Martin Scorsese’s Student Film: The Big Shave
Jul 2012 29

Have you ever actually watched a student film? Then you will have witnessed:

1. Low production values

2. Demented, spread-eagled overacting, juxtaposed with stultifying underacting

3. Terrible sound. Usually this would be more of an issue, but in most student films, it is greeted by the viewer as a blessing, because it usually masks a script so poor, that puking blood would seem like a pleasant alternative.

How do I know all this? Because I have made a few entries in that illustrious canon in my time at University of course! If there were proof that the great directors really are better than the rest of us, it lies herein, as embedded below is Martin Scorsese’s 1967 student short, The Big Shave.

Unlike most student efforts, whose grandiose ambitions are outweighed by basic filmmaking errors, Scorsese takes a simple, but original idea, and uses filmmaking language to create an interesting and impressive tension. Try not to weep with artistic jealousy at the nascent but still towering talent of the young Scorsese. He is but an artist, and we are mere ants by comparison:

Also, following a recommendation from RBT’s own Tom Williams, I checked out Adam Buxton (of Adam & Joe fame)’s latest show, BUG. Based on some live shows that were successful at the BFI Southbank, BUG essentially consists of Adam Buxton, onstage with a laptop, showing interesting music videos to audience. This he intersperses with irreverent and musical interludes of his own devising, followed by reading out the comments posted by REAL INTERNET PEOPLE in humorous voices.

If it sounds strange, cheap, and un-televisual, you’d be right, but somehow it comes out as both genuinely funny, and strikingly entertaining. It’s also a good opportunity to see some cool music videos, still a relatively new medium, where some of the more talented directors out there get more artistic licence than they would if they were making adverts or films.

So, at the risk of admitting that Tom Williams was right, I have to say that this show is great, and well worth your time. But don’t just take my word for it. Decide for yourself by checking out the below link to a special, funny, intro thing:


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