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The World Through Kaleidoscope

Written by r on 20. July 2009 18:18

As some of you know, mrks has become a household name for Q3 trick jumping for over 5 years. And also as some of you may know, this name is highly associated with incredible movies such as Catutthaj Jhana, Freeform, and Reaching Aural Nirvana. All of these movies along with Unity are quite possibly the only Q3 movies you need to watch if you're not an avid fan (well, you cant forget Temporal holding it down with Unreal... but i digress.)

I'm going to start negatively because, well, i was sort of let down by this release. The most prevalent thing that jumped out at me was the disorienting editing mrks decides to use in this movie. It's not everyday that Q3 trick jumping editors user a plethora of 1st person camera angles and mrks dares to do so. However, with his quick cuts, at times disorienting camera angles, and switches between first-person-to-3rd-back-to-first at alarming rates, it's occasionally hard to follow the action and thoroughly enjoy the creative art that is trick jumping.

I also have a pickle to pick with the music and editing relationship. Action in a movie and the subsequent directing/editing that goes with it should have a direct relationship with the music. In this film, I felt mrks fails to match the soundtrack he chose. The whole movie kept a static pace in the action (which was quick, choppy, high speed). However, the song makes dramatic switches and tempo changes from 1st half to 2nd half and is unfortunately not matched by mrks directing. The quick cuts, sudden rewinds and fast forwards and at one point, a "matrix-like" camera fast-forward [1:15] all digress from what the soundtrack requires in the editing/directing portion.

To further elaborate, the synchronization in this movie was at a basic level. It seemed mrks focused solely on the more obvious syncing opportunities instead of the micro syncing he could have achieved if he would have slowed down his editing style slightly. There were cuts in the films that would seem to have been synced to the snare or the weird synthesized notes to the song, but upon further evaluation, it seems these cuts are erratic and misplaced. However, often times when looking at the audio track in xyz editing program, you often see syncing points that aren't aurally heard in the actual song.

With everything that seems to be wrong with this short movie, there are so pros to this viewing experience. Mrks delivers some stunning camera angle and mixed with the DOF, he creates a beautiful focus on the trick jumping and Q3 character on the screen [1:39]. He also manages to keep a certain gradient look to the film (almost vintage with the vignette in the corner of the screen) and coupled with the quality of the footage, this is again a visual delight.

Unfortunately for shaolin productions (and mostly fei as he has a tendency to review all of shaolin's movies), praising their own movie doesn't sway this critic's opinion of a film that does not match up to its predecessor.

You can find the splash page and links for the movie here.
#1Zaknafein Style-Productions 20. July 2009 18:33
mrks was also heavily involved in tricking it2, probably the best gaming movie ever made, by helping jrb with cams.
As for this movie, I liked it. I liked the music and the atmosphere. The tricks and cameras were nice, but NOT used nice like you said. I agree the cut was too fast and often very disorienting, so this is not mrks best. Still, I liked it :)
#2Lacc Hybrid Movies 20. July 2009 19:09
Well, I'm happy to see that shaolinprod is still active (more or less). Kaleidoscope is a fairly enjoyable one. Anyway, Cattuthaj Jhana is still my favourite from mrks.
#3pray Kyoto 20. July 2009 19:52
yo the hard cuts between first person and third person realy realy fucked me up

all in all a good movie, but damn, why these hard cuts

nice review btw!

Last changed: 20. July 2009 19:56
#4ripieces HLAE 20. July 2009 20:20
Sadly I didn't like the movie (may be it's my fault I dunno), but at least I like the review :)

Last changed: 20. July 2009 20:20
#5Zaknafein Style-Productions 20. July 2009 20:31
He should've used the song Ugress - Kaleidoscope
#6Krpi Neebs 20. July 2009 20:39
I think the main problem with synch is having multiple soundtracks. Never really understood the point of having them as the result is always the same; mediocre synch and no commitment to the music.

Despite the fact that the movie didn't follow the soundtrack too well I did like much of the cam work. Probably all thanks to there being a couple of impressive and unique camming sequences.
Granted, a couple of confusing rewind/fforward moments took things down a notch.
Personally the aggressive cuts didn't bother me too much but that's probably because I've watched lots of defrag movies. Still, I understand the need for some easing in for the transitions.

But, as always, you can't find better quality anywhere. Subtle enough grain and nice use of depth of field. The visuals really helped with the atmosphere.

All in all it's a good movie with great quality, more valuable to defrag veterans than to average viewers I reckon. Which is also why I understand fei's response/review.
Although I agree, not the best of shaolin, not the best of defrag either.

Hoping to see some QL fragmovies from Shaolin in the future. Also clinging on to the hope of ashr actually going for that CPM done by voo sequel. :)
#7pray Kyoto 20. July 2009 20:45
lol were can i find fei's review? :D
#8r Style-Productions 20. July 2009 22:14
its on own-age max.
#9Lacc Hybrid Movies 20. July 2009 22:15 -> there's a very short review from him.
#10SRandal 20. July 2009 22:39
I agree with Tony. I liked the overall look, but the cameras gave me a headache sometimes.
#11SRandal 20. July 2009 22:42
Btw what's up with Almost every time I visit I get runtime error.
#12r Style-Productions 20. July 2009 23:08
their website has been experiencing outages for a while now.
#13stevester 21. July 2009 04:14
In all honesty, only 1 word describes what I just watched: art.

That was insane. The colors (granted in 1080p...) looked stunning, the film was very well scored, and the subtle grain was moving (no homo).

Unfortunately, the movie, as a gaming flick, blew dick. However, I doubt it was intended to be the next dkt2.

My final words go out to the artists: if you're considering a career in motion graphics/editing/compositing, you're on the right path. I've seen a plethora of artists makes well over 100$ an hour simply for knowing how to use an application, their end results usually suck. What you have here buds, is a beautiful display of art at one of it's simplest forms, moving pictures.

ps, no i did not read the page of text above, I can't be bothered.

Last changed: 21. July 2009 04:14
#14r Style-Productions 21. July 2009 06:16
you just hurt my feelings steven
#15delirious VertikalProduction 21. July 2009 08:46
Excellent review.
#16kab 21. July 2009 13:57
This movie has a great atmosphere. Very well done. Just a candy to your eyes. Watched it yesterday on youtube HQ. I will download it now.
#17stevester 21. July 2009 14:41
its nothing personal ant, just that juggling a full time job, full time university, and hockey makes my life pretty fucking shitty... <3 me please
#18xyanide Style-Productions 21. July 2009 16:41
oh, totally missed this one :>
#19r Style-Productions 21. July 2009 17:18
haha steve, ok. thanks Nikky
#20Zaknafein Style-Productions 21. July 2009 18:03
delirious is called Nikky? I would've guessed Sahmanjin or Mallahalla or something.
#21xyanide Style-Productions 21. July 2009 19:17
boring :(
#22Dec HLAE 22. July 2009 04:52
boring ;(
#23r Style-Productions 22. July 2009 05:50
ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, see what he did there...!!!
#24delirious VertikalProduction 22. July 2009 06:06
"Sahmanjin or Mallahalla" :o I have never ever heard of those names. They sound more like Arabic/Persian/Afghanistani to me.
#25Zaknafein Style-Productions 22. July 2009 14:34
I was just making them up, trying to be stereotypical, del :D
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