Do whatever you have to do to make your movie. Let nothing stop you. Now, I want to introduce you to filmmaker Lymond Ponder. He heeded this advice and created the CG-animated short Resilient Red-X. It’s a blend of Tron and Mad Max, with a splash of Captain EO at the end.
Resilient Red-X refers to a team of gamers sucked into a digital world and must run through an evil CPU’s game grid to survive. Their only chance is to navigate through several traps and a horde of digital jellyfish, known as binary sprites. The team is comprised of Luna, LP, Slasher, Lanta, Stealth, and Channel. All have their individual set of skills and must work together like a well-oiled machine or be defeated. When all hope is lost, the crew’s last resort is dance power.
Let’s face it. The big Hollywood studios have a lock on quality computer animation. Unless you have a few million dollars lying around, there is no way to compete with them (even the one that made The Emoji Movie). Fortunately, there is off-the-shelf software on the market, and writer-director Ponder made his movie with the gusto and resourcefulness of a guerilla filmmaker.
“…sucked into a digital world and must run through an evil CPU’s game grid to survive.”
It would be an unfair fight to pit Resilient Red-X against Pixar’s latest, Turning Red. Quite frankly, it falls far short of the standard. That said, writer-director Ponder pushed his resources as far as his computer could go. He built a full-on detailed digital battleground with assault vehicles, weapons, and digital characters you would meet in virtual reality, like VR Chat or Second Life. The facial animation and texture are impressive.
The animation appears to use motion capture but could not produce a 24-frames-per-second smoothness that we’re accustomed to. But it does offer some decent fight sequences and a cool dance battle at the end. However, its problems, which are well within the filmmaker’s control, are that sound and dialogue are hard to understand. Also, the voice acting could have been better, and we need some backstory to understand how perilous this world is and why our heroes find themselves in danger. Cool soundtrack, though.
Resilient Red-X offers a fun yarn, hampered only by the limitations of the DIY production. Hopefully, Ponder’s film serves as a huge first step toward bigger tales and grander adventures. So support an emerging filmmaker and watch the nearly 18-minute short, sit back and enjoy.
For more about Resilient Red-X, go to its official site.
"…built a full-on detailed digital battleground with assault vehicles, weapons, and digital characters you would meet in virtual reality..."