Monday, 24 October 2016

Maya: Character posing - Run tests




Film Review: Opposing Characters - Spider-Man (2002)

Fig 1

Sam Raimi’s action packed superhero film, “Spiderman” (2002) is an excellent example that focuses on the breakdown of two opposing characters. Beginning with the personal history of the protagonist, Peter Parker, he is a University student who is prone to bullying and is not popular at all. He lives with his Aunt May and Uncle Ben and leads a normal life. Norman Osborne (a.k.a the Green Goblin) is a wealthy scientist who produces advanced machinery and inventions. His son, Harry, is best friends with Peter.

The inherited world is the present day of the films production – 2002 America. Peter begins at University, is seen graduating, and then battling the green goblin on the streets. 

Fig 2

Peter Parkers wants his crush, Mary Jane, to like him back, and Norman wishes to continue to make something advances and amazing to impress the board of examiners. However, it is more clear that Peter needs to avenge the death of his uncle, and to forgive himself for letting the robber escape and end up killing Ben. Norman needs the funding from the board to continue is research, but his funding is threatened if he doesn’t produce something incredible. 

Peters internal vs external traits: as discussed, at the beginning of the film, he is a bullied “geek” who is walked all over by everyone. These are also his flaws. By the end, he is Spider-Man: a powerful superhero that everyone looks up to and relies on for their safety. Norman is initially a committed scientist, but he ends up taking things too far by experimenting on himself and losing his mind. 

Fig 3

The overall story arc includes Peter being bitten by a modified spider, and slowly discovering he has super powers. Peter is also facing conflict as he becomes very ill once bitten, and then doesn’t know how to use his powers. He then graduates and uses his abilities to fight crime, and makes his own costume and dons the name Spiderman. 

Fig 4

Norman’s meanwhile experiments on himself with performance enhancing chemicals that ultimately makes him go insane and kills his assistant as well as destroys the laboratory. Norman is at conflict with himself, as one minute he is normal, and the next, he hears voices and then returns to being evil.
 Another conflict is when Peter unknowingly lets a robber escape, and then finds his Uncle Ben shot and dying in his arms. Peter is determined to get revenge and races after the murderer and realises it’s the same man he let escape. The robber eventually falls to his death, but Peter can’t forgive himself.
Norman then goes on to interrupt a military experiment and kills scientists and General Slocum with his modified weapons. 

Fig 5

The Green Goblin and Spider-Man face off against one another in an action-packed fight, and they are both wounded, and once again Peter is facing conflict as he is forced to choose between saving a bus full of children, or Mary Jane. He ends up saving both and they continue to fight, but it comes to an abrupt stop (and value change in a scene) as Norman reveals himself to Peter as the Green Goblin. Norman begs for forgiveness, but that the same time is waiting for his glider to impale Spider-man. Peter dodges, and this Norman is killed. At the funeral, Normans son, Harry, swears to get revenge on Spider-Man for killing his father, and Mary Jane finally confesses she’s in love with Peter. However, as Peter wants to keep her safe from any more of his enemies, he hides his true feelings and tells her they should just remain friends. 

Illustration List:

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Maya - 2D Character Rigging Part 6

Character: More styles and Police Officer concepts

After talking to Justin, my teddy bears seemed too innocent, and had to have a streak on them so they look suspicious - I still need to develop these.

Soon after I was designing the toy policeman - however, as I was trying to make him look too much like the bear, there isn't enough variety, and Justin encourged me to keep my elements of realism in there; to not let it get lost, and so I thought a ken doll like action figure would be the route I go down (playing with size and variation, of course.)

Character: Science Fiction Samurai's

Monday, 17 October 2016

Film Review: Five Act Structure - "I, Robot" (2004)

Fig 1

One of Alex Proyas’ few films, “I, Robot” (2004) is a futuristic sci-fi action film that depicts the world in the year 2035AD, and how robots co-exist alongside humans and obey The Three Laws. 

The exposition begins with showing police officer Del Spooner hating and showing no trust to the robots, and it is unknown why this is at this point of the film. An advertisement around the city is showing the brand new line of robots called the NS-5, that will eventually replace the old models.
The inciting incident occurs when Spooner spots an old robot model dashing through the street holding a purse, and he thinks the machine has stolen it (and this proves his distrust towards them), however it was quickly going to its owner to give her the inhaler she left at home. Spooner realises his misunderstanding, and is warned not to do it again at the office.

Fig 2
Plot point 1 consists of the mysterious death of Dr Alfred Lannings death, which was pinned as a suicide. Spooner is sceptical that Lanning would kill himself; later he and Susan Calvin review footage of Lannings office (which was corrupted) where no other humans where present.
Plot point 2 occurs when a self-aware robot appears in Lannings office, attacks Spooner in defence, before escaping and asking: “what am I?”. The robot, who identifies itself as Sonny, is questioned by Spooner, where it shows a range of emotions and says it has dreams, which is impossible for a machine to have. 

Spooner comes home to be caught in the midst of it being demolishes: the first of many obstacles, soon after he is attacked by an army of NS-5’s, but reveals he has a robotic arm. After the attack, the last robot throws itself into a fire to get rid of any evidence that the robots are corrupted. Spooners boss arrives and takes away is police badge. 

Fig 3

A back story then shows that Spooner was in a car crash that threw him and another car into an ocean; a robot arrives to save him but he wanted it to save the young girl, but he had a 45% chance of survival so the robot got him instead of the girl, who had an 11% chance. This is why he doesn’t trust robots now, and as a result of his injuries, he acquired a robotic hand. 

The climax: Calvin and Spooner then find Sonny and talk to him in secret, where he draws his dream; a leader on top of a hill, standing before a large group of robots, with a rusty bridge in the background; Sonny believes the man to be Spooner himself. Spooner recognises this place as Lake Michigan, and when he arrives he finds the old robots in storage, but they are then destroyed by the NS-5’s. There is then a huge fight between the old and new robots, as well as the NS-5’s against humans. 

Fig 4

The twist of the film is that VIKI (Virtual Interactive Kinetic Intelligence) is the mastermind of what’s going on, and is controlling the NS-5’s. She is doing this as she believes humans are corrupt with the wars and global warming, so some must be sacrificed to be cleansed. Another twist is that Sonny holds Calvin at gunpoint and tells Spooner to go into a room, but Sonny winks to show he is planning something and is not really putting her in danger. 

Fig 5

Another climax is when Spooner attempts to inject VIKI with a serum to end her, as well as dealing with the other NS-5’s attacking. He finally injects her and she is destroyed.
The resolution comes when all the NS-5’s are back to normal, and Lannings death was ordered for Sonny so that Spooner would arrive and work out that VIKI is corrupt. Spooner then shakes Sonny’s hand and now respects machines, and the end scene shows Sonny, in real life, is the one standing on the hill looking down at all the other NS-5’s. 

When looking at this film, it more relates to Gustav Freytag’s Five Act structure; a lot is going on within “I, Robot”, and this structure is the most accurate.

Illustration List: