«Very well done! I know how difficult it is to put together a convincing live action movie, and it is amazing to see what you achieved here. Quite min blowing really. The camera work was excellent and editing was great. I loved the part where the main character ascends the stairs at night with his shadow on the wall. The final scene was very well done as well, if the blurs and special effects felt a bit too much at the beginning of that scene. The main actor does a magnificent job for his age. They say sound is what always gives away a student film. But hey, this is great over all!!! »
The Tell-Tale Heart
Having not read the original story, I came to this film with an open mind.
There were things I liked, and others I didn't in this film.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SPOILER WARNING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The first thing I didn't get on with is the plot [lol - quite major], not helped by some mumbled lines in the first section of the film. I didn't see any motive for the murder. Was it simply that the old man was too annoying? I didn't get a sense of what drove this character to do it. If this is as senseless in the original story, then I've got a problem with that as well.
Next, make-up. There was no effort to make the old man look old. A few black lines across the forehead and a permanent frown from the actor would have sold it better. His movement also did not look like an old person, too agile and quick and upright. The jokeshop eyeball wasn't a good idea either - it had me in fits of laughter, often at times when the tension was being wound up. Simply having the actor close the right eye completely and open the left as wide as possible in a permanent stare would have worked better.
A couple of early acting crimes from the lead. In addition to the odd patch of rushed and mumbled dialogue, he clearly nervously glances directly at the camera twice in the breakfast scene, briefly making eye contact with the audience. He was very good at the end though and during the murder, two of the film's most difficult scenes. It was the mundane stuff such as narration and conversation where the odd word went astray or went past too quickly.
Finally for the gripes, the arrival of the detectives was very amateurish, the dialogue levels were well down and the pacing flagged. This section would have done well to be trimmed down so that we see the detectives searching the house as quickly as possible (I would have used quick cuts here - under the bed, in the bin, in the washing machine and then the recycle bin). I couldn't also see how a "noise complaint" warrants the complete searching of a house!
Now the good stuff:
The way the camera was used was excellent. The choice of shots worked very well in telling the story.
Editing was at times brilliant, especially at the end when flashes of the old man intersperse with the dizzying closeups of the main character losing it. But also for the murder and the shots of the body being disected. There was a meticulousness about the editing that mirrored the procedure for the disposing of the body on screen.
This ties in with the use of music in this film. Newton-Howard's "Signs" worked perfectly, there were a good couple of jumpy moments in there thanks to good synchronisation between sudden cuts in the editing and music.
Generally, there was good work in using camera and soundtrack to ratchet up the tension.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SPOILERS OVER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So overall, it had problems in some delivery, and some unintentionally comic moments - but the use of camera, editing and music was very good indeed.
The story I'm not sure about though - for whatever reason, my heart wasn't in it.
("Beat" that for a pun)»
good stuff man...you did an awesome job putting this together...looked REALLY proffesional. Your obviously a talented director, you best be stickin wit it. The Signs music did fit the movie purrfectly. Dug the detective costumes...that kid has some killer facial hair. Bet ladies want his mustache rides like crazy.
Awesome stuff man...wish our school did something cool like that. »
«When I heard you made a live-action film, I was thrilled. Now that I have watched it, I am ecstatic. You did such a magnificient job with the camerawork, pacing, sound, music, and editing. Your actors also put in perfect performances. Yes, I think you found your medium.»
«Great work, TR 3!
The soundtrack fitted perfectly and enhanced the mood so much - I especially like the camera work - the end was just great, building the tension ever up.. up... up! Lighting, editing and acting were also very good.
Keep it up, and be very proud of this film!»
«I am floored.
This was brilliant on many levels. The first was the use of the Signs soundtrack. The feel of the scores match the feel of this great adaption of Poe's classic very well. The camera work was also impressive, not just for someones "first" film, but for a truly captivating film. The camera positions smartly carried the story instead of distracting away from it. The pace was appropriately slow to start, then as the story unraveled, the pace picked up to elevate the tension. THAT is intelligent film making.
Most of the acting, especially the main character, were well acted, believable and most importantly entertaining.
The lighting, except for a few shots, was spot on and and added so much to the mood of the scenes. Especially the staircase shots.
I thoroughly enjoyed this film and you should be very proud of such professional work. Give yourself and your cast and crew a well deserved pat on the back TR3!
«You made this wonderful movie for a class project? A class Project???? Whats the matter? Do you love movie making so little that you have to have a school assignment to get you to make movies?... Shame, shame on you! Excellent movie by the way! Well Done!
Dont let not having a school project keep you from making another!
«Wow, very impressive for a first take into real filmmaking. I really liked the intro pan on the house and you picked some nice intriguing camera angles throughout (way to play with the stairs and the lighting). Edward was performed very well and looked the part to boot. Music fit very nicely but I thought some of the dialogue could have been brought up a little bit higher in the mix. While the handheld action cam worked well in the final sequence (very nicely edited..and I liked those short BOO clips of the murder) I thought some of the earlier scenes could have benifitted from a steadier shot (tripod) as theres a bit of motion apparent when perhaps its not supposed to be. I also might have gone with a more relaxed costume on the two detectives forfeiting the illusion of age as the beard and trenchcoats seemed a bit hokey. These details aside I was truly entertained and impressed throughout. I am looking forward to seeing more in the near future.»
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