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Old January 18th, 2003, 09:12 AM   #16
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What a great little film. Took me way back to the years I lived on the island of Hawaii, esp. the shopkeeper -- pidgin English and all.

If you have not already, you should consider uploading this film to triggerstreet.com. It's far better than most of what I've seen there.

Also, because this is such a polished piece, it would be great if you would write an article about the making of this film. Perhaps Chris Hurd could put it on DVinfo.net
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Old January 18th, 2003, 12:15 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the positive comments everyone! It's really encouraging for a first timer to have such positive affirmation for my work.

Peter:

as for writing an article about the 'making of' this film, it would be great but I'll wait and see if Chris Hurd says anything about it first because I don't know if it will be too 'pretentious' for me to write an article 'teaching' others considering its my debut short and my first attempt at it myself!

Keep the comments coming!

Adrian
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Old January 18th, 2003, 01:44 PM   #18
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spacing credits

In FCP if you create a regular text scroll you can edge justify the columns by typing the first line and inserting an "*" between the second horizontal line. This will give you the 2 columns on the outside.

type like this:

written by*John Doe

views like this:

written by (space) John Doe

By the way I thought it was a fantastic film. Really great job. Keep it up!
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Old January 19th, 2003, 10:22 AM   #19
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First-time poster long-time lurker coming out of the woodwork (you know the deal).

Excellent short Adrian!! For years I've been hearing people on DV boards say something to the effect of, "as long as you have an engrossing story it doesn't matter what format it's shot with." Looks like we finally have an example to hold up to this phrase!

I'd disagree with others about the pace of the film...for the subject matter you're dealing with it fits rather perfectly. This is my opinion of course--but not knowing what I was getting into on the first viewing it did seem slow moving (although I was immersed in the pace)...but after the second viewing I can completely see the setups and why it was cut that way.

I think you've accomplished a good mix of style and substance here (both the narrative and the filmed result)...and you should definitely promote this work more.

A couple of annoying questions--

What was the level of acting experience with your cast?

The 360 camera shot at the aquarium, was that accomplished with a dolly track?

How much of the shots did you storyboard, and how much were discovered accidentally during your shoot?

And lastly, how long did it take you to complete it?

You've got a great command of hidden metaphors when it comes to their visual translation. Keep up the good work.
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Old January 19th, 2003, 04:54 PM   #20
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Hi again all,

Michael:

Thanks for the positive feedback. I knew from the beginning that I won't have any big explosions or any other big budget effects to keep the audience amused and on their seats so I figured I had better write something of more 'substance' for the film to be any good at all, so that is what I tried to do. I was very inspired by Resevoir Dogs (Tarantino) because after watching the whole film, you realise that although you could have sworn there were many things happening, the actual heist itself was never shown, and if you really look at it objectively, its just shot in a few streets, a restaurant, a couple of rooms and a warehouse, so it was really the good script that pulled the 'action' off.

The actors and actresses are all amatuers, some are my friends and the aquarium owner was actually my former discipline master!

the 360 camera move was done by a tripod dolly, you know, the wheel things you stick the tripod on. They wobble a lot and refuse to go in the direction and speed that you want them to, so unless your budget absolutely disallows the use of a proper dolly, I don't recommend the use of the tripod dolly.

I actually storyboarded the whole film but a lot of it was changed during the actual filming and during editing but I find it helps a lot to storyboard because, sometimes I was so tired and had so many things on my mind that I didn't really know what I was shooting and had to rely heavily on the storyboard as a kind of shot list.

I wrote the screenplay in Mar 2002, started shooting in July, actual shooting days were about 8, and started editing it in Sept, and completed it quite recently. (I wasn't hard at work all the time, but there were many delays and I had to have 'rest time' between the edits to see it in a better perspective)

Hope it answers your questions!

Adrian
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Old January 20th, 2003, 01:27 PM   #21
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Adrian,

I think it is very good film too - and I mean film as opposed to a bit of video.

I have noticed the comments on pacing and on the whole I think the pacing is fine, but perhaps if you were to omitt some of the fade outs it may help somewhat - they often can create a sense of having a series of vignettes which can slow a film down. Films can always do with tightening but don't go mad as you may loose some of the charm of the original.

I also liked the music but perhaps if you were to put a little of it up front and less towards the end it might seem more evenly spread - when you have the music there is a strong sense of atmosphere and it may be nice to start with that and carry it over transitions.

A final thought, which may be a bit hackneyed I don't know, but because there is an element of fantasy while the boy ponders the fish (as opposed to the reality of his life - UDD etc.), it might be worth trying to introduce some subtle colour change to the shots of the fish.

Absolutely the only thing I'm not too keen on are the flash frames: this is perhaps just me but I think one has to consider very carefully what a particular effect may communicate, what temporal or emmotive reaction they might generate and not use them because they might be in vogue at the moment: I'm not saying you did but I personally feel they detract from the lyrical feel a bit - perhaps I'm just too old fashioned!

Just my thoughts only, feel free to dismiss them.

Well done and best of luck,

Regards.
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Old January 21st, 2003, 11:14 AM   #22
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just saw it excellent..love the pace, the story but most of all the concept love movies like that....
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Old January 31st, 2003, 12:07 PM   #23
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Great work!

Would love to see more work from you.
Keep us updated.
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Old January 31st, 2003, 01:01 PM   #24
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This is really good

I am really impressed Adrian. Your frame, your shots were all excellent. The editing could be a little tighter but I don't mind the pacing over all. I can't say enough how good it looks.

Good voiceover. I daresay you are going to make some really good films in the future. Approaching festival quality.

Can you tell us who your influences were? I can see some Wong Kar Wai in there.

I am really impressed by the picture quality you got out of your camera. The tones were something to note.

Ah, it really reminds me of Malaysia where I was born.
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Old January 31st, 2003, 04:12 PM   #25
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Keith:

Thanks for the comments and compliments... I never know Wong Kar Wai was so evident in my work! Yes, he is a big influence but looking at it myself now, I can't really see which bits are Wong Kar Wai... can you point them out to me? It would be really interesting to know.

I guess my other influences are Darren Aronofsky (Requiem for a Dream in particular) and Jean Pierre Jeunet (Amelie, Delicatessen etc) and definitely the Coen brothers.

Good new is that I will be shooting my next film this coming Tues, it will be a short as well... estimated at 5-7 mins. Its a story about this middle aged everyday man who has lost his wife but is unable to deal with it. And I will shooting with the mini35 (very kindly provided by the KIND PEOPLE AT OPTEX, Mike Robinson in particular), and with Nikon Lenses (cos I got no money to rent PL lenses) So... wish me luck!

Adrian
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Old January 31st, 2003, 07:51 PM   #26
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Hi adrian,

Just wondering. How did you manage to persuade those guys to get them provide a mini35 for free?

I intend to shoot one on mini35 as well, and was thinking of how to ask as its very hard asking people do give out something for free over here :)
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Old January 31st, 2003, 09:59 PM   #27
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OK, without trying to sound too preachy... my only advice would be to be HONEST.

What I mean is that, approach people with respect and be honest about your situation and motives, ask yourself why you are asking in the first place. Does help mean the difference between making or not making the film? Or do you have the money but just want to save a few bucks? Even if your intentions are entirely noble, people sometimes cannot/ will not help, and you have to take that in stride as well, because essentially you are asking people for help and no one is obliged to help. If they do so, its out of goodwill. But then again, if you never ask, you never know!

Believe me when I say I really wish to pay everyone who helped me out on my film, both in time/ effort as well as equipment, and hopefully one day when I make a living out of this, I will be able to.

Hope its useful!

Adrian
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Old February 1st, 2003, 12:24 AM   #28
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Same here. I wish that someday I'd be able to pay those who help me out as well.

With or without the mini35, I'm still going to make my shorts.
Good luck in your coming short film!

I do go to S'pore sometimes, maybe I can give you a visit if you happen to be there.
Hope to see your coming short soon.
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Old February 14th, 2003, 09:35 AM   #29
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Just had the opportunity to watch your short several times and wanted to say I enjoyed it quite a bit.
Might have been helpfull to use color , lighting and music together to seperate the fantasy with the actuality in the video. All in all a wonderfull first outing.Congratulations and good luck on your upcoming film
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Old February 14th, 2003, 09:57 AM   #30
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Thanks all,

An update on my latest film 'Last Day of Work'... its in the rough cut stage now... the mini35 is wonderful!

A few things about production:

although I've read in this forum time and again to turn on the spinning mirror thing on the mini35, I constantly forgot to turn it on and yes, its very obvious when it off, despite my lenses being wide open (f1.4)

also, the mini35 has some problems (or is it just me) with wide angle shots, I find that it cannot go wider than 24mm (with reference to 35mm lenses), I have a 17-35L f2.8 Canon zoom lens and it just refuses to focus when its wider than 24mm. Is it the lens, the adaptor, or just me?

For UK based folks here, Talking with Fishes will be screening at the Raindance East Film Festival in London sometime in March, don't know the exact screening schedule yet but will post when I do.

Thanks again all! and keep the comments coming!

Cheers,

Adrian
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