Tonight's edition of Hit Me With Your Best Shot is our annual short film episode. The genre is sci-fi but we're looking at two trippy but altogether unalike films.
The first is True Skin (2012) which has rather extraordinary visual effects considering it comes from the DIY world of short filmmaking. It was once earmarked for the feature film treatment but when that didn't work out earlier this year Amazon snatched it up to develop into a TV series. The second film is recent Oscar nominee World of Tomorrow (2015) from animation legend Don Hertzfeld. (His career being Oscarless is just not right.) Lets look at the "Best Shots" as chosen by your host and the volunteer panelists elsewhere after the jump.
TRUE SKIN (2012)
Writer/Director: Stephan Zlotescu
True Skin follows an "enhanced" man through futuristic Bangkok where he's trying to escape capture since he stole some -- well, the details of the plot are not what's important. This is, essentially, a world building short and showreel and it worked. There are shades of Blade Runner and Minority Report in the concept and visualizations (those spiders are an unfortunate lift), but genre films rarely feel wholly original since they're working within familiar tropes. Like most good sci-fi this one riffs on contemporary concerns through heightened genre tropes: am I too dependent on technology becomes "we're not even human anymore".
The best thing about the brief short, is the super saturated with color -- too many films are afraid of bold color and this one just lays it on thick in nearly every frame. Purples. Yellows. Reds. Blues. Greens. My two favorite images, which would both work better as gifs due to the pulsing lights within their visuals, are of a marketplace (adore the Keith Haring surprise lines bursting from that one guy's head) and a cat (I can't help myself) whose eyes are even spookier than a real cat's eyes when they glow in the dark. As we become "enhanced" we even drag our beloveds with us out of the natural state.
Click on any of these images below to be taken to other Best Shot articles on this film!
WORLD OF TOMORROW (2015)
Director: Don Hertzfeldt
I knew this short would be more loved given its high profile and brilliance. Click on any of these images below to be taken to Best Shot articles on this film!