Machinima videos are a new discovery for me. I found a production very well developed for a young team of producers that is at the same time an excellent example of remixing practices and it is related with my focus theme. Regarding the story, it have a original narrative, is creative and attractive, and also shows a sense of audience. I enjoyed the positive inclusion this bilingual production brings.
The video is a remarkable example of remixing practices, literacy skill development and promotion of collaborative work between diversity teams. Al Peretz is a recognized Spanish-speaking machinima producer. He is working on developing machinima videos with a cultural approach. In an interview about his approach, he mentioned the difficulty of creating machinima videos in Spanish but how the production process helps developing team members English skills and becoming familiar with other cultures since everyone participating in the project brought their personal background. After the interview published in the book Machinima: The Art and Practice of Virtual Filmmaking the authors concluded “Al Peretz is one of a growing number of Spanish-speaking machinima producers who bring a cultural perspective to its art and practice. His school targeted to helping the Latino community learn machinate is likely the first of its kind, particularly when looking for online instruction intro areas. The machinima community in Second Life has encouraged such thinking, with the idea of acknowledging the accessibility and empowerment offered by this tool.” (Johnson & Pettit 2012, p. 222)
Critiquing the story from the kingd of involvement and literacy dimensions I found all the kind of involvements and literacy mentioned in Lankshear’s and Knobel’s chapter four appendix. I will comment the ones in my opinion that are best addressed.
Video editing skills: The video production is excellent. To produce a machinima video blending together different sections, actions, and games requires expertise editing software to create a cohesive whole. The flow and pace is adequate and blended appropriately virtual and real world as well multiple languages. I also enjoyed the incorporation of captions and comic elements to facilitate bilingual audience involvement. Additionally all the production credits are detailed in the video site.
Expressing fan identity: This short film evidences deep understanding of gaming, avatar creation, self identification with digital identities, relationship between non-player characters and virtual world. Additionally it provided a sense of different interactions depending on cultural background.
Maximizing narrative: This machinima movie demonstrated a deep understanding of how to leverage the original games and mashup them to maximize the original machinima story created and developed by the producers. They put together several games and game elements to make a cohesive and logic story effectively integrating gaming environment, character manipulation and game expertise skills.
The production is in my opinion is outstanding. However it has a little space to improve. I think sometimes the soundtrack can provide more sense of action. Also I would like to see a version developed in Spanish with the parallel real actor conversations in English. This great short movie is a great way to encourage new literacy instruction as well as creativity and originality, my main concerns with the materials I reviewed last week.