Sleepwalkers

(2017)

MA project:
Film, 3:25 mins, 16:9
This project invites the viewer to contemplate the tension between our physical lives and our online lives - on our ever-present mobile phones.
    This short film1 was my first experiment with film montage. A mashup of original and found footage, graphic flash cards and zombie film clips, combined with a digital narration of my adapted extract from Georges Perec’s The Street2. This is the script:

Observe the street, from time to time, with some concern for system perhaps./
Apply yourself. Take your time./
Note down the place, the time, the date, the weather. Note down what you can see. Anything worthy of note going on. Do you know how to see what’s worthy of note? Is there anything that strikes you?/
Nothing strikes you. You don’t know how to see./
You must set about it more slowly, almost stupidly. Force yourself to write down what is of no interest, what is most obvious, most common, most colourless./
The street: try to describe the street, what it’s made of, what it’s used for. The people in the street. The cars. The buildings. The shops. The cafés. Make an effort to exhaust the subject, even if that seems grotesque, or pointless, or stupid. You still haven’t looked at anything, you’ve merely picked out what you’ve long ago picked out./
Force yourself to see more flatly./
Detect a rhythm: the passing of cars. Count the cars. Look at the number plates./ 
Read what’s written in the street: newspaper kiosks, posters, traffic signs, graffiti, discarded handouts, shop signs./
Decipher a bit of the town. Its circuits: why do buses go from this place to that? Who chooses the routes, and by what criteria?/
The people in the streets: where are they coming from? Where are they going to? Who are they?/
People in a hurry. People going slowly. Parcels. Prudent people who’ve taken their macs. Dogs: they’re the only animal to be seen. You can’t see any birds – yet you know there are birds -  and can’t hear them either. You might see a cat slip underneath a car, but it doesn’t happen./
Nothing is happening, in fact./
Time passes./ 
Carry on./
Until the scene becomes improbable./
Until you have the impression, for the briefest of moments, that you are in a strange town or, better still, until you can no longer understand what is happening or what is not happening, until the whole place becomes strange, and you no longer even know that this is what is called a town, a street, buildings, pavements.../



1 All found footage is credited at the end of the film.
2 Perec, G. ([1974]1999) ‘The Street’ from ‘Species of Spaces’ in Species of Spaces and Other Pieces. London, UK: Penguin.