‘Going Up’ is a short student film focused on the planning and execution of a robbery by an established criminal, and a not-so-established criminal. However, the elevator journey to their final destination presents a series of challenges, romantic opportunities and terrifying prospects.
Our Favourite Cut
The cuts aired at our screening were Leslie Wang’s cut (see below) and a Collaborative cut which comprised of David’s opening montage, James’ teenage girl scene, Tessa’s older woman scene and David’s serial killer scene (see below).
Our Cuts + Comments
Throughout completing ‘Small Things’, I have gained an immense amount. From initially having very little technical competency in terms of camera/sound operation and editing to now having refined and developing those skills, I can strongly say I have gained and developed a foundation for my future filmmaking career. Through developing these skills and competencies, I have achieved my personal goal of enhancing my technical skills, one of the key aspects I hoped to gain. Further, I believe I have gained a firm understanding of the pre-production process and how integral it is for a production to be successful. I gained this understanding primarily through the completion of our final project, as for our film (Going Up), we required extensive pre-production in terms of set design, casting etc. But ultimately, the best thing I have gained from this studio, is the experience of working with the most enthusiastic, and encouraging group of students. Not to mention the incredible mentor we all had in Paul. I can truly say I have never experienced such a positive class experience and teacher experience, and I don’t know if I ever will. I have gained more than I could have ever imagined from this studio, and I am so grateful.
The “Small Things” studio has been an amazing opportunity to learn and get a taste of a wide variety of film making and production aspects and technics. It has allowed me to ‘dip my toes’ in lighting, sound design and recording, camera work, “firsting”, directing and so much more, and from there, submerge myself into the roles that stand out and interest me. Furthermore, these base understandings have given me more of an idea of what I would like to pursue in the future, both in regards to university study and work placement/experience. A real standout skill taught in Small Things has been lighting setups and first assistant director knowledge, teaching me that lighting is an absolute necessity to have an idea about on any set, and that being a first AD is a lot of hard, but satisfying work. However, the thing I’ve most enjoyed about this studio is the people and classroom environment. Small Things really connects and bonds people, learning at the same pace, with enough of a skill balance that you can learn from everyone. Both Paul and the class as a whole have been immensely enjoyable to work alongside, and will definitely be a highlight of my time at university.
After this studio, I think I learned a lot of things. The small things studio not only teach me to master the most basic shooting knowledge but also in the process of learning encountered many challenges to recognize my own shortcomings. I learned how to use equipments-cameras, tripod, microphone, lighting kit etc and the equipment safety is also very important during the shooting. A good cinematographic and television work can not be separated from careful consideration, lens’ design and shooting, selection of music, good teamwork and editing. All of these are indispensable. We tried to play different roles in the studio, each of them is very important for video shooting. We learned how to play every roles and saved time by fulfilling our duties. Although theoretical knowledge is important, when it is combined with practice, I realize that I still have a lot of things to improve and learn. When we show our works in class, the suggestions of the teacher and classmates made me reflect and make progress a lot. When I met some difficulties, the help of the teacher and peers helped me solve many problems. Although the short half semester studio is over, I have learned a lot and benefited a lot.
First of all, I have learned plenty of useful skills of editing and making a film, from how to set up a tripod to casting stars, editing our videos. From learning the basic knowledge of Premier, practiced with it for several times and I will continue learning more useful function, use it more mature, to learning how to find proper background music, how to mix them, cut them according to plot development. Music changes could foil complex ups and downs of the atmosphere really well. I really did learn a lot from Small Things, From Paul. Besides, I have clearly noticed that a good cooperation group is vital. All group members should positively participate in group works. There was an intention that Paul group us like this, in my point of view. We were grouped by our own personality and ability of film making, Each person has his or her strengths and has a unique role to play in the group. Moreover, most importantly, I have learned a lot of group communication and group cooperation. Group chat is necessary, we share ideas and connect with each other there. clear division of labor is another reason we cooperation well. we have a file before the pre-production, to list the thing we need to do and divide them into every person. This is a pretty useful method of teamwork in my future study.
The intricacies of film making were exposed to me throughout this studio. It is an eye-opening moment for me to realises the number of preparations and considerations that must be carried before even pressing record on the camera. From week 1 where I just picked up the camera without much consideration for lighting or framing, to spending half a day on set experimenting with lighting alone, I obtained practical knowledge on the so-called “boring” yet necessary aspects of film making. On that topic, the organisation system taught by Paul came into use for this project. With 4 scenes to edit in total, I would imagine it to be a nightmare to scan through all the footage and sound to look for a clip I wanted. The process of editing was also redefined for me. In the past, I would put all my footage into one sequence, and assemble, edit, colour grade all in the one sequence. I soon learned in our previous assignment, that although it was a familiar method to me, it prevents experimentation. I also appreciated the learning environment that was created in every class and got the chance to work with so many talented people in our studio, many of whom I would love to work with in future projects.