Life In A Day review

In Blog, Film, Lifestyle by jennisheppardLeave a Comment


As the world’s first crowdsourced feature film, Life In A Day may be too much of a gimmick for some moviegoers. But I found this unprecedented self-portrait of humanity both strangely fascinating and surprisingly moving.

The project began with an online appeal by Executive Producer Ridley Scott, in collaboration with Youtube, looking for contributors from around the world to record their lives for a single day on 24 July 2010.

The response was phenomenal and broke all Youtube records. Editor Joe Walker received 4,500 hours of video from amateurs and professionals in 197 countries. Incredibly, he and a team of film students then spent two months watching every single video.

As you would expect from a user-generated project, there was a lot of mundane footage of everyday life, not to mention shots of people’s feet. But Walker and his director Kevin Macdonald use these markers to give the film structure, while weaving together the narratives of several contributors with bigger stories to tell.

You can’t help but be touched by these stories. An American family trying to cope in the aftermath of cancer, a Peruvian boy earning his money shining shoes and a Japanese widower raising his young son alone.

But the film is not only a testament to our ability to take life as it comes with determination and dignity. It also embodies the inherent unpredictability of life itself, offering many unexpected moments of joy, humour and whimsy. And yes, at one point a girl does appear to complete a Rubik’s cube while hula hooping in a desert.

Crowdsourcing has many critics, and creating a whole film from Youtube videos was always going to be a brave gamble. But Life In A Day goes beyond the gimmick to become a captivating film bursting with the love, loss, beauty and horror of life as we know it.

Life In A Day is released in UK cinemas on 17 June 2011 rated 12A.

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