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Grads get reel life from time
By Luke Rundle
Those wishing to witness shining examples of indie film would be best served by attending the free showing of reflections on time and loss tonight in University College.
Western film graduates Charlie Egleston and Zorin Maric will be premiering their latest short films in a dual presentation.
Egleston graduated from Western's film program in 1994, then attended a year of film school in Victoria, British Columbia. He bounced around the film industry for a while, working on projects in B.C., Toronto and London. His contribution, The Waiting, is not his first foray into the short film realm, but it is his largest project to date.
The Waiting is a classic, albeit ambitious love tragedy. A 20 minute piece without dialogue, the film makes its presence felt through stirring images and a poignant musical score, composed and performed by fourth-year music student Marty Kolls.
"It's a story about a woman waiting for her lover to come over to see her and in the process of biking over to see her, he gets hit by a car," Egleston intimates.
"He never makes it over, but while he's dying on the road, she falls into a daydream waiting for him and the movie is about the metaphysical communication that takes place between them even though they're in separate places."
Egleston says shooting the film was a rewarding experience in which the ends justified the means.
"The actual shoot itself was a real experience, because when you go to shoot something, you always have the whole storyboard planned out and you're totally prepared," he says.
"But there's always these little things that pop up that add to the story. If you're attentive to them, you can incorporate them into your story and it ends up being a stronger piece for that. You get that spontaneity that you wouldn't normally get in a totally scripted shooting style."
For Maric, the experience was equally rewarding. A 1999 Western film graduate, Maric's offering of The Moontrain is only his second short film. Maric says this effort is bigger and better than the first, even though he had to call in a lot of favours.
"Everybody who's in the film is there out of a favour to me, not for money or anything like that. The equipment that I used was borrowed from Technical Services, where Charlie works and editing was done at a place where I didn't have to pay for it. So, if you try really hard, you can get things done for free," he laughs.
While more surreal, The Moontrain is similar in style to Egleston's work. "Without giving a bunch away, it's about a photographer who takes a picture of a woman and the picture, in the most simple terms, comes to life and it sort of goes from there," Maric reveals.
"It's pretty minimalist in terms of story and content, but it's 37 minutes long. Pretty long for a short, which is kind of a discrepancy," he says.
Both Egleston and Maric claim their films are concerned with telling stories in a non-linear fashion, while dealing with the frailties of the human condition.
"The title has to do with the structure of the pieces themselves and it was something Charlie and I sort of figured out," Maric says. "It wasn't something we were going for consciously. But when we watched both of our films back to back, we realized that there were certain things that were the same in both. We both play with time, expand and shorten it."
Egleston agrees. "The beauty of the film medium is that you can shape and sculpt time in different forms that we experience in everyday life.
"They're both studies of the human condition, how we deal with loss and how things can be perfectly fine, but that there's always something that can happen to change that forever."