Let’s Meet the CEO and Play God: What the Trailer for “Ex Machina” Tells You About Your Boss

Big tech companies’ CEOs can be quite unusual people, praised as those few enlightened individuals able to bring grounbreaking visions to the world. On the forefront of design, innovation and technology, they’re worshipped for their unique ability to inspire people and open new roads. But what if these paths lead to unknown territories that question…

A Sherlock Holmes for the Digital Age

What would the best detective on the market do nowadays to solve more cases? Elementary, my dear readers: they would run a blog. If you’re searching for inspiration about personal branding, you then should have a look at Sherlock Holmes’ The Science of Deduction. I am admittedly quite late in catching up with the latest…

Do You Know Which Is The Most Northern Place? Filmmaker Anrick Bregman Has the Answer. And It’s Interactive (Part 3)

After discussing the project’s genesis and some aspects of the storytelling process, I asked director Anrick Bregman to share more insights about immersive tools, music and sound design featured in his web doc The Most Northern Place. Prominent Monkey: Which are the main features that create the immersive experience you designed for the viewer? Anrick…

Do You Know Which Is The Most Northern Place? Filmmaker Anrick Bregman Has the Answer. And It’s Interactive (Part 2)

After discussing the genesis of The Most Northern Place with director Anrick Bregman, I wanted to know more about the engagement aspects of his interactive documentary and discover how he and his team approached this compelling story. Prominent Monkey: In this post you said that a traditional documentary would not achieve the same sense of exploration.…

Do You Know Which Is The Most Northern Place? Filmmaker Anrick Bregman Has the Answer. And It’s Interactive (Part 1)

There is no doubt that digital media is pushing the boundaries of filmmaking. When it comes to documentaries, web docs leave linear narratives behind and allow viewers to experience a more engaging connection with the story portrayed. Very often they are large-scale projects with very consistent budgets, but who said you can’t achieve immersive outcomes…

Is the “Vikings” TV series Worth Watching?

Finally I made it: I watched the pilot for Vikings. And after seeing it, I’ll give the Canadian-Irish TV series a chance. We’re actually well into it, with Season 3 scheduled to air on the History television channel in 2015, but better late than never, given the fact that I’ve always been fascinated by Norse…

The Crowd Strikes Back

I’ll start this post by jumping back into memories. Over a year ago, I was on a night flight on my way back to Verona after pitching at the STARTinMED startup forum in Barcelona. After a few hours of sleep I took my car and on a rainy early morning left for Udine to give…

In the Middle of Everything: Dennis Hopper and “The Lost Album”

An American photojournalist gone insane in the middle of the jungle, waiting for the crew of a boat with arms wide open: to me this character from Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now is still the most iconic among those Dennis Hopper portrayed onscreen. Coincidentally or not, besides being a director and a painter, the actor…

What I Got From My One Day at “Learn Do Share”

I usually say that crosspollination is the key to today’s creative landscape: film and digital media, storytelling and coding, multi-platform worlds and social innovation, smart cities and interactive stories, gaming technologies and journalism. I couldn’t then resist when I heard that Learn Do Share was coming to London for a free two-day conference packed with…

From Video Art to Narrative Films: The Case of Masbedo’s “The Lack”

The Lack is quite an appropriate title for the latest work of Nicolò Massazza and Iacopo Bedogni, aka Masbedo, an Italian creative duo active within video art, performance and photography. On 31 August their first feature film was screened at the 71th Venice Film Festival as a special event within the Venice Days section. The…

Gordon Parks’ “American History”, or Why Style Can’t Be Taught

Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Ingrid Bergman, Duke Ellington, Glenn Gould, Paul Newman: some of the most iconic portraits of celebrities, artists and human rights activists of the 20th century were taken by a self-taught photographer born into poverty and segregation in Kansas. Gordon Parks (1912-2006) is probably the most important African American photographer in the…

On Viruses, Apes and People Getting Hysterical at Film Screenings

Hey, it happens. Scientists design a virus to get rid of Alzheimer’s and as a result they wipe out almost the whole of mankind, enhancing the intelligence of apes on the way. Too bad, I’m sure next time they’ll do it better and manage to exterminate us all. Wondering how this idea will affect your…

Would You Contribute to the Hunt for Robots? Then the “Transformers Are Dangerous” Campaign Needs You (If You Survive the “Bayhem”)

Optimus Prime wielding a sword and riding a fire-breathing Dinobot is the epitome of the last instalment of the Transformers franchise, a film series that is heavily based on excess, sensory saturation and, here and there, a total lack of self-consciousness. Over the past years I have come to realise that enduring a movie directed…

How Many Digital Revolutions? The Hottest Exhibition on Tech and Creativity at Barbican Centre Is the Right Place to Get the Answer

Videogames, interactive documentaries, VFX: whether you are a media archaeologist, a nostalgic lover of game consoles from the 1980s, a curious investigator of wearable technologies or a fan of the latest hi-tech blockbuster, there is only one place to be in London this summer: the Barbican Centre, home until 14 September to the Digital Revolution…

Does Future of Journalism Lie in Immersive Virtual Reality Experiences? A Close Look at “Project Syria”

Living conditions in a refugee camp or in a street devastated by a bomb sound abstract to the majority of us. What if technology allowed people to experience these scenarios in an immersive environment, reproducing real events through actual audio, video and photographs taken at the scene? Nonny de la Peña calls this technology-driven opportunity…

Beyond Banksy: A Taste of Street Art in London

I have always thought that part of the success of street art lies in the fact that these artists manage to integrate their oeuvres within urban spaces in the most unexpected ways. Their provoking works interact with what’s around them and force us to view walls, bridges, doors and windows through different eyes. Outside of…

Chris Marker: A Grin Without a Cat

“In another time I guess I would have been content with filming girls and cats. But you don’t choose your time.” Chris Marker Judging by some of the works displayed at his first UK retrospective, not to mention the title of the exhibition itself, Chris Marker really loved felines. I think the French artist and…

Godzilla: King of The Buzz

Like the catchphrase says, “haters gonna hate”, but the King of monsters couldn’t care less. Gareth Edwards’ reboot of one the most popular franchises in the history of Japanese sci-fi films has already destroyed the box office using its signature atomic breath (and some brand new marketing tools). As for fans and detractors, they are busy…

The Art of Immersion: Director Claude Mossessian on Filming Artists and Interactive Installations (Part. 2)

After discussing how Claude Mossessian started his career, in this second instalment of the interview with the filmmaker Prominent Monkey focuses on his work with French digital artist Miguel Chevalier. Prominent Monkey: I find your long-lasting collaboration with Miguel Chevalier particularly interesting. How did you start to work with him? Claude Mossessian: I met him…

“Frank”, or What it Takes to be an Artist and Market Yourself in the Era of Social Media

If you’re an artist trying to break into the crowded music business, then Lenny Abrahamson’s film Frank will speak to you because it addresses one of the most delicate questions for creative professionals nowadays: how do I reach my audience? [some SPOILERS ahead] When wannabe musician Jon (Domhnall Gleeson) is offered the chance of a lifetime joining…

Pink Is the Colour of War. Photographer Richard Mosse Documents the Congolese Conflict With Troubling Poetic Shade

When we’re asked about a colour to describe war, we hardly find ourselves thinking of bright pink. Yet this is the palette that Irish photographer Richard Mosse has chosen to describe the cycle of violence in Congo. His work on the topic is well known to the international public, at least since his exhibition The Enclave at the 2013…

Before “Netwars/Out of CTRL”, Cyberwarfare Never Looked So Stylish

If the recent Heartbleed bug got you worried that someone could take advantage of your online assets, you might now want to know some more about “info threats”. Luckily, you don’t need to hang out with international wanted criminals to have a glimpse of what a cyber attack looks like: projects like Netwars are here…

I Heard the Sound of Space, Once. Then a DJ Played on it.

I wasn’t a fan of “hard sciences” when I was younger. Actually, I had a fatal attraction for social sciences (if the difference still makes any sense). Maybe I never fell in love with physics and chemistry because of the lack of passion – not to mention the poor will of engagement with students –…