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> Machinima Music Videos, A rant and a word of advice.
StoneFalconProdu...
post Mar 19 2007, 11:01 AM
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I, and you, have noticed many machinima music videos out there. For one thing, it's easier to create one of these babies because you don't have to worry about the soundtrack. In fact, most of these are created to existing songs. But here's my big issue with these videos - most of them are very unimaginative. They give me the impression that the filmmaker/s are counting on the fact that you like the song to carry the video. NOT GOOD ENOUGH!

Many machinima music vids are lacking in content. Let's just have the characters emote /talk. Then change it up with an emote /talk! One of the most popular, and guilty, examples of this is the infamous "The Internet is for Porn." Why is this video so popular? THE SONG. Don't believe me?

Here's a test: try it on any video out there, and on the one you are making right now.

TURN OFF THE SOUND.

Is it still watchable?

If not, then you need to get a little more creative in your thinking. What's the big overall idea for your video? Is it artsy? Strange? Hilarious? Haunting? Does it have a story? Or is it just a "images coming at a mile a minute" kind of video? Focus your video on what you want the audience to FEEL. This is usually related to the music, but it doesn't have to be. The right combination of visuals alone can get people to feel what you want them to, and then when you add the music, it just makes the overall effect that much more powerful.

So - in conclusion - don't depend on someone else's music to make your video great. (And if you wrote and performed your OWN song, you get 10 extra gold stars).

And for those WoW music videos - for heavens sake, we've seen enough of the /dance emotes already!!!! I don't want to see them ever again unless they are used in a fresh and creative way!!

-J.


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VaudeVillian
post Mar 19 2007, 11:10 AM
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lol. agreed!

I try n avoid "music videos." but there are two kinds of music videos I guess.

IMO, I think music video with machinima, and I think... Edge of Remorse.
A story told to the sounds of the music. No words, yet one of my favorite story-line movies ever!
but in actuality it's more of a music video to me.

While others think...like you said... favorite song + random footage.


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Zirivieon
post May 23 2007, 03:43 AM
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"Machinima Music Videos" just isn't manly enough imo O_O


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Olibith
post Aug 10 2007, 02:09 AM
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You're right, music videos are easier, everything in the audio part is already in place and perfect.
Turning the soud off is indeed a good way to see if there's more to it than the music.

But the best moment I've spent making machinima was with music videos and I hope to make a lot of them.
There are so many things you can play with, the meaning of the lyrics that you can distort as you want, what you feel when listening to it or just telling a story.
I don't think there's enought good music vid and there are so much great songs that makes imagination boil up.
It's also a good way to start making machinimas.


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Justin
post Aug 12 2007, 01:13 AM
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Edge of Remorse isn't just a music video, because Music was done only after video was perfect, that's the way it's usually done :)


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Romily
post Aug 15 2007, 08:16 PM
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As a huge fan of machinima music videos (honestly probably my favorite genre), I have to agree to some points but disagree on others.

I like the idea of turn off the sound and see what happens.

But, that being said, I forget which one but a director once said that a great movie is 50% soundtrack (which, granted, is not limited to just music in some/many cases) and 50% what you see. For me, it's absolutely true (and is actually heavily music/sound-based). It's not the visuals that scare me in horror/suspense movies - it's 90% music and sounds.

One of the things that happens in my favorite music videos is they "lift" me. They are a feast for my ears AND my eyes and they... complement is too weak to describe it... it's almost like a feedback loop is created when the audio and visual are just that dead on with each other - even if they aren't saying a thing that's logical in a story sense. They interpret each other. Which is the more inspiring? The images over those few seconds? Or the music? Hard to tell when it's done in the way I enjoy most. It's like a flash of light at a crescendo in a song at a concert. The crowd goes wild. Why? Is it the music? Or the lights? I think it's both. One enhances the other.

I realize that my tastes are different than many others. For example, I honestly have almost zero use for PvP vids of any sort. (I can't think of one but I hate to say never.) Yet they're exceedingly popular. *shrugs*

In the end, if #1 I enjoy the project I make and #2 people come back to me and tell me that my work made them smile, laugh, makes them feel good, lifts them up when they're feeling blue or any other good thing, it was completely worth my time even if my work does get slammed as "gay" by those with the PvP style appetites.

Regardless, the point of story is well taken. ;)


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WGSXFrank
post Aug 15 2007, 10:21 PM
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Though I do agree with what others have said about not doing the same old /dance and /tlk over and over again in your music videos, I have to disagree with the "Turn off the sound, is it still watchable?" advice.

With a music video, it's all about making the video match the music.

Take a few real music videos, and turn off the sound. It makes the video pointless.

The video for "YUI - 'Rolling Star'" was nothing but the band playing, and her singing in a white room. there were a few mixed in scenes of her singing in a studio environment or in a dark room (all with very nice angles, i might add). It was great for the music. Combined with the music, the video served its ultimate purpose. Turn off the music.. you'll be bored to tears....

The video for "Linkin Park - 'Breaking the Habit'" was an amazing video. The animation was beautiful. The flow was top-notch. The effects were very nicely done. Every scene matched the lyrics well. It really was a great music video, and it complimented the song very very well. Try watching it without sound... the animation and effects are still nice... but you'll have no idea what the meaning behind some of it is....

The famous video for "Micheal Jackson = 'Smooth Criminal'" is the perfect example of a music video that compliments the song well and pushes the boundaries of what a music video is supposed to be. The effects are amazing (or were for the time). Turn off the sound and watch it. yes it looks good, but are you really going to sit there for the full 9 minutes and 35 seconds watching it without any sound? I think not.

To be honest, I'm kind of surprised to hear any of these top machinima makers say "turn off the sound". Even I know that sound is a major part of any decent movie.

Some of my all time favorite machinima films include Snaky's Journal (all 3), Illegal Danish, Return and Unlimited Escapism. I can watch all of those films many many times over and be entertained for hours. However, I can honestly say that if I were to turn off the sound, I would fall asleep trying to watch them all the way through. They were not made to be played without sound, so, obviously they would bore anyone watching them if they didn't have sound. The same applies to music videos.

IMO, any music video... no.. any quality machinima piece should be a harmonious blend of both audio and visual goodness. Just having one or the other will not cut it in my books. Neither will having a video that doesn't fit well with the sound.

EDIT: Before anyone mentions the old "silent films":

Remember, even though they didn't have vocal sounds, they almost always had a musical score and sometimes had sound effects which were made by musical instruments and usually incorporated into the music itself. The music helped the viewer understand the emotion or "atmosphere" of the scene. This was especially important because (at times) all the viewer had to go on, other than the music, was text. I'm sure we ALL know how difficult it is to properly express emotion using text. The music was a very important element.


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Romily
post Aug 16 2007, 04:15 AM
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And Jun, THANK YOU for posting this! Whether we all agree or not in the end (unlikely), this is a fascinating discussion about a topic near and dear to my heart (and I wish I'd thought of it first! :P).


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StoneFalconProdu...
post Aug 16 2007, 08:17 AM
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QUOTE (Romily @ Aug 16 2007, 05:15 AM) *
And Jun, THANK YOU for posting this! Whether we all agree or not in the end (unlikely), this is a fascinating discussion about a topic near and dear to my heart (and I wish I'd thought of it first! :P).


Heh, I posted it a long time ago. Someone revived the thread! :biggrin:


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Olibith
post Aug 16 2007, 09:06 AM
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QUOTE
IMO, any music video... no.. any quality machinima piece should be a harmonious blend of both audio and visual goodness. Just having one or the other will not cut it in my books. Neither will having a video that doesn't fit well with the sound.


Music can sometimes take you so far from where you are that "turning the sound off" can be a way to really look at the video from a purely machinima-plastic point of view, nothing more. There's no other good reason to turn the sound off.

QUOTE
In the end, if #1 I enjoy the project I make and #2 people come back to me and tell me that my work made them smile, laugh, makes them feel good, lifts them up when they're feeling blue or any other good thing, it was completely worth my time even if my work does get slammed as "gay" by those with the PvP style appetites.


I totally agree with this statement !
Even if it's quite gay. :p


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Romily
post Aug 16 2007, 10:17 AM
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QUOTE (Olibith @ Aug 16 2007, 01:06 PM) *
I totally agree with this statement !
Even if it's quite gay. :p

A little OT but, one of the reasons I love this place so much is that, if I get criticism, I know it's going to be the useful, constructive stuff (even if some of it is stylistic/opinion-based about which I might disagree). People who waste time bashing either the artist or the work with stereotyped "scare tactics" annoy me. If you thought it was "lame" WHY did you think so? If it's because you like jazz and I like Rock and Roll, well that's all well and good and we'll just have to agree to disagree (though I happen to like both!). But if it's because I screwed something up or lost you on the story line or some other thing, TELL me, dammit! I'm very glad some hosting locations (like YouTube) allow you to delete useless comments. I'm glad I don't get many but they can drag down what is an, otherwise, positive thing (even if some folks are saying they'd like to see something different).
/rant off


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Justin
post Aug 16 2007, 02:01 PM
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QUOTE (Romily @ Aug 16 2007, 07:16 AM) *
But, that being said, I forget which one but a director once said that a great movie is 50% soundtrack (which, granted, is not limited to just music in some/many cases) and 50% what you see. For me, it's absolutely true (and is actually heavily music/sound-based). It's not the visuals that scare me in horror/suspense movies - it's 90% music and sounds.


after this words... movie called Sunshine (2007) raises in my mind :D


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Romily
post Aug 16 2007, 06:23 PM
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QUOTE (Justin @ Aug 16 2007, 06:01 PM) *
after this words... movie called Sunshine (2007) raises in my mind :D

Why so? (Haven't seen it and, with Rotten Tomatoes giving it a 58% (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/sunshine/) wasn't planning on rushing out there. But tell me if I'm wrong and should go and enjoy. ;)


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Justin
post Aug 16 2007, 10:30 PM
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QUOTE (Romily @ Aug 17 2007, 05:23 AM) *
Why so? (Haven't seen it and, with Rotten Tomatoes giving it a 58% (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/sunshine/) wasn't planning on rushing out there. But tell me if I'm wrong and should go and enjoy. ;)


Don't know hy many people dislike it, only few critics saw it like a masterpiece. For me it was one of those best 2007 movies (of course I like Pirates more, but...). It's a pretty heavy film, with not so scientific idea as it looks like in the trailer. For a long time I haven't seen anything, that brings you Action and Sci-Fi in the beginning and Drama with Horror at end, haven't seen how horror movies can be shown without any darkness, all the motion picture was covered by the brightest light of sun, and finally, the soundtrack. It's not yet out, but I will have big popularity probably. Because even in the latest Pirates, soundtrack doesn't accomplish video so much, theese were just like born to be together.

It's a perfect reference if talking about 50% video and 50% soundtrack, the key to success.

P.S. Check rotentomatoes again :) The rating becomes higher and higher


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Romily
post Aug 17 2007, 04:38 AM
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Oh, horror? :confused: Though I've, on occasion (mostly long long ago, mind you) seen one, I avoid them now. I had forgotten that aspect of Sunshine. But I did find it interesting when I realized a few years ago that, if there was a particularly scary or tense scene in a movie I otherwise liked, if I cranked down the sound (or even turned it off), it completely lost its effect for me.

I've always wondered how the impact of music/sound affects others in varying degrees (the varying degrees is of more interest). I've always thought of myself as a highly visual processor (I have to visually imagine doing something before I can do it well) but would that sound technique work for others? Or are there people for whom the visuals are even scarier? Maybe people could walk around with % #s above their heads: "Music is XX% important to my experience of the world around me." :teehee:

For my part I have to avoid horror because I have photographic recall but it rather runs amok/is uncontrolled. After a horror film, I'm likely to have some of the worst images come back at me in the middle of the night. :mellow: (It has really helped on some big exams though - being able to mentally skim down your notes, seeing the doodles in the margin and all, can be pretty cool! I need to learn to make it do my bidding one of these days - those instances happen but they're flukes... :tongue: )


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Denice
post Mar 18 2008, 09:50 PM
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I think sound plays a vital role in making a great movie, let alone machinima. The problem is that some people who make music videos rely on the song they want too much in the sense that they overlook what the video part lacks (like character, imagination and creativity). Maybe it should be realized that the music ALONE should not be what makes a video great, because that way, it can't be called a good movie/machinima at all.
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Delanish
post May 26 2008, 02:23 PM
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-del-
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ahato360
post Nov 19 2008, 02:43 PM
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lol, i think any video without sound has no point in watching
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Silverlined_Prod...
post Feb 23 2009, 09:38 AM
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Meh, music videos are more for beginners. But occasionally you see the really good ones made by people that actually know what they are doing.

Ex: Frame of Mind - SlashDance

I don't mind watching a music video occasionally and giving a little feedback, because that's where I started back when I was using windows movie maker. I actually know a handful of people that started with simple music videos and worked their way up...

So I really wouldn't complain about seeing to many music videos. They're good for learning effects and can inspire other machinima artists to try and do even better. But eventually you should move past your music videos onto more unexplored content like voice acting, custom sound, ect. :thumbsup:

But for the record: Yes we are sick of the /dance emotes in music videos >.<


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Gorean
post May 19 2009, 12:26 AM
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Hey there,

First post for me, but I'm excited that this thread was already going when reading through the many topics. Excited because I am a musician that has worked with a machinima artist for the sole purpose of making a music video. This was to promote not only her work, but also my music. It was a fantastic partnership which benefited us both very much. Her site traffic increased, which helped her establish a more broad fanbase and portfolio for her college/school work. Our band drew lots and lots of interest for releasing our first single with a "digital/video game oriented" music video. Nobody is really doing this that I know of. At least not enough that I notice, or that is publicly noticed.

After reading over many of the posts, I've found mixed opinions about the idea of making music videos using machinima. I have to agree that many of the videos I have seen out there have been very plain, with not much influence from the actual song being put into play. I agree with Stone (started thread) that the video should reproduce the feel and idea of the song its representing. Otherwise its just another pvp video with a kick ass soundtrack in the background. :) kidding to an extent.....

Angel, from Angel Production created the video below for our song "When You Go." She interpreted the song on her own, and built from there. Many of you may frown at the use of the Sims 2 engine, but that was and still is her specialty. We were happy to see the results.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKceD8ZAhek
Check out her other videos at: http://www.angelproduction.it

The music is by 1000 Miles From Home
http://myspace.com/athousandmilesfromhome

Our band is still looking to get more machinima videos made for our songs. We have drooled over the thought of having folks like Baron S. or X-Cross work with us. Both of which are so busy it's hard to either afford them or get the time to work with them. :) Right now we are planning to release a video with every single song we make. Since our band is made up of engineers/gamers (geeks) we have hopes to represent our music with an visual of our gaming passion. Though, music and day jobs have left very little time for us to put our own machinima together. Mastering the craft seems to take lots of patience and time, which is obviously something we are all very short on. I am the only one in the band that has made any attempts at creating machinima. I've found I have more vision of what I want to make, than what i can actually create on the computer. LOL always the vision, never the eye.

If anyone is interested in working on something to promote their machinima talents and needs muse please let me know. We have a lot of music that has been professionally recorded, and just needs the right visual to complete the experience for our fans. Again, this works in the favor of both parties.

I can be reached either here on this forum or by personal email in my profile. Still being a machinima noob, I try to read up on the 101s as much as I can.

Thanks for reading. Flame on if the need is there. And thank you to all that have worked hard and created such amazing bits of machinima eye candy for fan boys like me.

Gorean (Zac)


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www.1000milesfromhome.com
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