Riveting and Newly Released "Amateur" Japanese Tsunami Video
I spend a lot of time (too much?) thinking about how motion picture storytelling is changing.
For me, this newly-released video from Japan is one of the best examples I've seen yet of how "amateur" filmmaking is in the process of overwhelming (like a tsunami?) the century-old professional motion picture business.
Yes, the mind-boggling progression of events - after the tsunami warning - as the wave first hits - and then as the victims realize the truly awesome force that is bearing down on them - is simply stunning.
But, for me, there's more here than that.
Many "professional" filmmakers and film educators have (in the eight years since YouTube hit) derided the internet and the millions of short films that have - with scant warning - appeared online. Like the boats, homes and debris caught up in a tsunami - some pros mocked online videos as a sea of junk - unwelcome, disorganized and crude. Often these "amateur" films are poorly-framed and out-of-focus. And they've lacked a revenue model to rival the Hollywood scheme. In short, many pros viewed online videos (how they were made and shared) as an ugly and chaotic threat.
But then there are films online like this one.
For me, the inexorable death-dealing power of nature captured in this video is more chilling than any horror movie out of Hollywood. No "pro" would take the risks - both personal and aesthetic - that this Japanese filmmaker did.
And the wave that carried this "amateur" film from Japan is still building.
Thanks to Dan Kriwitsky for the link.
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Thoughts from a film producer about making and distributing films.