David Knight - 22nd Jan 2021

Colin Read mixes past and present, toying with our perception of the digital world, in his video for indie-rock legends Weezer.

Read affectionately draws upon the the band's roots in the 1990s, dovetailed with their selves in the here and now, to create a sort of anachronistic hybrid reality, with a different kind of internet: the optimism and sociability of early web days are back - courtesy of a young man with a magic chatroom portal. But then, everyone also has smartphones.

Our hero connects with a female chatroom pal - and then they join up in reality. The magic portal then takes them elsewhere, and finally to Weezer in the studio. And these transitions are achieved by 90s-tastic in-camera trickery rather than post VFX. But can 90s tech really triumph over the modern variety?

It's an ambitious, constantly imaginative way to show how the more interconnected we are through the internet and social media, the less connected we are as human beings. And nothing makes that point clearer than the video's downbeat ending.

COLIN READ:

We had a lot of fun figuring out the forced perspective gags.

"I wanted to make a video that felt like the Weezer videos of my teens—fun and self-aware. A teen angst adventure-comedy. So I sort of placed the video within my own memories: sitting up at the family computer late at night in the late 90s on AIM, discovering the internet as it evolved.

"To make the story feel a little more lost in time, I wanted to make the world a bit anachronistic; the technology and blocky CRT computer monitors from that era, combined with a more modern social media site…combined with smartphones, of course!

"We had a lot of fun figuring out the forced perspective gags. The only VFX involved was creating the bespoke social media website UI (okhumanfriends.com) that we played on the computer screens. Everything else was very simple and in-camera. It made all the shooting instantly gratifying: we never had to wait until VFX comps in order to know if our effects were selling on screen.”

PRO Credits

Credits

DirectorColin Read
ProducerJohnny Hernandez
ProducerJoseph Barbalaco
Production CompanyObra House
Executive ProducerRik Green
Director of PhotographyTrevor Wineman
1st ACErick Aguilar
2nd ACBryam Aguilar
Production designerMatt Sokoler
Art DirectorSpencer Gongwer
Set DresserJP Sweeney
Set DresserTony Pettibone
GafferSkott Khuu
Key GripGrant Gilligan
WardrobeCharneice Edwards
Hair & Make-upDiana Escamilla
EditorColin Read
ColouristSamuel Gursky
Post production companyIrving Harvey
Director's Rep (US)Reprobates
Other creditsBGE: Amber Jones BBG: Ricky Irizarry Sound Mixer: Oscar Coronel PA: Edgar Cortes PA: Bradley Kohlmeier Covid Compliance Officer: Maria Estrella Color Producer: Kerry Mack Cast: Sonny Golden, Monroe Cline, Ed Regine, Talia Perez, Timothy Hall, Emily Elkin

David Knight - 22nd Jan 2021

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