“Hezarfen” by Tolga Ari, Romain Blanchet, Chung-Yu Huang & Rémy Hurlin

Four recent graduates (Tolga Ari, Romain Blanchet, Chung-Yu Huang, Rémy Hurlinfrom) of Supinfocom Arles share their final project with us, Hezarfen.

Hezarfen is a Turkish historical character. The story takes place in 1632 in Turkey where he attempts the first human flight. The legend goes as far as to say that he flew through the Bosphorus, to almost 3 miles away from the tower from which he started.

The movie is much more about how he jumps from this tower. We have created the script together to get another vision of the story. We wanted to make some fresh and bright pictures and let the audience discover the beauty of this legend in our own way.


  • MichaelHughes

    This is a huge innovation on the French animated short chase film. When the characters are not moved in any way to chase each other, the inevitability of the genre causes the environment to fall apart and chase them around.

    • Iritscen

      This is the form of conflict which in literature we call “Man vs. Environment”.

    • http://www.elliotelliotelliot.com Elliot Cowan

      Michael – your comment is perfect in its observation.

  • Jim

    In the past, Supinfocom’s films have typically been more interesting (from an idea standpoint) than the stuff coming out of Gobelins. Now apparently everyone is just making chase films, over and over again. Look, I get it — making a short film is extremely hard and making a good short film is even more difficult. These guys should be commended for finishing a film that looks, and sounds, very nice.

    But, it’s hard not to be disappointed by the utter lack of story development here. Can anyone point me to the part of the film where you learn anything about any of the characters? Feel free to tell me how much you know about guy who bounces around rooftops with chicken, or guy who tends sheep, or even the main character, guy with wings strapped to his back. I’m not asking for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly in a 3.5 minute short, but if you’re going to spend months and months on a film, why not at least pretend to give your character(s) depth?

    • Katy

      If you are a student, you make your film to find a job.. so as a young animator I think your main priory is to show that you can move a character around. If you do a piece of work that is too ‘quiet’ you might risk having subtlety mistaken for inability.

      Not saying character depth wouldn’t be nice- just, it’s not top of the list.

    • http://adconcept.blogspot.com Alejandro D

      I invite you to see:

      d’une rare crudité
      http://vodpod.com/watch/5234159-dune-rare-crudit-supinfocm-2010

      matatoro
      http://vimeo.com/13298058

      slimtime
      http://vimeo.com/15635854

      tous des monstres
      http://vimeo.com/18563134

      between some others, all shortfilms from supinfocom 2010 before you keep doing comments about how the french schools do only chase sequences… It’s better to be well informed before doing critics like that

      • Jim

        Hi Alejandro, thanks for the links. Hopefully some of those films will be released online soon.

        I’m not sure if there’s a bit of miscommunication here, but I tried to acknowledge that in the past, Supinfocom’s films have generally been more creative. However, in the last few months we’ve seen this film as well as two others from former Supinfocom students (Meet Buck and Salesman Pete) that are essentially nothing but extended chase scenes. Maybe it’s our fault as a community for drooling so much over visually impressive (but shallow) films.

    • Olo

      I see nothing wrong with animation students trying to script their stories to suit a showcase of their talents cos they’re mostly students studying to become a part of the commercial animation industry. It’s understandable that character development or fresh story ideas take a backseat. Plus it’s not their fault only chase films got highlighted by animation’s social media lately.

  • http://woweh.com Kelly

    I thought it was cool and fun! I loved the music, too. :)

  • Dino

    The madcap chase with characters getting flung into the air is the centerpiece of every CG blockbuster now. These guys are just showing their ability to deliver the product.

  • Jm

    Thank Allah this is not a chase seque….Oh wait it is!!

    I invite you to check out My friend Carlos Felipe’s film
    also from Supinfocom, it’s beautiful and it does not involve telling the story in a series of action sequence gags. (not that there is anything wrong with that but…come on it’s tiring after a while)

    http://www.aldente-themovie.com/

    • Iritscen

      That *was* a nice film, thanks for sharing the link.

  • NR

    That was great! Wow… people love to complain about nothing.

  • http://www.goodaboy.com Rajesh

    The nudity was a nice touch.

    • Daniel J. Drazen

      Very recognizable by anyone who’s ever seen Ingres’ “Bain Turk.” Major in-joke for art students.

      And to me it wasn’t so much a chase as a massive pile-up of unintended consequences lending the picture a nice feeling of absurdity.

  • Bloopworld

    It was WAY too similar to Oktopodi. Not only in the way it was generally scripted, but also noticeable in the design of certain characters. Overall its starting to create the general “french” classification of student shorts. Random chases lead to extreme events. If they have a little more thought, the end usually is a loop of the beginning, initiating another chase.

    • http://comedyforanimators.com/ Jonathan Lyons

      I was also reminded of Oktopodi, based on the arrangement of streets they were falling through. But in Oktopodi, the octopus was intentionally chasing the truck in variety of interesting ways. Here, everything happens accidentally, nobody is choosing to make any of this happen. It relies on gravity, not on character. Although the production values are impressive, it didn’t make me laugh, or care.

  • Q

    Out of all the beautiful chase films I’ve seen this one is the weakest by far. Even with other chase films with their long drawn out second act of the story, the audience still might care about what is happening because action is still relevant to the motivation and the goal of the protagonists. This film throws in so many other characters and gags that don’t even build up the payoff in a meaningful way.

  • tgentry

    There were some nice gags in it, but overall I have to agree there’s just a ‘sameness’ and predictability to it. I knew what what was coming from a mile away, even if the details were occasionally charming. I was really hoping for some clincher at the end that would add some layer of depth to the physical comedy, or give it a reason to be there other than “here’s some stuff happening”. Still, in the context of a student film it’s not half bad.

  • gurkan

    a nice work, and if this student work compared with many other proffesional chase films, i would nothing but just appreciate these guys. also we should never forget that these films are like short stories not novels. there cannot be anything in detail, neither a protogonist or an antogonist, sub-pilot,scene….. Just sudden overflow of emotions, thoughts or laughs.
    the rest is enviousness.

    • Bill Bowler

      Hey, give the creators of this short movie a break. In my view the animation was excellent – of objects and of ‘live’ characters, and the latter had nicely differentiated personalities and expressed some pretty convincing emotions (fear, surprise, shock, desperation, terror, bliss etc.) There were a number of querky fun moments – the hamam plunge being one, the bouncing sheep being another. The Galata tower was well drawn, and the roofscape chase in the Galata district of Istanbul was convincingly atmospheric (helped by the music). To those previous commentators who mentioned a lack of a plot, I’d just like to say – I don’t think the point of the movie was either to show plot or reveal depth of character. The Hezarfen ‘first manned flight’ story is very well known in Turkish culture. It’s as iconic in its way as the story of Sir Isaac Newton watching the apple falling from the tree when he came up with his theory of gravity. What the creators of this short movie have done – in my view – is to tell us about the dramatic chain of hilarious mishaps that were happening amongst ordinary people of the day in that ‘frozen moment in time’ just before the polymath Hezarfen took his ‘historic’ flight. This movie, for me, is making quite a witty post-modern comment about ‘great men’ and their social and historical context, about high-culture and popular culture, about ‘noble drama’ and ‘slapstick comedy’. So, I personally don’t believe it’s just a shallow extended chase scene at all – I think it’s quite a thoughtful short movie. Of course it would be great if the team involved could get the finance to animate the complete Hezarfen story and maybe include in it his brother Lagari’s quest to make the first manned rocket flight too. (You could get some good character development and exciting plot progression out of that kind of sibling rivalry in a longer movie.) But failing that, this seems to me to be a cute, well-executed, short, stand-alone comment on the fact that ‘behind every extraordinary scientific leap forward there’s always lots of ordinary people going about their daily business, battling against untoward events, and trying to cope as best they can with things apparently falling apart’!