Still from Take this Lollipop
Take This Lollipop
If you’ve ever had any concerns about online privacy, this is brilliant, short and will confirm all your worst fears (needs a Facebook account). 5 stars!
“It’s hard to know what people are capable of. They can start a revolution on a smart phone but forget to close the lid on a bear-proof garbage can.”
Blurring the line between the wired world and the wild world, the National Film Board of Canada’s Bear 71 is a multi-user interactive social narrative that observes and records the intersection of humans, nature and technology.
Launched with a live, interactive art installation at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival New Frontier Program, the storyworld of Bear 71 is a fully immersive, multi-platform experience. Participants explore and engage with the world of a female grizzly bear via animal role play, augmented reality, webcams, geolocation tracking, motion sensors, a microsite, social media channels and a real bear trap in Park City. This project is the most recent example of how the NFB is changing the face of cinema.
My verdict: A moving documentary with OK footage and fantastic interactive map. 4 stars.
Director Lance Weiler’s storytelling project Pandemic 1.0 is part film, part interactive game, part sociological experiment, and was one of the most talked-about experiences at Sundance 2011’s New Frontier program.
The experience imagines that a mysterious virus has begun to afflict adults in a rural town. The town’s young people soon find themselves cut off from civilization, fighting for their lives. People online work with people in the real world to unlock a variety of hidden clues.
This transmedia storytelling experience unites film, mobile and online technologies, props, social gaming and data visualization, enabling audiences to step into the shoes of the pandemic protagonists.
My verdict: is not a standalone website but rather was linked to an event, so too difficult to understand. An artefact rather than a complete project. 2 stars.
Welcome to Pine Point
Michael Simons and Paul Shoebridge, formerly of Adbusters, recreated a town that doesn’t exist anymore. Part book, part film, part family photo album of a place that’s been lost in time, the National Film Board of Canada’s Welcome to Pine Point website explores the memories of residents from the former mining community of Pine Point, Northwest Territories. Overall, it’s an interactive media exploration of how we remember the past.
A multiple-award winner (including two Webby Awards), the online experience combines photographs, sound and video clips, interviews, music and narration by Simons to personally immerse the viewer in a multimedia world of memory and loss.
My verdict: moving and nostalgic excursion to a place that no longer exists, lots of grainy vids and imagery, structurally a little boring. 3 stars
Originally a concept album for a film that does not (yet) exist, Rome is a multiplatform interactive narrative experience inspired by the music of Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi (featuring Jack White, Norah Jones and renowned composer Ennio Morricone’s original 40-piece orchestra from Italy).
Director Chris Milk, an artist focused on technology-generated emotional resonance through interactive video, created this project. The result culminated into a feature film produced by Likely Story and Annapurna Pictures, which was adapted from the novel The Reapers are the Angels. The project integrated the use of webGL within the Chrome browser, creating a rich graphical interactive experience complete with elements of game play.
My verdict: spacey 3D animation not wholly rendered. You get to build your own lego-like 3D structure and save it to a gallery. I personally, needed a stronger point to all this to emerge. 2 stars.
They take the names of madmen because madness is their fate.
They descend into the tiny places, down where the mites leap and the lymphocytes ooze and the spark of human reason fires like lightning from sizzling neurons. Down in the meat. One by one they join the fight. In the macro, in the nano, in both at once, they fight for life, liberty and the inalienable right to be crazy.
BZRK is their method.
BZRK is their battle cry.
BZRK is their doom.
Verdict: A transmedia thriller which seems to revolve around a book and an app, both of which are for sale. Can’t comment on how good it is. Can’t be rated.
the Hyp replacement
The Hyp Replacement takes place over the course of 2010 and follows the daily lives of four Brooklynites – Yaya, Sandy, Eloise and Sol. They are in search of love, employment and happiness. They share the same Fort Greene brownstone. Eventually, they start an underground marijuana coffeeshop. That’s when things start to get interesting.
How does it all work?
Short chapters are published on an almost daily basis.
Told through a 3rd person narrative, but characters express 1st person narratives through Twitter, Tumblr, Blogspot and YouTube.
Verdict: A complex textual experience, set over various media. Although the writing seems strong, I’m feeling a little short-changed. I want my transmedia to revel sensually in audio and visuals as well. However if you’re happy with just text, this might do the job. 3.5 stars.
Read the interview with author E.A Marciano by Megan O’Neill.