The Cask of Amontillado

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November 29, 2003 at 11:27 pm #24157
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Logan

At long last, 2 monthes of work have become a 3 minute 40 second film. I won’t bore you with the details though, please enjoy.

TCOA’s site

High Quality, 9 MB, Real Media

Low Quality Coming Soon

The server the high quality version is on is quite fast, so you 56kers shouldn’t be caused too much greif.

Logan

November 30, 2003 at 12:03 am #24163
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Mr. Less

Wow, very good Logan! Nice animation combined with very good lighting! The voices though, made it slightly hard to make out all the words. And the story is slightly confusing, since you have no idea that the man is in a courtroom in the beginning. Anyway, a very good film!

November 30, 2003 at 12:24 am #24164
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ad.hoc

yep .. nice, smooth animation .. the picture quality is really great .. sometimes for me, as a non-native-english-speaker (is this a word? :lol: ), the dialog was kinda hard to understand, but nonetheless great work !

November 30, 2003 at 1:11 am #24171
Avatar of Tim
Tim

Not bad Logan, nice job. Very nice lighting, the dialogue and the plot was abit confusing though, the voices are ok. IMO, i thought it was not as entertaining, but still, the technical parts of this film stood out well and was well done, overall great job
My grade: B-

November 30, 2003 at 1:50 am #24174
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Becksterqueen

Very good Logan. Nice lighting, animation, and all that filming techniques. Just the plot is a little confusing.. but very good job!

November 30, 2003 at 1:53 am #24175
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Lieberman Bros.

WOW! That was awesome! Kepp up the excellent work! :D

My rating 7.5/10

How’d you get the file size so low with such a high resolution with DIVX? (what settings?)

November 30, 2003 at 2:38 am #24177
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A devoted reverence to Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado” which is worked out very well though the performance of your seiyuu’s (voice actors) is abstruse (difficult to understand) betimes. Comparable with some of my words but also in means of acoustics and engagement. I appreciate the high resolution and quality of your film.

Nevertheless, a very confusing and clueless story for those who are not adepted with its topic or even the English language. It should include English subtitles and a heterodiegetic (third-person) narrator with some explicating illustrations.

“Pass your hand,” I said, “over the wall; you cannot help feeling the nitre. Indeed it is VERY damp. Once more let me IMPLORE you to return. No? Then I must positively leave you. But I must first render you all the little attentions in my power.”

“The Amontillado!” ejaculated my friend, not yet recovered from his astonishment.

“True,” I replied; “the Amontillado.”

As I said these words I busied myself among the pile of bones of which I have before spoken. Throwing them aside, I soon uncovered a quantity of building stone and mortar. With these materials and with the aid of my trowel, I began vigorously to wall up the entrance of the niche.

I had scarcely laid the first tier of my masonry when I discovered that the intoxication of Fortunato had in a great measure worn off. The earliest indication I had of this was a low moaning cry from the depth of the recess. It was NOT the cry of a drunken man. There was then a long and obstinate silence. I laid the second tier, and the third, and the fourth; and then I heard the furious vibrations of the chain. The noise lasted for several minutes, during which, that I might hearken to it with the more satisfaction, I ceased my labours and sat down upon the bones. When at last the clanking subsided , I resumed the trowel, and finished without interruption the fifth, the sixth, and the seventh tier. The wall was now nearly upon a level with my breast. I again paused, and holding the flambeaux over the mason-work, threw a few feeble rays upon the figure within.

A succession of loud and shrill screams, bursting suddenly from the throat of the chained form, seemed to thrust me violently back. For a brief moment I hesitated — I trembled. Unsheathing my rapier, I began to grope with it about the recess; but the thought of an instant reassured me. I placed my hand upon the solid fabric of the catacombs , and felt satisfied. I reapproached the wall. I replied to the yells of him who clamoured. I reechoed — I aided — I surpassed them in volume and in strength. I did this, and the clamourer grew still.”

By the way, Fortunato looked like a hustled and invalidated baby in this scene. The animation was too slow in my opinion.

“And the motto?”

“Nemo me impune lacessit.” (No one provokes me with impunity.)

Remigiusz Krawczyk alias –plastic boy-

November 30, 2003 at 6:27 am #24180
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Logan

Thanks for the reviews, please keep them coming.

Everyone seemed to think that the story was confusing, and the voices were slightly muffled, or low quality. I expected this, perhaps my mic simply isn’t good enough. The confusion shocks me slightly, however, Poe’s writing is no different, and as such I don’t feel as if I’ve failed too dearly in this category.
Mathew

How’d you get the file size so low with such a high resolution with DIVX? (what settings?)

I compressed first with DivX, and fed the AVI through Helix producer, creating a 350 kbps RM. When first compressing with DivX, I used a bit rate of 400 kbps, but it was lowered by the RM’s settings. The resolution is quite high, 720 by 380.

The lower quality will be of half the resolution, and because of this, I’ll be able to lower the bitrate, without loss of clarity. I’ve noticed simply lowering resolution does very little to the size of a file, but a lower resolution (unless stretched to 200% it’s size) is capable of being compressed at a lower bit rate (in this case, probably 225 kbps), and still looking fairly good.

Plastic Boy

Nevertheless, a very confusing and clueless story for those who are not adepted with its topic or even the English language. It should include English subtitles and a heterodiegetic (third-person) narrator with some explicating illustrations.

I hardly agree with you that it was “very” confusing, perhaps confusing. Clueless is a rather strong word aswell, I’d hate to throw any punches at you though, over use of it. It is, indeed, your own opinion. I’d like to think that I did my homework here.

In the story, Poe often times, uses such a heterodiegetic narrator, but not in “The Cask of Amontillado”. The main character often thinks to himself, and thus was the purpose of the “court room scenes”.

As for the excerpt you’ve shown, I find differences from it to that of the version I read. Perhaps, this is original, but I see little to no revelance in this.

By the way, Fortunato looked like a hustled and invalidated baby in this scene. The animation was too slow in my opinion.

Yes, I’d have to agree with you there. I’d argue that he looks like an old man, rather than a baby, and I’ll use that as my crutch. I am, assuming that one would imagine Fortunato as such an old man, and a violent shove would not only ground him, but likely injure him, and keep him there for some time.

And, yes, I can admit that it isn’t completely true to Poe’s story, and that I’ve left out a few parts. Fortunato’s scream, was in the un-edited version, but it seemed to hinder the pacing of the film, and as a result, it was promptly removed. I don’t regret my desicion to do this, as now, one fully comprehending the story, will be further shown of the main character’s lack of satisfaction.

Once again, thank you for the reviews. I’ve never had a film have 2 pages of reviews before (to the best of my knowledge), and I’d very much like to have many opinions on this.

Logan

November 30, 2003 at 9:05 am #24194
Avatar of Kristian
Kristian

You’ve done a great job here, Logan!

***There might be spoilers below****

The story in this film was quite hard to understand. That I don’t understand so much English, made my fall out a couple of times. When I watched it the secound time I got it. It was better then, but what I didn’t understand was why Fortunato didn’t do anything when that other man locked him in.

Your animation was very good. The charachters moved realisticly and it looked good. I appriciate that you had put some moving people in the background. That’s always nice to see!

The lighting was good and I couldn’t see any flickering, but sometimes when you changed the cameraangle the lighting changed. I guess that’s because you filmed it on different days and couldn’t keep the lighting as it was the day before. Try to avoid that next time (I know it’s hard)

I have to say that the cinematography was very good, but I have some advices. When you film angles where one man talk to another and you film from behind his head (I hope you understand what I mean) you should put the focus on the one that’s farest away and not the one that’s close to the screen. Another tip would be to not change the angle to one that’s very close to the previous. Then it’s just best to keep the previous one a little longer.

One last thing: the black spaces lasted a bit long. I thought there was something wrong…

I don’t hope you got the impression that I didn’t like the film, because I really did!

November 30, 2003 at 1:17 pm #24203
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KG

Downloading now…..

November 30, 2003 at 2:00 pm #24209
Avatar of KG
KG

The animation was really good.Did you use the LogiTech Quickcam Pro 4000?I’m dying to get that cam! :evil I understood the story,since I read the poem before. This is just an idea,but you coulda updated the diologue to fit today’s standerd,but it’s good the way it is.You’re sound quality is better than mine. :)
Did you have fun filming this movie?
A very good film,although I woulda liked to know why the main character wanted to kill Fortunato. 8/10

November 30, 2003 at 4:08 pm #24211
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Detective27

– The Cask of Amontillado –

**SPOILERS**

I read this story in freshman year and I was heavily impressed by it. The story was scary, tense, and interesting. Admittedly, I don’t remember many details, but I do remember the true sense of horror I felt when the Narrator (I know he had a name) began to bury Fortunado behind the wall, brick by brick.
Sad to say, I didn’t really feel that sense of horror in this movie. The entire thing felt rushed, which is a shame, because I think it could have been really good.

I’ll talk technicalities first, then the story.
–The animation was good. The walking and talking all suited very well. Nothing that knocked me off my seat, but still above average. Nice job here LoganArts, keep at it.
–The sets were disappointing except the cattacombs, they were nice. I tend to be attentive to these details because I used to be very sparring when making my sets, but once you start putting things in the background, it just livens up the scene so much. The main problem I had was the basic use of colors. Black, grey, red, and blue. Not only that, but the lighting made the latter two colors seem extremely bright, not the route one would want to take while making a tense horror movie set in the late 1800′s. The carnival threw me way off. I didn’t feel like they were at a festival of any kind at all. Sorry to say this, but thats all I could think about during this scene. All there was was a red and blue box for the characters to act around. It surprised me even more when I saw the cattacombs and how good they were. Some effort in the sets as a whole in the film would have improved it greatly. Logan, whatever mind set you were in while building that underground tunnel, use it from now on. :)
–Cinematography was basic, again for the first two scenes, but once they got underground, everything was a little darker and a little moodier. The lighting was good in that I could see everything well, but there wasn’t anything really special about it. The shot structure had some excellent intentions, but in the fashion it was executed, I wanted more and also felt that the film almost accomplished it. In the cattacombs, the choices of shots were very good, I liked the tilted and the more obscure shots, and they also fit well in the story. Nice job here.
Kristian mentioned the scene where the Narrator meets Fortunado at the carnival. What he said about having the shot over one persons shoulder and having the other person in focus is a good thing to note for future projects. If you look at the shot, there is nothing interesting about it because the only thing there is the back of the guys head. Now if Fortunado was in focus, all of the background would be in focus and the shot would be much better. The other thing (Kristian also mentioned this) was the changing of shots between the two characters when they spoke and how the shot really wasn’t too much different than the previous.
When shooting a dialouge between two characters, the shot structure that is commonly used is a shot reverse shot. Take note of this because it may help you in future films. Imagine a straight line going through the two characters talking. Pick one of the sides of that line. Now the rule says you cannot pass over to the other side of this line while chaning angles to show the other character. So you look over the Narrators right shoulder (like you did), so the reverse shot would be looking over Fortunatos left shoulder at the Narrator. Just something to consider. :wink
I must mention the little sequence where the Narrator pushes Fortunato into the nook and buries him. I won’t go into much detail, but the editing and the shot structure and the music worked perfectly and it really did feel like a great payoff.

–Now for the story and the way it was told. I must say, the idea of using the courtroom was brilliant. To my recollection, that was not the original way the story was told and it is an excellent idea on your part Logan. Like many people mentioned before, the way the characters talked and the vocabulary used made the ideas they were trying to get across a little difficult to understand. Those who have read the story were at an advantage, but those who didn’t may have been lost. I do not remember why the Narrator was trying to kill Fortunado and I’m not sure whether you mentioned it in the film. However, that should have been a point that you should have put specific emphasis on because it is the hook of the story and the main reason why we’re watching. One detail that you seem to have left out was the Fortunado was terribly drunk. This is why he doesn’t find it suspicious that the Narrator is leading him down to the cattacombs and this is also why he doesn’t do anything except laugh while he is being buried alive. Without this detail, these two things, especially the last one, are lost and, at least to me, don’t make too much sense.

– Music — great choices here. can’t pinpoint any of the specific songs, but the music at the beginning over the credits (mind sharing the name of that piece with us?) and during the burial were all well choosen and used. great job here.

All in all Logan, you have crafted a film that was not boring or bad in the least, but left someone who has read the story wanting more. I would say the two biggest things are concentrate more on lighting and not only making sure we can see whats going on, but also in creating a mood and a feeling and sets. Detail detail detail. The more stuff you put in the background, the better it is. You did have people moving at the carnival and that certaintly was a pleasant sight to see, but dont forget about little things, like crates and barrels and just stuff in the background to make a more fleshed out and believable environment for your characters to work in.

***(out of four)

LoganArts, i wish you luck and hope you improve in the areas above mentioned and anywhere else you think you need to improve on and i also hope that you stay on track with the things you got down (music and animation mainly). Good job and looking forward to seeing a new film from you soon! :D

November 30, 2003 at 5:01 pm #24216
Avatar of Logan
Logan

Kristian

I didn’t understand was why Fortunato didn’t do anything when that other man locked him in.

Yes, Plastic-Boy mentioned this. I’m going to say that he’s simply too old to get up quickly. In the story, he is restrained by the narrarator, but I wanted for him to be visible in the last few scenes, and if he was pinned to the ground, he wouldn’t be able to do this.

Your animation was very good. The charachters moved realisticly and it looked good. I appriciate that you had put some moving people in the background. That’s always nice to see!

I appreciate that you noticed the background action. I put quite a bit of work into it, and it isn’t always noticed.

I have to say that the cinematography was very good, but I have some advices. When you film angles where one man talk to another and you film from behind his head (I hope you understand what I mean) you should put the focus on the one that’s farest away and not the one that’s close to the screen. Another tip would be to not change the angle to one that’s very close to the previous.

I was hoping you’d comment on this. I originally had different shots for all of the main character’s dialogue, but I wasn’t satisfied with lighting on them, so I re-shot. If I had known this before, I certainly would have kept the same angles longer, instead of making small changes. I attempted to greater the contrast by changing the focal point, but to no avail.

Thanks for your comments

Karateguy

Did you use the LogiTech Quickcam Pro 4000?

Yes, I used the Logitech QC Pro 4000, and Image Studio (which comes with the camera) to animate.

This is just an idea,but you coulda updated the diologue to fit today’s standerd,but it’s good the way it is.

I had never thought of this, it certainly has some merit. Some people had trouble understanding what was happening due to Poe’s manner of speech, and I now believe this may have been the route to go.

Did you have fun filming this movie?

Yes, I always enjoy animation. Editing commonly poses a problem for me (my software managed to crash 40 odd times during editing), but I very much enjoy picking out music.

I woulda liked to know why the main character wanted to kill Fortunato

If you’ve read the story, you know all there is to know, but one of the early lines in the film is: “The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as best I could, but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge.”- Main Character. This could somewhat explain his motives.

Detective27
First of all, thank you for your incredibly detailed and knowledgable review, it is very much appreciated.

Sad to say, I didn’t really feel that sense of horror in this movie. The entire thing felt rushed, which is a shame, because I think it could have been really good.

I attempted to create such a feeling with the music, and the “rushing” was my vain attempt to create action, and welcome that horror a bit. I failed here, more time could have been put into that scene indeed

The sets were disappointing except the cattacombs, they were nice. I tend to be attentive to these details because I used to be very sparring when making my sets, but once you start putting things in the background, it just livens up the scene so much. The main problem I had was the basic use of colors. Black, grey, red, and blue. Not only that, but the lighting made the latter two colors seem extremely bright, not the route one would want to take while making a tense horror movie set in the late 1800′s. The carnival threw me way off. I didn’t feel like they were at a festival of any kind at all. Sorry to say this, but thats all I could think about during this scene. All there was was a red and blue box for the characters to act around. It surprised me even more when I saw the cattacombs and how good they were. Some effort in the sets as a whole in the film would have improved it greatly. Logan, whatever mind set you were in while building that underground tunnel, use it from now on.

Yes, set design wasn’t very important to me early on. The carnival scene wasn’t particulary well-planned out, unfortuanetly. I was also dissapointed with the colours, but I simply don’t have that many bricks of duller colours. The festival really wasn’t a festival, indeed. The cattacombs had alot more attention to detail. I wanted something that would fit in quite well, and I certainly succeeded in this regard. Thanks for the great observations and suggestions on set design, a rather commonly ignored area of filmmaking.

When shooting a dialouge between two characters, the shot structure that is commonly used is a shot reverse shot. Take note of this because it may help you in future films. Imagine a straight line going through the two characters talking. Pick one of the sides of that line. Now the rule says you cannot pass over to the other side of this line while chaning angles to show the other character. So you look over the Narrators right shoulder (like you did), so the reverse shot would be looking over Fortunatos left shoulder at the Narrator. Just something to consider.

Thank you very much for this peice of information. It certainly would have worked well in this film. Another with excellent cinematography knowledge, you are.

I must say, the idea of using the courtroom was brilliant. To my recollection, that was not the original way the story was told and it is an excellent idea on your part Logan. Like many people mentioned before, the way the characters talked and the vocabulary used made the ideas they were trying to get across a little difficult to understand. Those who have read the story were at an advantage, but those who didn’t may have been lost. I do not remember why the Narrator was trying to kill Fortunado and I’m not sure whether you mentioned it in the film. However, that should have been a point that you should have put specific emphasis on because it is the hook of the story and the main reason why we’re watching. One detail that you seem to have left out was the Fortunado was terribly drunk. This is why he doesn’t find it suspicious that the Narrator is leading him down to the cattacombs and this is also why he doesn’t do anything except laugh while he is being buried alive. Without this detail, these two things, especially the last one, are lost and, at least to me, don’t make too much sense.

Yes, I thought the court room idea was good also. After reading “The Facts in the Case of M.Valdemar”, in which the main character expresses his thoughts somewhat like writing a newspaper article. This probably contributed alot to this idea.
I don’t recall every knowing the reason why the main character wanted to kill Fortunato. I’d assume he was being dominated, in business etc. by him, or they were simply long time enemies.
Yes, Fortunato was drunk, and I really can’t say as to why I didn’t include that. It must have slipped my mind. His being drunk would have made voice acting easier, that’s for sure.

Music — great choices here. can’t pinpoint any of the specific songs, but the music at the beginning over the credits (mind sharing the name of that piece with us?) and during the burial were all well choosen and used. great job here.

I put quite some time into music.
The soundtrack from begining to end was:
Moonlight Sonata: 1st Movement, by Beethoven
No. 8; I – Allegro Moderato, also by Beethoven
Rex tremendae by Mozart
and, the music in the final credits was
Symphony No. 25 in G minor K 183; Allegro con brio, also by Mozart.

Once again, thank you all for your reviews, they are greatly appreciated.

Logan

December 1, 2003 at 2:47 am #24256
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Motfilms

~Spoilers~

Pretty good movie. First I’ll start with the story. It was confusing, but on the second viewing, I understood it. A few things were still a little fuzzy, but I understood most of it. Once I got it, I liked it. But I still don’t know what an Amontillado is! :P The animation was great; your best yet. The picture quality was also great. Same goes for lighting.

The sets were a mixed bag. The catacomb set was great and nicely detailed. However, the carnival set wasn’t very detailed. I wasn’t sure where that scene took place for a while. Maybe some booths or games or something would have helped that. But good job on the background action in that scene. The soundtrack was great. The music really fit the mood quite well.

~End Spoilers~

I hope my criticism was constructive. Very good movie, Logan! It was different from a standard Brickfilm, and I like that.

Tom

December 1, 2003 at 2:13 pm #24287
Avatar of KG
KG

A think an Amontillado is a type of wine.

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