Thanks for sharing your stuff which is really good..you can see yourself whatever tehcnical probs exist with frame sizes (letterboxing sometimes), lighting etc. Good action and pretty good effects.
first of all I have to admit that to really do a critical analysis ( critque) that is deserving of the time and work you put into this would mean I would almost have go through it very carefully and slowly and spend quite a lot of time on looking at it more than one or two times. It is very good and deserves that kind of attention.
the story is the most important thing in my opinion..and developing that story means introducing "characters" ( protagonists and antagonists) and hooking the audience in a way that they care about those characters....care what happens to them..what choices they make, how they act, etc.
for example, why not introduce the character who is sticking his nose in the coke in the office first...and get us intrested in why anyone with a mask might be protecting him?
he is probably a bad guy so its not so terrible to see him killed...but if we see him doing something first...like being some kind of big gangster, in control of the city , ( maybe on the phone talking about his giant kingdom and his bad influence ) , it makes it more satisfying to see him killed.
could have spent a few more frames on the good guy ( without mask at first ) pulling on his mask ( to fake out the bad guys..the ones with the masks )...that was rushed...
the story is paramount...and all the action has to lead to resolving the tension between the protagonists and the antagonists...
which means, you can whittle down the "action " and so on ( effects etc ) even though it looks great and you can do it well...to just tell the "story"....
sooo, after you have the good guys storm the bad guys....develop a little more why someone without a mask ( maybe a good guy but a traitor to the good guy camp? ) ends up shooting another guy witout a mask....
its not bad to have a lot of action, but during that process, tell the story...so we can
1) believe in the character
2) care about them and what happens to them
3) root for one or the other ( hope one or the other wins or gets the girl, or ends up being a hero ---we "identify " with someone....)
sooooo, as I am suggesting, the story is the main thing and important to capture our attention, keep it, and make us feel something.
The "action" ( which you are good at doing ) is a tool along the way to achieving that goal....dont go nuts with it
Thank you for your critique. However, when it comes to frame sizes and letterboxing issues: this is not a tech problem. This was done deliberately. I just love the effect it gives. I recommend you to watch the opening scene of The Dark Knight in HD. The bank robbery is in regular widescreen, while most of the film is in anamorphic. Lighting is an issue that arose because of time and budget limits.
I promised myself that this is the last time that I will do a short like this. A thin story and a lot of action might look good, but it's not my style of filmmaking. I'm planning a new action scene. This one has story as top priority, and action as second one. I'll work on the 'character introduction' issues.
However, I don't quite understand with: 'tell the story so we can believe in the characters.' What do you exactly mean with believing?
In short, great review and i'll work on the story
The bank robbery is in regular widescreen, while most of the film is in anamorphic.
That is actually a technical error with the Blu-ray mastering. Neither the theatrical print nor the DVD suffered from it. It is a visually jarring situation that I agree should be avoided.
I would somewhat disagree with the previous critique about 'character', but only because this comes across as a scene, not a story. It is one part of a whole. Given that whole, I'd expect to see the missing 'characters'.
My own primary criticism of the piece would be to avoid AE blood spatters and ALWAYS use squibs. Seeing gun shots with no hole is a throwback to westerns of old that modern audiences will no longer tolerate. This, I feel, is the primary issue that takes your work down a notch to the amateur level. There are other issues that contribute to that, but using squibs, I'd elevate it at least to film school student level. Without them, it comes across as more of a "backyard wannbe" piece.
Sorry if that seems harsh. I'm a pretty tough critic.
Okay on the blood.
But no, The regular widescreen shots in The Dark Knight (Bank Robbery, Hospital explosion, Armored van chase) were shot using IMAX cameras and the rest was shot in Panavision Anamorphic cameras. I quote from IMDB:
1. Joker Introduction (Bank Heist)
2. Hong Kong scene
3. Chase scene throughout Gotham
4. Final fight scene in the skyscraper
5. End scene
6. Various shots over Gotham and Hong Kong
Yes. IMAX sequences are presented in 1.78:1 while the rest of the film is in 2.40:1. The DVD release, on the other hand, displays the entire film in its theatrical ratio of 2.40:1.
If variable aspect ratio is accepted in a mainstream blockbuster, it sure can be accepted in a short film. I really like this effect. I wish I was able to shoot the movie with different camera's.
Regardless of how they were shot, the scenes all appeared as one aspect ratio on screen in mainstream theaters, and as well on the DVD release. No one saw changing aspect ratios until the Blu-ray was released.
And I still think it's a jarring error on the part of the Mastering house. Even if it were done on purpose, I still feel it's an "error" that needs correction. It really is annoying (and actually keeps me form buying the Blu-ray version until it's fixed.)