Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival Palm Springs

The Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival

“In the middle of the night, between the lights and shadows of a rich house, a cold-eyed killer consumes their crimes.
After caught in his sleep a boy and a woman, sits in the living room of the house where he awaits the arrival of his real target.
Preceded by the barrel of his shotgun, an old and mighty man bursts into the room ready to strike, but finds himself unprepared for the truth that hides the identity of the murderer.”

This is the synopsis of “Killer's Sight”, my new short film made with no budget, born from the ashes of the much more ambitious and at the moment economically unfeasible “A Drink to Die”.
A tribute to American noir, always one of the film genres that intrigue me most, “Killer's Sight” inherits some of the essential characteristics of the genre: so here's a story lived almost entirely through the eyes of the protagonist (except for the final sequence), characters stuck in unwanted situations, a plot that only solves part of the questions, a photography that surrounds in the shadows environments and characters.
Even the title can be seen as a small tribute to Stanley Kubrick's “Killer's Kiss”.
Shot mostly with makeshift equipment (lighting has been made with the lamps from the living room and so on) I tried as much as possible to remain faithful to my original vision, but having finally rethink several scenes during shooting and cut other during the editing process.
Several choices have had to collision with practical problems and this has led to some decisions: for example the desire to shoot in low light which hit certain predetermined points, made ​​me opt for more than one occasion for the presence of a video noise more pronounced , rather than having a more accentuated light.
Despite having taken more time than expected, I wanted to make some real main titles that accompany the first trumpet solo of Summertime by George Gershwin (in the version sung by Louis Armstrong and Ella Firtzgerald), song that is the background to the short film: the trumpet soloist has always had a special relationship in the nusical accompaniment of the noir genre, as can testify, for example, the scores by Jerry Goldsmith for the legendary Roman Polanski's “Chinatown” and the excellent Curtis Hanson’s “L.A. Confidential”.
Everything was shot in 1080p 25fps with a Canon HV30 with Raynox lenses (a wide angle DCR-6600PRO and a telephoto DCR-1541PRO) using a tripod Velbon DV-7000, while post-production was done using Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 for editing and Adobe After Effects CS6 for visual effects, on a computer based on a Intel Core i7-2630QM processor.
During shooting was taken into account that, in post-production, the final aspect ratio would have been 2.35:1, obtained by cutting a captured original image in 1.77:1.
As for the sound, while having available an external microphone Rode NTG-2, the lack of an external support on which record the audio separately in order to obtain a satisfactory sound, has prompted me to make a new audio mix on the original track, using sampled sound effects separately. To accommodate the different cut, editing were also made on the soundtrack.
The decision to summon two members of my family for the main roles is to be found in the precise intention to have mature and lived faces, that were able to fit in with the light and the atmosphere selected.

The final result is dirty, rough, and obviously improvable below different points of view and in this sense I look forward to my next project.

  • Currently 5/5 stars.

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Comment by Antonio La Camera on January 24, 2014 at 5:50pm

Hello Andre ,
thanks for your nice comment.
Regarding the movement of the arms during the shot you're right: I should have put a higher physicality of the shot on the body of the killer.
Regarding the lighting of the shots, apart from the first shot, there is light in the two subsequent murders if you pay attention: in the second murder is reflected on the mirror, while in the third in the eyes and face of the killer .
As for the story I wanted that not all the details were clear, leaving understand only that between killer and victim there was some kind of relationship, but I realized that maybe I left too much in the shadows.
However, the man with the shotgun did not kill himself, but is the killer to shoot him .

About Vimeo and YouTube the story is simple: unfortunately, YouTube removed the audio track from the short because it recognized the song by Louis Armstrong that can not be used without rights, so I folded on Vimeo which unfortunately without a Plus subscription allows you to have video at 720p only.

I did not know Stage 32, but intrigued I went to look for it and now I am part of it!

And yes, I am on Black Alley Noir and I posted "Killer's Sight" in the topic "Home Made Noirs" a few months ago.

I run now to see your short film and leave a comment below it.

If you like to read, I'll post a couple of reviews written by Noir Journal and on my short: in the first there is also an interview with me.

Comment by Andre Hunt on January 24, 2014 at 12:35am
Handsome filmmaking. You're the rascal that bumped me off top visibility in this video section on Arthur Lyon's Film Noir home page. (my film, Bum Rap - A Noir Fantasy). Ah well, it was good while it lasted....
The pouring of the four drinks is interesting.
Somebody let the word practical in the special effects title be misspelled. (as pratical).....
Congrats on using real faces. Too many young people's faces in excellent short films these days...
I think the opening black is too long. The light and phone may be my favorite shot. Your Empire Graphic looks marvelous.
The arm never reacts to the pistol going off. No movement. If you want an unreality to soften the murders, that's one thing. No flash of light either. Needs it.
I dropped off Vimeo a couple of days ago. My film would take light years to start, and then show up in a square shape all squished, and comments not visible. Vimeo needs more info in it's help it my system not being late enough...Flash issues? Anyway. I dropped out. My film is still on YouTube. Having the huge bio on the film on Vimeo right below it seems incorrect. It somehow should not be seen at all till after the film.....
I liked the cigartte ending. But I didn't buy the guy killing himself. Not enough info. Of course, in my film, he'll he Seems to kill himself right away....but then.....he's back...
Are you on Stage 32? Also check out Back Alley Noir. I'd like your feedback on my film, of course. YouTube is not showing it on mobile devices because of my use of copyright music...but it's fine in 1080p on a desktop, laptop, and now via youtube HD on Playstation...
Welcome to Arthur Lyon.
Andre Hunt

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