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quietearth [Celluloid 08.31.08] review short horror



Year: 2006
Director: Marc Lougee
Writers: Edgar Allan Poe (story) & Matt Taylor
IMDB: link
Trailer: link
Purchase DVD: link
Review by: quietearth

I will readily admit I've never read the Edgar Allan Poe short story of the same name that this is based on (at least that I can remember), but regardless, a quick glance at wikipedia will give you a rundown, cliff notes style. The big draw on this short, which clocks in at 7 minutes, is that visual effects legend Ray Harryhausen was one of the executive producers on it, and it shows. It's stop motion claymation at it's finest.




Peter Cugno provides the narration which starts with our prisoner's short trial, the judges words being unclear. Then thrown into a locked cell, an iron bucket shackled to his head. Clearly the story revolves around the large pit in the center of the room, and the pendulum swinging closer and closer to his supine, strapped body. James Bond would be proud of his escape method.



Simple and short, I'm glad to have this as part of my collection. While it looks like they took liberty with the storyline, I think the essence remains the same, that of the prisoner's terror being palpable. This is a fantastic little short and I'd definitely recommend checking it out.

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christopher (12 years ago) Reply

sounds great, but i'm not paying $14 for a 7 minute film, even if it does come with 1 hr 45 minutes of extras! they should have this on itunes for $1.99. many of the short films i download from there are 30 minutes long for the same price.

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PitandthePendulum (12 years ago) Reply

Animation is a costly medium, especially when it's created with feature film professionals performing the various duties at a high degree of execution. That being said, the DVD release is, in my humble opinion, worth every penny. Loaded with information shared among the various crew members, director, producer, composer, animators, visual effects crew, storyboard scans, production stills, conceptual art and behind the scenes video's explaining the process of creating sound effects and surround sound audio for an animated film of this type. In essence, what we've supplied is a significant amount of material that breaks down the filmmaking process, from a practical standpoint in much detail, rather than a 'back-patting' smattering of interviews, referencing specific shots and sequences to illustrate each of the phases of production. For those interested in animation , especially stop-motion animation production, the disc will prove to be a great addition to a collection, a great learning resource, and a heck of alot less pricey than a weekend workshop. Thanks for the feedback! Cheers, M.

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Peter Samuel Cugno (12 years ago) Reply

Who, if anyone, is THIS "Peter Cugno" that is 'providing the narrative' please?

A google of that name turns up ME!

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PitandthePendulum (12 years ago) Reply

THIS Pete 'Scary Pete" Cugno is a Canadian voice actor / comic/ musician, much sought-after voice actor for commercials and animated series television North of the border. Great guy, very talented, and does his comedy schtick as Scary Pete. Try 'SAY UNCLE Productions' in your google search... Pete is a great guy and a good friend. Cheers, M.

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christopher (12 years ago) Reply

"Animation is a costly medium, especially when it's created with feature film professionals performing the various duties at a high degree of execution."

that's true, but i can still buy all of pixar's shorts on itunes for $1.99. a 7min film isn't worth $14.

as for the extra materials, this is part of a last-gasp trend for dvd sales and a useless argument for anyone not interested in them.

they might be interesting to a small slice of the audience (and i used to be part of that slice), but most of us just want to watch an entertaining film. i think the majority of film-watchers now either have seen enough behind-the-scenes extras or just aren't interested.

but the bottom line is, if you want your film to be seen by the vast majority of the audience that isn't interested in the dvd extras, then adding hours of them doesn't matter. and since you won't make the film available separately, you're just encouraging them to find it via other means.

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Anonymous (12 years ago) Reply

I watch extras, particularly commentaries. That'll keep me buying dvds for a while I think.


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