Final Task – Crime Scene

The three tasks so far have focussed on technical skills and application thereof. We have focussed this week on storytelling through bodies of work (the books and the movie) through technical application (the lighting workshops that turned into scene setting with actors and scripts) and by discussing “Why?” in tutorial.

Your final task is to build on this and make it your own. You will re-visit the “Human Presence” theme using all of the skills and techniques discussed and explored. You will previsualise your images and tell a story, that narrative will include an environment both populated and empty, detail studies and images of people, it will have a beginning a middle and an end, you will consider pace and flow, tension and resolution. 
The amount and nature of the piece will reflect one month’s work (a significant chunk of time we expect a significant piece of work).

For the final task I decided to build up on what I did on Task 2 and 3. I started building more complex stories on the person who lives in that storage room. Finally I decided to recreate a crime scene. What came out this story is as I was thinking initially, but I am more than happy with the outcome.

The story builds up without much information intentionally in order to let your imagination take part in my story. It is open to interpretation. I am portraying a story around a space instead of a character and that is why I am telling it from two different points of views. The first one being our point of view, introducing tragic irony, while the second one being the characters point of view. You are aware what is probably going on. But for him, the character it’s a surprise. The character is probably an investigator or a police officer and that is why some pictures look more like taken by the forensics team. I shot most of it with low key lighting and low angled shots to give a more dark and sinister feeling to the story.

For this shooting I used:

  • 2x Bowens Esprit 500 watts
  • a snoot with a honeycomb
  • a wafer strip light box
  • 2x Pulsar radio triggers
  • a Canon 5D Mark II (24-105mm, 50mm lens)
  • a tripod and a low backlite stand, extension pole
  • a light meter
  • a laptop tethered to the camera

(click on the first one to start the gallery show)

I will also like to thank Hollie Woodward and Siobhian Palmer for their ideas!


Infernal Affairs (2002) – A critical review

Infernal Affairs tells the story of two graduates of the police academy and how
their lives took a different path the moment they became police officers. A film
with a brilliant plot written and co-directed by Alan Mak, is not your classic
police and thieves story. Andrew Lau’s vision of this story really adds drama in
the story. Basically one officer became undercover from day one. We watch his
life in about 10 years after being an undercover cop. Only two know of his  real
identity. One of them is the police chief and Superintendent Wong Chi Shing
who gives Chen Wing Yan, the undercover cop, a last job.

The second man, inspector Lau Kin Ming, graduates the police academy and is to
become the cleanest cop ever in the department, also one of the most successful.
The only flaw here is that when he graduated the academy he also started
working for the mob. He swore among others to the big boss Hon Sam brilliantly
played by Eric Tsang. It happens though that the undercover cop has infiltrated
the same gang as the one inspector reports in.

When a cocaine deal between the mob and a Thai dealer is about to go down due
to Yan’s work, inspector Lau is trying to disorient the police task force. It’s then
that both sides figured out that there is a mole among them. On both sides.

Hearing that the movie inspired Martin Scorsese’s The Departed a remake of
this brilliant plot and adapt it to a crime thriller based in Boston instead of
Hong Kong, made me want to watch Infernal Affairs. The Departed is one of
my favourite movies, but I really don’t appreciate that just because it was
produced with the biggest names in Hollywood, it received a Academy Award
for Best Picture. Infernal Affairs is a slow paced, strong thriller with amazing
shots and innovative direction.

The “party”starts when the inspector is assigned by the CIB (I suppose the IA
department of the police) to find the mole among them. Instead he uses him time
to find out who is the superintendent’s man in the gang. He didn’t play it very
safe though and repercussions are to come. On the other side Yan, who took
some safety measures has realised that there is mole in the police and tries to
find him out. Yan has told his story to the nice psychologist before the mayhem
started. A dead slow thrilling mole hunt starts and there is no happy ending.

This movie show’s us what it could be really happening in undercover situations
and how each side will protect their own. How tough a situation becomes
between these two worlds. Even though the plot is quite linear, Alan Mak and
Felix Chong twisted it to the edges!

Brilliant movie, great acting! I guess I will be watching the prequel and the
sequel soon. A proof of course for the success is that it ispired the great Scorsese
thriller that hit the top by winning an Academy Award. Recommended!

Chan-wook Park’s Oldboy – A critical review

Oldboy is a South Korean movie by Chan-wook Park that takes us into the world
of a man craving to revenge his enemy. The story begins when the main character,
Dae-su Oh (Min-sik Choi) is abducted by his unknown enemy. He is imprisoned
for 15 years in a room and the only forms of communication is the person that
slides his food under the door and the television installed in his room. The story
progress by showing us his life in parallel with the life of the outside world,
through the eyes of television. We see some moments of madness surounding
him and my best guess would be the infite amount of time he’s been in the room,
as well as the moments when they gas him, in order to brainwash him. His
abductor remains unknown for the first half of the movie but the story
continues with Dae-su Oh finally realising that he could make it alive out of
this room.

Sooner or later he decides to start digging the brick walls. Several years have
past when he finally gets to the outer wall of the building. Next frame of the
movie he appears to be freed from this room. He is wearing a nice suit a watch
and he is on a rooftop.

That’s when the second part of the movie starts. From his point of view we see
a man that wants to revenge his enemies. On the way he meets a girl, Mi-do
(Hye-jeong Kang) that starts palying a significant role in the plot. The drama
though about the twisted plot is that we still don’t know why he was imprisoned
nor does he.

Ultimately he starts putting the pieces together and it’s then when we meet his
captor Woo-jin Lee played by Ji-tae Yu. We find out that the Woo-jin Lee is
playing a game on Dae-su Oh and he is in a way still a prisoner, a prisoner of life.
Apparently Dae-su Oh was not the best person in this world. So he tried to find
out who hated him so much.

The movie has some action, a lot of drama and some romance along the way.
The movie is quite clever and the characters are really strong. I would expect
a more realistic approach but this way it gave more meaning and value to the

The plot aproaches to an end with a crazy twisted part inside Woo-jin Lee
luxurious apartment, where truths surface and leads to a mayhem. Meanwhile
Mi-do is kept hostage and Dae-su Oh actions serve the purposeof saving her as
well as his atonement for him bad deeds.

Not a bad movie, I recommend it, just be in mood before you get into this
crazy world.