264MC – Case Study: Touch

Touch is the project of Shola Amoo, a graduate of the National Film and Television School (NFTS). The short tells the story of two lovers, Jessica and George, who meet in a field at the same time and place everyday. George appears to be falling  for Jessica a lot quicker, which originally portrays it as an awkward love story. The short explores the characters relationship, love and desire, through a chilling reveal at the end. The genre of the short is sci-fi, although it doesn’t appear to be at first glance.

“The form of a short film can be anywhere from ten seconds to twenty minutes long and of any genre but normally has a self-contained narrative and is primarily distributed or exhibited through film festivals, arthouse cinemas or short-film websites.”  As a thirteen minute short film, Amoo is able to exquisitely capture a futuristic Sci-Fi film which “asks some big questions, of technology, and of human experience, in a way that is delicate and open-ended. How can bodily experiences be shared, and how much can be transmitted between us?” I feel that thirteen minutes provided Amoo with the perfect amount of time to build the characters relationship with the audience before revealing a heart wrenching twist.

Shola Amoo created a trailer for the short which was released in 2013 as a source of advertisement and promotion. In the description of the trailer he credited the crew and cast, as well as listing all the screenings the film would be showcased at in 2014.

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Once created, Amoo screened his short at several film festivals such as, the Future Weird on the 26th NY, Colours of The Nile festival 27th Ethiopia , New Voices in Black Cinema 2014 30th NY, in March 2014, as a build up to it’s online release in April 2014. The film was released on 2nd April by IndieWire. As well as this, the short toured the UK as a part of The BFI’s Sci-Fi season, screening on five different dates. Amoo also used his social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook to countdown and promote the release of the film.

Most short films are made with a low budget and small crew. Considering the size of the crew and the use of 3 actors, I would assume that Amoo filmed this short on a low budget. Being a graduate film I would assume that Amoo used a crew of students who attended NFTS and or friends. The music was produced by Finn McNicholas a fellow NFTS student. Finding good copyright free music to suit your film is hard, so using a music composition student is a great way to professionally score a film is great way to create original music that suits the mood your trying to create. For the production of our short film, we have been partnered with the music composition students to create the music for our short film. We sent the composers a list of song inspirations and asked them to create music with a similar sound and feel.

Director – Shola Amoo

Producer – Shola Amoo

Co Producer – Ian Aryeh

Music – Finn McNicholas

Cinematographer – Jack Wilkinson

Film Editor – Alice Petit

Sound Designer – Nikola Medic

After researching Amoo’s projects, in an interview with Ransom Note, Amoo states that his upcoming feature ‘A Moving Image’ is his “first crowd funded project”, so many of his other projects were made on a very low or no budget or funding from an external source. Crowd funding is a great way to raise funds for the production of films; websites such as and Kickstarter provide a platform for this.

Amoo filmed Touch in the green fields of Lincolnshire which provided a compelling atmosphere. The importance of choosing a good location is reflected in Amoo’s work. If he were to shoot this film in the heavily built up city of London, the depth of the narrative may be diminished as the theme of an isolated love may not be as prominent. Dawkins expresses the importance of choosing the right location. The chosen location has to “provide the preferred reading you want to convey to your audience”.

Amoo’s use of low budget props is also inspiring as a simple item such as a clear glass picture frame and CGI was used to create a control panel. It shows that you are still able to create high quality props with a low budget.

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“Touch has been critically acclaimed”receiving a lot of positive feedback at festivals and screenings, such as the Hollywood Black Film Festival. The short also won Shooting People’s Film of The Month in April 2014, which was selected by “Oscar nominated Cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto (Wolf of Wall Street, Brokeback Mountain)”. The free distribution of this short on Vimeo was also a marketing method to present his upcoming feature. Well constructed short, showcases Amoo’s talent for film making and gives the audience a taste for his style and quality of work.

 

 

Amoo, S., Amoo, S., Amoo, S., Edwards, N., Fear, T., Rodney, A., Edwards, N., Fear, T. and Rodney, A. (2017). Touch (2013). [online] IMDb. Available at: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2751358/?ref_=nm_knf_i1 [Accessed 16 Jan. 2017].

Dawkins, S. and Wynd, I. (2010). Video production. 1st ed.

John, C. (2017). Shola Amoo’s Futuristic Short Film ‘TOUCH’ Now Availble Online. [online] IndieWire. Available at: http://www.indiewire.com/2014/04/shola-amoos-futuristic-short-film-touch-now-availble-online-160833/ [Accessed 16 Jan. 2017].

Shields, D. (2014). #Watch: The online premiere of Shola Amoo’s short film “Touch”. [online] Africa is a Country. Available at: http://africasacountry.com/2014/04/watch-the-online-premiere-of-shola-amoos-short-film-touch/ [Accessed 26 Mar. 2017].

Shola Amoo. (2017). About. [online] Available at: https://sholaamoo.com/about/ [Accessed 16 Jan. 2017].

Shola Amoo. (2017). Screenings. [online] Available at: https://sholaamoo.com/festivals/ [Accessed 16 Jan. 2017].

Thebritishblacklist.com. (n.d.). Director Shola Amoo Releases Sci Film ‘Touch’ Online and Announces New Project ‘A Moving Image’ « The British Blacklist. [online] Available at: http://www.thebritishblacklist.com/director-shola-amoo-releases-sci-film-touch-online-announces-project-a-moving-image/ [Accessed 26 Mar. 2017].

Theransomnote.com. (2014). Shola Amoo Talks. [online] Available at: http://www.theransomnote.com/culture/film-interviews/shola-amoo-talks/ [Accessed 26 Mar. 2017].

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