PDA

View Full Version : Waking Life



Yuri
06-02-2005, 06:17 AM
Some people just hate this film, a sample here:
http://portland.indymedia.org/media/media/2004/08/294750.wmv
... But it's not a political film, fascinating effects, flakey metaphysics, just fine with me.

Screen shots from Linklater's anticipated new film " A Scanner Darkly". http://www.aintitcool.com/display.cgi?id=19085

and a write up:
http://www.austinchronicle.com/issues/dispatch/2005-01-21/screens_string_all.html

tox
06-02-2005, 02:03 PM
I really enjoyed Waking Life. Very interesting content, backed up by the unique visuals. Tape, Waking Life and Before Sunset are some of my favourite films of the last few years.

Cheers for the heads up about "A Scanner Darkly" - not heard about it before. Those screens look interesting. Have to get reading the book before the film comes out.

Yuri
06-02-2005, 03:24 PM
I guess my only complaint about the film would be the rarified "20 something" angst in some of the dialog, and the college coffeeshop effete-ism, but then again I like that stuff and Linklater kept it to nicely clipped and controlled vignettes.
I think that aspect is what those who dislike this film complain most about.
Yes it's one of my favorite films as well.

LRJP!
06-02-2005, 10:10 PM
i think it's pretty easy to kick Linklater's movies and i can see that they could be well annoying but i guess i'm a sucker for rarefied, possibly sophomoric bubblegum epistemology Waking Life really works for me.

I Caught Before Sunrise/Before Sunset double bill last week - lovely! - and i'm looking forward to A Skanner Darkly, though i'm a bit wary...

On channel 4 in the UK there was a super lousy, 'Art', documentary on him. Was a hatchet job with the highly annoying presenter acting all offended because Linklater was more interested in 'questions' than 'answers', and wisely not very interested in the presenter or his programme... waste of an hour.

Yuri
06-02-2005, 10:37 PM
HA! Well it's easy to kick people when they are out on a ledge. No, Linklater deserves credit for going there, and as far as more questions than answers being a bad thing .... well, I question that.

I tried watching the notorious Heaven's Gate but fell asleep in spite of the gorgeous photography and glorious sets. Maybe tonight.

ambrose
15-02-2005, 01:14 PM
man i cant believe people criticise this film, on account of the dialogue!?!!!

hello? this film looks FUCKING AMAZING! just look! turn the sound off if you want! (although that would reduce it a lot too)

i just thouth that linklater wanted to set this rambling discourse off and let you forget about it, just sit back, and nod off. i thoguht it was implicit that he idea is to firstly provide visual, rather than mental stimulation, like in the scene where the crazy professor guy is explaining something and the animator just makes loads of funny little visual gags, its as thoguh hes saying "well this is pretty dull, but lets just mess around instead"

i freakin love this film

Yuri
15-02-2005, 06:11 PM
One of my favorite scenes, besides Alex Jones, is the guy who sets himself alight.

http://img23.exs.cx/img23/322/poof4uy.jpg

and the scene I think your talking about:

http://img23.exs.cx/img23/9112/precloud9xm.jpg

http://img23.exs.cx/img23/6761/cloudy5mx.jpg

ambrose
15-02-2005, 10:28 PM
thats not actually the scene im thinking of. the one im thinkign of is the one where thees loads of atoms flying around and stuff. and the guy soprt of turns into water for a bit, like the fishtank behind him.


but that cloud scene is utterly utterly breathtaking. am i too easily pleased?

Yuri
15-02-2005, 11:07 PM
Ok, I'm just going to buy the DVD rather than rent it again. Yes I remember that scene as well.
Easily impressed? God no. How boring life would be if it were otherwise.

Yet t be determined is if the impressive effects will outlive the next version of Photoshop. I think they will.

LRJP!
21-02-2005, 04:02 PM
Ok, I'm just going to buy the DVD rather than rent it again. Yes I remember that scene as well.
Easily impressed? God no. How boring life would be if it were otherwise.

Yet t be determined is if the impressive effects will outlive the next version of Photoshop. I think they will.

one of the thing's i like about this film is that the effects probably won't outlive the next version of Photoshop; it'll date like a magazine cover - so distant, so close, so evocative...

maybe.

Yuri
21-02-2005, 05:29 PM
It's always interesting to watch the transition from cutting edge to quaint to "classic"
Metropolis still resonates. Although Star Wars never really did.

ambrose
21-02-2005, 07:14 PM
sorry i dont understand why you are talking about photoshop. this film was an animation, even if they used live action stuff to do it. Do you think good naimation looks dated? snow white?

this does not compute for me!

Yuri
21-02-2005, 08:10 PM
I used the word "Photoshop" as a catchall for digital manipulation. The film was not animation in the normal handmade sense of the word. Not at all. I can make very similar effects using Photoshop by running it thru a few filters.
http://img197.exs.cx/img197/4598/demo5ei.jpg

I think Disney's work is usually stunning, especially Fantasia. Sure some things are dated but it does not detract for me, the same could be said of the film Metropolis or Blade Runner which I still love.

The first Star Wars looks hopelessly hokey to me, especially if you see the original version, I understand it has been redone. It's not really the effects though, it is the story that relies too much on effects, once the effects are dated the weak story is all that is left. Your left looking at old technology. Now I'm not saying that the Disney stuff always has a great story so perhaps I'm contradicting myself. Let me say that the distinction between Kitsch, Camp, Crap and Art is not so easy to pin down. I'm not sure just what it is that makes something "timeless".

I think Waking Life will always be a good film.

LRJP!
21-02-2005, 09:34 PM
I used the word "Photoshop" as a catchall for digital manipulation. The film was not animation in the normal handmade sense of the word. Not at all. I can make very similar effects using Photoshop by running it thru a few filters.


The first time i saw it my overall feeling was that to circumvent lazy criticism of the premise and wordy style of the film Linklater went and got some people to colour it in... ;)

this is fine and i think it'll always have a freshness, but equally i can imagine people in the fifty years feeling the images to be soooo turn of the century. I think it probably has more in common with illustration on Op-Ed pages than conventional movie look/feel and set design even animation - it's processed flatness being miles away from standard CG styles, though not without parallels, particularly in advertising....

Snow White does look dated; but this doesn't stop it being beautiful and a distinctive acheivment for the time. When you think about it, why would you - one - expect anything not to date?

Yuri
22-02-2005, 01:37 AM
When you think about it, why would you - one - expect anything not to date?

Good point.

All of Linklater's film have a dreamy disconnected feeling about them so I don't think the effects are an attempt to provide cover.

I guess maybe the phrase 'age gracefully' ought to be taken up; things that never seem to go thru the other stages as time moves on. I wonder if Durer or Cezanne or Bach ever seemed quaint or Kitschy.

Maybe I'm just thinking about pop culture and fashion and the cycles they go thru. During my day after the 60's space age style lost it's inventiveness Modernism was reviled for it's cold rationality and Victorian ornament was loved. I guess the Ikea riot proves that it's back but I'm thinking of hanging some Indian prints from the ceiling. And there is another thing, people who will mock the look as being so turn of the century will be shallow people, as ever.

ambrose
22-02-2005, 11:59 AM
i was under the mipression that waking life was painstakingly created, with far more work putinot it than is being implied here. http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,47433,00.html?tw=wn_story_related this seems to corroborate that, to some extent, eg
This...... hosted 30 animators who drew on and colored the digitized images, frame by frame

Yuri
22-02-2005, 04:17 PM
Seems I was wrong about the amount of hand time that goes into the film. Of course some wil argue that it is not really hand time because it is digital. I have to admit it is disconcerting to hit a a button and a few sliders and turn a photo into a watercolor. The issue for me is one of satisfaction in mastering the physical properties of real paint. Will I use the belly of the brush or the edge, will I load the color on the brush dry or leave only a little dry in the center and keep it wet on the edge, is the canvas too bouncy today? All these little decisions seem to be keyed into some part of the brain that allows you to put emotion on canvas. To be fair, I have not done much digital painting and don't know if a graphics tablet really allows for this without a lot of unsatifying button pressing.

Apparently there is some controversy about the software program sometimes referred to as "Rotoshop". I remember the same sort of controversy about Disney's use of computers, or the early days of photography itself.

Same sort of controversy when, I think it was Hockney, proposed that Vermeer used a Camera Obscura to paint his paintings. So the debate is whether it is animation with a capial "A". Purists against a new wave.

This seems to be the heart of the debate:


... This is not really animation.* They shot the film in live action, the processed each frame with a digital paint program.* So, it's no more animation than, say, tracing a newspaper photograph would give you a portrait.--CHARLES SOLOMON

Personally I won't go here. If it's not really animation then call it "motion graphics' or something else and continue developing it. The results, the visual beauty that this merging of techniques will win out, it always has.

There is a weblog here that goes into some of the finer points.
http://wardomatic.blogspot.com/2004_12_01_wardomatic_archive.html