TERENCE – A mockumentary


This mockumentary draws parallels to the classic fable, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”. A prankster, played by Terence, hatches a master prank when a prankee of his tells him to “try harder lah!”. However, when things actually go wrong, his friend thinks it’s another one of his pranks and doesn’t help him. Terence comes to realize that pranking people isn’t such a good idea and changes his ways, or does he?

Development process

During the pre-production stage, we had many ideas before deciding on adapting “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”. Some initial ideas we had were stories based on “The Journey to the West”, “Midas’ Touch”, and various urban tales.

To help us decide on an idea, we used various factors that would affect the making of our short film:

  • Feasibility

Was the idea practical?

  • Manpower

Since we were only a group of three, our story had to have as little characters as possible, which led us to our final idea (a mockumentary based on the experiences of a single person).

  • Time

Having to deal with many other deadlines of other modules, our idea had to be one that would not take up a lot of time in shooting and post-production.

  • Locations

Considering the  relative short amount time, it would be best if our idea utilised a small amount of locations.

In the end, we decided to do a mockumentary based on “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”. Being a genre that gained popularity in the past few years with shows like “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation”, the mockumentary genre was chosen to give a modern twist to an old fable. Plus, it would be comedic, which is always nice.

To aid us in pre-production, I wrote up a screenplay for our short-film, which ended up taking two drafts to finalise.

Click here to view the screenplay!

Challenges faced

In pre-production, the main problem we faced was that we just had too many ideas. Instead of finalising a single idea, we were continually coming up with different ideas. We had to take a step back and tell ourselves “okay, this is going nowhere”, before actually moving on. After developing a single idea, everything else was pretty smooth sailing.

The film was shot over a span of two days. While we were shooting the scenes that happened in ADM, we faced several issues such as random people walking in and out of frame (which could potentially mess up our continuity), random sounds that messed up our sound recording (the beeping sounds from the card reader thing). 

The short shot of Terence buying the fake blood from the party store was actually shot without permission from the shop owner. We basically went in, shot the shot and got out of there. The whole process must have taken only a minute, so that was pretty exciting.

One main challenge I faced while editing the video was dealing with audio. Firstly, we recorded all our audio clips using an external recorder, which meant that I had to manually sync the audio to the video. Secondly, I had to manually add in all the ambient sounds to make the scene sound more whole. The end result is a flurry of audio tracks.

Screen Shot 2015-11-08 at 8.24.40 PM

They say that if you do your sound right, the audience won’t notice anything at all, and I’d like to think that I did an okay job.

Of course, what short film is complete without a blooper reel?

Reflections and Conclusion

For Terence and Wilson, who have not had experience in making short films before, their main takeaway from this project is the knowledge and new-found appreciation for TV and films. Often times, we look at a TV show or movie and think that it’s easy to make, when in reality, a ton of thought and hard work from many parties is involved.As for me, this video project serves as a good warm-up before I begin to major in Digital Film-making in year 2.

To conclude, all three of us really enjoyed making this mockumentary, but what we enjoyed most of all was seeing our classmates laughed as they watched it. We all agreed that if our classmates laughed, we did a good job, and so we did.

GROUP MEMBERS: Leon Tai, Wilson Heng, Terence Goh

90 images


The theme that I set for this sequence of images is “personal growth”. The sequence starts off with me in a blank state, progresses by showing myself going through different life events, and ends with me as a developed person

The first set of images shows my progression from being an empty person into a person with different interests, hobbies, and life experiences.

The second set draws inspiration from the commonly heard phrase, “we are our greatest critic”. In the beginning, I show that I see myself as a flawed person, wanting to remove the stained shirt. However, I learn to acknowledge and accept my flaws, resulting in me willingly putting on the stained shirt.

The last set shows my discovery of love. I meet my significant other and we go on adventures together. I try to imagine life without her (I got inspired by a similar question that she asked me when we first started dating), but everything is blur and bleak. She helps me see clearly again, and we are happy with each other.

And finally, I go back to sleep acknowledging all that has happened.


I was inspired by a series of photos that my friend took a while back.

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While not every single photo references this style, I did make this “symmetrical” style a main focus to show how time passes in relation to my character.

Learning points

I realise that while it is easier to do a “stop-motion” style of photography to fill up the 90 image requirement, the result would probably be less interesting and authentic. Rather than using the 90 images as a storytelling medium, I think it is more interesting to try and use the difference between each image to tell a story, if that makes sense. Trying to make each of the 90 images have a certain meaning to it was pretty difficult, but I learned a lot from it and honestly, I wouldn’t mind doing it again.

Research: Shirin Neshat

Our group (Leon, Wilson and James) was tasked to do research on the artist named Shirin Neshat.

  • Born in 1957, fourth of five children of westernised, wealthy parents.
  • Learnt traditional religious values from maternal grandparents.
  • Attained Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts.
  • Visual feminist artist exploring gender issues in the Islamic world; addresses gender issues through her artwork.

“I am an artist, I am not an activist” – Shirin Neshat

The artwork that we’ll be looking at today is a group of 4 photos titled, “Women of Allah”

  • An artistic result of her visit to Iran in 1990, a country transformed by Islamic fundamentalism.
  • Wanted to explore the notion of femininity in relation to male authority and Islamic fundamentalism in her home country.
  • She feels that photography works best for her topics, conveying realism, immediacy, and a sense of drama.


Even though she was traditionally trained as a painter, she was inspired by the realism of photojournalism. She crops and enlarges photos in a large format, and considers herself more of a director than a photographer.


The veil is used as a common representative symbol. Rejection of veil under Shah’s promotion of secular culture. Symbol of religious faith & political rebellion under Islamic Revolution.



“Women of Allah” also showcases women’s bodies, which is a sensitive subject matter encompassing religion, spirituality, moralism and gender equality. She intentionally shows some parts of female body that are not allowed to be seen in public, which are covered with abstract designs and Persian calligraphy; infusion of Middle Eastern culture. Brings worth the themes of roles of women, gender rights, equality and dress code.



A common object featured in these photos is a gun, which is a symbol of cruelty and violence. She creates a contradiction by putting feminine traits such as beauty and grace, with cruelty and violence.

On a micro scale, “Women of Allah” is a personal series where she explore her cultural roots and heritage, showing the transition from the Shah monarchy to the Islamic Revolution. On a macro scale, she shows an experience of living in the west and their cultural norms. She also investigates women’s identity across two cultures and regions.

“I believe we don’t need to widen the divide between the West and Islam. Rather, we need to build dialogue to encourage tolerance and respect.” – Shirin Neshat

Done by: Leon Tai, Wilson Heng and James Ng












Leon’s project 1b that he feels neutral towards

I chose to see the poem in the form of a narrative, and so the images that I’ve presented resemble storyboards, or mood boards that one would make in the conceptualization stage of making a short film. With that out of the way, let’s start interpreting the poem.


Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
 (tophttps://micheledelcampo.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/michele-del-campo-consuming-desire-220x300cm.jpg middle: my own photo bottom: https://www.flickr.com/photos/image_chaser/4989430266/sizes/l/)
I see fire as overwhelming passion, the kind of love that will eventually hurt you, and ice as apathy, or indifference towards anything. These are the two dominant factors that kill the man in the middle of the picture.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
(top: screenshot from "500 Days of Summer" middle: screenshot from "The Matrix" bottom: http://images.sodahead.com/profiles/0/0/2/4/3/6/7/0/3/mt316231258327698tanz_der_vampire_hamburg_tickets.jpeg)
The author is saying that having tried fire, he tends towards those who have similar views. The choice he makes is represented by him taking the red pill, as the red pill is what Neo decides to take eventually, as seen in the movie “The Matrix”. The picture of the woman being bitten by Dracula, presumably out of passion, and is therefore tinted red. The top picture shows a couple being distant towards each other, which represents indifference and is therefore tinted blue.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
(top: http://www.4thestate.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/time-machine.jpg middle: http://img05.deviantart.net/2cd6/i/2008/222/9/5/indifference__by_photography_cc.jpg bottom: http://pre08.deviantart.net/0f17/th/pre/f/2013/033/6/b/handstone_by_inaaca-d5tjrp4.jpg)
I interpret this as the world being resurrected, represented by the hands of time. And after being resurrected, he has gone through enough apathy and indifference of those around him to know that the world is also capable of being destroyed by it’s own apathy.
And would suffice
(reference: http://www.kristeligt-dagblad.dk/kronik/europas-identitet-en-gammel-og-en-ny-kristen-spiritualitet)
This line is represented by a single image of a grave with a purple sunset. The purple sunset represents the mixture of red and blue elements, namely “fire” and “ice”. If you’ve noticed, all the panels so far have been in a set of 3 images, whereas this final sentence is represented by only 1 image. I feel that a single image shows off the impact of the phrase, “to suffice”.
Admittedly, thinking abstractly isn’t exactly my cup of tea, but I still tried my best anyway and I’m pretty happy with the result, although I feel like I could have done a better job if I had a better grasp of Photoshop.
Seeing everyone else’s work made me realise that there are so many ways to interpret a poem, and it really inspires me to do a better job next time!

Leon’s project 1a that he is actually proud of for once

1a.) Self


The first image of the series is my self portrait. I feel that most of the time I tend to be in my own world, where I ignore the presence of everything around me. I used a slower shutter speed (1/8th of a second IIRC) to make the people around me blurred out while I am in focus.


For the second image, I wanted to show my love for collecting CDs. My favorite thing about collecting CDs is the fact that each CD contains a unique memory of myself finding that CD. It’s not like downloading music nowadays; people don’t go, “Oh! I remember downloading this at ______!”

The CD I chose to showcase is titled “Late Registration”, by Kanye West. I had been looking for this CD for a while, and one day I decided to go down to my regular CD shop to see if the guy had it. When I reached the shop, the owner looks at me and says, “Hey, I have something that you’ll love”, and lo and behold, it’s the EXACT album I was looking for, completely new. It is because of that memory that I will hold this CD dear to me.


The last image portrays my love for street photography. I find that street photography is the purest way to see the world, and what I like about it in particular is the fact that it’s seeing the uniqueness in the ordinary.

In this photo, a child is being held in her father’s hands. In this intimate moment between father and child, she has noticed my presence, therefore sharing her moment with me. I may not appear in the photo physically, but my presence is etched in the photo by her looking at the lens, and therefore, looking right at me.

1b.) Object


The object that I chose to portray in this series is a deck of playing cards. One of my hobbies is the art of shuffling playing cards, otherwise known as cardistry. The shot of me holding the deck of cards shows that this hobby isn’t about me. When I first started learning cardistry, people would make comments about how I am only learning this to showoff to others. My face is blurred to tell people that I am doing it because I like it and not to show myself off to others.


The rest of the images showcase the different type of displays and movements that are involved in a typical card flourish. One is a static image of a card fan taken close-up to showcase the patterns that the cards make, and the other involves a kinetic element to it; one packet of cards is spinning while the rest are stationary. I think both images serve their purposes well.


1c.) Place


The place that I’ve shown is a video game arcade. I spent a lot of time as a child in these arcades, playing all the different games to pass the time. You could say that I’ve grown up in these arcades.


In this series, I wanted to show people what I like about video game arcades. I like how the place is usually dark, and the only thing lighting up the place are the arcade games themselves. It gives a very unique vibe to the place, and that was what I was trying to capture.


Also, I like that there’s an invisible sense of camaraderie in an arcade. Even though everyone doesn’t know each other in an arcade, everyone knows that they’re all there to have fun, so there’s a certain kind of connection that everyone forms with each other, which you can only feel if you’ve spent a lot of time in an arcade, in my opinion.


You could say that this series is my labor of love to video game arcades, and I hope they will continue to exist as long as possible.



I learnt that multiple images can tell a single story, even though said images might not seem relevant to each other at first glance. I also came to realise that the way you assemble your photos in an exhibition can add to the message that you want to bring across as well. Overall, I really enjoyed this exercise and wouldn’t mind doing it again.