David Knight - 23rd Mar 2016

Trunk’s director Junior Martinez directs a wonderfully unsettling video for Solomon Grey's Sweet 84, a track from the debut album that was inspired by the childhoods of the band's two members Joe Wilson and Tom Kingston.

Barcelona-based Martinez approaches the world from the point of view of a small girl, and one level presents an innocent world of toys and play. But there's also an ever-increasing sense of unease, created by gradual inclusion of real life war footage, as seen on TV.

The video was filmed over two days, the first on set in the mountains overlooking Barcelona, and the second in the streets of the city itself. Martinez used the depth of field, palette, and colour grade, to play and build on the suspense that lives within the action, playing with this suggestion of danger and threat, rather than showing anything overtly dangerous. 

Trunk's executive producer Richard Barnett worked with Spanish producer Mireia Jordán to help put the team together, including DoP Jon D. Dominguez, who Junior has worked with on a number of projects. “The team were amazing and worked so hard to achieve Junior’s vision, it was an absolute pleasure to work with them, and I can’t wait to do it all over again!” says Barnett.

Wilson and Kingston, who in their incarnation as composers created the soundtrack for the BBC and HBO adaptation of JK Rowling's The Casual Vacancy, have said: "When we were writing Sweet 84 we got obsessed with our childhoods and the memories we still held onto: our parents watching the news, being held up on their shoulders, falling asleep in the back of the car and being carried into bed while sleeping – becoming aware of the wider world and its enormity.

“[Junior] has done a great job of bringing to life what was in our heads when we wrote the track. It mirrors a lot of what our own children's experiences must be now, and what they must be taking in from the world around them."


”It was wonderful working with Joe and Tom, both had loads of great ideas and references were soon bouncing off everyone and we were quickly in tune with each other. From this collaboration Richard and I put together a running script detailing the kind of shots we wanted to do and the guys were delighted with that and told us to go ahead. They trusted me 100% which whilst daunting really allowed me to concentrate and totally zone in during the shoot.

"What we were going for was as though you are in a fairy tale, the feeling that whatever is lurking in the background will rush out and eat you, but of course never does. Working with the little girl [the daughter of a family friend] was great. We allowed her innocence and sense of play to shine through, rather than directing I more than often just filmed her going about her play. By the end she was directing herself! Choosing how and where to place props it was like having a mini Kubrick on set. 

"But this approach in essence allowed us to be the ‘dark presence’. I controlled the focus and lighting and brought in a lot of film references for each shot, that aimed to give an overarching feel of unease.”


DirectorJunior Martinez
ProducerMireia Jordán
Production CompanyTrunk
Executive ProducerRichard Barnett
1st ADLucia Alemany
Director of PhotographyJon D. Dominguez
GafferNathan Grimes
Art DirectorHeura Marimon
Lead actorMelissa Arjona
CommissionerCynthia Lowe
Other creditsAnimation Rok Predin

David Knight - 23rd Mar 2016

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