DVC17 - Azure Sunrise - Daniel Bates - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Old October 15th, 2009, 10:10 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Daniel Bates View Post
Was my edit too fast-paced? I tried to base it on other monster/horror trailers (especially Cloverfield's teaser and theatrical trailer), but there has to be a balance between velocity and comprehension and I'm not sure that I achieved that.
You've nailed what I'd say is the largest issue here; I think this might be more effective if you were to hang on a couple of those shots a bit longer. The "db" logo, for starters, just to give your sound effect time to die off on its own, and get us in the "sitting in the theater in the dark" mood, waiting for the trailer to start. Feels a little rushed the way it is. I'd also like to see the detonation play out, perhaps slow down the ring as it spreads? Or have it leave a trail behind it that hangs in the air, something to give it a bit more gravitas, pardon the goofy word. After that I think the security camera shots could hold for a few seconds before going out, and maybe the two guys in the hallway top left could react to something (plywood-bouncing vibrations, lights flickering, horrible monster off screen, something like that). Or, if you really wanted to get into the visual effects end of things, some sort of vague, giant shadow creeping across the parking lot with the van? Finally, the shot of you coming out of the door, I'd have waited 'til you reached the right side of the frame before cutting away, maybe even let you leave it partway, I'm not sure. That's not to say the entire trailer should be slowed down; overall I'd generalize my advice here as being to speed up your edits as the trailer plays. Let the earlier shots linger to establish the story, then ramp up as you go to build the pace approaching the final shot.

The audio was mostly great, but the shots of your team preparing your weapons sounded slightly off to me. The sound effects of grabbing the rifles off the wall, and of loading the pistol, had an awful lot of reverb, which made the room to my ears sound rather quiet and relaxed, despite the engine spinning up over all of it. I think bringing the mic in farther would eliminate most of that, despite the hard, flat plywood surroundings. I would suggest adding some extra arms reaching in for their ... arms, and maybe we could hear some more boot traffic in the room, but I suspect the addition of such frenzy might run afoul of procedure, and wouldn't respect the way those situations are actually handled.

The only other thing I'd add, given the resources and time, is a shot of someone overseeing the detonation. I gather the three with the laptops are controlling it, but from what we see they're the only ones who know or care about the results. I can only imagine what kind of restraints you're under when it comes to personal projects like this, so I can understand the opportunity may not have exactly presented itself, but I think a few other people reacting to the explosion (its aftermath, really, perhaps some large scale rumbling from underground, or a monster growl) would have fleshed out the plot.

All that said, I'm impressed. Seeing you dragged away by whatever the monster's supposed to be is great! I've seen it plenty of movies already, true, but the effect always plays wonderfully, and I can't get enough of it. Your access to genuine "props", if you'll excuse me calling them that, wardrobe, and personnel made for some serious production value. The two opening shots were magical, good catch with the front moving over. I love that little bunker, too, if that's what they're called (bunker, pillbox, I don't know what I'm talking about), with all the graffiti on it. Have you had a chance to add any messages of your own out there?

You've done fine work here, and if I knew how to do it properly I'd salute you. I can barely drag my fat ass out of bed most mornings, let alone handle life in the military and a filmmaking hobby at the same time. Bravo! And here's hoping those recompressed movies work out for you. Let me know if there are any problems, I'll help however I can.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 02:48 PM   #17
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I loved the opening shot...breathtaking! Also you can't beat the "wardrobe and props"...real guns and uniforms- sweet! I think that's exactly what indie filmmakers like ourselves have to do- think about what our resources are and use them! Very high production value right there.
I'd cut the audio from the speakers outside into the room a split second later. I think it's a tiny bit jarring to cut mid-word "detonation." I'd probably go into the room audio during the at "5, 4..."
Also I really really liked the surveillance screens going fuzzy- but it's so fast that you can't take in the full, terrifying significance of this. I'd give it a little more time so that the audience gets a feeling that danger is approaching.
I really loved that you cut to the happy music at the end and you think it's all over and then BAM- the last scary shot hits you. (we also have a dragged into the darkness shot! That made me laugh...we also had a heartbeat! It really goes to show trailers in themselves are their own genre.)
Really excellent work Daniel! I'm so impressed you got this done while on duty in Iraq. Thank you for your service and stay safe!
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Old October 15th, 2009, 11:43 PM   #18
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not much to add from me. it could use some development, and I though the ending shot was waay to cliche. Loved the angles and the efx.

And of course, props for making a film while stationed in Iraq!!
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Old October 16th, 2009, 08:53 AM   #19
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Being new to fiction on films (my background is science documentaries), I had to look up the definition of a modern fiction trailer: 2 minutes 30 seconds max, 3 acts - #1 sets premise, #2 moves story forward dramatically, #3 wraps with dramatic scenes and music to recap and entice.

When I read that someone from Iraq was in the competition, I was amazed. At 35 seconds, the "formal" act structure would have been hard to piece together. However, you did it. The premise was set up in a few early seconds. Act #2 drove it forward to the closing title, and then Act#3 was a single shot with someone being dragged into the dark. All very exciting and there were no spoilers to give away what was going to happen.

Despite the short trailer, it seems to me this one was a complete piece with all the elements called for. Congratulations for being able to pull this off in such a difficult location.
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