We’ve kept a pretty vigilant eye on the work of director Alex Amoling this year on DN, especially his collaborations with musician Chae Hawk. However, long before he landed on our radar Amoling had created a 40 minute sci-fi thesis film whilst at Emerson college. It’s a film he’s described as “a symbol of one of the most rewarding and heartbreaking experiences of my life”, and has largely remained shelved and unseen since its 2011 completion.
Cut to now and the recently concluded Departure Films competition in which filmmakers were invited to create a video for Hammock track Mute Angels. After listening to the track and finding it stirred similar feelings in him as his film, Amoling decided to jettison all thoughts he previously held about the film to re-imagine it as a 5 minute cut which served Hammock’s music:
“I was on my parents’ porch, while I was listening to “Mute Angels.” This was my first moment of feeling truly at peace in a long time and that’s where the editing began. I threw out everything I knew about the footage in front of me and worked to recreate the emotional journey the song had brought me on. The process wasn’t easy. It involved me re-examining my outlook on the material, leaving thirty five minutes on the cutting room floor, and creating entirely new visual effects sequences up until the contest deadline. I sifted through outtakes, mistakes, little forgotten moments, and anything I could get my hands on to find performances that drove the completely new story.” – Alex Amoling, Hammock Mute Angels Interview
Whilst probably worth the effort for the catharsis it provided alone, Amoling’s new cut took first place in the Departure Films contest to be crowned as the official video for Mute Angels.