Make Stuff Get Famous

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Sharon Mizrahi, Eyebeam Project Description of Short Film

Make Stuff Get Famous (written and directed by Student Resident Sharon Mizrahi) is a short film in the truest sense of the phrase, capping in at a curt two minutes and twenty seconds. Initially conceived as a plot-based “New York drama,” the film evolved into a non-linear piece laced with rich, nearly literary symbolism. The high contrast, black-and-white video features two male characters (both played by Fellow Fran Ilich) in vastly different contexts. Richard, a suit-clad professional, is heard gently pleading with his son on the phone in Times Square between business calls, and Adrian, an introspective booze-guzzler, delivers impromptu philosophy on the Highline while taking swigs out of a paper bag. Through Richard and Adrian, two sides of the urban spectrum are explored: the iconic “skyscraper-and-lights” glamour, and the comparatively unremarkable lives of those who keep the city running.      

The film is punctuated with shots of “the other side” of Times Square: the ordinary slices of life lurking between exaggerated tourist smiles and blaring marquee ads for Domino’s Pizza. A voiceover of Richard pacifying his young son is paired with scenes of frustrated urbanites speed-walking to the subway, cheery Broadway ticket-sellers in outlandish costumes, and ever-present taxicab traffic. Somber-eyed and quietly dramatic, Highline drunkard Adrian provides a bizarre sense of reprieve from the inner-city chaos. In the leafy confines of Manhattan’s miles-long, elevated parks, he gives quaint but poignant reflections on cigarettes and the weather. 

Richard and Adrian live in wholly different urban worlds: the former, in the wildly affable core of New York City, and the latter, in the cozy confines of a mock-suburban park. Make Stuff Get Famous initially reads as a stark juxtaposition between high-impact city life and quiet solitude—but perhaps these two extremes are not as foreign as they appear. 

Project Created: 
July 2011
 
People: Sharon Mizrahi
Project Type: Video