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The Low, Down Of It

Posted: Fri, 23rd Jan 2004, 1:24pm

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Aculag

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Sam Spade became famous when the film The Maltese Falcon was released in 1941 starring Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade, and based on the book by Dashiell Hammett. Back in those days, and when Film Noir was first gaining popularity, the films were often very darkly lit. This added to the mood of the film, and also was used to hide inexpensive sets. When The Low, Down Of It was written, it was intended to be a goofy comedy, where at the end, the woman, Mary pulls a brick out from nowhere and smashes Sam's face with it. But I decided that wasn't good enough, and I extended it about 4 pages. And the final script is what you see here.

We built the set in 3 days, shot it in 1, and it took about 2 and a half weeks to perfect the editing. Shot on an XL1s, audio by Sennheiser (which is a bit lacking because we didn't have our phantom power source. The noise kinda cuts in and out, but it's not bad if your speakers aren't very loud), and edited in Final Cut Pro.

Enjoy, everyone. There's a small version, and also a higher res version, if you want to spend a little longer downloading it.
More Info
Posted: Fri, 23rd Jan 2004, 2:10pm

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ssjaaron

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good job i enjoyed it smile even though smoking is discusting and bad for ya, and so is alchohal. but other than that, the acting was good the set was very good and the feel of the movie flowed. the only thing i reconized was the little fuzz when somebdoy talked. but other than that, it was awsome.
peace out
PS: you should have added a alli sceen of him spying on the bad guy or somthing, just to spice things up wink
Posted: Fri, 23rd Jan 2004, 5:21pm

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Andreas

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I love this movie! I posted my thoughts on the other topic!
Great work!
Posted: Fri, 23rd Jan 2004, 11:21pm

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Brettsta

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Once again, great job. What was Chromanator used for? Sorry if this is a stupid question. I see a new number one movie!
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 1:29am

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LtMcMurphy

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Rating: -2

I HATED THIS MOVIE!!

And by hate, I mean love, and by this I mean the, and by I I mean we, and by movie I mean masterpiece, and by I mean , and by ! I mean ., and by *blows up*
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 1:32am

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FiveIronFrenzy

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Rating: -1

I don't know what to say....(thats a bad thing)

tard crazy neutral Weird
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 2:00am

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Aculag

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What was that in reference to, RichardS?
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 2:10am

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averagejoe

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I was wondering how Chromie would change the types of movies we would see. I got my answer today. This really was great! Great editing, great use of lighting. Actors and costumes were well presented.

The set, well the set was the most ingenius thing. It appeared that the walls were removable to accomadate the different shots. And because of the style of film the look was perfect.

The only real complaint ( which I had to search for) was that the glasses and bottles hitting the desk were SUPER LOUD! And to think, you pulled it off without one lightsword or laser blast. "Inconceivable!" lol

IF you did not read the credits please go back and watch them. hugegrin
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 4:12am

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MistahG

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That was incredible. I guess Chromanator's responsible for that extremely professional aesthetic you have there. I agree, ecellent lighting and editing. The girl's acting was good, but I didn't like the guy's, even if it was supposed to be somewhat melodramatic and self-depricating for satirical purposes. Just the accent was thicker than the shadows in the room, for example. But this place is all about effects and I give you an A++ for your achievements. I found that it looks like an episode from a TV series. Loved it. Congrats!
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 4:53am

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MaineMike

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I have to echo another reviewer's thought here - how exactly was Chromanator used in this project?
Anyway, looks good. Love the opening title sequence.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 4:57am

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cantaclaro

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Very good movie. You captured the "Noir" style very well and kept a clean pace in your story. I especially liked the glow filter that you put over the whole movie. It gave the movie a very hazy dreary look. A very professional looking movie with very high production value. Great job, 5 from me.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 5:08am

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Aculag

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Ok, time to tell you how Chromy was used. In one of the shots I posted, is the shot with Sam getting his coat from the hat rack. Here's a look at the original frame, untouched:



After processing the appropriate grading and such in After Effects, I went into Chromanator and added a black video slug over the footage. Then I just masked it to block out McMurphy's arm, and you get what you see in the movie:



And there you have it!
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 5:10am

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Brettsta

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Whats a video slug?
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 5:11am

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Aculag

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Just black video. It's better than using a still frame, because technically it's actually video, so it still "moves" like video.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 7:28am

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format-slut

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wow. that was awesome! ive been looking forward to this movie for a while, easily the best ive seen in this cinema.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 1:51pm

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ferral

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Aculag -

I've already commented on this in the General forum section - so you know how I feel about it. Awesome work. A resounding 5 from me : ) Hope to see more of Sam.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 3:00pm

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Brettsta

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I love that poster! smile
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 3:21pm

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Smates Studios

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I thought this was an awsome film. I really liked it! I'm new to this and I was going to give you four or five stars but I messed up somehow and only got one. Sorry, but I loved it.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 3:59pm

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Sollthar

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This is a very well filmed piece with a very nice mood! I liked it. I love film noirs and you managed to get that feeling perfectly well. The dialogoues were cool, the acting was great, light was good and the editing too.

Very well made!


What was a real shame is the bad audiodesign though. It cannot hold up with the rest of the qualities of the film and destroys a lot of an otherwise perfect mood. Shame you didn't dubb the audio and added some soundeffects in. Would have made it!
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 7:33pm

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er-no

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As I commented in chat last night.

The audio killed this otherwise very refreshing piece! It was such a shame. sad That was the true downfall of this piece which did a very good job of keeping my attention for something that uses a 'cardboard' room wink

Lighting was lovely, the shots were very well framed. It was all neat. Apart from the audio.
Posted: Sat, 24th Jan 2004, 9:25pm

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LtMcMurphy

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Smates Studios wrote:

I thought this was an awsome film. I really liked it! I'm new to this and I was going to give you four or five stars but I messed up somehow and only got one. Sorry, but I loved it.
Isn't there some way of changing that?
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 12:20am

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Aculag

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Sollthar wrote:

Shame you didn't dubb the audio and added some soundeffects in.
*shudders* Ugh! I'm very against dubbing... It's one of those things that we'll just learn our lesson this time, and for next time, it'll be much better.
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 1:01am

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AndrewtheActorMan

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Aculag, I noticed when the girl comes on, her face seemed to glow slightly... Was that just lucky, or was it an effect or grading type technique. If it was, what did you use? It was really nice.

btw: 5
Andrew biggrin
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 1:04am

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Aculag

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Well, there was a slight glow on the entire thing, but some shots more than others. Mostly that's due to a filter we had on the lens, but the glow you're speaking of is because I kinda.. huffed on the lens (?) to fog it up. It only kinda worked.
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 1:05am

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AndrewtheActorMan

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Allright, thanks!

Andrew biggrin
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 1:30am

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Aculag

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Hmm. There Is a way to change ratings isn't there? I'm not liking that accidental one.
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 5:36am

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Brettsta

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Thats Tarn's territory I believe. Ask him.
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 4:39pm

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MaineMike

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Aculag wrote:

I went into Chromanator and added a black video slug over the footage. Then I just masked it to block out McMurphy's arm, and you get what you see in the movie:
Subtle and effective!
I like it.
Posted: Sun, 25th Jan 2004, 10:28pm

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Brettsta

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kfults, that 2 for this is kind of harsh, but I guess everyone is entitled to their owned opinions. Aculag, you should really ask Tarn to get the 1 removed.
Posted: Mon, 26th Jan 2004, 4:44pm

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Smates Studios

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I was able to fix my one to a four. I'm not sure how I just got on and it let me vote again.
Posted: Wed, 28th Jan 2004, 5:02am

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Aculag

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Cool. Thanks.
Posted: Wed, 28th Jan 2004, 10:38am

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b4uask30male

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5 from me,
well scripted, well acted. but.....

there were some things that could have been better.

the sound, when it cuts the background sound had gone, should have had street sounds with a few horns beeping. ( watch a startrek neg gen episode with dixon hill, you'll know what i mean )

also the long shot of sam and the girl sitting down, should have been used once or twice then you should have done an over the shoulder shot, it was very distracting looking at a close of the girl in center frame then haveing to look left side when it cut to the wide side.

apart from that i really enjoyed it, nice feel to it.
Posted: Fri, 30th Jan 2004, 10:40pm

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4Jex

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I really wanted to give this film five stars......but I couldn't. Mainly for one reason, the audio. there was really a distinctive buzz when they talked and silence when they weren't talking. I really enjoyed this film and the audio was one of my only problems.

very good job.

P.S one other thing, you kept showing the same cammera angle of her flicking her hair around. It sarted to look repetative after a while.

anyway good job! looke for word to any other film you might make.
Posted: Fri, 30th Jan 2004, 10:59pm

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Brettsta

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I find it a little frustrating when people say, the audios bad! Blaha bla bla blah... Not everyone can afford to get a good mic. I know right now I cant.
Posted: Sat, 31st Jan 2004, 12:17am

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Aculag

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Well, we did have a good quality mic. Just not the correct power for it, so I had to boost the audio a lot in post. I addressed that in the main post hoping that it would decrease the number of complaints about it... Guess it didn't work.
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 2:34am

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Aculag

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Wow, jaycoolyea... A little harsh, no? Well, I suppose you're entitled to your opinion...

Edit: Fallen Angel too? Come on, man! That's the best movie here, and you give it a zero?
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 3:41am

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Brettsta

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I guess hes not a fan of good movies.

EDIT: Great movies
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 4:10am

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Aculag

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Actually, he's not a fan of the competition. Look at his votes...
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 4:12am

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Brettsta

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er, the low down of it is down..

Jaycoolyea, stop. Dont vote others movies a zero. I suddenly dont like this kid and i wont like any of his movies. Prepare to get zeros on every submission jaycoolyea. Muahahha
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 4:43am

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Aculag

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It's being updated. I uploaded a trailer...
Posted: Mon, 2nd Feb 2004, 9:03am

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b4uask30male

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WTF..................
Jaycoolyea

you watched over 40 films in 4 hours... GIVE ME YOUR BROADBAND SERVER, i can manage just 2 - 3 films in that time.
The above guys are right you have appeared to vote like this:
Released your own film "Matrix Retarded" then voted 5 on yours and 0 ( ZERO ) On on the films in the top ten.
Then to cover your tracks you went through and voted on films that are not in the top ten.
This sort of vote rigging went out a long time ago, for your own sake I suggest you think about how important is it to have your film in the topten for a few weeks ( after that it gets moved out anyway )
I'll pm you this thread so you'll understand why ( i'm sure ) people will now give your film a low rating.
It's better to be fair, trust me.
Aculag, I'm sorry to post this on your thread but the effort you put into your film alone makes me sick when i see it was given a zero.
Posted: Tue, 3rd Feb 2004, 1:29am

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Aculag

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Thanks for the support.
Posted: Wed, 4th Feb 2004, 9:54pm

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Aculag

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A trailer and blooper reel are now up.

Ps. Is it just me, or are the votes for this mysteriously hidden, and have we been removed from the top ten...?
Posted: Wed, 4th Feb 2004, 11:10pm

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Brettsta

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Itll be up by the end of the n ite. I thhink that its because it was down.
Posted: Wed, 4th Feb 2004, 11:13pm

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Aculag

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That's what I thought too.
Posted: Wed, 4th Feb 2004, 11:29pm

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Waser

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wow I really didnt think that was that great. I went into this with high hopes because people talked about how great the acting was and how well it was written, but at parts felt the acting wasn't that good, and I wasn't impressed by the scipt at all. also, im sure this is just me though, I thought this film was boring, but not just because it was a talking movie, i mean The Insider is one of my favorite films of all time and that is a 3 hour 20 minute talking movie. I dunno this just really didn't do it for me. 2 stars
Posted: Thu, 5th Feb 2004, 12:22am

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Aculag

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Hmm... Ok. Everyone's entitled to their opinions I suppose. Except those who rate without commenting or anything. Is it because there was no action or anything at all waser? It's interesting that you complained about everything BUT the sound. Haha. Quite a contrast. I'd just like to understand your reasonings, if possible...
Posted: Thu, 5th Feb 2004, 12:25am

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Waser

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well that may be it, but again, The Insider is one of my favorite movies of all time and there is no action in that what so ever. I think it may be that the whole movie was just one conversation basically and it felt like there was no real problem and nothing to resolute it if there was one. i think this may be part of a series if i am not mistaken, and if so, that would explain why i didnt get it/like, and if that is infact the case, i would rate it differently, sorry sad
Posted: Thu, 5th Feb 2004, 12:49am

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Aculag

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Well, I can respect that. It is part of a series. The first part. About there not being a resolution... It's not a play. It's a serial movie. There'll be 4 parts. So that means at least 4 scenes. It's going off the principle that in any given film, each scene can hold it's own as having a beginning, middle, and end. Here, the beginning is him sitting at his desk, obviously bored. She comes in. Beat. Middle, she explains that her husband is cheating on her, and the relationship that she had with Sam is introduced. She pulls away, "Typical." Beat. End, she decides not to go with him, and leaves. He's once again left alone.

I'm not trying to change your opinion really, just explain to you what we were really doing in it. A script doesn't have to be 300 pages long to have a concrete plot. All you need is a beginning, middle and end.
Posted: Thu, 5th Feb 2004, 12:51am

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Waser

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Aculag wrote:

A script doesn't have to be 300 pages long to have a concrete plot. All you need is a beginning, middle and end.
well, ill need to check out the other movies now. by the way i like what you said, that is totally quote-worthy (which is what i did smile )
Posted: Thu, 5th Feb 2004, 2:11am

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Aculag

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Heh. Thanks. The other movies are in pre-production right now. Scripts are being finished. Expect them in a couple of months.
Posted: Sat, 7th Feb 2004, 2:44pm

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Mantra

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Nice work, Aculag.

Your attention to detail/planning is very evident in the film, i enjoyed the look very much. One thing i did think that could be improved is the lack of close up on the male lead during the dialogue. I feel the addition of a good close up edited in would have built up the tension between the two rather than the somewhat distant view you chose. I appreciate the film noir style alot.

I look forward to seeing more. Good luck.
Posted: Sat, 7th Feb 2004, 11:57pm

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anonymous

i think it was great, but the sound was kinda annoying, thats not a big problem, but i was unsure about how sam was feeling about the lady person, he keped switching his mind and the diologue wasent that great at that part, but it was really nicely set, and the lighting was great. I really liked it.
Posted: Sun, 8th Feb 2004, 12:57am

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Aculag

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Actually, guest, you bring up a nice point. The fact that Sam keeps changing his mind was intentional. These are things that art school kids will pick apart. Stuff like, the fact that at first, Sam doesn't want anything to do with her, then he does. She never takes a sip of her drink, but he's constantly drinking. It's (in my mind) showing how fast he'll jump into things, and she's a little more wary about it.

Mantra, a good friend of mine also said I should have a close up, but the distance between the two in the shot kinda applies to the distance between them emotionally.

Lot's of subtext!

Thanks though. By the way, I did some fiddling with the sound... I'm going to upload a version in a few days with much much better audio.
Posted: Tue, 10th Feb 2004, 11:34am

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stqagehanduk

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It is beautifully done, and an excellent example of what a film can look like if a decent amount of prep work is done.

Any quibbles I might have about the film would be pointless tiny things - it maybe lacks tension, but technically it's marvellous. MInd you, I'm a sucker for Black and WHite ...
Posted: Tue, 10th Feb 2004, 11:59pm

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Aculag

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Hey, I thought everyone should know that there's a version now with updated audio. I took b4uask's suggestion and added some street noise. I think it sounds a lot better. Might add a bit of something. Anyway, give it a look-see.
Posted: Wed, 11th Feb 2004, 12:00am

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Brettsta

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DLoading it now.

Sounds great!!!!! What do you actually mean by street noise? Like sounds of a street litereally? Heh,, stupid question, I know...
Posted: Wed, 11th Feb 2004, 4:03am

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Aculag

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You know, like... cars driving and such.
Posted: Wed, 11th Feb 2004, 4:10am

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Brettsta

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What I thought. It worked tremendously!
Posted: Fri, 13th Feb 2004, 2:24am

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jstow222

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Wow, that was really great. Sam Spade's voice made me chuckle a few times. My only major comment is the lighting, I know it can be tricky in B&W, but a few times I had to struggle to make things out. Over all, a really great film that had some true effort put into it.
Posted: Tue, 24th Feb 2004, 9:32pm

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FroDittyBro

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Nice job Aculag. I can see now why my film was so horrible. Clean cuts and everything! sound though kinda killed it 4 stars here
Posted: Tue, 24th Feb 2004, 11:00pm

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Brettsta

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FroDittyBro wrote:

Nice job Aculag. I can see now why my film was so horrible. Clean cuts and everything! sound though kinda killed it 4 stars here
You thought so even with the revised version?
Posted: Tue, 24th Feb 2004, 11:29pm

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FroDittyBro

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oh i didnt notice the revised version! ill take a look.
Posted: Fri, 19th Mar 2004, 5:59pm

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ajjax44

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Aculag,

I really dug the creativity of the set, the lighting and the use of props. Creative limitations can bring a lot of juice to a film and this is proof of that - visually, this was magnificent, except for a few continuity issues with the lighting and props (fan motion, door). Overall, I enjoyed the film.

Good job.

AJ
Posted: Fri, 19th Mar 2004, 8:48pm

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Aculag

Force: 8365 | Joined: 21st Jun 2002 | Posts: 8581

EffectsLab Lite User VideoWrap User FXhome Movie Maker MacOS User

Gold Member

ajjax44 wrote:

(fan motion, door)
YES! Someone finally noticed the biggest flaw in the movie in my opinion. The door!

Thanks for the comment's AJ. Glad you dig it.