Documentary Short

The Gatekeeper.

Shige San is one of the truest examples of a public servant and personal savior. The video below tell the story of  a retired police detective that now dedicates his life to preventing deaths at Japan’s suicide cliffs, providing emergency assistance and counseling even as tourists flock to the site, attracted by its notoriety as a popular suicide destination. This is a wonderful short film, that tells an extraordinary story and worth taking 40 minutes to watch it.

I suggest if you have an AppleTV or a smart TV with Vimeo available you watch it on the big screen. The experience is so much better than on your computer monitor or tablet.

Ross Garfield – Drum Doctor.

Music really is a collaborative process. Even a solo artist, playing a song they wrote is collaborating with the person that built the instrument they are playing in a way. The video below is a five minute mini documentary from Media Bird is about “The Drum Doctor”Ross Garfield. This is a compelling little short that shows how this man has helped shape the sound of more recordings then you can imagine. You might not think of drum kits having a specific sound, but they do, and Garfield tells you why. If you want to see just how many people this guy has worked with, go to his Facebook page. It’s pretty damn amazing.


Who’s Voice is That Anyway?

Ever wonder who is behind the overhead announcement at a train station, airport, or other public venue? Neither have I really, but after watching the short film below I’m probably going to wonder about it a lot more. Produced by the New Yorker, this is the story of the man behind New York City’s subway announcements.

Dustin Cohen’s “Conrad and the Steamplant”.

This morning a friend of mine sent me the link to the video below. “Conrad and the Steamplant” is the product of photographer Dustin Cohen. This is the latest in a series of short films he has produced over the last year or so, and like his previous short films this one profiles an individual in New York with a unique job. It is a striking portrait of Pratt Institute’s Chief Engineer  which  follows the story of 79-year-old Conrad Milster.  Milster started working at the steamplant in 1965 and is one of only four to hold his position at Pratt in its 127-year history. Like all of Choen’s works this is a beautifully shot and edited documentary short that is well worth the watch and a great way to start your work week.

Follow Your Fears This Afternoon.

They say if you don’t try, you’ll never know, and I agree with that. If you have a dream, a passion, or a goal, you’ll never make it if you don’t try. The short documentary from LiveUnbound is a perfect example of this. A bit crazy, and way beyond my safety zone, but none the less a great example of setting a challenge and going for it. This is a great little story, that has been beautifully shot and edited, with a really nice underlying message.

Some Monday Magic. “The Grand”.

 Glen Milner does some really nice short film work. The piece below was commissioned by Steinway & Sons to highlight and reveal the craft that goes into producing one of their pianos. Working with a small crew, Milner shooting with Camera Assistant Arne Zacher, the two created a wonderfully timed black and white short. The editing is tied tightly to the original composition by Elwin Hedrijanto and Dominic Ferris with cuts hitting on time to the music. In just two and a half minutes Milner shows the amount of skilled work and love that goes into producing a Steinway. The film highlights the Hamburg factory, the workers, the 1200 parts in each piano, and slowly builds through the performance by  Hedrijanto and Ferris ending with the star of the show on stage.

Monday Inspiration. “Cowboy As I Am” by Philip Hodges.

The nine minute short film by  below tells the story of Steven Millward who was paralyzed in a rodeo accident almost twenty years ago. It is a story that focuses on his relationship with veteran horse whisperer Grant Golliher and Steven’s horses. The short film features some killer cinematography from James Coombs and Morgan Mercier. The editing, post and sound work help complete this, wonderful little documentary. Take nine minutes of your day and give it a watch. You’ll be glad you did. It is beautiful and inspiring.