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We are very pleased to announce that the latest winner of our Film of the Month competition is The Conductor made by Jack in Lincolnshire.
The Conductor (Engaging for 14+) is a brilliantly directed drama and clever character study about a nervous young composer undergoing an audition in-front of a frustrated conductor.
Please note - this film has one incidence of mild swearing.
A well-executed and compelling story that packed a punch at the end. A great example of how to deliver a strong short film on a limited budget. Well done to all involved!Film of the Month judge on 'The Conductor'
We got in touch with Jack to ask him more about his film.
It feels amazing! It's great to see that people liked the film. Thank you!
I've been making films for roughly around about 2 years now. However The Conductor was my first short film and I intend for it to not be my last.
When planning the film I always knew I wanted music to play a strong part in the film. But I did come up with the story first and then I tailored the music around it. The music was created before filming had begun so that when the scene was playing out, the actors could listen to it and act alongside it. Rather than creating music around the actors movement.
I knew while preparing the film that I wanted certain shots to take place. For instance every shot in the film is either on a static tripod or dolly. This was all because I wanted it to seem that the character of the conductor had everything forcefully under control. If the camera was on a shoulder or moving around freely, I think it would taken away from the feeling of control. Then when taking it to the edit, I didn't like the idea of rapid cuts, so to keep the story flowing smoothly, the cuts lasted rather than picking up the pace with more cuts.
The film was precisely planned for over a month. Where there was a lot of paperwork involved, including storyboards. So that production would go smoothly. However the twist at the end was changed on the day of filming.
Focus on the story of your film. In my opinion it is without doubt the most important feature of a film. So if you spend some time creating a story that you like and enjoy, you'll love bringing it to life. And as for challenges, it's just a case of being well prepared. You never know what will happen when shooting, so you always want to make sure you have prepared for any scenario or have backups. Just a bit more planning could save you lots of time if something does go wrong while in production.
If I could make it again I would maybe tweak some lines of dialogue to make them sound more natural. I would also change locations, preferably taking it to a theatre so that the location would relate more to the story. Another thing would be to give the shooting some more time, maybe an extra day which would mean that the lighting could be played around with more and some details could be finer.
I have too many! A film I love is Whiplash which heavily inspired the story in The Conductor. I also really liked the lighting in Whiplash's stage scenes so in The Conductor you'll see the use of tungsten lighting to try and create a similar feel (tungsten lights give a 'warmer' feel than other lights, such as fluorescent lights). I also graded the film to look slightly warmer than the footage, which is also something I really liked about Whiplash. I am also a big fan of The Shining. One of the things I really liked about that was the steadicam shots following the trike. I didn't want to implement something like that into The Conductor if it didn't have a place. But when there was a chance I liked to add in the dolly to create smooth movement.
The Conductor will now be showcased to over 300,000 film club members online and all of this month's films can be seen on our YouTube channel. Jack has also won a £100 Amazon voucher and a DVD! If you've been inspired by this month's winner, find out more about how you can enter our ongoing Film of the Month competition.
If you enjoyed The Conductor why not try these related films:
A film guide that looks at Whiplash (2014), exploring its key topics and themes through informal discussion.
A film guide that looks at The Sound of Music (1965), exploring its key topics and themes through informal discussion.
A film list that celebrates the power of music to express identity and bring people together.
Suitable forAll ages
No. of films23
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