Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A memory in a shell

"If you could have a memory of anything, real or not, what would it be?"
"A fake memory?"

Shell is Wong Fu Productions' most visually beautiful short that they have ever made. Written and directed by Wesley Chan, one of the three people behind Wong Fu Productions, an independent production company that makes short films, music videos, and vlogs on YouTube. Their YouTube channel has more than a million subscribers. Their most popular short, Strangers, Again, has more than 11 million views.

I watched most of their videos, but I think Shell is their most beautiful short. Some may not like the dialogue, theme, or actors, but one has to admit that it's really beautiful.

Why do I love this short?

It's lovely to look at. The dichotomy between "reality" and "fiction" is contrasted by the use of colours. In the "reality", the colours are all dark and blue, and the setting is in an enclosed room, as if their actions are limited. In "fiction", the lovely warm colours represent the dream or the man's made-up memory. The characters are outside too, which means that they are free to do what they want. 

I love sunset shots. I'm being biased here, but I think sunset shots are hard to shoot because one has to find the perfect angle to get that perfect light. 

The background music fits the scenes. Soothing and relaxing. Talented Jesse Chui and George Shaw. 

I didn't like Mimi Chao's acting the first time I watched this short, but after watching it again (and again), I have grown fond of her. Chris Dinh's voice is perfect for this role especially when he says the last line. I also like the little details in his acting in the "fiction" scene--when he averts his eyes and gulps because of nervousness. 

Say anything you want about the script, but I think it's very deep and profound. 

Lastly? Because it's a Wong Fu short.


"What if we had a chance to remember things that we never actually experienced?"

"What good is it if it didn't happen? No one would believe it."

"You'd believe it. It's about the feeling, that's what matters."


Visit the blog for full commentary and behind the scenes footage here.