New Short Film
I've just completed my new short film 'This City is an Illusion:the debt' (2019) which is currently being submitted to film festivals.
This City is an illusion: the debt is a film that developed out of the bank crash of 2008 and my own experiences of debt in this period - it will be 11 years since the crash in September 2019.
The film mixes documented fact with fictionalised scenarios, using multiple formats including 16mm and Super8 to create the perspective and fractured memories of an east London debt collector Gabriel. One of the many recurring motifs of the film is Canary Wharf being built back in 1994. This motif continues through various viewpoints that Gabriel establishes including from a debtors balcony and an east London motorway bridge - the iconic banking buildings of Canary Wharf representing the debt system with which many people live in. The film has a number of other characters including Faith a working stripper, Mrs Jones a single mother and two absent debtors: Murray and Jonsey all of whom are all based on real people dealing with debt that I have known. The character The Horse played by James Tweedy is representative of a financial system that does not interact at a human level but is more akin to a phantom that haunts the lives of those trapped in the debt system, offering contracts and loans, a cross between a Gangster and a Banker. All the characters of this film are victims with the exception of The Horse - the chosen perspective of Gabriel gives a frightening insight into what people do to extract money out of others of behalf of bigger organisations. The films structure does not necessarily play out in chronological order but gives this appearance, thus the end may give clues as to why the narrative is constructed in such a fragmented way.
The majority of the production was set in and around the London borough of Greenwich with two additional locations in Soho in central London. The film is shot in true 2x anamorphic on DV giving an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 with additional formats including 2K digital stills, 16mm and Super-8.
The production budget was extremely low and was only made possible by the good will of everybody involved.