Lego Stop-Motion, Feature-Length Film Discovered

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Erik Olson

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May 25, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/25/99
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Lego Stop-Motion, Feature-Length Film Discovered


A while ago there was some talk about stop motion films with Lego.
Coincidentally, I was introduced to the creator of a 1975 school
project featuring Lego "70's Big People" characters in elaborate
brick sets and vehicles. The feature was filmed in Super 8, with 9
pictures per second (frame doubled to get 18) and reportedly lasts
30 minutes.

The film was titled "A Lego Experience" and was shot by John Lakos
and one other student (name forthcoming; who also scored the film)
in New York. It follows the exploits of Granny--if you played with
Big People you remember Granny--and the rest of her gang of
thoughtless criminals as they bungle crime after crime with "Too
Much TNT." In one scene, just after they have destroyed an armored
car with a too-powerful tank, the gang's getaway van is chased by a
fleet of police cars. Giving them the slip, the van drives
inside a larger truck which then goes past the cops in the other
direction. Finally it drives into a still larger van to make the
escape good. Ah, the possibilities of whimsical scale.

Some of the film is live action as vehicles and sets explode, and
the maker was quite proud of the care it took to accomplish the
seamless transitions to these "effects shots".

I asked Lakos if he would be willing to share his film
with others and he gave the initial go-ahead to digitizing some
stills from the movie. Don't hold your breath for the digital
restoration, as the last Super 8 print is in storage, somewhere.

More on "A Lego Experience" as it becomes available! You'll hear
of it in RTL if it comes online.

John Lakos is the author of _Large-Scale C++ Software Design_ (1996)
and is currently employed in the securities industry.

--
Erik Olson -- ols...@interport.net Visit my "Sanctuary of Fortuna"
http://www.users.interport.net/~olsone/contest.html 10,000 Lego bricks!

Dave!

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May 26, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/26/99
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Erik Olson wrote:
>
> Lego Stop-Motion, Feature-Length Film Discovered
**snip**

> More on "A Lego Experience" as it becomes available! You'll hear
> of it in RTL if it comes online.

About 18 years ago, while at a friend's house, I saw a LEGO "short" as
an intermission piece on the "premium" channel Prism. I remember almost
nothing about it, except that it was stop motion and depicted either ice
skating or a hockey game. I do remember distinctly that one player's
arms were made of about 6 1x2 hinge bricks each, and, since at the time
I only had two, I was in awe.

Dave!

Erik Olson

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May 27, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/27/99
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Wow... I hope someone somewhere collected these shorts, so that they
surface one day when all adults partake of the wonders of Lego and one
says "Hey! I've got that old Beta recording of this stuff!"


I almost miss the days when I had to pine after parts I didn't have. All I
wanted were some studded wheel covers to make the new cars in 6000!

John Lakos has given the OK to digitizing his book of the movie. I have
got him looking forward to finding the film when he moves out of his house
in the near future.

Certain similarities to the 6000 Lego Idea Book now occur to me. The
script of "A Lego Experience" begins with lots of vehicles and soon leads
to the destruction of a building. Then the story follows the space
adventures of the characters as they take off in a rocket. Finally the
rocket returns to a strangely altered, pastoral Earth. But soon the Lego
people go back to their old element and the cycle starts anew... just like
6000!

-Erik

al...@iteams.org

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May 28, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/28/99
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> >
> > About 18 years ago, while at a friend's house, I saw a LEGO "short"
as
> >an intermission piece on the "premium" channel Prism. I remember
almost
> >nothing about it, except that it was stop motion and depicted either
ice
> >skating or a hockey game. I do remember distinctly that one player's
> >arms were made of about 6 1x2 hinge bricks each, and, since at the
time
> >I only had two, I was in awe.
> >
> > Dave!
>
> Wow... I hope someone somewhere collected these shorts, so that they
> surface one day when all adults partake of the wonders of Lego and one
> says "Hey! I've got that old Beta recording of this stuff!"

The "short" in question is one episode from the Lego Sport Video, a half
hour compilation of 7 stop-action segments, each highlighting a sporting
activity. The segments are (the order is not exact): Ice Hockey; Soccer;
Ice Dancing; Rythmic Gymnastics; Slalom; Formula One Racing; Weight
Lifting. They are quite whimsical, always with "something" happening
that turns the endeavour into minor farce. My three year old daughter
loves it, as do her parents, but the computer generated music can
sometines grate (hence volume control on the remote).

From the credits, it appears that all the creators and sundry technical
folks for this production are Hungarian.

Alan


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