Video Information

Information

  • Member: Therax
  • Studio: Hoshizora Productions
  • Title: Caught in the Crossfire
  • Premiered: 2005-05-14
  • Categories:
    • Action
    • Drama
    • Serious
  • Song:
    • Buffalo Springfield For What It's Worth
  • Anime:
  • Participation:
    • Fanime 2005 AMV Contest, Fanime 2005 AMV Contest (2005-05-27)
    • Anime Expo 2005, Anime Expo 2005 (2005-07-01)
    • Otakon 2005 AMV Screenings/Contest, Otakon 2005 AMV Screenings/Contest (2005-08-19)
    • AnimeFEST 2005, AnimeFEST 2005 (2005-09-02)
    • Anime Weekend Atlanta 11, AWA 2005 AMV *PRO* CONTEST (2005-09-23)
    • Animania Con Ja Nai XII, Animania Con Ja Nai XII Contest (2005-10-29)
  • Comments: Summary

    A newly discovered artifact off the Mayan Islands brings this isolated location to the forefront of global affairs. Whether motivated by the pursuit of scientific knowledge, military advantage, or simply anthropological curiosity, the UN and the Anti-UN Alliance both see themselves as the principal actors, but in the end they are not the ones swept up in the maelstrom of conflict, but instead those "Caught in the Crossfire."


    Competition History

    Fanime 2005 - Finalist in Drama (Audience judged.)
    Otakon 2005 - Finalist in Drama (Audience judged.)
    AnimeFEST 2005 - Winner, Best Dramatic (Panel judged. Note: AnimeFEST does not give out a "Best in Show" award, but Caught in the Crossfire was singled out by the judges during awards presentation as the best video submitted.)
    Anime Weekend Atlanta 2005 AMV Pro Contest - Winner, Best Dramatic (Creator judged.)
    Animania Con Ja Nai XII - Winner, Best Dramatic (Audience judged.)


    Software used

    Sony Pictures Digital Vegas 4.0E
    AviSynth 2.5.4


    Concept

    This video originated after seeing Apocalypse Macross at Anime Expo 2004. This video is also available here on AMV.org. I was impressed once again at the visual beauty of the original source footage, and this AMV did a tremendous job capturing the swirling dogfights and gorgeous explosions of the action sequences. However, after watching it I felt there was something missing, something nagging at the edge of my mind. After some thought, I realized that what was obscured in Apocalypse Macross was the tragedy of the Mayan village. So I set out to make a video that, as in the original, put these hapless souls front and center.


    About the Video

    The idea that struck me the strongest when first watching Macross Zero was that of the "noble savage." Despite their apparent technological backwardness, the villagers know far more about how the world truly works than the scientists who sneer down their noses while pretending to study the village society. Through the series, we slowly see that the superstitions of the village, while distorted and unclear, are true in a literal sense and show a lost sophistication.

    "You don't know the dreadfulness of impure blood! ... There are two snakes entangled with each other in the blood, and if their power is released..."
    -> double-helix
    -> DNA
    -> a warning against genetic manipulation

    But far from being heeded, the villagers watch their most ancient and dire fears come to pass, and their way of life crushed as the UN and Anti-UN forces squabble over power beyond their imaginings.


    About the Song

    Buffalo Springfield's For What It's Worth is one of the quintessential protest/anti-war anthems of the 1960's. Along with other, similar songs, its strident calls to "stop...[and] look what's goin' on" came to symbolize the culture of the time and an entire generation, bound together by the civil rights movement and the Vietnam War. It has been featured in countless compilations and soundtracks, including the soundtrack for Forrest Gump.


    About the Photograph

    The final photograph, Vietnam Napalm was taken by Nick Ut, a photographer for the Associated Press, on June 8, 1972. It shows Vietnamese villagers fleeing their village after it is hit with napalm by South Vietnamese aircraft. Centered is Kim Phuc, a nine year-old girl who shed her burning clothing. This Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph is one of the iconic images of the Vietnam War.

    I first noticed the similarity in theme between this famous photo and the scene of the burning of the Mayan village in Macross Zero when I first watched the series, and I decided when making this video that it was an important parallel to draw. I didn't realize until I actually had the images side-by-side just how similar they are. The facial expression, the position of the arms -- I think it's likely that the creators of Macross Zero intentially evoked this photo.


    Plot

    0:12 - Photographs of a picturesque island, with beautiful scenery, wooden huts, and children playing on the beach.
    0:22 - To this paradise suddenly come outsiders -- the military? the government? -- who occupy the island, bringing dire, but vague warnings of the conflict to come.
    0:39 - In the dawn hours, an air battle rages overhead.
    0:49 - A pilot is shot down, ejects, and wakes to find himself rescued on the island.
    0:56 - Bewildered, he demands and gets directions back to his fleet...
    1:00 - while plans for continued battle are being laid by both sides.
    1:05 - Still trapped on the island, the pilot falls into a romance with one of the villagers...
    1:10 - a romance far from acceptable for the village at large.
    1:14 - But war has come to the island in a deeply personal way, as the skies are torn asunder by sonic booms and the mountains tremble with the explosions.
    1:30 - The villagers shelter in the caves, but finally, enough is enough.
    1:35 - They march on the military camp, demanding that they leave and take their war with them.
    1:42 - But they are lulled by promises of flashy trinkets, and disperse.
    1:48 - The struggle continues, with the downed pilot taking up arms, for revenge, to protect, perhaps out of sheer frustration.
    2:05 - Offshore, the military finds and recovers a strange artifact, unknown to them, but known to the villagers in their legends, and embodied in their totems.
    2:14 - Fed up, the villagers reject the outsiders.
    2:19 - As the shells are falling, the military evacuates...
    2:23 - even while mounting the final defense of the village.
    2:32 - At last, the villagers watch as familes are sundered, homes are shattered, and lifetimes of memories vanish in the flames.

Opinions (3)

  • Orig
  • Visual
  • Sound
  • Synch
  • Lip
  • Effects
  • Effort
  • Re-View
  • Overall
  • 9.67
  • 9.33
  • 8.33
  • 8.33
  • 9.00
  • 9.00
  • 8.67

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