“Plunge into the hell of an integration week-end “, we promise it before running WEI or DIE, the “interactive fiction” produced in particular by France Télévisions through his lab, New writing, Resistance Films and Cinétévé, available on the internet from the 28th of October. The program includes a film of at least 45 minutes (the “at least” has its importance) featuring one hundred and fifty students in a business school, in time for a weekend of hazing in the campaign option-sex, drugs, alcohol, and humiliation.
The film opens on a sequence Blair Witch-ienna macabre. Three young, obviously in full party mood, fall nose to nose with the corpse of one of their own, floating in a pond. The next sequence sees the gendarmerie, dispatched to the scene of the drinking party, to collect the smartphones and cameras each. Flashback. The experience can begin. Because WEI or DIE is a real experience.
Through the images collected by the police and synchronized chronologically, the viewer evolves in its own way in a timeline interactive. From one camera to the other, it multiplies the points of view, discover new characters, new story arcs. As in a kind of film which one would be the hero, sets of theories, one begins to imagine that may well be in this pond, how it got there. False tracks (the mysterious Louis for example) in discoveries, this dive infernal in a celebration of trash down the minutes until the ending, surprising and cynical to perfection.
By merely playing the editor and lover, switching from one receive simple click of the camera “videographer official of the WEI” to the smartphone of a comedy duo tying (Côme Levin and Stéphane Bak, not bad) passing through the surveillance cameras and the camera of an apprentice journalist, so it takes around 45 minutes to arrive at the end of this tiring weekend, dodging the battles of flours, hazing, abusive and drunk. For all to see, the little secrets like the great revelations, not far from two hours are necessary.
And it is here that Simon Bouisson, the creator, shows his talent. Not content to innovate on the form with a narrative device new, ultra-fluid and powerful, the author and Olivier Demangel (co-writer) manage to ensure that the important information and the springs of the main plot are necessarily known to all, regardless of the mode of use of the work and the choice of the viewer in the role of voyeur. WEI or DIE, very well written, avoids too much redundancy for those who want to see it all of a sudden. Side ” dive in the hell of a weekend of integration,” Simon Bouisson mania clichés sparingly. So much so that among his gallery of characters and the multiplicity of situations that can sometimes seem overused, the film remains credible at all times.
The shape also helps with this realism trash. For, apart from the videos in the “video maker official of the WEI,” most of the images perfectly match the codes of the found-footage. It pixelise, that bug there. And unlike some such films that try to be cinematic, despite the constraint of the hand-held camera way amateur (Chronicle , for example, who uses telekinesis to play drone), Simon Bush wants to anchor its plans and frameworks in the real world. The youth of today. Also, in a hollow, not content to propose a plot of the polar well-thought-out in an atmosphere of trash, credible and pop, WEI or DIE, questioning our tendency of the glut in the production of images permitted by the technology. It is also fun to see, when two impressive scenes of the film, the difference in perception of the situation by the simple quality of the framework or definition. Filmed on the Canon 5D, the battle of flour and the evening seem to be epic, with just the right amount of slow-motion and images that throw. Passing on the Go-pro of Roman or smartphone, lambda, the scenes seem sad, limit, pathetic, or in any case lacking in panache. The presence of a “videographer” official ” allows also to refer to the staging of the continuing the work to life in the era of social networks (Instagram is a good example).
“WEI or DIE opens the door to a new way of storytelling, less linear, more immersive.”
Speaking of business school, WEI or DIE, also addresses the issue of power and power relations. Through such a mysterious character, that of a young ” son of “. Offspring of a great boss, next to the CAC40. And it’s about other things as well. Sex, drugs, the injunction to look cool, future prospects… As a great teen movie.
Reinventing the found-footage, coupled with a process close to a video game as Her Story (which invites the player to solve a police investigation by searching a database of videos), WEI or DIE is one more step towards the future. Real film of its time – on the form – speaking of young people of his time – on the bottom, it opens the door to a new way of storytelling, less linear, more immersive. It appears a bit shaken from this WEI slipping. “Will you go as far as them ?” asks the baseline of the film. Frankly, we can only advise them.
To test it on: wei-or-die.fr
• Original title : WEI or die
• Realization : Simon Bouisson
• Scenario : Simon Bouisson And Olivier Demangel
• Country of origin : France
• Released : October 28, 2015
• Duration : At least 45 minutes
• Distributor : France Télévisions New writing (www.wei-or-die.fr)
• Synopsis : WEI or DIE, an interactive fiction by Simon Bouisson at the heart of an integration week-end that skid.