Thursday, October 20, 2011



Directed by Colin Levy, Netherlands, 2010, 15 Minutes

Source: YouTube

Sintel is the story of a girl name Sintel who by chance comes across a wounded baby dragon. After taking the baby dragon in, healing it, and naming it Scales, a older dragon captures scales and takes it away. Sintel then goes on a perilous journey across the world in order to get her dragon friend back. However, when Sintel finally finds scales again, certain events lead to a sad and shocking ending.

When I first saw Sintel I was blown away by the graphics, cinematography, and the story. However, as I watched the short over and over again I began to realize that something was missing. That something depth meaning that this film gives off a feeling that your being rushed through a complicated story. In other words, Sintel feels like it should be a two and half hour epic instead of fifteen minutes of rushed mediocrity. While the various landscapes and shots are stunning, this movie is really disappointing because this deep and amazing story is rushed leaving the viewer wanting more.

However, Sintel is a different type of film than any of the other films posted so far on this blog. Sintel is a free open source movie created on a open source 3D program called Blender. The main purpose of this film was to raise money through DVD sales to help fund the Blender Foundation, which oversees the Blender 3D program. In fact, it's through my interest in the program Blender that I came across this movie and it stuck with me ever since. In case you are unfamiliar with what an open source movie is, it's a movie where by purchasing the DVD you receive all of the files used to make the movie. This unfortunately means that the main reason this movie doesn't stand up well is because it's meant to sell DVDs for the content instead of the story. By rushing the story and making it complicated, the Blender Foundation was able to create tons of content to put on the DVDs that makes them a better deal but at the same time kills the magnificent story.

This still isn't an excuse for ruining an amazing story and Sintel is still an amazing short film. However, in order to see it's beauty you have to really look deep into it's rushed story line and imagine what it would look like if it wasn't rushed. Hopefully at some point in the future, they decide to redo this short and flush it out so the story really gets a chance to shine.


Mark said...

I agree - I'm a Blender user/fan and I think this is fantastic, though I'd have loved to see it as a full length feature film! (Even though I know it is not practical for a project of this size)

haley schattner said...

Though the animation is amazing, I have a hard time watching it, and would therefore not be able to sit through this film as a feature even though I agree, the story is complicating and rushed and would make a good feature. Thank you for sharing. I am now interested in finding other films by this company.