Film 7, Aug 18 – 23: Dolos

Wow, my final film out of 7!  It really is hard to believe my 7 Film project is now done…

This final film boasts original music by Jake Knight, who arranged and performed music for Film 4 as well.  It really was a joy working with Jake; he has a great attitude and, more importantly, he genuinely loves creating music.  I look forward to collaborating with him again.

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/28098523 w=640&h=360]

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37 Responses to “Film 7, Aug 18 – 23: Dolos”

  1. Jay January 26, 2013 at 7:49 pm #

    I am two years late, almost, but I got to your films via the garage at Mubi and watched all seven. They’re really sweet. I think this is a very cool project, and I’m glad you tested my patience with Moirae, gave me a great joke in the one at the party and demonstrated how to make a short piece pivot around a simple piece of info in the one with the piano. I felt this final one mirrored the earlier piece with the mother / daughter tension. For someone just wandering around the net, this was a good find.

    • Christopher January 28, 2013 at 9:03 am #

      Whoa! Thank you, Jay. I’m so glad you took the time to watch all seven films!!! And I really appreciate your thoughtful feedback. Yes, Moirae does test one’s patience, which is very hard to do these days, indeed. It really was an amazing experience overall and proves that one can make films without much hullabaloo!

      I sure hope you’ll visit my blog again soon and share your thoughts. I’m actually going to post one still shot a day, every day in February!!!

  2. heypro September 2, 2011 at 8:59 am #

    Chris, first off, happy belated birthday! I really love this picture. I was not at all thinking it would go where it did and although I got a rumbling, tremor-like feeling of how the elderly must long for love and touch and oftentimes live the remainder of their lives tragically deficient in this regard, when the shot changed to the doll, it was like the big one had hit. Ouch, man that was touching. Well done, sir. Well done.

    • Christopher September 2, 2011 at 9:33 am #

      Good to hear from you, Tim! I’m so happy you enjoyed the film. It’s been really interesting hearing back from folks regarding their response to this film in particular. Obviously, I was hoping to create a twist and it appears to have worked.

      Better yet, it’s been great hearing the different ways people “interpreted” the film. I definitely was shooting for something, but everyone brings their own experiences and insight. I loved yours, regarding the elderly and loneliness – so sadly true.

  3. Caitlin Rose Williams August 31, 2011 at 6:26 pm #

    So haunting and beautiful, I was in tears enjoying it so much and then all of a sudden pretty scared ;)

    • Christopher September 2, 2011 at 4:19 am #

      Great to hear from you, Cait! I’m so happy you enjoyed this short. You know, it’s funny how my 7 films kind of come full circle: the one we made together, Film 1, is sort of similar to this film in mood and feel. At least I think so…

  4. virtuos and beautiful August 31, 2011 at 5:07 pm #

    Congratulations on all of you 7 films!

    • Christopher August 31, 2011 at 5:29 pm #

      Thank you so much for taking the time to watch my films and commenting! I read all your comments and certainly appreciate each and every one.

      Your comment on this film, Film 7, is so interesting. The fact that you read the comments actually helping with the twist is so cool.

      Hope you have a blast celebrating the birthdays!

  5. virtuos and beautiful August 31, 2011 at 5:06 pm #

    I made the mistake of reading some of the comments before I saw this film and I was in suspense the whole time wondering why people thought it was creepy. When all I saw was a Grandmother making a cake, seeing the granddaughter blow the candles was a very warming picture that I let go of my nervous feeling to the next second getting goosebumps!

    Also, I agree with the earlier comments about cakes. I think I saw your films in good timing because today is my sister’s b-day, tomorrow her boyfriend’s, and the day after, my other sister. But my observation about cakes is that not only were you thinking about cakes, but cakes with sprinkles.

  6. Victoria August 30, 2011 at 8:54 am #

    What an eery ending to a very warming piece. LOVE LOVE the soundtrack, Jake!
    – Victoria from Naked Core

    • Christopher August 30, 2011 at 9:33 am #

      Sweet! Thanks, Victoria! Great to hear from you…

  7. Susan August 29, 2011 at 5:19 pm #

    Wow Chris!!! Way to end your project! Your grandmother is incredible!

  8. Cassidy August 29, 2011 at 10:03 am #

    Thanks for the compliment Jake!!! :)

  9. Chris Bell August 28, 2011 at 11:56 pm #

    My favorite yet. Your grandmother is incredible. Worthy of her own feature…

    • Christopher August 29, 2011 at 5:22 pm #

      Chris & Susan: thank you for the compliments regarding my grandmother. Yes, she really is incredible! Believe it or not, this was my fourth film with her! :)

  10. G-Fish August 25, 2011 at 2:28 pm #

    What is it with you and cake? I think you have a little cake fetish. Way to end the series!! I love it!! It reminded me a bit of the vibe I got when watching Requiem for a Dream, during the crystal meth mom parts….

    • Christopher August 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm #

      Funny, huh?! LOL Yeah, my sister caught onto the cake thing too, but I didn’t even realize it until she said so. LOL She even remembered that Cassidy mentions a B-day cake in Film 4.

      Hey, it’s my birthday tomorrow, so perhaps that’s why…

      Thanks, man. Always good to know you like my stuff :)

  11. Graham Fisher August 25, 2011 at 12:55 am #

    I feel the same way about dolls. lol – kudos on finishing the project! I want to ask about the camera moving slightly from side to side. Not quite wandering, but definitely not holding to one spot. I know you’ve stressed intentionality in the way you shoot before. What are your thoughts on the style?

    • Christopher August 25, 2011 at 11:29 am #

      Thank you for asking, Graham. I chose to use this camera style due to it’s “ghostly,” surreal feel. I wanted to approach this film with a fantastical feel, especially the second half. I wanted to juxtapose the “ordinary” actions of the woman with something unsettling or, again, surreal. If I had used a static shot, then it would have been too straightforward. If I had use a more conventional handheld technique, it would have been too jarring, edgy.

      As far as the minute movements within each shot, it’s purely instinctive. In my film Jasmin & Josephine, I was much more intentional in framing hands and other actions that captured the servanthood of the young woman. But in this film, I just went for it and shot instinctively.

      I must admit, though, I kind of wish I had an absolutely static shot of the final CUs in this film, of the elderly woman and the doll. I think to have ended wit absolutely static shots would have been jarring and even more unsettling…

  12. John Newcombe August 24, 2011 at 1:36 pm #

    Another home run, Chris! Excellent. A mini-Twilight Zone episode. Great performance by the woman. As always your eye is amazing. I am sad that this is film 7! What about 8 in 8 next??

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

      Oh man, I don’t think my marriage can withstand 8 in 8! LOL Thank you for the comment, John, always meaningful from an artist like you! You know, The Twilight Zone is exactly what I was thinking too after I came up with the idea. And, it’s funny, I was thinking my film is a TZ episode minus all the talking “filler.” You know what I mean? LOL It seems like most episodes build up to a twist or some climax, but to they needed to fill up the time with something, so they throw in insignificant stuff.

      Okay, enough on the TZ! Thank you again, John :)

  13. Dale Becker August 24, 2011 at 1:28 pm #

    I am very, very scared :-) Wonderful job Chris. Props to the actress grandma, she sure knows how to give people the creeps!

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

      Yeah, Grandma is good, huh?! I can call her that because she is my grandma – not sure if you knew that :) I really appreciate the comment and hope you’re doing well….

  14. Barbara August 24, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

    I thoroughly enjoyed watching each film. That is a lot of work, energy and passion poured into 7 weeks. I find myself thinking deeper because of them.

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

      Wow, that’s great, Barbara. Next time I see you, I’d love to know which film(s) got you thinking the most. If you’re up for it, please leave a comment and share. It’s so great to know that my films are able to stir up people’s imagination :)

  15. Johanna August 24, 2011 at 12:44 pm #

    Creepy Kid ;)… loved it

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 1:15 pm #

      Thank you and Amir again! It really was fun working with you three – much appreciated…

  16. K.j. Farrington August 24, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    Talk about finishing strong! Delicate, sad and a bit unsettling, even. Is it time, age, that is the deceiver? Memory? Well done.

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 1:20 pm #

      Love your thoughts, K.j.! You know, I never even thought about it that way, but I like where you’re headed.

      Call it a shortcoming, I don’t know, but I rarely think about the “depths” of my films. I simply come up with something I instinctively feel is “layered,” and I run with it. And when I direct the actors, I never, ever discuss the “depths” with them. Man, that’s the worse: an actor acting the depths of their character! LOL

  17. Rae August 24, 2011 at 11:50 am #

    CHILLLLLLLLLLS!!!!!! OmyGoodness …. I did not see that coming!!! Awesome tone. I want more movies!!! Tell me 7weeks isn’t over already! Phenomenal work Chris!

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

      Rae!!!!!! You’re the bestest. Thank you so much for commenting on my films and watching and encouraging!

      And thank you for offering to participate in my last film. I really wanted to work with my grandma and when I thought of you as the doll, I realized folks would accuse me of serious perversion! Can you imagine?! LOL

  18. Amir August 24, 2011 at 11:03 am #

    Awesome! One of our favorites. Obviously we are bias =). I just love films that speak so much, yet have not a line of dialogue. Lilliana had such a blast. Great Job Chris and the Gang!

  19. ollie August 24, 2011 at 9:54 am #

    OMG! That was so freaky. I love it. So creepy and really sad. Good job and I love the music, it was perfect!!

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 1:23 pm #

      Thanks, Cassidy. Isn’t the music amazing? Jake arranged and performed the music for your film as well. He seriously is talented and I’m super excited to be in contact with him now…

      • Jake August 25, 2011 at 6:07 pm #

        Ok, now my head is starting to swell. I’ve been very impressed with your films as you know, Chris, and I’ve been impressed in general with the caliber of people working with you. I don’t know how you attract all this talent, but I’m gonna go out on a limb here and guess that is an extremely important quality in a director. Cassidy, your performance in film four was outstanding. In fact, it was my favorite of all seven. I can’t wait to see Girlfriend 19.

  20. macha August 24, 2011 at 8:07 am #

    Woa! Creepy! Way to finish strong Chris. So awesome. What an accomplishment!

    • Christopher August 24, 2011 at 8:59 am #

      Thanks, Mach! And thank you again for your role in Film 4!

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