Sunday, 26 February 2012

Character Profile 2 - Rocket Scientist

Name: Eric Grey
Age: 37
Height: 5' 7"
Job: Aerospace engineer

Calm, patient and timid. Working as an Aerospace engineer, his intelligence and co-operation among the team have him as a highly regarded colleague. Bullied for his intelligence and shyness, which made it hard for him to socialise, he has been coined as a "push over". He wants to turn that all around.

Character Profile 1 - Rocket Scientist

Name: Donny Ellsworth
Age: 27
Height: 5' 10"
Job: Rocket Scientist (Aerospace engineer)

Arrogant, ambitious and cocky. Donny works as an Aerospace engineer. His vast intellect and knowledge lead him to one of the most challenging fields. At the top of all of his classes, he grew arrogant and cocky. His attitude has left him alone, with a cynical attitude towards others. His demeaning view of others has made him crave for a new challenge.

*Note: Reminds me a little of The Italian Job (1969) with Charlie Croker at the top of his game, presented with a new challenge, one of his hardest yet. He limits his group to a "no violence" option creating the level of difficulty and at the end, the money is left balancing with the gang inside the bus. 

Bouncing/Bowling Ball

Edit: I have no idea why it is so discoloured. May be an issue with the upload.

A Crash Course In Screenwriting - Notes

Directing With A Pencil - Notes

Story Making - Notes

Writing, Directing, and Producing Documentary Films and Videos - Notes

Another Idea

Brainstorm - Rocket Scientist

Basic measurements of roller skates

Influence Map

Notes on prop - Roller skates

Notes on environment - Desert Island

Notes on character - Rocket Scientist

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Psycho Review

Fig.1. Psycho poster
Leaping head first into the suspense that Hitchcock is so famous for, this gripping horror mystery known as Psycho is one that hasn't faded away through time. Jumping straight to the point, Hitchcock sets the mood by granting permission to a young woman to carry a large sum of money on her person, for financial reasons, but allows the woman's personal greed to overwhelm the situation. Waiting at a set of traffic lights believing this is her lucky break, Hitchcock places her boss at the same lights and whilst crossing the road, questions her character with his eyes as she drives hastily. As Peter Bradshaw said, "those few seconds, brilliantly economical and tense, are simply more psychologically convincing and real" (Bradshaw, 2010).
Fig.2. One of the most iconic murder scenes
After a suspense packed sequence in which she is tailed by the law, she runs into a small motel, a motel that is Hitchcock's chosen destination in which the rest of the story will unfold. Creating one of the most iconic horror scenes of all time Hitchcock does what he does best and hands out the information that is needed to hold the suspense in the upcoming moments, that by no means halt the progression of suspense.

Hitchcock spared no expense at throwing in tension, horror and mystery into this film. With quick edits, overhead camera shots and long pausing sequences, Psycho is varied in it's delivery, but gives the same thrilling results. David Jenkins pointed out that "it was the first movie to show a toilet flushing, so we might also credit it with spawning the entire gross-out genre" (Jenkins, 2010), though however childish it may seem now, but was deemed "too disgusting" to show.
Fig.3. Psycho(logically deranged)
Psycho is a very gripping tale, and reveals a very shocking conclusion, of both the film and the mentality of the "Psycho". Many have used the iconic shower scene as inspiration for the horror genre, as well as the comedy market which are in the forms of parodies. R.L. Shaffer summarised it's impact on the genre quite nicely by saying, "while some (very few) have done the slasher formula better over the years, without Psycho offering unforgettable inspiration, those films might never have existed" (Shaffer, 2010). Whilst it may not prove to be the most horrifying thriller in this modern age, it would be a mistake to think this was a blind knife in the dark.


Figure.1 Alfred Hitchcock (1960) Psycho poster. At:
Figure.2 Alfred Hitchcock (1960) One of the most iconic murder scenes. At:
Figure.3 Alfred Hitchcock (1960) Psycho(logically deranged). At:


Peter Bradshaw (2010) Guardian. At:
David Jenkins (2010) Time Out. At:
R.L. Shaffer (2010) IGN. At:

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Rope Review

Fig.1. Rope poster
The suspenseful take on the play under the same name, Alfred Hitchcock maintains the atmosphere of a theatre play through the seamless scenes as it takes place in real time and edited into a single continuous shot. Hitchcock gives the audience all of the information, but intelligently plays with it to draw tension.

Fig.2. Uneasy Philip and over-confident Brandon
Alfred Hitchcock "has made his camera a random observer in an elegant suite of rooms in which a murder is being committed just as the picture begins" (Crowther, 2000) so the audience is to watch anxiously as the events unfold. It is a method that Hitchcock has used many a time, and the success of the execution is of no surprise. The tension derives from the audience's knowledge of an event that will effect later events, but the circumstances elude the audience in such an antagonising way that it arouses an urge to take control of the situation.

Whilst the situations evolve around the murder of their 'friend', the goal later becomes to include their old housemaster into their plans due to this 'inferior' and 'superior' mentality. It is the same idea that inspired the murder in the first instance. One that had originated from the housemaster himself, though he never saw the flawed logic until it was put in practise by Brandon. This film, as Dennis Schwartz said, "dallies around arguments about Nietzschean philosophy, his "Superman" theory, in order to take down that elitist belief as possibly being used in the wrong way to justify criminal acts" (Schwartz, 2008).

Fig.3. Publisher, James Stewart interrogating the two boys

Hitchcock tested himself and, as Emanuel Levy said, "his medium by working in tough, confined spaces, as was evident in 'Lifeboat,' set entirely in a lifeboat" (Levy, 2005). He restricted himself to a single room, with minimal editing with the cleverly cut shots occurring in dark scenes or behind someone, to dispel the thought of a short lifespan of the film reels. The long shots convey a sense of real time, and that there is a continuous and constant threat of tension.

A masterpiece that did not follow the traditions of editing and is complimented for such thing, Rope creates tension and suspense the moment it begins and successfully maintains it throughout. Cleaver witty lines and quality star acting are the icing on the cake for this classic.


Figure 1. Alfred Hitchcock (1948) Rope Poster. At:
Figure 2. Alfred Hitchcock (1948) Uneasy Philip and over-confident Brandon. At:
Figure 3. Alfred Hitchcock (1948) Publisher, James Stewart interrogating the two boys. At:


Bosley Crowther (2000) New York Times. At:
Dennis Schwartz (2008) Ozus' World Movie Reviews. At:
Emanuel Levy (2005) Emanuel Levy Cinema 24/7. At:

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Unit 4 - Storytelling

For this unit I have:  Environment - Desert Island
                                    Character - Rocket Scientist
                                    Prop - Roller Skates

I have a few initial ideas for possible scenarios;

Similar to the introduction of Lost (TV series)

In Lost, a plane containing over 300 people crashes on a desert island. The survivors must then try to escape the island, encountering abnormalities along the way. 

My character, the Rocket Scientist, could be a passenger of a either plane (passenger) or a space shuttle (observer/overseer) and has crash landed onto the desert island. Being the only survivor of the crash, he salvages the crash in an attempt to escape from the island. Among the crash site, he finds a pair of roller skates. These roller skates belonged to his son who, was either was on the plane or is back home and initiates the tension through the "ticking clock".

On the basis of his son being on the plane, he struggles to cope with his son's passing. This, however leads to the irrelevance of the father's occupation. Though, to counter that, the Rocket Scientist, created a space shuttle and took his son, including crew, for a journey that no more than a hand full of people will ever witness. The scientist holds that regret, and builds a memorial for son, placing his son's roller skates at the site. The story would be told through flashbacks, jumping from present to past. A possible, very dark and gloomy way to end this particular idea, would be similar to that of a scene in CSI: New York.

In the scene, a teenager who had committed murder, un-knowing and un-willing, killed himself upon finding out the truth. He believed it was his father that killed them, and upon hearing the truth from his father's friend, the teenager drove to the beach. Having sat and stared at the empty sea, he stood up, took off his shoes and began to walk slowly into the sea.  The guilt was too much for him to bear, thus relating back to my idea. Though, in addition to the roller skates, a toy rocket would be at the memorial too. 

On a brighter note, with the basis of his son at home, the scientist devises of a way at getting back home. With a bit of comedy to this telling, the scientist attempts to build rafts, boats, S.O.S signs, catapults, slingshots, digging tunnels and to no avail has either worked. Through searching the island for an idea, he stumbles upon a pair of roller skates. He then took them back to his makeshift office, consisting of branches, vines and logs, to devise his next idea. His idea was to take the necessary components, to make a pair of rocket powered skates, similar to that of Dead Rising 2's workbench combo system, that would take him home.

Of the ideas, I'm more compelled to the first as I prefer a more mature story, than a comic one.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

DVD Template

Unit 3 Crit Presentation


Final Scene Rendered

Maya Scene Render

Matte Painting

Maya Piece WStages



Shaded Model

UV Map

Reception Desk

Desk Phone

Small Wooden Table

Desk Chairs