Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Narrative - Man Vs Machine - My initial thoughts

So yesterday we received the brief for the Narrative project, we already have been designated groups and are in the very early stages of drafting ideas and are looking to form a basis for research soon. If you haven't seen my groups blog please defer to here.

The restrictions given for the short animation we were asked to create are as follows;

  • A Film Genre
  • A Conflict
  • An End Sentence
  • A Non-Realistic Design Style
  • A Stylised Construction Method
  • 90 Second Duration
We've also been tasked with adopting roles to mitigate time management and reserve responsibilities for certain areas;
  • Animator
  • Art Director
  • CG Modeller
  • Compositor
  • Director
  • Editor
  • Graphic Designer
  • Layout Artist ( Cinematographer)
  • Lighting Technical Director
  • Marketing Manager
  • Media Planner
  • Producer
  • Production Designer (Concept Artist)
  • Render Wrangler
  • Researcher
  • Rigger
  • Screenwriter
  • Sound Designer
  • Storyboard Artist
  • Texture Artist
I am fairly certain we can split the 20 roles amongst the four people in the group, I can acknowledge there will be hurdles along the way that may divide the work flow and pause until something is unto scratch. This should be the time we all intervene and come together to make sure we achieve the most desired effect in the time allotted. 

Man Vs Machine
So the conflict we were given yesterday as to what to base the project on was 'Man Vs Machine'. A conflict that is both rich in potential but also includes a lot of areas in my own personal opinion have been explored excessively. I wish to push our group toward originality instead of being based on work that has already been made. If I was to refer to Film and Tv, In my eyes this conflict is often resolved with man realising his mistakes too late and overcoming the odds and defeating machine. Its something thats been battered to death and seems rather cliche and a common trope. 

Instead we should push forward the idea that it is machine which overcomes man. 

To strengthen this idea I would then speak about Stephen Hawking's warnings against artificial intelligence.  “The real risk with AI isn't malice but competence,” Professor Hawking said. “A super intelligent AI will be extremely good at accomplishing its goals, and if those goals aren't aligned with ours, we're in trouble." you can read the article here for more information.

Examples Taken From Film and TV
So I quickly highlighted some existing examples trying to show what I mean about machine overcoming man. I have included four images, two to explain one route and two to explain another.

In short, 'Ex_Machina' and 'A.I.' are two films that explore the idea of machine out-living man and becoming independent, self preserving things that at some point think themselves as beings of their own. 

'The Six Million Dollar Man' and 'Robocop' are two separate examples that play on the idea that by integrating a damaged host with advanced cybernetics, allows them to achieve things either on par to norm or exceed them exponentially. 

Both examples of the possible routes are interesting and can be explored in-depth in a stylised form. Just finding the appropriate story for the style would no doubt compliment it.

'His Knees Steadied, His Heart Beat Fiercely And He Began To Run Again'

So the above phrase is what we were given to be the ending sentence to our piece. I believe it ties in quite well to our conflict. From this phrase we can base the animation on either the Man or Machine overcoming the other, and becoming independent. Again we could avoid the trope of falling into the obvious and instead explore newer ideas if we but took the risk.

I would like to see;
  • A prosthesis attached to a living host that enables them to move or perform to norm or beyond what was anticipated.
  • A machine that is somehow oppressed by man and is put beneath them, but once man disappears they can become independent and perform something.
  • A machine that ironically creates a man? perhaps their idea of perfect is being inside a body instead of being a data stream.
I think we have a lot of ideas to play around with and I would remind you guys to follow our group blog if you haven't already its here again. All of these ideas can be condensed into a 90 second animation and if you have any insightful ideas or knowledge please comment :)

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