Those in the know know that the classiest online video site around is Vimeo. It’s home to the work of budding filmmakers, film school graduates, animators and those for whom YouTube is altogether too low grade. It is not particularly a place where one is going to find silent films, but that may change with its recently-announced Weekend Project on silent films. The site organises occasional Weekend Projects where Vimeo members are encouraged to produced films along a particular theme. This time they are being asked to produce silent films. One of the site’s organisers says says:
Last time I suggested a Weekend Project, it was all about making noise. This week, I’m swinging the pendulum to the opposite side and proposing a Silent Film project. And when I say silent, I mean no sound. At all. This means you’re going to have to make actions, edits, and direction speak for you. You are allowed to use those old-timey slides to show what people are saying and to narrate your story. But remember, silence!
Well, not strictly silence, since the filmmakers are allowed to include music (not songs), with the less than encouraging suggestion that “Cheesy piano music is the way to go if you use music.” Winners will be announced next Friday. I’ll let you know. Meanwhile, the above video by Benjamin VanderVeen exploring the School of Art and Design at Northern Michigan University is held up as a model effort. Hmm.