Friday, May 1, 2009

Clever Cellphone Video Wins Film Fest Award

Using mostly word images found on street signs in Sydney and New York, Jason van Genderen shot "Mankind is No Island," this cleverly crafted musically-driven short video below, on his cellphone. It won the top award at TropFest NY, the self-described "world's largest short film festival."

While it is not characteristically videojournalism as we normally showcase on KobreGuide, we are smitten by its resourceful sequencing of words and piano so that it plays like a visual song of sorts -- with an unexpected emotional wallop. No interviews, no dialog, no nat sound -- but it will probably speak to you more about how we ignore the homeless than the hundreds of interviews you've already seen on the topic. It's a triumph of editing to the beat. The heartbeat.

The 3:30 short has already racked up nearly a half-million YouTube views. For those who fret that videojournalism is unprofitable: Van Genderen shot this on a $57 budget, and won $20,000 TropFest prize money.

A tip of the hat to KarmaTube, for selecting "Mankind" as its Video of the Week. And be sure to hear this behind-the-scenes ABC radio interview with videomeister Van Genderen.

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