On YouTube there are film shorts made as a tribute to the style of Michael Mann. And I am not referring to a montage of Mann made scenes. Personally shot films in the image of Michael Mann are often city slick night scenes, the noir feel for some reason being most associated with what Mann shoots. Collateral and Heat has much to do with that. But Michael Mann’s movies are far more than cool architectural flavours, wet street scenes lit at night, and hypnotising electric music. A film short video maker would do well to put just those aspects together visually and technically successfully.
The core of a Michael Mann film is the story, and the aim to bring that story to the audience with authenticity, both in its physical and emotional connection. To that end, a Mann film is an orchestra for a crew, and a conductor for a director. A Mann film, if you really want to create a tribute, is to not just be stylistic, but to convey a conversation, a look, a glimpse, a conflicted heart… a universe of human condition that is limitless in its complexity, yet focussed on a part of it. Just look at the Amy Winehouse life story. If ever there was a life made out of extreme conflict and tragedy over such a short space of time, hers is one. Many, including myself, felt a depth of sorrow for this damaged life – A life I didn’t know much about, but “experienced” whenever I saw her performing, or on the news.
Yes, we have Michael Mann tributes… agile camera movements and cold minimalism providing the effect. But that is way short of what a Mann film is ultimately giving us.
As we are in the Michael Mann news doldrums, I welcome anyone with a decent film short to have it posted on this blog. I am happy to share your talent, so long as it fits the theme of what makes a Michael Mann movie. I love the visual side, but a challenge would be to see some acting in there too. Post it on YouTube, let me know, and I will post it here if it ticks the Michael Mann ingredients boxes!
To kick things off, here is a piece put together by Andre Rehal. Tell us what you think.