Watch Ben Craig's Short 'Modern Times' That Has Studios Buzzing
by Alex Billington
January 11, 2011
Source: Heat Vision, Vimeo
If you're already wondering if the title has something to do with Charlie Chaplin, it does, but you'll find out exactly how once you watch it. Heat Vision recently featured a short film that's been floating around the web since December called Modern Times that was conceived and directed by Scottish art director Ben
Craig. The reason it was featured is because its getting lots of buzz around Hollywood and subsequently Ben Craig has been pursued by studios like Warner Bros, Fox and Paramount for upcoming projects. The short can be seen below and, despite the name, is a futuristic sci-fi that film fans will
should fall instantly in love with.
Watch Ben Craig's short Modern Times below and read the story about how he made it over on Heat Vision.
Wasn't that just wonderful? It kind of feels like 2001: A Space Odyssey, Moon and J.J. Abrams' Star Trek all rolled into one, which is actually quite awesome. And now you know why it's also titled Modern Times. Please tell me that's something that we'll actually be able to experience in our "near" future, because holy hell is that one amazing movie screen. Craig came up with this after thinking "who was going to [watch all] these old movies and where?" He learned by watching commercial shoots, then shot the live-action portion over a weekend. He then spent two more months in post-production, learning along the way. The result is obviously spectacular, I just hope he can successfully extend that same quality into a feature-length movie.
interesting - definitely got a "moon" or "2001:SO" feel to it (not abrams ST, though). are the studios interested in this guy as far as developing this into a film or to work on some of thier internal projects?
Anonymous on Jan 11, 2011
benjisbarmusic on Jan 11, 2011
talk about getting moonblinked
Julie on Jan 11, 2011
awesome! a real CG masterpiece! i watched 10 time!
Smartpandora on Jan 11, 2011
a 1080 HD link please.
Smartpandora on Jan 11, 2011
That was really "Boring".
i have no name on Jan 12, 2011
What's so special about this? The set's nice, the effects are as well, and hey, he has a good camera. I came into this thinking it had something to do with Modern Times, the Chaplin classic, and all it is is a tribute, showing a small clip from it. It doesn't say anything about the movie or what it stood for, it doesn't take the themes and apply them to modern day, or anything of the sort. This is what's getting people pursued by big name studios? The fact that he obviously has money and/or connections to pull something like this off? Nicely edited, and your cinematography isn't half bad, but it's more of the same. Your short doesn't say much beyond "in the future, we will watch movies on the moon. maybe." And if it does say more, I'd like to know, beyond it's terribly masked. It's nice, but I'm having trouble seeing the originality here. It more like an opening clip that a movie theater would play before they show the film, than a short that should garner buzz.
Mike P. on Jan 12, 2011
haters gon' hate
snitch robinson on Jan 12, 2011
To be honest, I was expecting something a lot more impressive. The effects were nice and all, but this didn't give me any indication that this guy could do a masterpiece movie when given the resources. I think this is what's wrong with hollywood, they're going for style over substance.
Anonymous on Jan 12, 2011
It had some nice bits, but it reminded me of motion graphics from about 8 years ago with a bit of hd camera work put in. Would definitely get the guy work in doing tv ads, not so sure about cinema really, I would say it was less style over substance and more 'technique over substance'. I think with the tools to make short films like this being so accessible there should be shorts like this being made all the time. Personally, I think it would be better if people made films like MINDGAME: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fTVm9anbYUk How much more 'looks like a bunch of other scifi films' shorts do you need? I suppose to make money it's easier to go the tried and tested route of 'the same'.
Crapola on Jan 12, 2011
isnt that the girl from the TV show without a trace?
Trav on Jan 12, 2011
Beautiful. But too precious. Go go CG demo reel directors! Take over Hollywood! Oh wait, you already have.
Capt. Precious on Jan 15, 2011
Why are people slagging this off so much? It's brilliant. It's not meant to have a story, it's not meant to have hidden meanings and it was never meant to be an homage to Chaplin - it's just a really nice looking short that asks what cinema will be like in the future and whether people will still watch old silent films when they've got great technology at their fingertips. What's not to 'get' about that? He's made a great little short that looks amazing to show what he can do, which is probably infinitely better than anything the haters who've slated it could cobble together.
open minded on Apr 1, 2011
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