Jimi Hendrix famously said, “Music doesn’t lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music.” Whether you buy into this philosophy or not, it’s impossible to deny the inspirational power of top tunes. One way this has been showcased in spectacular style in the last couple of months is the Nokia Music Short Film Competition.
Music movie magic
Launched in collaboration with the Sundance London Film & Music Festival, its aim was simple: To encourage filmmakers to showcase the amazing, the unusual and the unknown music scenes in their cities. The response from filmmakers was incredible, with hundreds of entries submitted. Last week the two finalists, Jason van Genderen and Bartosz Madejski, showcased their amazing short movies, made on the Nokia Lumia 920, at the festival. They met with an astonishing response. Check them out below to see why.
First up, Jason’s Red Earth Hip Hop.
“the Nokia Lumia 920 is stunning”
As you can see, it’s another example of both filmmaking skill and the capabilities of Nokia Lumia 920. Afterwards, we asked Jas what it was like using a Nokia Lumia 920 to make his short movie. Here’s what he had to say:
“The technology in the Nokia Lumia 920 is stunning, such incredibly sharp pictures from such a tiny lens… it really was remarkable to see the picture on the cinema screen and most audiences would have no idea it came from a smartphone.
The stabilisation chassis was amazing, too. Ordinarily anything hand-held with such a small, lightweight camera produces shaky pictures. The Lumia 920, however, allowed my arms to crane the phone in high and low to a scene and it played back perfectly smooth – really impressive… it genuinely looked like I’d used a tripod or a steadicam to get those shots.”
And here’s Bartosz’s entry There’s nothing like a Sound System.
“The progress in this field is amazing”
Another stunning production, which showcased both the Glasgow reggae scene and the Nokia Lumia 920 brilliantly. But how did it feel to present it at one of the world’s most illustrious film making events?
“The progress in this field is amazing and I can see some good films being made using mobile phones in the future,” Bart said. “The two films certainly stood up to other documentaries that were shown alongside and the small form factor can be very important, too.”
“I don’t think anyone will be getting rid of serious cameras – they’re being used for many good reasons – but filmmaking will probably become far more accessible to everyone just like photography did. Being in the right place at the right time is essential for documentary work and phones can play a big role in that.”
The judges’ verdict
Both films won over Sundance audiences, but in the end the Nokia Music Short Film competition judges, Trevor Groth (Director of Programming for the Sundance Film Festival) and Mike Plante (founder of indie distributor Cinemad Presents) chose Red Earth Hip Hop. Here’s why:
“We found Jason’s short, Hip Hop, very engaging and illuminating. It shows how incredibly popular forms of music can be adapted to become exceptionally personal and symbolic of a specific region. Hip Hop Australia may be as underground and unique as you could get by reframing the way we think about seemingly disparate but intrinsically linked styles of music.”
Massive congrats to Jas and Bart for their brilliant efforts. Although there can only be one grand champion, we think everyone who entered and everyone who has enjoyed their entries is a winner, simply because we’ve all discovered new and exciting music.
We’re sure Jimi would have approved.