To evaluate this project, I strongly believe that I have created a discussion between a Toon and a real-life character, and although I differed away from the original brief’s approach I stilled managed to discuss about different camera techniques and film language.
Looking at this project, my strengths definitely resided the characters design and script. The design of Tobias suits character, as a failing con artist, the colour scheme does well to bring out his personality. As for the script I’ve done well to establish the relationship between Tobias and James, as well as give myself plenty of opportunities to talk about the different camera shots I will use for the storyboard.
Although these good points there are few drawbacks to the project. My time management was an improvement to the previous project, getting all of the planning and idea generating done in the first week leaving all the practical stuff for the last week, but I was a bit slow in starting the rest of the project, leaving me with little time to polish up the storyboard and really think and discuss about which camera shots I would use and why? As well as even extended it to fit all the scenes from the script. I must work on it for further projects.
Overall I am pleased with the results and believe it was a successful attempt to the brief. If I were to do this again or something similar, I would like work more on my storyboard, as well as my discussion of camera techniques for the different shots.
A bright flash. James opens his eyes to find himself in a strange place, very different to alleyway he was previously in.
James: “Where am I…?”
He looked around and scouted the area, tall trees that blocked out the sunlight, bushes that masked out the sound of creatures in the distance.
James: “How did I end up in a forest?”
He took another look around and notice there was something off about the trees, they looked different to ones back home. They had more colour to them and they almost looked flat, like they belonged in a cartoon or something. Suddenly James’s focus was distracted by a rustling in the bushes opposite him, getting wild and aggressive. He looked closer trying to make out what was making bushes move, but as it got more aggressive, he moved back, trying to prepare himself for whatever comes out. Then suddenly a tiny squirrel pokes it’s head out the bushes letting out a cute little squeak, before jumping out scurrying to the nearest tree. James gave out a sigh of relief, thinking it was stupid that he got worked up and scared of tiny squirrel. He chuckled as he composed himself before being interrupted.
Stranger: “Gee, you got scared by a tiny squirrel?”
He jumps and crashes to ground, looking up at a tall dark figure, he couldn’t make out the stranger because of the sun that was glaring into his eyes.
Stranger: “You wouldn’t make it 1 day out here…”
James tensed up, prepping himself for any attack that the stranger could inflict.
Stranger: “It’s good thing that I found you then…”
The stranger moved in front of the sun to reveal a lively gentleman in a waist coat as he tipped his fedora to James.
Tobias: “The name’s Tobias… Inventor Extraordinaire and I have the perfect solution for you”
James picked himself up, dusting off his red flannel shirt, white t-shirt, black jeans and boots as he looked at Tobias. He wore a purple shirt with a grey waist coat, combined with orange trousers and a bowtie. He postures and gestures were all proper, like he was an entertainer for the royal variety, using his red sphered cane as an extension of his body. Which was weird considering his clothes were dirty with patches and tears all over, even his brown shoes looked worn out, he even wore pair of brown fingerless gloves to top it off. But James wasn’t bothered by it, in fact nothing concerned him, because he was too shocked at the fact that in front him was an actual real-life cartoon character.
Tobias: “Never get lost in the woods again with this state of the art NAVIGATOR!”
Tobias pulls out a painted rock that was tied to a bunch of sticks with the words ‘NAVFGATEOR’ on it, waving it in front of James trying to get his attention.
Tobias: “No…? Ah of course! You’re out here for adventure! Well an adventure wouldn’t be adventure without your own treasure map!”
He pulls out a piece of paper with the words ‘Treasure Map’ misspelled, with a bunch of different coloured scribbles with an ‘X’ in the middle.
Tobias: “Legend has it that within these woodlands there’s a secret, legendary treasure that was buried by the none other than Captain U.S.Less. During the Gold Age.”
James: “I… Er…”
Tobias: “Yeah you’re right it’s not really a map, I’m not really sure how I got this?”
Tobias throws away the map and starts rummaging through his bag pulling out a variety of ‘Gadgets’ and ‘Gizmos’ made of junk.
Tobias: “Here how about this cloak of invisibility or maybe this chalice of eternal youth, why not both for a low, low price…? Wow tough customer, you’re not like the other bozos from town… In fact, you look kind of different to the others in town, strange almost, are you new in town?”
James: “How… Wher…?”
Tobias: “Come on speak up”
James clears his throat.
James: “Where am I?”
Tobias: “You are new. Well, right now you’re in the middle of the Mystery Woods home to all things weird and wonderful in the town of H.O.W.T”
James: “Mystery Woods…? H.O.W.T…?”
Tobias: “Yes weren’t you paying attention… How rude”
James: “This must be a dream… This can’t be real… Man I shouldn’t have watched Who Framed Roger Rabbit before bed yesterday.”
Tobias: “What are you talking about? This ain’t no dream buddy, at least I hope not that’ll be such a cheap cop-out of an ending…”
James: “I’ve just got to wake up…”
Tobias reaches over and slaps James across the face
James: “AH! What the hell was that for?”
Tobias: “Well you seemed pretty convinced that this was a dream, I wanted to see if you were right… guess you weren’t”
James: “Oh god… How is this possible… You’re animated, this whole world is animated!”
Tobias: “What are you talking about? What does animated mean? Is that an insult? Are you insulting me? How dare you!”
James: “Shut up! Just… let me think”
Tobias: “Wow you got issues”
Tobias steps back as James ponders to himself
James: “Right the last thing I remember, I was walking home from Uni and… I heard a noise coming from the alleyway… I went to go check it out and saw two guys messing with something. It looked like some sort of crystal of some kind…
Tobias jolts up at the word of crystal
James: “Then there was this big, bright flash… And then I ended up here…?”
Tobias: “Did you mention a crystal? What did it look like?”
Tobias leaned in closer
James: “It was greenish, with some form of pattern all over it”
James: “Why do you know something about it? Could get me home?”
Tobias: “I’m not sure, but I remember a couple of weeks back the folks in town were going crazy because a crystal of the same description went missing.”
James: “How does that help me?”
Tobias: “Maybe somebody knows where the crystal went”
James: “I guess that’s a start”
Tobias: “Okay then let’s go”
Tobias begin to walk towards the exit of the forest with James following, before he stops abruptly.
James: “Wait why are you helping me? What’s in it for you?”
Tobias: “What do you mean? I’m just being a good Samaritan by helping a person in distress”
He stands tall with head held high
James: “Yeah I’m not buying it”
James: “No offense but you do a pretty rubbish job of hiding the fact you’re a con-man”
Tobias: (Surprised) “Wha… I… Er… Fine you got me. Most of this stuff is just made of crap I got from the junkyard”
James: (Sarcastically) “Wow I never would have guessed…”
Tobias: “Yeah whatever”
James: “So why are you helping me?”
Tobias: “Let’s just say if someone else didn’t pinch the crystal I would’ve instead”
James: (Sarcastic) “Shocking…”
James: “Anyway I don’t care, as long as I can home, you can have it”
The two head towards the exit of the forest heading to the town in search for answers.
“Man I shouldn’t have watched Who Framed Roger Rabbit before bed yesterday”
- Who Framed Roger Rabbit, 1988 [DVD] Robert Zemeckis, United States: Buena Vista Pictures.