This zany little stop-motion short has caused quite a sensation on the popular video-sharing website, YouTube, and it was with some surprise that I discovered that this apparently-"amateur" film was recognised as legitimate on the Internet Movie Database. This eligibility arises from the fact that the film has featured at two well-known film festivals: the Boston Underground Film Festival and the Riverrun International Film Festival. "Tony vs Paul" was written and directed by two first-time filmmakers, Paul Cummings and Tony Fiandaca, who also star as two former friends who engage in a wacky stop-motion battle through the countryside of Massachusetts, USA.
The film makes use of pixilation an animation technique using live actors as stop-motion objects which was made popular back in 1952 in Norman McLaren's short, "Neighbours." It uses the technique exceedingly well, with the characters' movements always seeming completely smooth, particularly when each man finds himself gliding a good one metre above the ground (an effect accomplished by continuously jumping into the air for each frame). According to the filmmakers, the film took two months to film and edit, and stop motion being a relatively tedious process you can imagine what sort of patience the two must have been required to have. The film's soundtrack, which is a catchy little techno tune, was performed by the third and final credited crew member, Christopher Donovan.
To be perfectly honest, there's really nothing significant about this film. The story is virtually non-existent, and it doesn't say anything important or incite any powerful emotions. However, it does demonstrate the commitment of the two filmmakers so very well, and some of the visuals can only be described as "cool." I look forward to their next effort.
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