“Silience in London 2017” is a terrific example of a recently minted genre: the music video crossed with the mini-documentary. Cassius Rayner and Dimple Devadas illustrate the song “We Shall Stand for Love” using candid-camera-like images shot in public places. The performers—a protestor, a couple dancing, a child breaking large bubbles—have no script and aren’t aware of the music. It’s their candid-camera naturalism that brings life to the production.
There is a challenge in having unrelated clips tell a story. The filmmakers’ solution is to present a thematic focus up front, namely the word “silience.” You won’t find “silience” in your average dictionary. Coined by John Koenig—for his project on inventing words that our culture lacks–silience means: “the kind of unnoticed excellence that carries on around you every day, unremarkably—the hidden talents of friends and co-workers, the fleeting solos of buskers, the slapdash eloquence of anonymous users, the unseen portfolios of aspiring artists—which would be renowned as masterpieces if only they’d been appraised by the cartel of popular taste, who assume that brilliance is a rare and precious quality, accidentally overlooking buried jewels that may not be flawless but are still somehow perfect.”
That definition explains the force bringing the visuals together in the Rayner/Devadas film. We’re viewing a documentary of often overlooked bits of creativity.
We should add that “Silience in London 2017” isn’t simply a random collection of shots. Note, for example, the way the editing contrasts the emotions of different characters. There’s also the non-linear structure that brings us back several times to key performers.
About the song: the words were written as a poem by Dorothy Oger; the music was written and performed by Dan Defeo & Mr. Lorraine aka Phatlady.
“Silience in London 2017” was chosen as Mobile Movie of the Week in this magazine.