, what about the other family?"

    Hmmmm... I'm looking for a good writer/director...

  • TheRobinsonBrothers | January 6, 2014 11:57 PM

    I'm back Carey, I was going to write to you, just time kept slipping away from me, but I'm here, and back to what you were saying, there a few things you need to understand. I wasn't making any excuses toward my film, or my actress... again I love her performance and I stand by her and still would work with her again. For a film with 0 budget that was shot in one day and had fun filming it I think we did alright, but it's all about taste at the end of the day.

    "Thin Line" and "Waiting to Exhale" there was a supporting cast and subplots to help move the story"

    I'm happy you point that out, "subplot" meaning a small part of the story, and that is one of the reason I made it a short. My short has a beginning middle and end and I gave you enough so you can understand the whole story under 8 mins. I wasn't trying to make a hour long movie here, but what you're asking for would have made the short more longer... and by you not liking the actress do you really want to see this short any longer then what it is? lol

    As for the selling point, even tho you didn't see it, me and my bro Direction came 1st. We wanted to shoot this short Differently then the normal way you were looking for. See Carey in your mind you have your own idea of how this short should have been directed. I'm sure you would like it if we showed the guy and maybe had both of them fussing at each other throwing stuff and let the girl play the victim were you feel sorry for her? So maybe that what you pictured for this short or maybe you don't, but my point is I wanted to being something new to this type of story, but you want to turn it into something that you seen before. That's why I wanted to try to do less cut always and keep the camera on her, and use one song. (also it's only 8 mins how many songs can you play in 8 mins) If the short was 20 or 30 mins yeah you would be right, we wouldn't use just one song, but you have to keep in mind you are watching a 8 min short film. Playing 3 or 4 song in 8 min you wouldn't remember what you just heard. Also wasn't you the one that said we should have played a aretha franklin song chain of fools lol?

    Anyway I hope that answers your questions, and really me and my bro main goal was to take something Black people seen before and film it in a new type of way.

  • Mark & Darla | January 6, 2014 10:36 PM

    Carey bad bad bad, made that woman snapped.

  • CareyCarey | January 6, 2014 8:42 PM

    The Robinson Brothers, "it's crying time again, you're gonna leave me... I can see that far away look in your eyes... I can tell by the way you hold me darling, that it won't be long before it's crying time".

    I used that popular Country & Western song to embellish my thought that it's tough love time. I say that because in your reply (your haste to justify and defend your film) you appear to have blocked out any suggestions that I believe could have improved your film and possibly make you a "better" future filmmaker. So what I am about to say will be a bit more blunt than my original "feedback" which may not lead to you kissing me in the morning *lol*.. so get ready, tighten-up your seat belts, turbulence is on the horizon.

    Lets start here--> "I get the feeling you're saying that it's to unreal for a woman to put her self in a position where she know she's the other woman and her man is married but still fight to be him"

    No, that's not what I'm saying. Listen, I can relate to this story because I've been there... yes I have!

    Short story: I was leaving a horse race track with my lady and our son. In the parking lot a woman approached from the darkness. As she got close she said "Carey, what are you doing?". OMG... it was my (other) lady. That's right, in that period of my life I was a zip fool who had two families in 2 different states. On this day I was in the city of the woman who believed she was my one and only lover, my childhood sweetheart, the woman who gave me my first child. Going back (it has been many years ago) I think she had heard rumors of my out-of-town activities, but here it was, looking in her face and she (my heartbroken first lover) had a gun in her hand. That's right, she was on a mission to kill me.

    Of course there's a LOT more to that story (a very interesting story, if I can say so myself) but I simply wanted to convey the fact that I am well aware that love and pain makes people do strange thangs, some of which takes them completely out of their character.

    So I didn't have a problem with the premise of the story, my concerns are focused on how you presented the story. Look, you compared your story to "A Thin Line Between Love and Hate", and "Waiting to Exhale". Well, the only thing they have in common is they all have angry black women going off. And, it's important to note that in "Thin Line" and "Waiting to Exhale" there was a supporting cast and subplots to help move the story. You had NOTHING, ZERO... not one thing to rest you hat (film) on... except a trite/played story and one actor. So let's go... let's go to your biggest selling point, your actor.

    Listen, you're in a contest, the judges could care less about your budget and casting woes, they're there to judge all the films on the finished products as presented before them. Think about that. It's unreasonable to believe each film has as disclaimer attached, outlining which aspects of a film should be ignored or excused or given a pass. NO-NO, when the judges see poor visuals, poor sound quality or a sub-par performance, they can't tell their brains to "strike that out" because ol'boy was broke. Nope, not gonna happen. Consequently, your film rested in the hands of your friend, who I believe needed help to make the story more exciting and more entertaining. Be it by visual aids (of which you had few) or a sound track which could enhance/embellish/help move the story and give an added punch to the actors words and facial expressions, those details (additions) are the things that take a film to the next level.

    So again, lets look at your music selection. But first, you said--> " I love our music and wouldn't changing that for any body... I notice when it comes to black film ppl normally don't use the type of music my bro made for our short". What... you wouldn't change, what?

    Listen, no one is asking you to change it (at least I didn't) and I've repeatedly said many black films do not put their sound/music score at the top of their priority list. In fact, I mentioned the omission of such details in my comment at the C.J. Harris post. However, by using the Moonlight Sonata in your film does NOT automatically move your film to the top of the pile. The devil's ALWAYS in the details.

    That reminds me, you also said "By you Pointing that out (our music) means we are doing something right, because I bet you didn't notice the music in anyone else short"

    That's simply not true. I am a die hard movie buff who has an inquisitive nature. Consequently, I am always looking, delving, seeking to find why and how a particular scene or film has moved me. And, if you would have looked there, you'd have surely found it fair that aside from the C.J. Harris post, I generally mention something about a films music, as I've done in other comments on other films in THIS very post/contest. Anyway, as I said, I wasn't necessarily objecting to the use of your selection, but suggesting it wasn't enough (imo) added punch to drive an otherwise event-less/trite/same 'ol same 'ol story. In other words, a story and actor who were in dire need of assistance could have benefited by paying more attention to every detail (i.e. facial expression, words, emotion, actions) to make sure the accompanying music hit and fit every beat.

    Again, it's not wise, nor the best storytelling method to play one song (I don't care what song it is) over an entire scene. The best storytellers/directors use a vast array of sounds and music (in unison) throughout an entire scene, stopping them, slowing them down, interchanging them when appropriate. They do so to heighten an emotion/mood/tempo when words are not enough.

    There you go my brothas. That's your drunk uncle CareyCarey's feedback for today. I hope my objections are clearer now.

    "as a filmmaker I understand how it can be frustrating when you work your ass off and then a person like Carrey makes a comment but this is the nature of the biz...if anything people like Carrey help filmmakers grow...if you're willing to listen to the message and extract what you need and put aside ego..." ~ Ryan C. Khan

  • CareyCarey | January 5, 2014 10:00 PM

    Hat tip and kudos to you youngblood.

    Although this post centers on a contest, not only have you been able to show your film, you've shown the world the man behind the film. Personally, I believe that can be as much of a selling point to success as the film itself. I mean, it's a fact that if a person likes what they see and hear from/in a person, they're more inclined to open their door to them. In that regard, I believe you're doing a fine job.

    Now your film. I've always said this medium does not lend itself very well to have an ongoing discussion/debate. In "normal" conversation each person can jump in at any time to correct a misunderstanding, or how someone interpreted a comment. Without that ability to interject a thought/comment/objection at any time, much of our comment is wasted and/or useless or unnecessary. For example, you opened with the following.

    " I get the feeling you're saying that it's to unreal for a woman to put her self in a position where she know she's the other woman and her man is married but still fight to be him?"

    Now had we been sitting in the same room, I would have immediately said "NO, that's not what I was saying". Since I wasn't able to step in, you went there :0). Woe is we, what we gonna do?

    Hey, that reminds me, I do have a suggestion for S&A. I think it's time to bring back their live podcast. I even have a name for it: Shadow & Act & The Sandman & The Hot-Seat. See, out goes the traditional slow conversations of talking heads, in comes the type of "conversations" and comments reminiscent of those seen in the comment sections of blogs (quick remarks, short responses, rhetorical questions, etc). Hence, "The Sandman" and "The Hot Seat". If a person gets on the air with some drawn-out sleep inducing mumble jumble, an "alarm" (ring, bell, tone, etc.) will alert the listeners that the Sandman is on the move. Yep, the caller, in essence, is sitting in the hot seat, so he or she better come on with the come on or face the fate of being abruptly escorted off the stage. Of course there are fine details that have to be worked out, but I seriously believe it can be a very entertaining night with all the issues/topic/movies still being discussed but in a faster format.

    In the interim, we're stuck with what we have now. Soooo, back to my response to your reply. Well, I think I've run my mouth enough already, so I think I'll take a break.

    "and again I'm not here to make you like this film. I understand everyone has different taste when it come story , actor and so on...." ~ The Brothers

    Yep, we cool. Don't even think about it. As I said, we're just kickin' the bobo. And, you've done yourself proud. I will return...

  • the robinson brother | January 5, 2014 8:34 PM

    I meant to say " wanting to kill her bf.". not waiting to kill him.

  • . | January 5, 2014 5:36 PM

    .

  • The Robinson Brothers | January 5, 2014 2:59 PM

    There are some keys things I forgot to touch on as well " compassion for my character" When I was writing this I didn't want people to feel compassion for her just understand her reason for waiting to kill this man, good or bad.

    It's like watching movies like Goodfellas there's a scene were a guy wife sits ontop of her man with a gun pointed at his face. He been cheating on his wife and she know he been cheating but she didn't want to leave him , because she felt like if she left him, then the mistress would win. There are a lot of women and men out there that really think that way and would kill the person they love just so no one else could have them. Do you feel sorry for those people that could stay in a bad relationship hoping things would get better? No, but there are ppl out there that live just like that. That's all I was trying to show in my short that this situation is real, you don't have to feel sorry for the guy or the girl but it's real not fake. Some story you are not going to feel compassion for the main character but you are entertain and watch the whole film I did my job.

    Some of my fav movie I don't feel compassion for but I like the story, like goodfella, Training day, scare face... doesn't mean those story are bad. Do you get what I'm saying? I'm sure you might look at films differently then the way I do but that's my view.

    I also wanted to talk about the N word... I understand how some people can get upset by the use of the N word, I'm not a big fan of it and don't really use it in my normal life, but if I make a story and I want it to be real it might come up here and there, it's a character trait.

  • The Robinson Brothers | January 5, 2014 2:39 PM

    Hey Carey about time man , I started to think you didn't like us anymore lol. Alright I'll break this down in 3 part, Story, actress, and music, and again I'm not here to make you like this film. I understand everyone has different taste when it come story , actor and so on....

    Story

    Now when you talk about the story I get the feeling you're saying that it's to unreal for a woman to put her self in a position where she know she's the other woman and her man is married but still fight to be him?

    I wrote the script taken things from real life and movie I've seen in the past, like "A Thin Line Between Love and Hate", and "Waiting to Exhale". Both story that deal with cheating men that lie to women to have sexy with them. In waiting to exhale Whitney Houston character was closer to my story then anything, even tho she didn't want to kill her man, but she was with a married man who wasn't planning on leaving his family but she stayed with him until she realize she was wasting her time.

    Now in real life QB football player Steve McNair lose his life playing around with the wrong female.

    I wrote my script way before the Steve McNair thing happen and I do believe he was married at the time and was killed by his girlfriend. So in my story yes she knew she was the other woman, but the guy she was with always gave her hope that he would leave his family and be with her, but as my story start he's tied to the bed giving the idea that he was done with her and wanted to end their relationship.

    So obviously for a woman, kinda like the character in my script to point a gun at the man she love, she have to have a mental disorder that was building up from past relationship that went wrong. I didn't want you to feel sorry for her either, I just wanted you to understand why she would go to that level to kill someone. At the end of the day I didn't make this short to spread awareness that you shouldn't cheat or play with someone emotions, it's just a story I wrote, but if someone get something out of it that a added bonus.

    They are two reason why our short ended at the auditioning room, 1. The idea of the short came from and old video game clip I was paying homage too. 2. Even tho you didn't care for the ending, I did that to make it different. Did that work for you no and it's not for everyone I get that, but I also get a lot of ppl that say that ending is the best way to end that short, because everyone thought she was going to kill the guy and that was it.

    The Actress

    I understand that the actress in our movie didn't work for you, I thought she did a great job and I do get ppl saying she was awesome and other say she was ok and people like you that just didn't believe in her acting. So there not much I do with that but hope you like the actors and actress in our next film. Also keep in mind that this short had no budget that was shot in one day, so I had no money to hire a payed actress or a B-actress. Just my friend Sam that came out and did the best she could for short notice and did great to me.

    Music

    lol man I love our music and wouldn't changing that for any body... I notice when it comes to black film ppl normally don't use the type of music my bro made for our short. If you think it don't fit, that's what we were going for, we wanted something to stand out. So many time when I watch a black films the music is soooo plan you don't even notice there music playing. By you Pointing that out means we are doing something right, because I bet you didn't notice the music in anyone else short. Now you might take that as a bad thing but if we got you to notice it , that's great on our part. That mean in our next film you're going to keep and ear out on what's playing in the background. I was shock when that guy "Abayomi " like our music, and I notice we kinda think the sameway when it come to films.

  • CC | January 5, 2014 4:31 AM

    ...and yes, I do know the actress is auditioning for a role. My response to that revelation is "so what?". What, if anything would that change? Exactly, and that's why I didn't mention it.

  • CareyCarey | January 5, 2014 3:31 AM

    Okay Robinson Brothers, it's time. The holidays are over and hopefully Tambay and the crew are tallying their votes. Before they announce the winner, and since we're both ready and willing to get this thang on, let's do it.

    I'll start with the actress and that long gun. I don't have an affection or need for guns in my movie watching experience, however, it was a nice touch having her shoot the bad guys through that gun embedded in her wooden leg. Wait a minute...? wrong actress? wrong gun? wrong movie? Damnit, I just finished watching The Lone Ranger (my mind must be going places that I can't control :-). That scene is not in your film and your damsel in distress didn't have a tattooed wooden leg nor was she a white chick. Opps... let's start over. *LOL*

    As you can see I wanna keep this "light". You know, first and foremost you're the filmmaker, I"m just a guy you've graciously agreed to spend a little time with talking about your short. So needless to say this is not a critique, just my opinion on how I believe the film (your short) could be improved. I mean, as one reader implied, if you want a "true critique" filled with technical jargon and ambiguous critic's speech, I am not the one. It's just me and you sitting in my kitchen kickin' the bobo.

    But let's start with the actress in your film. Dude, putting all your eggs in one basket, in this case an amateur actress, is not a wise move. The best actors possess and exhibit an uninhibited nature. This actor, your actress does not exude that quality. On the contrary, she gave the appearance of someone who was well aware that she was in front of a camera, and thus, didn't get lost in the character (didn't wear the character) which ultimately gave the appearance of someone "acting". Consequently, the character never pulled me in. In fact, I thought her best acting came at the end when she was talking to the casting director.

    So I am left to ask, other than the actor's performance, what do you believe are other selling points in your film? Was it the basic story? If so, let's take a look at the premise of the story. From what I gathered, we have a distraught female who's hurt and feels abused by her lover, a lover who she knows has a family that he has no plans of leaving. Now, let me stop there. First, who do you believe you're engaging with this type of story ? I mean, who's the intended audience?

    Well, who do you believe can relate to her predicament, leading them to have compassion for her plight? I mean, shouldn't that be a goal of the filmmaker? You know, giving the audience a chance to pick a side... good vs evil... the good guys vs the bad guys... or even a moral message that allows the audience to feel good about themselves, root for, relate to or agree with, shouldn't that be included in the filmmakers game plan?

    Well, I found it very hard to have compassion for this woman. On that note, I believe the more emotions (i.e. love, fear, laughter, compassion, hope, suspense, joy, etc) one promotes/garners through the character's exploits/actions/predicaments, the better the film. So lets take a look at what your protagonist may have given us. But first, on a side note, when you use the word "n*gg*" or "nigg*r" you've immediately loss a portion of the audience. Just something to consider.

    Now, your protagonist was a female who says she was abused by her lover. Okay, I am sure many can relate to that. But why is she so heartbroken to the degree that she would take a life? She knew he was married. She even said she knew he would never leave his wife and kids, so how could anyone feel compassion for this woman? This same woman who said "You never called because it conflicted with your family... F**K YOUR FAMILY". Now I am suppose to show her compassion and understand her pain? Please... your the mistress fool. A mistress who has no concerns for who she may be hurting. Then she had the nerve to mention the nasty and disgusting things he had her do and said " I guess your wife was too much of a lady to do that sh*t. Was that what I was to you... your fking whore".

    WHAT?... PLEASE... who wrote those lines? The mistress is complaining about the sex she had with a married man? And, having "nasty" sex (whatever that is) with your mate makes you a whore? Come on man, everybody knows and believes what Bill Withers said is true... "If it feels this good getting used, then keep on using me until you use me up, because I sure am using you to do the thangs you do". In other words, this woman was getting exactly what she bargained for.

    Mr. Robinson, your protagonist gave me nothing to wrap my arms around. Lets move to a few "technical" aspects of the film.

    Music score: I guess the best way to voice my concerns with your choice of music is to refer you to the S&A post by C.J. Harris. She spoke of the importance of having the right sound/music that conveys and enhances the emotions on the screen... in every scene. And, of special note, even within a particular scene, there can be a change in mood/emotions between characters, which requires a subsequent and immediate change in music. In short, I guess I am questioning the use of a orchestra arrangement throughout an entire scene.

    In your film a different choice of music was gravely needed to help move the pace/tone/emotions at times when the actor's performance wasn't sufficient.

    The split screen: I don't know if that was necessary.

    There you go my friends, unedited and without regrets :-). I don't know if you guys got anything from that but it has been fun. Hey, it's possible the voters may see things quite differently... and you could possibly win the grand prize.

  • The Robinson Brothers | December 31, 2013 11:22 AM

    Yeah we're here and have time to check out your review of the short.

  • CareyCarey | December 31, 2013 7:05 AM

    Robinson Brothers, are y'all still there? I am asking because I'm ready but I didn't want to write this whole script if you guys are not still peeking in. See, I know y'all are busy guys and may not have the luxury (as some of us ;-) to spend an inordinate amount of time chatting on a blog. And this is the holiday season, a time when many take a break from "work" and the grind to chill with family and friends. So I'm just checking back in before I do my thang.

    But let me tell you, this is gonna be a goodie. Granted, I am slightly biased in that opinion *lol*, but seriously, I think you will get something from this that you can actually use as you continue on your filmmaking journey.

    So holla and I'll drop it.

  • The Robinson Brothers | December 23, 2013 6:00 PM

    Yeah np... I've seen the chat you and other director of Minutes to Midnite had, I like that type of interaction.

  • CareyCarey | December 23, 2013 3:19 PM

    " it can be upsetting at time, when you put your blood sweat and tears into something you love just to have someone tell you, sorry you f#@$ up"

    Believe me man, I understand. But if that's all the feedback one has to offer, I'd tell them to get the f*#k out of my face :-). I joke but I'm serious, that type of feedback is useless, therefore I'd throw it in file 13 (the garbage can) and tell that fool where he could put it.

    But what's up man, I'm glad you came back. Listen, what I try to do is simply give my opinion ( as a consumer) on areas of a film in which I believe could be improved. Granted, as the director of Minutes To Midnite (Ryan Khan) said, my style is blunt but I don't believe there's anything to be gained by being politically correct or lying to someone softly. I mean, trite but true, in most endeavors, no pain no gain. Anyway, as Ryan also said (and I agree "[feedback] can help a filmmaker grow...if you're willing to listen to the message and extract what you NEED (leave the dumb sh*t behind) and put aside ego..."

    But listen, right now I'm in ATL doing a little Christmas thang. So when I get a little more time I'll re-watch your film and tell you what I think.

  • Mark and Darla | December 21, 2013 5:50 PMReply

    My Favorites are:
    Deceit
    Hag of Champagnolle Creek
    Dragon Fruit
    Bad Blood
    The Slap
    Minutes to Midnite

    Can only pick one ‘Dragon Fruit’

    After watching the short film, what stand out to me is the beginning and middle deceitfulness, what comes at the end is unexpected.

    Here you are enjoying the scenery, smiling at the couple flirtation....aah they are falling in love...the female cough once, twice, think nothing of it...then she start coughing and hacking uncontrollable falling to the ground distress....the guy say the name Charles and stares crazy....saliva forms out the female mouth, she dies with her eyes open...wtf. Damn she must have made Charles real mad.

    Is there a part two? I need more.

    As the saying goes today a screenplay has fifthteen pages, a movie has fifthteen minutes to capture the viewer attention, to me this short film did it, in eight minutes and forty seconds.

  • CC | December 12, 2013 1:26 AMReply

    **There's a flag on the play. The umpire steps to the mic **

    "15 yard penalty on the Hag team. We've reviewed the short and determined there was too many hypers on the field. The film " Hag of Champognolle Creek" is not ready for the playoffs by any stretch of imagination. If the team's captain/director wants to submit a protest, she can do so. If not, let's play ball. 1st down from the 20 yard line"

  • CareyCarey | December 22, 2013 2:05 AM

    Thanks Ryan,

    I appreciate you having my back. Probably, more importantly, I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to share your opinion on why I do what I do here at S&A, and the rewards one could receive and help filmmakers grow if (in your words) --> "if you're (a filmmaker) willing to listen to the message and extract what you need and put aside ego...I learnt that lesson early and I'd say it's like finding a zen like peace with the beast that is known as the film critic...lol." ~ Ryan C Khan

    Thanks again Ryan.

    And thanks Rhemona, ABAYOMI, Damon and all who have shared a voice to give this contest an added punch.

  • Ryan C. Khan | December 21, 2013 12:35 PM

    O THE HUMANITY - 'if you want true critique, ask an actual filmmaker'....as a filmmaker I severely disagree with this. Filmmakers make films for audiences, critics and regularly viewers alike...we don't make them for ourselves or to show off to other filmmakers (well at least I don't). Added to that, I've had a couple conversations well with Carrey and he goes the distance, as well as none of his opinions or statements are offensive or personal, they're just creative and blunt. I understand how it can be frustrating when you work your ass off and then a person like Carrey makes a comment but this is the nature of the biz...if anything people like Carrey help filmmakers grow...if you're willing to listen to the message and extract what you need and put aside ego...I learnt that lesson early and I'd say it's like finding a zen like peace with the beast that is known as the film critic...lol.

  • CC | December 21, 2013 7:59 AM

    Rhemona, I believe I read your comment incorrectly. I think we are on the same page. Yes, it was a bit too long. Some scenes did nothing to enhance the story. And yes, the story was very confusing. I still can't figure out if this was a story about a "hag"/evil spirit, or a couple of serial murderers? In fact, I had to watch the short for a third time before I even knew "they" were in cahoots with each other.

    And the sound quality was awfully muffled at times.

    Special effects? Yep, do them right/justice, or leave them alone. In this film, the wiggly white image, the man's howl and the gun scene were a wee bit campy. Also, in the last scene when the guy chased down the doctor/suitor in the woods, both actors needed a little more realness/sincerity in their struggles. Overall, most (if not all) of the actors fell below the "C" line.

  • O the humanity | December 21, 2013 2:36 AM

    leave it to the shadiest mothafuka here to try an call out shenanigans. waht the matter carrie? you the only one allowed to make fake post?

  • CC | December 21, 2013 2:25 AM

    Mr. Oh Please, even if all that be true, my eye is that of someone who actually pays to see the films. Consequently, "true critique" or not (whatever that is?), my voice may be a representation of many. And, I am not afraid to speak it.

    And btw, what did you say you are?

  • Oh please | December 21, 2013 1:56 AM

    Rhemona

    Carey is not an authority on anything much less cinema. He is a blog troll who likes attention and getting a rise out of people. If you want true critique, ask an actual filmmaker. Carey is a clown playing "I'm a critic" make-believe.

  • CC | December 21, 2013 12:32 AM

    Rhemona, you'll have to excuse me, I'm still laughing at something Sergio said in his Joy-Ann Reid post --> "Where in bloody hell have you been, Amari? When has anything we ever done been a "good look"? And especially by me."

    :-) I'm laughing because only Sergio would say something like that, but more importantly, he could care less of what others think about him, and thus, is content with doing it his way. And you know what, I like that in him. He inspires me to do my thang the best way I know how.

    Having said that, I feel like I am dragging you out, pleading with you and begging you to engage in a conversation about YOUR film. In my opinion, there's something just not right about that. I mean, I could be wrong but I asked if you have any concerns about discussing your film ( I thought I felt you hesitancy to do so) and asked you to take the lead. Well, you didn't take the lead, so now I have a little story.

    First, as I've said, this film business is for big boys and big girls, not for those with thin skins. If one is not open and accepting of criticism they are in the wrong business. However, it's quite possible that some aspiring filmmakers jump in the "fray" before they really know exactly what they are up against.

    For instance, after graduating I went out into the world with my little degree, expecting to make big money and conquer the world. Well, big money would have been enough, but the world smacked me right upside my head. Anyway, even though I had an engineering degree, I was promised and convinced by this good ol' white man that I should just concentrate on getting my foot in the company's door (in a job I did not apply for) and then things would work themselves out. Well, I was hungry (broke) so I took the job. Then, one day I saw a posting for a job (in the same company) that was paying 3 times what I was making. My promise had not arrives so I applied, took the necessary entrance exams.... and got the position. Now I'm moving on up (as the song goes) to the sky, I finally got a piece of the pie. It wasn't what I wanted to do, but the money and respect for having usch a position was calling my name. I found myself in one of the most dangerous legal jobs a man could do, that of a high voltage utility lineman. Yep, he's that fool who installs and repairs power lines in the dark of night, through lightning and thunderstorms... across rivers and through every weather condition God sends our way.

    One day, during my apprenticeship one of my peers said he was quitting. He said the money looked good ($75,000- $150,000) but he didn't know what he was getting into. Particularity, he didn't know how to handle the fear that we faced on a daily basis (i.e. climbing 100 ft iced covered poles and 400 ft towers, handling live 7,000 volt power lines). Also, the other guys were known to tease those who showed fear, which didn't set well with him either. He thought he'd gain more confidence as time went by, and even tried a hypnotist, but in the end, he had to accept the fact that the job required more than he had imagined.

    I told that little story to ask all "young" aspiring filmmakers, do you really know what you're getting into? Are you ready for the pain and doubt other are going to throw your way? More importantly, will you ask for it?

    Rhemona, now I have to ask you, are you really ready for a constructive critic that's not all wine and roses? In fact, it may be rather brutal.

  • Rhemona | December 20, 2013 4:38 PM

    I would love to hear your opinion. I'm game for constructive criticism.

  • CC | December 20, 2013 1:45 AM

    Hello Rhemona,

    First, I did not say nor imply that "Hag of Champagnolle Creek" did not belong in the contest. So I think it's important that we start-off on the right foot. That said, I am NOT your adversary.

    Look, I love movies/films, so if there's any way I can help someone produce a better product, I am in essence helping myself. On the other hand, if I was in your position, I'd hurry-up to open a dialog with ANYONE - if my film was the center of discussion. So, before we get started, I think should ask you what has been the motivation behind your concerns, fears and hesitancy to engage in conversation/"constructive criticism" of your film?

    I'll tell you what, you set the guidelines and I'll follow suit. For instance, you mentioned "sound" and "acting" and "special effects". Are those areas of your film that you're admitting could use a little tightening up/improvement? What else?

    Hey, I have a saying "if one doesn't not believe it's "broke", they'll do nothing to "fix" it, leading them to commit the same error".

  • Rhemona | December 19, 2013 11:22 PM

    Hello CC, I may understand why you think that 'Hag of Champagnolle Creek ' does not belong in the contest. For one, it was a bit long, but I felt it would help tell the story to edit it to a shorter version. Hindsight, I think it killed it. It was hard to follow. I could go on and on about the sound, the acting and the special effects. I would love to hear your opinion. I'm game for constructive criticism.

  • CC | December 12, 2013 6:36 PM

    Opps... I "couldn't" think of a better way...

  • CC | December 12, 2013 6:34 PM

    Hello Rhemona,

    I could think of a better way to express my opinion about your film and the many voters supporting it (and keep it light), other than the football analogy. Hey, it seems to have worked because here you are voicing a protest just like a football coach does when they throw a "red flag". They do so when they are challenging the call on the field. So thanks for playing along.

    Now, your film. Well, lets just say I had a few problems with it. So much so that I wouldn't rank it in the top 8. Would you be open for a discussion of your short as other directors have done?

  • Rhemona | December 12, 2013 12:11 PM

    Could you please speak explain in English, rather than football analogies...what you talking about?!?!?!

  • Darel Tidwell | December 11, 2013 9:43 PMReply

    I voted for Hag of Champognolle Creek

  • Tonya Simmons | December 8, 2013 4:28 PMReply

    My vote is for Hag of Champagnolle Creek!! Good job!!!

  • Shanna Stroud | December 7, 2013 6:57 PMReply

    I am putting in my Vote for Hag of Champagnolle Creek! Great Sci Fi Movie !!

  • Tanya Lewis | December 7, 2013 5:13 PMReply

    I vote for the short film "Hag of Champagnolle Creek. I will tell you I was scared for them. I wouldn't even sweep my floor.

  • Gladys Winston | December 7, 2013 5:00 PMReply

    I vote for the Hag of Champagnolle Creek.Scary and creepy; keep you trying to figure it out.

  • Darlene Greene | December 5, 2013 11:48 PMReply

    I vote for the film, "Hag of Champagnolle Creek"

  • Darlene Greene | December 5, 2013 11:45 PMReply

    The mystery that surrounds the idea of an old superstition saying is personified well as the story line unfolds. A bit of sci-fi mixed with an urban setting. Fantastic film- headed to the Cannes Film Festival!!

  • andia | December 5, 2013 11:25 PMReply

    21. Dark Matters

  • Taneesha | December 5, 2013 10:01 PMReply

    Hag of Champagnolle Creek #27

  • Chassidy | December 5, 2013 3:19 PMReply

    I vote for #27 HAG!! I LOVED IT.

  • Jerome | December 5, 2013 2:15 PMReply

    I Vote for #27 The Hag

  • Marcus Montgomery | December 5, 2013 1:42 PMReply

    My vote for best short film is: The Hag of Champagnolle Creek

  • Joni Martin | December 5, 2013 9:05 AMReply

    I vote for #27, The Hag of Champagnolle Creek!!

  • Meredith Coleman | December 4, 2013 11:46 PMReply

    I vote for the The Hag of Champagnolle Creek great movie and writer

  • Diana. Whaley | December 4, 2013 8:57 PMReply

    I vote for Hag of champagnolle creek.
    Loved it very well done by all involved.

    Thank you.

  • Cedric | December 4, 2013 7:57 PMReply

    I vote for #27 - HAG of Champagnolle Creek! All day every day!

  • S Cozad | December 4, 2013 7:35 PMReply

    #27. HAG I LOVED IT

  • CB | December 4, 2013 5:45 PMReply

    #27 - The Movie HAG, has a very different and special vibe. It has a quirky sense of dark horror mixed with a personal humor. There's just something its nostalgia. Got my vote!

  • LASHA MITCHELL | December 4, 2013 5:42 PMReply

    I VOTE FOR "HAG OF CHAMPAGNOLLE CREEK"
    IT IS SPOOKY...I LIKE IT.... AND BO IS NICE.

  • Nicole Mackney | December 3, 2013 4:59 PMReply

    VILLAINS FOR THE WIN! THE LEAD ACTOR IS CUTE ;-)

  • Leon L. Wilson | December 3, 2013 4:58 PMReply

    I vote for Villains. Good job ya'll.

  • Eric Davis | December 3, 2013 4:57 PMReply

    Villains.

  • Dilip Gurung | December 1, 2013 11:11 PMReply

    Add me,bollywood films actor.i am ready

  • Abayomi | December 1, 2013 2:46 PMReply

    I see S&A will drag this contest out a little longer, I was hoping to see the winning film today, but since no film was pick I guess I'll give my vote on who I think should win.

    I've seen all of the films even the two new ones I miss this morning, and it came down to 3 film for me.

    1. Few and Far Inbetween - It was shot well, love the location and the film just look beautiful , but wasn't much dialogue and I didn't really understand the story.

    2. The Shadows of Strangers - Now I remember getting into a small argument about this film. I myself love the way this film is shot, and I find the editing to be different from the normal style of editing. The way the character voice play over top of the scene as if we are hearing what she's thinking or her having a conversation with herself is, I thought it was unique. The music is great, I love how they made there own version of "moonlight sonata". I thought the actress did a great job as well, also the story. If i had to say something bad about the film because nothing is perfect, I would say the location could have been better, and maybe cut 1 or 2 mins off the film.

    3. Transporter - Now the Transporter, this film have a great CG opening scene that's looks awesome and I know a think or two when it come to computer effect so I know they work hard on this scene. Great Direction but I didn't connect to none of the characters. I still don't know the reason why the main character wanted to help that young lady? I didn't find anything special about her. Not saying she's a bad actress, I just didn't see why he wanted to save her then all of the other girls I'm sure they moved in and out of that house. To me the best thing about the Transporter was the opening.

    So if I had to pick the winning film out of those 3 it would be The Robinson Brother the Shadows of Strangers -"The Story of a Mistress". I've seen more of these guys work and I like what I'm seeing. The 2nd episode to Shadow of Stranger " The Story of Bella" was excellent! You guys are on the right track and you two have my VOTE!

    Goodluck.

  • RYAN C. KHAN | December 21, 2013 1:04 PM

    Sorry I meant to say 'ISN'T looking for the next Black FILMMAKER Auteur'. Hey IndieWire can you guys introduce an 'edit commentary' feature into the commentary section? So hard to track what I'm writing in such a small box. Lol.

  • RYAN C. KHAN | December 21, 2013 1:00 PM

    ABAYOMI, thanks for the critique and feedback on my film. As CC mentioned, I read all the comments and I'm happy with just the fact that it's being discussed, so I never felt the need to defend or disagree and I actually extracted some good points from the points you've made. Now the reason I decided to chime in at this moment even though I said I wouldn't say anything unless specifically asked (as I told CC, I don't like filmmakers who overtly try to defend their work) is because I'm sitting at home watching the INDIANA JONES marathon on SyFy and I remembered a discussion I had with some filmmakers/fans of the franchise...Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford had always stated they were making a 'B Movie' when making these films...(to the point where INDIANA 4 went too far). So I'm throwing into the conversation here that 'B Movie' is not necessarily a genre you can't take seriously and that this S&A competition is looking for the next Black Auteur (are they?) but they're just trying to find a film/concept that is based on something ethnically specific and that has viability (hence why my film was chosen, right?). I'm not trying to compare my film to INDIANA, but who's to say if I didn't have the same budget and access to quality cast,crew and equipment that I wouldn't have be able to produce a Caribbean INDIANA JONES adventure type film franchise based on something the world hasn't seen before. It's just a short, my first, but my vision all along was to create a concept that had both originality and viability and something that the Caribbean and Diaspora would have of their own but not take itself so seriously that it wouldn't be accessible. Entertainment was the goal, not being prolific or having in mind it being a film that everyone knows that RYAN C. KHAN made.

  • CC | December 10, 2013 2:11 AM

    Abayomi, it's nice seeing you and Damon having a discussion on his film. The director of Minutes To Midnite sends his thank you. Well, the following is what he said (in the back lot)in response to our discussion on his film.

    "Very cool stuff. I'm reading it and thinking...man my film is actually be discussed and debated...it puts a smile on my face. And While his points are coming from a sort of 'well I don't get it so it's not good' POV I wouldn't say they're invalid. I mean, films either resonate with you or they don't and I'm not going to tell a guy he doesn't get my film therefore his critique is incorrect. He was right on the Amateur part in the sense it was my first film 5 years ago..."

    Yep, in short, it's all good. He did say he wouldn't come back unless the other critics asks me something directly.

    Good job Abayomi, it's apparent each director appreciated the time you've taken to discuss their film.

  • Damon Colquhoun | December 9, 2013 7:44 PM

    You make some very good observations, Abayomi. Because of the Canon Project Imagination guidelines (less than 10:00 TRT), I couldn't hold certain shots for as long as I wanted to. In fact, the final film is a chopped down version of the script. I foolishly thought I could squeeze 13 script pages into 10 minute. I ended up having to rely on viewers being totally tuned in and picking up the details - for the most part, those details are in there.

    You're right, there are actors out there who can convey subtle nuances with their faces (or rather, embody their character, live the scenario, and be so totally in the moment that their performance is void of dishonest gesturing). Some of those folks are in my film. But again, because of the contest timeline - and my lack of access to actors - I was fortunate to get the actors I got (all for deferred payment). Some of those folks will be in the feature film (Petronia Paley who plays Mother & Taimak for sure), for various reasons, some probably won't.

    Ultimately, I'm glad you enjoyed the film. I believe that I've created one hell of a film - meaning, I invented a film in my head, and 3 or 4 months later I was able to manifest almost the exact film I envisioned - if not better. Every artist knows that this is no easy feat. I also produced the entire film on my own (while being a stay-at-home dad to my then 13-month-old son). With that being said, the film's flaws didn't go unnoticed by me. Circumstances were what they were. So I'm confident that the next one will be ten times better. I've already grown from the process, and next time, I get to take my time and do an even better job.

    The feature version of Transporter is currently being written. I'm in talks with some legitimate Hollywood players. Hopefully we can make it work. Stay tuned! In the meantime, you can find me at damoncolquhoun[dot]com. My links are also on the Vimeo page. Email me and I can be more specific if you'd like. I think you represent part of the audience I ultimately want to draw.

    Thanks again,
    Damon

  • Abayomi | December 9, 2013 3:42 PM

    Sorry for the long wait, I've been out of town.

    CC my name is African, my mother give all of kids African names, but I'm from Maryland, and back to your question. No it's fine for people to pick different genres for this contest, but I just think when you make a B-movie (grindhouse) it kinda hard to judge. We both know you can't judge a b-movie on writing , acting, and story... it suppose to be funny corny and not taken to seriously. But it all depends on what the judges are looking for. If they break a film down to Directing, writing, acting, lighting, ... and so on. MTM could get hurt, but beside that, for what it was, to me the film was funny and better then a lot of other stuff on here, but it didn't make my top 3.

    Now to Damon, first I want to say goodjob on making the Transporter, that opening scene is awesome, and you done a great job as a Director. I love the color tone you use for your film as well. As for your question, you're right I just watch it again and notice this time around they did have a connect that would give him reason to help her. That scene came off kinda brief were I didn't notice it before. The 1st time around the only thing I picked up on in that scene was her asking for help and him saying I'm going to get you outta here, then her saying get away from me.

    For a person that been kidnap I would think she would be scared out of her mind, crying, and yelling for help. I didn't get that from her She didn't even ask him to call 911 or maybe one of her love ones that live in that area.

    But I have to keep in mind this is a short film so you only can do so much, I do understand that.

    So I guess the only thing I could say is the actress you pick didn't catch my eye to make me look at her as someone special. Not saying she done a bad just as an actress, I just need to see more of a reason for him to get himself killed over her. There are actresses out there that can get that point across with just there looks and there are others that need more story development to make you understand why someone would fight for them. In your scene I notice she say his name but I still didn't get they were friends maybe someone he seen around the area but that's it.
    i still thinks its a cool story and I would mind seeing more.

  • Damon Colquhoun | December 5, 2013 4:28 PM

    Hey Abayomi, thanks for including my film, Transporter, in your top 3. I truly appreciate it. A lot of thought and hard work went into the entire film, so despite the recognition the film has already received, I'm happiest when it's recognized by the folks I hope to one day count as fans of my work.

    It's always helpful to see how ones own work is interpreted. So, I'm curious. You said "I still don't know the reason why the main character wanted to help that young lady?" Now, I believe that the entire scene in the basement, where Darien (the main character) sneaks down to see Charlotte (the kidnapped girl), conveys why he was motivated to help her. I thought that their conversation established that they already knew each other. To help make that point, there's also the earlier scene where the girl is delivered by van. Practically, the first line of dialogue in the film is the main character asking the guy in the van, "What are you doing here?" to which the guy in the van says "special delivery." Now, considering what you did pick up on "all of the other girls I'm sure they moved in and out of that house," the exchange with the guy in the van would suggest that the delivery of this girl by that particular guy in the van is unique - something out of their ordinary. Please tell me if this connects for you. If you double check it, and it still doesn't connect, that would be really helpful for me to know. Either way, thanks for participating.

    Thanks,
    Damon Colquhoun
    Writer & Director of Transporter

  • CC | December 4, 2013 1:56 AM

    Well Abayomi (African name? what region?) I see we're at a fork in the road.

    Well, first, you did bring up something that I touched on in my very first post/comment, NOVEMBER 13, 2013 7:15 PM. Shadow and Act has given a list of which genres would be eligible, but they didn't tell us what they'd be looking for? To that point, I mentioned what I thought fits Tambay's and Sergio's eye. However, again, as of late, we really don't know what they're looking for. Okay... FLASHBACK: Nov 13th

    "Tambay, for instance, is a film critic with filmmaking aspirations who has frequently shared his love of the fine details of cinematography. He has even shared the type of camera he presently owns. Consequently, his "eye" will be quite different than the average moviegoer. Sergio, on the other hand, has no love for CGI, guns, comic books or movies with fast cars. He's your basic nuts and bolts kind of guy. In other words, he's old school to the bone -- not easily impressed. The rest of the crew is a mystery (they don't give much of their background) so who knows what tickles their fancy?" ~ Carey

    Now back to you Abayomi, you apparently do not think it's wise to have competing films from different genres? This competition is open to "science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller, and I'd consider action and dark, twisted comedy." . So I guess you'll not be considered for a position as a judge in this go round :-)

  • Abayomi | December 3, 2013 12:30 PM

    Maybe we didn't see the same movie? In MTM There was a black guy with snake eyes right? And they use bad sound effect right? (like when that white dude punch that girl our in the car) Didn't they change that guy with the bow tie voice, the one that sound like he suck helium from a balloon?

    Beside all of that If you put that many genres in one, yes that's what they call a grindhouse film. it's nothing wrong with those type of movies. I'm mean if it was a grindhouse contest they would win. I found the movie funny , but hard to take serious.

    What I mean by taken it serious is when you have to judge a film. You can't judge a grindhouse movie only compare it to other grindhouse film. That like putting From Dusk Till Dawn up against Forrest Gump. It can't win.

    There are some Horror movie you can take seriously and there are some you can't. But the one you take seriously are mix with drama/horror like The "Sixth Sense" or Interview with the Vampire. Then you have the ones that aren't taken seriously but still good, Cabin Fever, cabin in the woods, any zombie movies ( I think walking dead is taken to damn seriously). When you make a b-moive you already telling me to not take it seriously but yet the other film in this contest what do we do with them? Not take them seriously either? Do you see what I'm saying?

    I'm not trying to pick on MTM, after picking it apart I find the movie funny and interesting but when it come to judging and I'm talking about my way of judging (not sure what S&A are looking for), but with me it's hard because it's a b-movie (grindhouse in my book) and you already know it's not trying to have the best lighting, or effects, or acting or direction, b-movie are b-movies for a reason.

    Now the question is S&A looking for the next great short black "B-Movie"? Or are they looking for someone who's trying to be put together a decent short black A-movie?

  • CC | December 3, 2013 4:21 AM

    Granted Abayomi, the acting was not the best, but I wouldn't call it "bad", but simply unseasoned actors. In fact, the director said he used a few friends, so I can't hold that against him. But lets be real, in all the shorts there was not one actor who I thought was ready for prime time. Wait... I believe in one of the comedies there was an actress (or 2) who seemed to know her/their craft. Yet, overall, most of the actors would not get a call-back from me. So that's a wash across the board.

    Back to MTM. I think it would behoove you to take a look at the exchanges between me and Ryan C. Khan, the director of MTM ( Mine--> Nov 14, 12: 50 and his reply Nov 15 5:09 PM) , and consider this is actually what he was going for--> "a B-movie, noir, fantasy, crime drama". You'll surely see that he was not going for "low" quality.

    And, I still believe you're missing the point or are slightly confused about the term "Grindhouse movies".

    Grindhouse films characteristically contain large amounts of sex, violence or bizarre subject matter. One genre of film featured were "roughies" or sexploitation, a mix of sex, violence and sadism the order of Robert Rodriquez and Quentin Tarantino's Planet Terror & Death Proof. Also in that genre is From Dusk Till Dawn starring George Clooney and Harvey Keitel. On a personal note, I've talked with Mr. Keitel about that film and others. Anyway, a little more background on "grindhouse". It's an American term for a theater that mainly shows exploitation films, thus, the above movies surfaced. So again, I wouldn't necessarily agree with the sentiment that "Grindhouse movie aren't suppose to be taken seriously". Like... what kind of "serious" are you referring to? I think they are taken as "serious" as any other genre. Are comedies taken seriously? Are horror films taken seriously? I think you see my point?

    So, I cannot "downgrade" MTM for going for a look and feel that you're not familiar with. I mean, I think he captured exactly what he was going for, which made for a very enjoyable film.

  • Abayomi | December 3, 2013 2:57 AM

    When it comes to MTM, the quality was low on purpose I'm sure. At the very beginning it looks like a VHS tape was coming on. Then the scene when they were driving in the car , you can tell the background was Green screen. The car didn't look like it was moving but rocking back and forth. The quality of the whole movie look like a movie on VHS tape mix with the scratchy look of old film. I'm sure this was the look the Director was going for but it's hard to judge his film. No bad acting huh... look at 2:37 - 3:29 it's suppose to be funny I get that but that the same reason why I said it hard to judge this film. Grindhouse movie aren't suppose to be taken seriously. So it almost like giving this film a free pass for all it's short coming because it's making fun of it's self.

  • CC | December 3, 2013 1:47 AM

    *lol* Abayomi, I was just being factious with my "plant" comment. I am sure no one thought you're associated with any particular film.

    Now, me think you've done yourself proud. I cannot object to any of your "critiques" (you made it clear that you based your decisions on personal preferences) but I do question your take on Minutes to Midnite. I do not believe the director was going for a Grindhouse type film. I also do not agree with your definition/overview/take on what constitutes a Grindhouse film. Furthermore, in reference to MTM, I really don't understand what you mean by "fake backgrounds" and bad quality film look? Also, bad dialogue? and bad acting is not what I saw in this film.

    But again my dear, I think you did the dang thang. Thanks

    I wish others would take the time to give their personal critiques. I am sure the producers would greatly appreciate it.

  • Abayomi | December 3, 2013 12:02 AM

    Okay CC, because I wouldn't want anyone to think I'm a "Plant" smh. I'll start with "STEAMFUNK" - It's a documentary, and I thought S&A was looking for science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller, comedy, not documentaries? I could be wrong but that's what I thought and beside I didn't really care for steamfunk, it wasn't for me. I don't like the art work they use for the opening and on the production side it has bad sound quality during the interviews.

    INHERITORS - This film wasn't for me, I notice they had a big fan base on here but I didn't like it. The dialogue came off too cheesy for my taste, I do understand what they were trying to do, make a science fiction cop drama, but it didn't catch me, and I'm not really into super powers and all of that stuff. As for the way they shot the film it was good, the film could use a good color tint over it because it looks really plain , like a few other movies on here Villains, Strain, Sweet Child Of Mine and The Assignment. If you look at the color they all look plain.

    Minutes to Midnite - Again this wasn't my cup of tea, I know this film is suppose to be a Grindhouse type of movie with fake backgrounds, bad dialogue and acting, and bad quality film look, and yes you did that great. I myself wouldn't make a grindhouse film until I can prove to people I could make a great looking "normal" film.(not saying this director can't make a normal film) It's safe to say that all of the directors here are amateurs, no one did anything BIG or groundbreaking, but the Minute to Midnite director put himself in a tight spot to me. His film look amateur and that's what grindhouse film are amateur style of shooting, and on top of that he's a amateur director, so how could you judge his film? I would think S&A are looking for an amateur director that short film speak volumes, you know show off your best ability.

    Angels Playground - Right from the start this movie comes off as a documentary, then when the story start I notice some bad editing, and sound... I didn't care for the story or acting.

    Villians - This film suffer from bad sound, and the colors shift a lot from different scene and takes. One minute it's a hard yellow tint then in the next scene it's going back to plain ol'normal tint, and has bad lighting.

    Chains - This film has great direction, and I was digging the location and love the acting. This would have been my number one pick but the editing was normal and the music was bland almost to the point where you wouldn't even notice it, and I did NOT like that story. I have rules when it comes to picking a good movie.
    You have to have :
    1. Great Direction
    2. Great sound
    3. Great Acting
    4. Great Music
    5. Great lighting

    A lot of these short films on here are missing some of these key elements, but what I notice a lot of is the bland music these short films have, not all of them but a lot of them. When I came across the robinson brother film and they had "The moonlight sonata" playing in the background that caught my attention, but again just because your film didn't hit me doesn't mean it's bad, it just wasn't my taste. I still think a lot of you done a great job, but the ones I pick was the movies that spoke to me.

    So there you have it CareyCarey.

  • CC | December 1, 2013 9:05 PM

    ...and Abayomi, in other words, the film business is for big boys and big girls, not for the weak of heart. So drop your "criticism" of the films you viewed as also-ran's as freely as you did for those you praised.

  • CC | December 1, 2013 8:43 PM

    ABAYOMI, to be fair (and to clear-up any doubt that you're a "plant") , since you've seen all the shorts, would you mind giving your opinion on a few that many would judge ahead of those you've chosen. For instance, INHERITORS, Minutes to Midnite, Angels Playground, Villians and one of my favorites STEAMFUNK, have received many votes. So, what was it (in particular) about those films that lead you to rank them below your choices?

    I am sure (me think) the producers of each film wouldn't mind a little short but succinct feedback on their film, so don't be hesitant or fearful of stepping on toes.

  • Ade | December 1, 2013 11:26 AMReply

    Hear, hear.

  • KRISS | December 1, 2013 11:25 AMReply

    'Record/Play' is the best film by miles. They might not be 'in competition' but their film is on the site and I guess they have their reasons for not taking part - bigger fish to fry - like Oscar. But they deserve to win and it's good for S&A if they win and everybody that's seen the film knows it's the truth. So my vote is - 'Record/Play'. I'm voting for the best film - not my desperate friend's film.

  • CareyCarey | November 28, 2013 2:05 AMReply

    Ryan C. Khan ---> " I want to keep the comment section as free of unnecessary comments as possible. Also, any comments posted that have nothing to do with the films in the contest, will probably be deleted as well. So focus!" ~ Editor, Tambay O.

    *lol* ... well Ryan, I think he's talking to us. Our conversations have been... well... a little unfocused and many have nothing to do with the films in the contest. So I have to respect the man's spot and his desire to keep this post clutter free.

    Tambay, I was wrong. Delete all my mess at your pleasure. But I am voting for the following. STEAMFUNK: Excellent! Five Stars.

    SPOT LIGHT: Best editing. Best "action". Nice short story. Different.

    And...

    MINUTES TO MIDNITE: The contest's criteria: "Fantastical, meaning, science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller, and I'd consider action and dark, twisted ...."

    Well, it's safe to say Minutes To Midnite captured all of that in 15 minutes. In fact, in my opinion, it was simply the best short B-movie, noir, fantasy, crime drama that I've seen in quite some time. The "thriller" edge was there. The narration was tight. The attention to details were unsurpassed by any other short in this competition.

  • Ryan C. Khan | November 29, 2013 1:27 PM

    Lol...I'm equally guilty...hard luck Tambay O. Will email you Carey and thanks for your critique and vote!

  • Kylah | November 28, 2013 1:43 AMReply

    The Angel's Playground

  • ANV | November 27, 2013 7:26 PMReply

    Angels Playground. Chilling story.

  • Jeff Garretson | November 27, 2013 1:40 PMReply

    I vote for .. The Angels Playground .. starring THE Chris Swenson!

  • noel tengdin | November 27, 2013 9:02 AMReply

    angels playground......loved it

  • Rich Watson | November 27, 2013 5:57 AMReply

    I vote INHERITORS by Chidi Ozieh!! Well done visually and leaves me wanting more.
    Great work!!

  • Sean B. J. | November 26, 2013 11:43 PMReply

    I really hope INHERITORS wins… It is WELL done!

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