“COST OF LIVING” AND THE STATE OF SHORT FILMS

February 14, 2012

LET’S TALK ABOUT THE STATE OF SHORT FILMS.

HULK GETS TO SEE A FAIR SHARE OF THEM NOWADAYS, AND… WELL… THEY MOSTLY SUCK. AND NOT FOR THE USUAL REASONS YOU MIGHT EXPECT. IT ISN’T SOME MATTER OF TECHNICALITY. THE REAL PROBLEM IS THAT IT SEEMS SHORT FILMMAKERS HAVE FORGONE ANY EFFORT TO ESTABLISH A VOICE. AND AS A RESULT, THEY’VE BECOME HOLLOW EXERCISES IN “PRODUCT RELATION.” YOU KNOW WHAT HULK TALKING ABOUT HERE. FAN FILMS. MASH-UPS. CROSS-OVERS. UNAUTHORIZED SEQUELS. EVEN BASIC USURPING OF POPULAR MOTIFS (VAMPIRES! HARRY POTTER! WHATEVER THE FUCK!).

LOOK, FOR YEARS FILMMAKERS HAVE USED TOUCHSTONES TO ESTABLISH THE KINDS OF STORIES THEY WANTED TO TELL, BUT THEY USED AMALGAMATIONS. THESE TOUCHSTONES JUST MERE INFLUENCES IN CREATING YOUR OWN UNIQUE STORIES AND WORLDS.  BUT NOW WE JUST USE THE THINGS THEMSELVES. DREW MCWEENEY AND THE FELLAS OVER AT HITFIX APTLY CALLED IT “THE AGE OF FAN-FICTION” AND IT IS 100% TRUE. INSTEAD OF AMALGAMATING WE JUST TAKE THE THINGS WE LIKE AND FUCK WITH THEM, SEEMINGLY JUST IN AN EFFORT TO GET EYEBALLS OR SHOW WE KNOW HOW TO POINT AND SHOOT AT THINGS. AND QUITE FRANKLY, HULK THINKS IT SUCKS. MOSTLY BECAUSE SOME PEOPLE ARE ACTUALLY FALLING FOR IT. BUT JUST AS LUCKILY, MOST HOLLYWOOD EXECUTIVES ARE NOT. THEY ARE LOOKING FOR A SENSE OF STORYTELLING. THEY ARE LOOKING FOR A VOICE. AND AS SUCH, THEY KNOW WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ABOUT SHORT FILMS.

OH AND DON’T GET HULK WRONG EITHER, SHORTS TODAY SUCK FOR THE USUAL TECHNICAL REASONS TOO. BUT LET’S NOT PRETEND THIS IS SOME EXCLUSIVE PROBLEM TO LOOK DOWN OUR NOSES AT. HULK’S MADE SOME SUCKY SHORTS WHEN HULK WAS STARTING OUT TOO. THINGS TAKE TIME TO FIGURE OUT AND WHAT IS SOMEWHAT UNFORTUNATE IS THAT THIS IS ALSO A DAMN EXPENSIVE MEDIUM TO WORK WITH. GIVEN THAT EXPENSE, HULK FINDS IT SO RIDICULOUS HOW OFTEN NO ONE DOES THE PREP WORK FOR THE EQUIPMENT THEY’RE USING. THAT EVERYONE EDITS LONGER INSTEAD OF TIGHTER. THAT NOBODY IS REALLY WANTING TO DO SOMETHING THAT HAS THE AIRS OF PROFESSIONALISM.  THEY JUST WANT TO BE SURE IT BASICALLY “LOOKS RIGHT.” BUT WON’T SPEND THE NEEDED HOURS ON COLOR CORRECTION, GRAIN APPLICATION IN POST, THE SOUND IS USUALLY BUTCHERED TO THE POINT OF BEING AWFUL (HIRE SOUND EDITORS EVERYONE). EVEN WITH ALL THIS, HULK IS FAR MORE FORGIVING OF TECHNICAL ISSUES. THOSE CAN BE FLESHED OUT IN TIME IF IT’S CLEAR THE PERSON AT LEAST HAS A SENSE OF IT. BUT ULTIMATELY, THESE ISSUES ARE NOTHING COMPARED TO HULK JUST WANTING TO HEAR WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY.

SO CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:

HERE IS A SHORT FILM.

IT LOOKS PROFESSIONAL. ACTUALLY IT’S BETTER THAN PROFESSIONAL LOOKING, IT CAN FIT IN WITH TOP FLIGHT PRODUCTION WORK TODAY. IT LOOKS LIKE IT HAS AN INSANE BUDGET, BUT IT DOESN’T AT ALL. IT IS TOLD WITH COMPLETE ECONOMY. IT IS ONLY 9 MINUTES AND IT DOESN’T WASTE A SECOND OF IT. IT IS FUNNY. IT HAS EXCELLENT PERFORMANCES. IT TELLS A CAREFUL LITTLE SLIGHT OF HAND STORY AND NEVER TRIES TO DO MORE THAN THAT. IT NEVER INSULTS THE AUDIENCE. IT NEVER FEELS OUT OF CONTROL OR HAPHAZARD. IT NEVER FEELS LIKE IT’S TRYING SHOW OFF. AND ABOVE ALL ELSE, THIS SHORT HAS A VOICE. IN JUST 9 MINUTES IT CAPTURES A BAD NIGHT FOR TWO LOW-GRADE SECURITY DUO IN AN EVIL SCIENCE LAB. IT HAS TOUCHSTONES, BUT THEY ARE AMALGAMATIONS. THE FILMMAKER IS CLEARLY INFLUENCED BY CAMERON AESTHETIC AND CARPENTER’S DISAFFECTED ANTI-HEROES. IT EVEN PLAY’S WITH WRIGHT’S MODERN, GENRE-INVERTING SENSE OF HUMOR WHILE STILL KEEPING AN EVEN KEEL. QUITE SIMPLY, IT IS GOOD.

AND IT IS CALLED COST OF LIVING.

HULK SAW THIS SHORT A FEW MONTHS AGO AND SHORTLY AFTERWARDS HULK MET THE DIRECTOR BENDAVID GRABINKSI. WE IMMEDIATELY BEGAN TALKING ABOUT EVERY SINGLE THING HULK HAS MENTIONED SO FAR INCLUDING THE CRAP STATE OF SHORT FILMMAKING. SINCE THEN WE’VE BECOME FRIENDLY, OFTEN TALKING AT LENGTH ABOUT THE YEAR IN FILM, THE PRATFALLS OF DIGITAL CINEMATOGRAPHY, LENS MANIPULATION, AND THE DIRECTION OF THE INDUSTRY. SO HULK GUESS THIS IS ONE OF THOSE FULL-DISCLOSURE TYPE-DEALS WHERE A CRITIC SAYS “HULK KNOW AND RESPECT THIS GUY.” WHETHER YOU MIGHT THINK THIS ALL COLORED HULK’S OPINION HERE, IT NOT FOR HULK TO SAY. HOPEFULLY, YOU’VE COME TO REALIZE HULK IS NOT SOME UNTRUSTWORTHY SLUG AT THIS POINT, BUT IF THAT NOT ENOUGH THEN JUST REMEMBER THAT EVERY SINGLE THING SAID HERE WAS SAID IN OUR VERY FIRST CONVERSATION. AND EVEN THEN, IF HULK DIDN’T FEEL THIS WAY THAN HULK WOULDN’T BE UP AT 5 IN THE MORNING TO WRITE IT…. MAKE OF IT WHAT YOU WILL.

HULK IMAGINE THAT MOST OF YOU WILL LIKE OR RESPECT THE SHORT, BUT ALSO HULK IMAGINE THAT SOME OF YOU MIGHT HAVE OTHER REACTIONS. PERHAPS IT HARD TO CONSIDER AGAINST OTHER SHORTS BECAUSE “IT HAS STARS AND STUFF.” WELL, HULK HAS SEEN MORE SHORTS THAT YOU CAN IMAGINE WITH STARS IN THEM AND THEY ARE OFTEN GARBAGE (STARS HAVE FRIENDS THEY WANT TO HELP EVERYWHERE. MOST OF THIS STUFF NEVER SEES THE LIGHT OF DAY). SO THE REAL ANSWER IS THAT IT THIS FILM DOESN’T HAVE STARS, IT HAS ACTORS WHO HAPPEN TO BE STARS. AND BEING ACTORS IS WHAT MAKES FOR A GOOD SHORT. SO WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR WORK, JUST KNOW YOU CAN FIND ACTORS ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD, BUT YOU HAVE TO WORK HARD TO FIND THEM, PAY THEM, AND THEN ACTUALLY KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH THEM. TRUST HULK. FINDING A STAR IS NOT THE SOLUTION TO YOUR PROBLEMS.

OR PERHAPS, YOU WILL THINK THE SHORT SEEMS “SLIGHT.” WELL HULK AIN’T GONNA LIE. THERE WAS A LITTLE PERIOD WHERE HULK THOUGHT THE SAME THING, BUT IT TURNS OUT THE FILM IS JUST PLAYING YOU LIKE A FIDDLE. IT EVENTUALLY COME AROUND TO REVEAL THIS GREAT, RESONANT BIT STORYTELLING THAT IT KEPT SLOW BURNING THE WHOLE WHILE. IT’S IN THE BEST TRADITION OF GENRE FILMMAKING, TAKING THIS FUNNY CONCEPT ABOUT A SECURITY TEAM IN A MONSTER LAB AND TURNS IT IN A LITTLE COMMENTARY ON MALAISE AND REGIONAL ECONOMICS.

OR PERHAPS YOU DIDN’T FIND IT FUNNY. THAT’S FINE AND STUFF. THERE IS SUCH A THING AS TASTE AND REFERENCE POINTS, BUT IF EVEN OF THESE ARE YOUR LONE DISMISSAL, THEN HULK JUST WANT TO SUGGEST AN IDEA THAT MIGHT BE BEHIND ALL OF THESE FEELINGS.

IN DEALING WITH SHORTS (AND A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO WATCH SHORTS WITHOUT MUCH CONSIDERATION OF WHAT IS DIFFERENT ABOUT THEM) THERE IS OFTEN THIS THING THAT HAPPENS WHERE PEOPLE EXPECT A SHORT FILM TO INGRAIN ITSELF INTO YOUR CONSCIOUSNESS AND AFFECT YOU THE SAME WAY A FEATURE WOULD. THAT’S JUST NOT POSSIBLE. MOST OF THE TIME PEOPLE DON’T SETTLE THEIR BRAINS DOWN UNTIL ABOUT 15-30 MINUTES GO BY. SO BELIEVE IT OR NOT, PEOPLE WHO EVALUATE SHORTS AREN’T LOOKING FOR YOU TO TELL THESE COMPLETE, EPIC STORIES, BUT TO SIMPLY THAT WORK WITH ECONOMY AND DO ONLY WHAT YOU NEED TO DO. AND SHOW THAT IN THAT CONDENSED TIME YOU CAN YOUR ESTABLISH YOUR VOICE

PEOPLE ASK HULK ALL THE TIME, WHAT IS HOLLYWOOD LOOKING FOR IN A SHORT?

IN SHORT, WE’RE LOOKING FOR STUFF LIKE THIS.

TAKE A GANDER YOURSELF AT BENDAVID GRABINSKI’S COST OF LIVING.

AND LET’S CELEBRATE PEOPLE DOING IT RIGHT.

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33 Responses to ““COST OF LIVING” AND THE STATE OF SHORT FILMS”

  1. Well put together short for sure, I got a Hot Fuzz vibe for sure in how it’s a step above simply genre satire.

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      YEAH RISING ABOVE GENRE SATIRE, IS A CAREFUL SUBTLE THING. HULK THOUGHT THE WAY IT BUILT TO THE ENDING POINT (ABOUT JERRY USING ALL THESE OBSERVATIONS AS A WAY OF TRYING TO CONVINCE SILAS TO TRANSFER) WAS A REALLY NICE MOVE AND SOMETHING MOST SHOTS DON’T REALLY UNDERSTAND HOW TO DO.

  2. Haha! Official selection, Omaha film fest! Perfect.

    That was a pretty solid little film. I enjoyed it.

    So Hulk, a question and a request. First, where do you think the best place to find short films is? I feel like us outside of the industry don’t really have any exposure to shorts other than occasionally dragging ourselves to a film festival or somebody linking to one on Vimeo etc. Is there a good aggregator of the best content or some other way to gain greater exposure?

    Also, can you, as his friend please sit him down and make sure he doesn’t start working under the name BDG? Thats just a popped polo collar waiting to happen.

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      THERE IS NO GOOD PLACE. USING SAG ACTORS PROHIBITS ONLINE DISTRIBUTION UNLESS A CERTAIN (RATHER HIGH) CRITERIA IS MET.

      DRAGGING ONESELF TO A FILM FESTIVAL IS REALLY THE BEST WAY. BUT THE REAL BEST WAY IS TO SIMPLY WORK OUT HERE AND GET SENT A SHIT LOAD. THE GOOD STUFF RISES TO THE TOP. BUT IT NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION.

      HULK WILL DO BEST.

      • That’s too bad. I suppose its true of a lot of creative industries that fledgling work is really just made for the purpose of getting a bigger, better opportunity; and a lot of interesting work gets left on the table never to be appreciated at large. It just seems a shame now that distribution is so ridiculously easy. Maybe in another decade SAG will catch up.

        Oh well, I accept my place as an outsider. Although I do appreciate the odd candid look in that you offer here.

  3. Meaghan said

    My god, after this and Scott Pilgrim, I’m tempted to label Brandon Routh as king of the intense comic performance.

    Also Hulk, I was wondering, what do you think of the Portal short film “No Escape”?

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      UNLESS YOU WERE DIRECTLY INVOLVED WITH THE PORTAL SHORT FILM, HULK HATED IT. IT REPRESENTS EVERYTHING HULK DISLIKES AND MENTIONED ABOVE. AND WORSE IT GETS THE TONE OF THE PORTAL UNIVERSE COMPLETELY WRONG. IT’S ALL PART OF THIS “EVERYTHING HAS TO BE GRITTIER!” B.S. THAT ONE WAS PRETTY MUCH THE TIPPING POINT FOR HULK.

      • Meaghan said

        Haha, no, I was most certainly not involved in that film, I was just wondering since it did meet all of the criteria you mentioned above and yet I still liked it. I do agree that it gets some tonal things wrong, such as having Chell being guarded by other humans when really, the whole game is about being totally isolated with only one entity, and its passive-aggressively trying to kill you.

        It’s interesting…I wonder how much of me liking No Escape just comes down to how exciting it was to see Portal iconography realized in live-action (connecting back to Drew McWeeny’s article). I think there are other genuine reasons that I like that short, but the fan-service definitely plays a big part.

      • I’m glad I’m not the only person who wasn’t a big fan of that film. It was well put together but I felt it had nothing to say about the world that it was referencing, just a cool looking fan tribute.

  4. Nicely done. I would have ditched the flash-forward.

    Totally agree about fanfiction being treated as if it were worthwhile simply because of what it expropriates. Grown-up writers and filmmakers need to be coming up with their own concepts, their own characters, and their own voices.

  5. Haven’t been able to watch the short because my work computer sucks, but your points on the short film in general are important. I’m prepping a comedic short as I type this and was wondering if what I was writing had any relevance right now since it’s not a mashup or a fan film or, hell, even science-fiction. Does a (hopefully) well-observed character comedy have a place at all? Man, I hope so.

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      ANYTHING GOOD HAS A PLACE. OBVIOUSLY, BE SURE IT’S FUNNY. HAVE TONS OF TRUSTED PEOPLE READ IT. AS FOR POIGNANCY, DON’T TRY TO DO TOO MUCH. REALLY FOCUS ON WHATEVER ETHOS YOU’RE TRYING TO CAPTURE AND MAKE IT FEEL LIVED IN AND RESONANT.

  6. Man, now I’m getting nostalgic about all the crappy short films I worked on as a student. Heh, one was about an immortal Civil War soldier looking for the body of his brother. It was awful.

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      EMBRACING ONE’S AWFULNESS IS IMPORTANT. HULK ONCE MADE ONE ABOUT A GUY MAKING A DEAL WITH THE DEVIL FOR A POWERMACG4… IT WASN’T A COMEDY.

  7. After reading the first few paragraphs, I thought it was your set-up to actually criticize “Cost of Living.” In fact, when I watched the short last night, your opening thesis pretty much sums up why the film didn’t impress me. I thought the performances were funny and of course the production values are high (although it doesn’t look expensive to me), but in the end all I saw was well-executed fluff. The economic themes you point out certainly didn’t resonate with me at all.

    I don’t think anyone can argue that there’s an actual story going on here; the characters are types and the plot points are clearly (intentionally) recycled from other genre films. Isn’t that basically the definition of fan fiction?

    • Nathaniel — well, not exactly. Fanfiction uses the actual settings and characters from an existing work. “Cost of Living” isn’t fanfiction; just self-consciously derivative. (If you’re blatant enough about it, derivation becomes homage; e.g., the panicked voice on the intercom that takes off on Cameron’s “Aliens”.)

    • Popcorn Dave said

      Agreed. I don’t see any “unique voice” here, just a tired Aliens riff juxtaposed with a guy talking about mundane stuff for comic effect. Very professional and all, but I honestly have no idea why Hulk thinks this is any better than the stuff he was criticising before (although I haven’t seen that many shorts lately so maybe this is great by comparison).

      I don’t buy Brandon Routh’s ridiculous Batman voice either. Is he just trying to avoid being typecast as that other bloke?

    • FILMCRITHULK said

      HEY SORRY HULK JUST GETTING TO THIS NOW. HULK WORRIES THAT HULK PERHAPS OVERSOLD THE CONCEIT HERE. HULK DID NOT MEAN TO HOLD UP THE FILM AS THE PARAGON OF SHORT-FILMMAKING, HULK JUST WANTED TO MAKE IT CLEAR THAT IF FOLKS ARE INTERESTED IN MAKING CERTAIN KINDS OF GENRE FILMS, THAN THERE IS A MUCH BETTER WAY OF AMALGAMATING THOSE INTERESTS INTO A KIND OF STORY LIKE THIS. ALSO THE COMMITMENT TO PROFESSIONALISM.

      AND YES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THIS KIND OF FILM AND A STANDARD FAN-FICTION ONE IS SLIGHT, BUT THAT SLIGHT DIFFERENCE IS REALLY EVERYTHING.

      IF YOU WANNA SEE A TRULY GREAT SHORT FILM CHECK OUT THIS ONE (PROPS TO TOM TOWNEND FOR SHOWING HULK!) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UW-RR0l_o0

  8. Charming Charlie said

    Yay, I didn’t get linked to Badass. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it makes me feel silly for continuing to check this blog.

    “HULK SAW THIS SHORT A FEW MONTHS AGO AND SHORTLY AFTERWARDS HULK MET THE DIRECTOR BENDAVID GRABINKSI. WE IMMEDIATELY BEGAN TALKING ABOUT HIS NAME AND WHY HE REFUSED TO TELL ME HIS REAL ONE.”

  9. Ben said

    Excellent as always, Hulk. Big fan of your writing. I recently tried my hand at making a short film just to see what it takes, and it gave me a new appreciation for the craft. Collaboration is a tricky business, and for someone like me (i.e. someone who isn’t trying to “make it”, just a curious film-lover) it meant taking on a lot of duties (well, everything, really) simply because I didn’t have the the means nor the connections to work with a willing and able sound editor or After Effects guru. I think a lot of aspiring filmmakers run into this dilemma, where they feel emboldened by the proliferation of film criticism and discourse made possible by the internet, but the actual real-life relationships required for collaboration are simply not there. If you’re curious on the short, I’d welcome your thoughts. Keep up the good work.

  10. Biko said

    I’m wondering if you are familiar with the short list. It was a fantastic 30-min show comprised of short films that used to air on pbs.

  11. Apologies for double commenting; but I was just over at BAD watching the Midnight in Paris/Jay-Z mashup and felt compelled to come back and follow up. That video was clever, and well edited, but I think helps me understand a little bit more what your concern is. We are in the midst of preparing a generation of extremely technically proficient editors, rather than well rounded film makers.
    I would suggest perhaps this goes back to the idea you have eloquently pointed out elsewhere and which the words for now escape me – the idea that people grab onto the noticeable features. I would guess that the shorts that get noticed (and this is their primary function, no?) are the ones that do something splashy, technical, cute, over-the-top-gritty, etc.
    I’m brought to mind of the (terrible, terrible) short lived Film-Maker reality show on Fox a few years ago – where the guy who won, or was clearly in the lead when it was cancelled anyway, was a VfX guy. His shorts were always produced to within an inch of their life, but not especially well told stories, nor necessarily well acted and so on. Because that isn’t what got him the attention.
    I’m hoping this culture doesn’t lead to a giant influx of next generation Michael Bays and Neveldine and Taylors – not that their movies can’t be enjoyable – that rely almost exclusively on technique – at the expense of nouveau Aronofskys, Tarantinos, PT Andersons, etc.

    • I think what’s causing this is more to do with the fact, with very little investment you can get a decent looking image. You buy a $700 DSLR, open up iMovie and throw some 30$ coloring plug-ins and you can get something that, to a broad audience, doesn’t look like crap.

      So when a beginner starts out with that, they aren’t pushed as hard to tell a better story to get noticed. Before, you had to work hard on all aspects to make you’re product broadly appealing. Sorry if this sounds like a, we had it harder back in the day rant but in many ways it was.

      At this point having a good story and telling it well takes a back seat to DYI special effects and plug-ins that try and create a “film look”.

  12. Daniel said

    This was just okay for me. I was hoping for a really big twist at the end. It needed a better score, though. A score with actual music instead of mostly sound design.

  13. Mr. E said

    Great article as usual Hulk; one thing I would wonder about is whether you think it is possible to have your own voice in a work based off someone elses–in a work of fanfiction, let’s say. I’m specifically thinking of theater at the moment, with Shakespeare probably being the most “fan-fictioned” author in Western memory. Every single director of his plays can take the tone, the words, and even the story in their own unique directions–a la the time I saw “Macbeth” set in 1990’s Bosnia. Obviously film is a different medium, but I think the two are similar enough to at least pose the question of if a direct fanfiction work can be of enough quality and substance and style to get across the author’s unique voice even while using the characters, storylines and motifs from another’s.

  14. I always feel that articles like this should preface with exactly how much work it is making short films independently. I made 5 shorts in film school (worked on approx. 20 of my classmates as that is how the curriculum was set up), 2 post film school, and am currently in post on one and in pre-pro on another. I’ve gotten 2 shorts in to festivals and won an award on one of them. Please note that none of this is bragging as I still really can’t watch any of them without wincing a few (thousand) times. Seriously, most them are embarrassing at best. But they are a tremendous amount of work where both you and your crew/cast have to wear numerous hats through out the project. A project that can be relatively thankless.

    HOWEVER… that doesn’t give you any type of excuse for making shoddy work. It amazes me to see shorts where sound is awful, or the lighting doesn’t match up in one scene to the next, or a million other things that are indeed correct-able. Obviously I’ve made a lot of these mistakes in the process, but I’ve learned from them. Which was another thing that amazed me, seeing people make the same mistakes over and over again.

    When you do go to festivals on a frequent basis, you get to see your fair share of shitty shorts. With everything going DSLR now, literally anyone can make shorts which is such a double-edged sword. Digital has allowed me the output that I currently have. I do love it though, as I’ve always loved film (thanks for your “Why I Love Film” post on Badass… so so good). Creating shorts, and hopefully features one of these days, is incredibly rewarding, frustrating, exciting, stressful, etc. etc. etc. Just a lovely process/creative outlet.

  15. Ah, default Californian conversation #3b: “Do you know what size of house you can get for $x in [place]?”

    (I really liked it.)

  16. I’m working on my second short film now (my first one was called Sound Off–http://vimeo.com/23427828), and I feel like the way I’ve done things so far would be agreeable to you, Hulk. A good bit of my peers here don’t focus on story as much as they should, and the films suffer because of it, I believe. “OOOh, we got a Red Epic! Let’s shoot on that AND our 5D Mk II, AND our 7D! OOH, let’s get another 7D just for shits and giggles!” Less is more.

    BTW, that thing about all the cameras actually happened today. I wanted to use the 5D, but someone else was shooting today and had it. THEN, they got the Red Epic for their shoot, too. Also, they have 2 7Ds. My DP and I shot on our personal T2is (with a 50mm and 18-55mm kit lens). I didn’t let it upset me while on set, but it helped me realize that it’s not always about what camera you shoot on, it’s how strong your story/acting is.

    P.P.S., Hulk, I feel like I become a better filmmaker after reading one of your articles. Every time. Thanks for that.

  17. [...] Now go read this: Film Critic Hulk – Short Films [...]

  18. [...] I was introduced to this piece, COST OF LIVING by Film Critic Hulk in this essay about the State of Short Films. it’s a really good example of what I was writing about last week in regards to a [...]

  19. [...] COST OF LIVING AND THE STATE OF SHORT FILMS [...]

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