Lincoln enjoyed its Christmas lights switch on on Thursday – though many areas of London already welcomed the Christmas spirit with a switch on in early November- so we’re all feeling a building sense of merriment here at Blueprint HQ. To keep ourselves in check we’re exercising a strict No-Christmas-Songs-Until-December policy. We’re certainly not a bunch of Scrooges and it’s far too early to let the Chrismas Spirit loose in the office – things can get out of hand. In the meantime, we’ve been keeping ourselves adequately distracted with the usual creative projects. Read on to find out more!


What have we been up to?

Our Blueprint Film Academy course in collaboration with Genesis Housing Association in Woodberry Down is now in its fourth week. Having developed three scripts, the groups have spent this week’s session finalising pre-production on their short films! They’ve been busy designing and purchasing props and costume, finalising their locations and scheduling shoots. We’re really excited to take them through to the production stage for some hands on filmmaking!

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David put the finishing touched on the NCS lip dub film he has been working on for their Autumn 2015 program.  Chris travelled up to Lincoln to shoot some more footage for the project, to give it that little extra polish and the end result is fun and loaded with energy.  The young people threw themselves at the task of miming and dancing to their chosen track with great aplomb.  We wish them all the best in their graduation over the coming weeks!

Chris has also been busy this week finalising the design for that super-secret-totally-hush-hush project that we can’t tell you about. Sorry. Chris has enjoyed the creative development of the project and we’re really excited to show off the work when it’s complete! Keep your eyes peeled for more info.


What We’ve Watched!

Beasts Of No Nation (Mikaela)
I didn’t love this the way I wanted to. It’s been hanging over my head since Netflix released it – I enjoyed Fukunaga’s work with True Detective and I’ve been excited to see Idris in a role that might actually be good – he’s a great actor (see The Wire, Luther) and the film industry just isn’t doing him justice (see Obsessed and most other Idris films). I’m also a fan of a lot of Netflix’ original content. The film was a powerful and unflinching look at the cost of war and it’s effects on the young. It was heartbreaking and tense and for the most part I think it was a story very well told – something about it just felt too long. It was a gruelling watch, but after a while I felt myself becoming easily distracted instead of distressed wide-eyed. It could have perhaps benefited from a slightly tighter edit. But only slightly – still a watch worth your time. Also Idris was fantastic as expected. Well done Idris.

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King Kong Marathon! (Dave)
I’ve watched all three versions of King Kong over the last week, ready to discuss them on the LAMBcast.  Here are my brief thoughts:

King Kong 1933
One of my all time favourite films.  I think it’s one of the most exciting special effects blockbusters ever made, even 82 years on!  Once they get on the island, the film is pretty much action set-piece after action set-piece up to the classic finale on the Empire State Building and the effects still look awesome (other than those big close ups of his animatronic face!).

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King Kong 1976
It starts off pretty well with possibly the best introduction of the three and a nice 70’s vibe.  It has a decent cast too.  However, once Kong arrives it all goes wrong.  It’s just a guy in a suit so obviously looks terrible.  They’ve cut dozens of action scenes from the original film too, yet it’s almost an hour longer, so it’s rather sluggish.  Everything about the film once Kong appears is just embarrassing.

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King Kong 2005
This is frustratingly hit and miss. The film looks great, with a well realised period setting and nicely over saturated colours.  Some of the set pieces are brilliant, particularly the finale.  Kong is amazing too – Serkis and the CGI crew do a fantastic job.  However, the film is littered with problems like some really bad compositing, mega hammy on-the-nose dialogue and comedy low frame rate jerky slow mo that cheapens the film.  The biggest problem however is how drawn out the film is.  It’s almost twice the length of the 1933 version and for no good reason.  They could have easily got rid of all the crap with Jamie Bell for instance and the film would be much better off as his scenes are awful.  Plus the film over milks the Ann Darrow/Kong relationship, which was handled much more subtly in the original film.  Here they watch the sunset together and go on dates etc.  It’s pretty ridiculous.  If you can switch off and enjoy the spectacle it’s enjoyable enough though and much better than the 70’s version.

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Steve Jobs (Chris)
I was slightly irritated by the structure of the 3 product launches. They often just felt a bit like too much creative license was at work! Just unbelievable scenarios happening right before product launches and for me distracted from some pretty solid performances and writing. Also being an Apple geek I just wanted to see the actual presentations happen instead of cut!!

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Requiescat (Dave)
This spaghetti western may be slower paced than some, but it’s got more brains and class than most. I reviewed it fully over at Blueprint: Review.

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