Review

Film Threat reviews MADE PUBLIC, a "wonderfully produced and intelligent short" by Foster Wilson

The independent film site Film Threat has published a review of Foster Wilson and Brian Leahy’s short film MADE PUBLIC:

“What I like about Made Public is that it takes a simple idea of a public Facebook poll about whether he should go through with his wedding.  Rather than turning it into 13 minutes of yuk, yuk silliness, he instead makes a statement about this need to engage everyone and the world in our everyday decisions to the point when we can’t make any decision on our own…even the big one. Are you able to decide for yourself anymore, or are you going to make it based on mob popularity?

The film itself is fun to watch. It starts like an SNL sketch and suddenly gets serious when Dave is face-to-face with his fiancé Sydney (Jeanine Mason). Dave’s long walk to Sydney and their return to the alter is a single extended shot with Jeanine Mason giving a thoughtful, compelling speech about social media and individuality to the indecisive groom. So effective that at some point you wonder why she’s putting up with the emasculated Dave.

Made Public is a wonderfully produced and intelligent short, that balances it’s sketch comedy elements with an actual thoughtful message behind it.”

MADE PUBLIC director Foster Wilson on the Reel Easy Review Podcast by Foster Wilson

In the days before MADE PUBLIC’s online release, director Foster Wilson appeared on the Reel Easy Review Podcast to discuss her journey as a filmmaker, the impetus for MADE PUBLIC, what the film’s final moment really means, and Foster’s favorite film / guilty pleasure (hint: it’s a little flick called Love Actually).

You can listen to the podcast here (P.S. discussion about Made Public begins at 00:47:50).

And here is the review from the Reel Easy Podcast:

Made Public is a delightful yet highly thought provoking short directed by Foster Wilson starring Jeanine Mason and Josh Zuckerman. The film tells the story of a nervous, slightly gawky groom 5 minutes before the start of his wedding where the evening before he has unwisely posted a Facebook poll to see whether or not he should get married. He’s got to be an idiot, right?

This film was clever in so many different ways. It grips you within the first few seconds as you’ve no idea what’s going on. Everyone around the poor sweating groom standing at the alter is giving regular updates on the poll that we have no context for which was a great way of engaging the audience quickly. The use of single shot tracking cameras as we follow Josh through the church to find his fiancé was a bold and brilliant move. It kept the pace of the film as intense as possible and you have to appreciate everyone being on their game during the shoot.

The music was also key in creating the intense atmosphere. The percussive use of human clicks and claps in a disjointed yet rhythmically eerie overtone makes these moving transitions seamless and very compelling.

Both lead actors were fantastic at portraying a realistic dialogue of a relationship on the brink of both being over and also taking it to the next level. The do or die scenario could have been overdramatic but the use of expert comic timing between the two kept things lighthearted and very amusing.

The film as a whole invoked many questions on whether we now rely too heavily on other people’s opinions to inform our own especially now it’s so easy to obtain a large pool of opinions using social media. The Black Mirror influenced theme coupled with the open ended final sequence with the Reverend really rammed this point home and you’re left thinking does it really actually matter what she thinks.

MADE PUBLIC is available to watch now on Vimeo and YouTube. Find more information about the film at MadePublicFilm.com.

FirstShowing.net adds MADE PUBLIC to its "Worth Watching" List by Foster Wilson

On the day of MADE PUBLIC’s worldwide online release, FirstShowing.net added Foster Wilson’s dramedy about social media’s influence on our most private moments to its Worth Watching list.

From FirstShowing.net:

This is an ingenious short that seriously packs in quite a bit of social commentary on top of an amusing, enjoyable marriage story. It's not just about social media, it's also about society itself. Looking forward to seeing more from Foster, she's got a clever eye.

MADE PUBLIC is available to watch now on Vimeo and YouTube. Find more information about the film at MadePublicFilm.com.

Award-winning short film MADE PUBLIC debuts on Short of the Week and Omeleto by Foster Wilson

After more than a dozen festivals and a handful of awards, including Best Film at the 2019 Vaughan International Film Festival and the Audience Award at the 2019 Bentonville Film Festival, MADE PUBLIC was released to the public on June 24th and was featured on the acclaimed Short of the Week and Omeleto.

You can watch MADE PUBLIC for free online on Vimeo and YouTube.

From Short of the Week:

In her short comedic film, Made Public, Foster Wilson pokes fun at our newly found desire for approval and self-provoked loss of privacy on social media. With a sharp screenplay, compelling performances and cinematography that’s an integral part of the storytelling, the film is not only funny and entertaining it also prompts a little self-reflection.

Made Public is a clever take on the exploration of the perils of making personal decisions and our need to share intimate details in a world dominated by a certain set of six reactions. Having worked as a wedding photographer, the core idea of the film appeared quite easily to Wilson and along with writer/editor Brian Leahy, they set out to explore the willingness of people to share their everyday life with the general public.

An immediate response to the premise of Made Public, might be to write it off as ridiculous and unreal, but in a near future, it might seem more plausible (feels like a reality TV show in the making!). Leahy, who is Wilson’s creative partner, penned a screenplay that hits where it needs to. The situation he created in itself is funny, even if it seems a little too big to be true. The characters and their dialogue sell the reality he has created and with one-line zingers for some characters and more complex dialogue for the two main characters, the film is not short on jokes.

Leahy also did a remarkable job in the editing room, delivering the right rhythm in comedy is paramount and he ensures the film moves along at an entertaining pace. Restricted by a limited budget in her previous projects, Wilson aimed for something more ambitious with this one, including two impressive one-shots. Capturing the scenes this way increased the authentic feel of the piece, making the audience feel like we are right there with the characters as the tension rises.

The film relies heavily on its two lead performances, Jeanine Mason (Roswell: New Mexico, Grey’s Anatomy) and Josh Zuckerman (Desperate Housewives), who have already played an on-screen couple in different projects. Zuckerman’s portrayal of the indecisive groom is extremely compelling, while Mason’s mix of annoyance and anger comes off as natural. The chemistry between the pair does shine though, which makes it easy to root for the couple and appreciate the light-heartedness of the comedy.

From Omeleto:

Director Foster Wilson, along with writer Brian Leahy, has created a sharply witty, caustic and engaging comedy about the strange, irresistible impulse to share intimate thoughts and private dilemmas with anyone but the person you need to talk to most. Here, the third party is the general public, enabled by social media, which allows strangers to weigh in on a very intimate, emotional question for the groom at an unprecedented scale, adding a resolutely modern twist to the age-old trope of a groom having cold feet just as he’s about to tie the knot for life.

The film’s strength rests on the foundation of its excellent writing, which blends smart, sharp-edged dialogue and well-observed social insights about how we conduct our lives in the era of constant sharing, likes and polls.

There are plenty of zingers and quips in the dialogue, but they’re given pace and shape by nimble, quicksilver directing, particularly in the kinetic camerawork, which adds cinematic flair and underscores the almost farcical nature of Dave’s situations.

The storytelling never really quite falls into farce, however, thanks to emotionally grounded performances by actors Jeanine Mason as Sydney and Josh Zuckerman as Dave. While both can deliver comedic moments with great timing and perfectly arch or deadpan delivery, they also play believable people having a believable emotional crisis. Mason nails Sydney’s fury, delving into how anger masks a clear sense of hurt, pain and sadness at the idea of Dave having doubts, while Zuckerman plays Dave’s doubts and fears with honesty.

Both are relatable characters, which makes the final movement of “Made Public” that much more engaging and even heartfelt. It’s a conversation that Dave and Sydney clearly needed to have before the wedding, and the fact that it’s happening just before the ceremony in front of a huge audience adds both stomach-churning anxiety and awkward comedy to its unraveling. But when they get through the other side, there is genuine vulnerability, honesty and intimacy, giving both Sydney and Dave a chance to love and care for one another — and a stronger foundation to build a loving, lasting marriage upon.