Small Films 13: Midnight


A Weekly Short Film Review

The “small film” of the week is a gripping project created by a living legend. That is Midnight, a 19-minute short film based on the manga of the same name by Astro Boy creator Ozamu Tezuka. The film, based on one of Tezuka’s underrated gems, centers around a taxi driver named (title name again) Midnight, who comes to the aid of people in need. We follow Midnight as he fights a street gang on the streets of Tokyo and rescues a young woman. 

The main feature of this short film is that it was shot using an iPhone 15 Pro. With its compact size and advanced features, such as action mode and 5x optical zoom, it films stunning images. They even used the phone to scan the vehicle for CGI effects purposes. A brief behind-the-scenes video is also available on YouTube. The way they push the iPhone to the limits is impressive. 

But, hey…

There is an ironic catch, though. This film was released quietly by Apple. It’s pretty much an advertisement for their phone. They’re obviously Marketing and SEO experts cause they will tell you this was shot on iPhone 15 Pro in the header, in the video title, in the description, anyway they can. In case you didn’t notice, they’ll keep telling you and reminding you that their product can film an action comedy based on a manga. 

In today’s world, Yorgos Lanthimos won multiple Academy Awards. So, in this case, Apple and the director of some of the most bizarre films ever made collaborating doesn’t sound that crazy. If they’re going to do it, do it in bold, fun, and intriguing ways. 

Who’s Takashi Miike

Takashi Miike is one of the most prolific filmmakers in the world, with over 115 films and TV episodes under his name as director throughout his 33-year career. He’s done everything from Yakuza crime thrillers to some of the most extreme horror movies ever released. There’s also happier and wholesome stuff in between. No matter what he does, there’s at least some touch of his signature weirdness and violence. So he’s not only one of the most prolific, he’s also one of the most badass to ever do it. 

Maybe he predicted all these unconventional things happening in the business on one of those 100+ movies.

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