This Incredible Short Film Was Shot in One Nine-Minute-Long Take on a Drone

The long take is one of the most awesome displays of directorial prowess. This nine-minute short film shows off that prowess and adds another variable: a drone. 

Written, produced, and directed by Paul Trillo"At the End of the Cul-de-Sac" is a stunning achievement with its precision of execution and smoothness. Set in an alternate version of the present, it shows a man's public breakdown and his neighbor's calculated and extreme handling of the situation. Pulling off the film, made on a DJI Inspire 1, took creating an animation of the blocking and timing and a lot of rehearsal, all of which you can see in the behind the scenes video below:

Perhaps the most impressive part of the entire endeavor is that the first official take ended up being the final take. Despite the effort, the end result is certainly worth it in my opinion: the lack of breaks creates a much more immersive experience, while the camera weaving in and out allows the viewer to take in the entire scene while still being privy to the closest details. It's an enormously impressive achievement by all involved and yet another sign that drones are becoming powerful tools in the hands of talented filmmakers. 

[via Gizmodo]

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14 Comments

I appreciate the direction & the performance but ... did someone get the story ? :P

I think a comment on the overly repressive rules in some of the communities. People more willing to punish someone for breaking them then to help. Quite well done I think.

That's what I thought first ... but the thing that didn't convince me is the fact they stop throwing rocks at the guy at some point and thus the ending is left "suspended". This is not conveying that idea to its end in my opinion, hence my question.

Michael Aubrey's picture

Great direction, acting, etc.

But really just a rip off of Shirley Jackson's The Lottery.

Anonymous's picture

And a poor one at that. Great production though.

Most impressive of all = the work of the dialogue editor, ADR performance/recording/editing, the sound editors, foley team & re-recording mixer/s... Pratcically none of the sync audio would have been useable with an Inspire 1 buzzing all over it (and yet any sync audio is invaluable for syncing ADR as reference)
And it plays as real... Great work & also a great reminder how sound is 50% of the story

I thought the same. The sound editing and foley is amazing.

Simon Patterson's picture

Oh wow, that is incredible, in so many ways!

gah. irritating that no one seems to know how to actually render out 21:9 video. so they just render out 16:9 with black bars. now I get 4 black bars.

Sorry. Annoying self-indulgent showboating for no clear purpose.Technique should be INVISIBLE. So many better examples of long take storytelling have been around for a long time. This doesn't come close.

Dennis Murphy's picture

What was the big drone there for?

Steven Elliott's picture

I think any person with the vision and then going through with the execution of their idea should be celebrated. There's always going to be things that can be done better. Great job with this.

David Hynes's picture

Love this - thanks for sharing :)

This is great! I hardly noticed the drone at all - only because i clicked an article discussing it.