Short Films

Pearl, One of the Best Emotionally Mesmerizing VR Short

Aardman, the Oscar-winning animation studio behind Wallace and Gromit; and Patrick Osborne, director of the Oscar-winning animated short Feast, have both worked on this sweet animated short Pearl.

Pearl sweetly showcases the relationship between a father and daughter through the years, from their early days crisscrossing the country, living out of the car in support of his music, through to her rebellious teen years, and eventually a music career of her own. Its an emotional journey told in montage and is both unique for its approach to the challenges of VR storytelling, but also in the way it incorporates music as a central element.

“We are still learning how storytelling works in 360 degrees; it seemed like a place that’s fresh for exploration,” Osborne told The Hollywood Reporter of his reason for tackling the format. “I like the idea of trying to tell a story by making something that happens all around you, and without the quick cuts that we are used to. The idea [for Pearl] was to tell a story inside one automobile, and see the story unfold that way. … You don’t want to disorient the viewer. It’s difficult to storyboard in a traditional way.”

I think this is one of the best VR based short films I have seen. For instance, forgetting the story creators have done lots of work in designing the flick. I mean the amount of scene changes in a flick like this is amazing. The upcoming generation of VR creators will, of course, build upon these foundational VR experiments. Still a long way for VR flicks to go.