“Dirty Shorts” are short films and experimental movies that I produced in the last years. They mostly mirror my attempts to try out a new technique. There are also spontaneous works that developed without any script. And finally you can see results of movie projects with my students. The longest film in this collection is “The Work Of My Hands” (34 minutes, no English subtitles), a bizarre horror comedy from 2009, which I would do totally different today but which I am also proud of.
A lot of creative thinking and work were put into all of these films, more than a casual viewer might deem possible. Those are movies I look back upon crying with one eye and laughing with the other.
This movie was an attempt to drum the three forms of English irregular verbs into my students’ brains.
“IRREgular!” was shot on a single school day shortly before the summer holidays. My students were about 13 years old and provided most of the ideas you can see in the film themselves.
“Rain” is a music video that talks about the victory of hope over depression. The song was written by Kai Dehmelt and Max Lorenz, two of my ex-students, who often write melodic and melancholic songs. When they asked me, if we could do a music video, I was sceptic at first – until I heard the song.
There are two levels of action in this film. On the one hand there are the musicians, as is typical of music videos. On the other hand there is the narrative element of a depressed boy who walks through town. A girl representing hope is putting her hands on a wall and ornaments are growing out of them, reaching out to the boy and drawing him towards her.
We shot this movie on a grey November day in 2012 in an old monastery and in the city of Meissen, Saxony. It was the first time I ever used a dolly to have a smooth camera move. That dolly was my car. I put the camera on its roof and we pushed it along the road – probably one of the most heavy dollies of amateur film history.
Quick Trick Chick Flick
Five days of planning. Six hours of photo shooting. 2500 images. Dresden in the summertime…
Juli 2011. Initially, I had planned a six-kilometer non-stop camera move through the inner city of Dresden, starting at Albertplatz and ending at the world-famous Church of Our Lady. Unfortunately it started raining after 45 minutes, so we had to cancel our ambitious project.
Frustrated we sat in a café. Since the rain didn’t stop, we had the idea to make the movie in one of Dresden’s biggest malls and improvise. At the end of the movie there is still the first scene we had already shot outside before the rain stopped us.
An eerie short film about a eldritch playground, where a monster is roving about.
The film is based upon a short cartoon by Ralf-Alex Fichtner. To find a location for this dark film I had been looking for an isolated playground. A skate park in Meissen was perfect. The drab and lifeless facility was in stark contrast to the beautiful autumnal trees.
Far From Any Road
The song “Far From Any Road” has originally been sung by “The Handsome Family” and was used in the opening credits of the dark crime series “True Detective”.
The show as well as the song are brilliant, so I decided to try a cover version. In October 2014 I recorded my own version in a studio, mainly because I wanted to do something crazy, challenging and fun, not necessarily start a new career as a singer.
Working with professional musicians like Veronica Kralacek (singer), Arne Rudiger (base guitar) and Tilman Droste (guitars & mix) has been an intimidating as well as a great experience. A small abstract piece of film hodgepodge round it all down to an acceptable level.
Crash Boom Ding Ding
An experimental music video, where the music is the product of the edit.
Fast Food Future
This short film answers the important question of whether 50 years from now there will still be fast food. The movie was developed spontaneously on a motorway station in the middle of nowhere.
Little Red Riding Hood
What sickening sight is waiting for Little Red Riding Hood inside the house of her grandmother?
Making that clip has taken a whole week. I had been thinking a long time about how to make the girl look as stupid as possible and still be cute. Eventually I decided on an egg-shaped head.
Eine kurze Horrorgeschichte in 60 Sekunden
A camera track through the dark abyss of the human soul.
I found this short story many years ago in a small thin book full of dark-humoured horror stories. It was only a single page with one illustration and some captions.
This animation movie is also only one single shot of a camera move through a front garden of a house.
The single components of the film were drawn completely in Photoshop, exported as different layers into After Effects and moved around in a virtual 3D space. I then animated and keyframed a camera that passed the right objects at the right time.
A dreary landscape on a planet like ours. A girl who carefully plants a seed into the earth. Then the dance begins.
“Seed is a psychedelic short film based on a comic story.
A completely meaningless stop-motion spectacle of the pseudo-religious sort.
The Work Of My Hands
Since that tragic day when Anna not only lost her family, but also her hands, she has been living in the orphanage “Cereal House”, led by the strange Miss Rottenmeier.
When she is offered new hands, Anna seizes the opportunity. But shortly after the operation strange things start happening. Anna is suddenly able to play the piano and she loses control of her hands.
“The Work Of My Hands” is a dark-humoured horror comedy full of special effects.