Alchemy is a short film about transformation. In nature, everything is constantly changing: the earth, the sky, the stars, and all living things. Spring is followed by summer, fall and winter. Water turns into clouds, rain and ice. Over time, rivers are created, canyons carved, and mountains formed. All of these elements, mixed together, create the magic of nature's alchemy.
As of today, it is estimated that there are more than 7 billion humans living on Earth.
Humans have only been a glimpse in the Earth’s timeline, yet in the last 200 years the evolution of mankind has skyrocketed as well as the need for Earth’s resources.
Skyscrapers are growing taller than the next, like huge trees battling for sunlight. At night, from a higher point of view, traffic evokes lava flowing down a volcano.
Like a giant ant colony, humans have made this planet their own. But what about the Earth? Can we continue to take without consequences? The City Limits tries to show that even though we are the dominant species on the planet, there is something bigger than us.
In Carl Sagan’s own words “Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us.”
Human progress and technology are developing at exponential rates but at what cost?
Where is the city’s limit?
/ Technical Info
Camera: Canon 5D Mark II
Lenses: Canon 14 II, Canon 24 II, Canon 70-200
3 guys, 44 days, 11 countries, 18 flights, 38 thousand miles, an exploding volcano, 2 cameras and almost a terabyte of footage... all to turn 3 ambitious linear concepts based on movement, learning and food ....into 3 beautiful and hopefully compelling short films.....
Colour Grade : Edel Rafferty and Roslyn Di Sisto
Online Edit : Peter Mirecki
Assistance in titles and production design : Lee Gingold, Jason Milden, Rohan Newman
Big Ups to Michelle, Kiri, Renee, Hana, Andre, Ross, Bernie & Julie for your patience and support and awesomeness.....
Huge Thanks to :
Marco, Juliana and Julio at GAP Argentina and Peru
Ariana Cardenas, Toni Figuera and cooltra scooters in Barcelona,
Abete Zanetti Glass blowing school, Murano, Venice (abatezanetti.it)
Annabel, Rosario and Carolina (Pitu) in France
Juane and Andrea from the Princeca Insolenta hostel in Chile
Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement. The response has been phenomenal and overwhelming. We never thought this little project would reach out to so many people. x
This was filmed between 29th April and 10th May 2011 in the Arctic, on
the archipelago Lofoten in Norway.
My favorite natural phenomenon is one I do not even know the name of, even after talking to meteorologists and astrophysicists I am none the wiser.What I am talking about I have decided to call The Arctic Light and it is a natural phenomenon occurring 2-4 weeks before you can see the Midnight Sun.
The Sunset and Sunrise are connected in one magnificent show of color and light lasting from 8 to 12 hours. The sun is barely going below the horizon before coming up again. This is the most colorful light that I know, and the main reason I have been going up there for the last 4 years, at the exact
same time of year, to photograph. Based on previous experience, I knew this was going to be a very
difficult trip. Having lost a couple of cameras and some other equipment up there before, it was crucial to bring an extra set of everything. I also
made sure I had plenty of time in case something went wrong.
If you can imagine roping down mountain cliffs, or jumping around on slippery rocks covered in seaweed with 2 tripods, a rail, a controller,
camera, lenses, filters and rigging for 4-5 hour long sequences at a time, and then
having to calculate the rise and fall of the tides in order to capture the essence - it all proved bit of a challenge.
And almost as if planned, the trip would turn out to become very
difficult indeed. I had numerous setbacks including: airline lost my
luggage, struggling to swim ashore after falling into the Arctic sea: twice, breaking lenses, filters, tripod, computer, losing the whole dolly rig and controller into the sea, and even falling off a rather tall rock and ending
up in the hospital. As much as I wanted to give up, the best way Out is
always “Through”. I am glad I stuck it through though because there were some amazing sunrises waiting. At 1:06 you see a single scene from day to night to day which is from 9pm to 7am. Think about that for a minute.. 10 hours with light like that.
I asked the very talented Marika Takeuchi to specifically compose and
perform a song for this movie, and what she came up with is absolutely remarkable. Thank you very much Marika!