You, The World, and I (2010) dir. Jon Rafman
Address is Approximate (2011) dir. Tom Jenkins
Via (2018) dir. Maria Constanza Ferreira
Arena (2018) dir. Páraic McGloughlin (if you only watch one, I recommend this)
Thanks to our current friend and future scary-ass AI foe Google there’s unprecedented access to images of the Earth from all distances and perspectives. How would you use this power of omniscience to make a short?
Would you make a thoughtful personal essay on the ephemeral nature of the past?
Would you make a pithy showpiece that gives playthings emotions you learned to imitate from Pixar movies?
Would you blow some minds with painstaking animation?
Shots zooming around the globe may soon replace drone footage as the go-to tiresome short film flourish. Google recently launched an animation tool that works in tandem with their satellite and 3D imaging technology. The shorts here were produced before Google Earth Studio was launched a few months ago, but they still point to the filmmaking possibilities contained just within our browsers.
More than we’d probably care to examine, Google shapes the way millions of people interact with the Internet and, by extension, the world. Zoom in: one part of that interaction is the ease of access to mapping and imaging tools, making our world (on the surface anyway) more easily knowable and navigable. How has the way you navigate a city a changed when you can be instantly familiar with its layout upon arrival? Does being able to pull up images of Antarctica in seconds make it feel closer or more real?
Zoom in again: these can be filmmaking tools. How does our perception of establishing shots in a movie change when we can create our own sky tours of the Alps on a laptop? What sort of role can the Earth play in film as an infinitely manipulable prop?
Zoom in again: I think that’s a cow down there. Maybe a deer? It’s still kinda blurry on this level.