Movie trailers

Trailer talk: ‘The Hateful Eight’, ‘The 33’, and ‘The Danish Girl’

The awards season makes its mark on the week’s releases.

The January 15 releases include two Hollywood movies that are slugging it out for awards glory, a low-budget tearjerker about noble teachers, and a movie starring Kate del Castillo, the Mexican actresses who along with Sean Penn played a role in nabbing the Mexican drug baron known as “El Chapo.”

The 33 In 2010, 33 miners were trapped for over two months in a mine in Chile. Running parallel to their ordeal were the efforts of Hollywood’s finest to make the first movie on their rescue. The film is finally out, and it stars the estimable Antonio Banderas as the leader of the miners, who eggs on his comrades even as their wives anxiously await their return and their mining company combats media criticism and adverse public opinion. The survival drama also stars Juliette Binoche, Gabriel Byrne, James Brolin and Rodrigo Santoro. Also look out for Kate del Castillo, the Mexican television actress who brokered the interview between fugitive druglord “El Chapo” and American actor Sean Penn that resulted in his recapture.

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The Hateful Eight Quentin Tarantino’s eighth film has gathered the force of the same blizzard that confines its characters to a wayside inn. The period movie is set in the aftermath of the Civil War and examines the racism and general nastiness that rent the air. Seven men and one woman with revenge on their mind are out and about on a snow-crazed day. The characters include soldiers on either side of the Civil War, suspicious folks who might or might not be gang members in disguise trying to free a convict on death row, and one man claiming to be sheriff. The heavyweight cast includes Samuel L Jackson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kurt Russell, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Bruce Dern and Channing Tatum.

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The Danish Girl Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech, Les Miserables) is back in the awards race with his adaptation of David Ebershoff’s novel of the same name. Set in Denmark in the 1920s and ’30s, The Danish Girl explores the transformation of Einar (Eddie Redmayne) into Lili. He is helped in his gender transition by his wife, fellow artist Greta (Alicia Vikander). The novel fictionalises the relationship between Lili Elbe, a pioneering volunteer for sex reassignment surgery, and his wife Gerda. Redmayne’s performance has awards juries in a tizzy – should he be nominated in the Best Actress category, perhaps?

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Chalk N Duster The major Hindi release of the week stars Shabana Azmi and Juhi Chawla as idealistic teachers at a school that faces the threat of modernisation (read increased fees, a changed curriculum, and layoffs). Faced with a new principal with evil designs on their way of functioning, the teachers revolt. Directed by Jayant Gilatar, who has a couple of films and most several television series to his credit.

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Rebellious Flower A biopic, in Hindi, of the formative years of the godman Rajneesh, who was known as Osho in his later years. Backed by the Osho Foundation in Pune and directed by Krishan Hooda, Rebellious Flower reveals how Raja, a young boy in a village, was transformed into the spiritual leader who attracted followers and controversy in equal measure.

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Not just for experts: How videography is poised for a disruption

Digital solutions are making sure it’s easier than ever to express your creativity in moving images.

Where was the last time you saw art? Chances are on a screen, either on your phone or your computer. Stunning photography and intricate doodles are a frequent occurrence in the social feeds of many. That’s the defining feature of art in the 21st century - it fits in your pocket, pretty much everyone’s pocket. It is no more dictated by just a few elite players - renowned artists, museum curators, art critics, art fair promoters and powerful gallery owners. The digital age is spawning creators who choose to be defined by their creativity more than their skills. The negligible incubation time of digital art has enabled experimentation at staggering levels. Just a few minutes of browsing on the online art community, DeviantArt, is enough to gauge the scope of what digital art can achieve.

Sure enough, in the 21st century, entire creative industries are getting democratised like never before. Take photography, for example. Digital photography enabled everyone to capture a memory, and then convert it into personalised artwork with a plethora of editing options. Apps like Instagram reduced the learning curve even further with its set of filters that could lend character to even unremarkable snaps. Prisma further helped to make photos look like paintings, shaving off several more steps in the editing process. Now, yet another industry is showing similar signs of disruption – videography.

Once burdened by unreliable film, bulky cameras and prohibitive production costs, videography is now accessible to anyone with a smartphone and a decent Internet bandwidth. A lay person casually using social media today has so many video types and platforms to choose from - looping Vine videos, staccato Musical.lys, GIFs, Instagram stories, YouTube channels and many more. Videos are indeed fast emerging as the next front of expression online, and so are the digital solutions to support video creation.

One such example is Vizmato, an app which enables anyone with a smartphone to create professional-looking videos minus the learning curve required to master heavy, desktop software. It makes it easy to shoot 720p or 1080p HD videos with a choice of more than 40 visual effects. This fuss- free app is essentially like three apps built into one - a camcorder with live effects, a feature-rich video editor and a video sharing platform.

With Vizmato, the creative process starts at the shooting stage itself as it enables live application of themes and effects. Choose from hip hop, noir, haunted, vintage and many more.

The variety of filters available on Vizmato
The variety of filters available on Vizmato

Or you can simply choose to unleash your creativity at the editing stage; the possibilities are endless. Vizmato simplifies the core editing process by making it easier to apply cuts and join and reverse clips so your video can flow exactly the way you envisioned. Once the video is edited, you can use a variety of interesting effects to give your video that extra edge.

The RGB split, Inset and Fluidic effects.
The RGB split, Inset and Fluidic effects.

You can even choose music and sound effects to go with your clip; there’s nothing like applause at the right moment, or a laugh track at the crack of the worst joke.

Or just annotated GIFs customised for each moment.

Vizmato is the latest offering from Global Delight, which builds cross-platform audio, video and photography applications. It is the Indian developer that created award-winning iPhone apps such as Camera Plus, Camera Plus Pro and the Boom series. Vizmato is an upgrade of its hugely popular app Game Your Video, one of the winners of the Macworld Best of Show 2012. The overhauled Vizmato, in essence, brings the Instagram functionality to videos. With instant themes, filters and effects at your disposal, you can feel like the director of a sci-fi film, horror movie or a romance drama, all within a single video clip. It even provides an in-built video-sharing platform, Popular, to which you can upload your creations and gain visibility and feedback.

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So, whether you’re into making the most interesting Vines or shooting your take on Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape of You’, experience for yourself how Vizmato has made video creation addictively simple. Android users can download the app here and iOS users will have their version in January.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Vizmato and not by the Scroll editorial team.