Most people ride out their wedding days in a whirlwind that blurs every kiss, toast, vow, and dance together into a single event that spins too fast to fully remember. That's why people hire wedding photographers, but photographers--as they blow that aperture out to make your wedding day look as gauzy and ethereal as possible--all too often forget that your wedding isn't just the most romantic day of your life. It's also the day you'll throw the most amazing *party* of your life.
That's what makes the wedding video of Quang and Ellie Dinh so charming. Not only does it slow the whirlwind of a wedding down into a series of amazing, idiosyncratic, and surreal moments, it captures the best party of someone's life in a time bubble.
Called the Slow Motion Booth, the video was shot by Super Frog Saves Tokyo, a Seattle-based video comprised of "two cynics, an idealist, two realists and a French guy." Super Frog doesn't specialize in wedding photography. Instead, they major in developing viral videos for different Internet companies. So how did they come to film a wedding?
"It was innovation born from incredible laziness," says Super Frog's Executive Producer, Mike Gaston. "Our good friend Quang was the groom, and he masterfully guilt-tripped us into shooting his wedding. We aren't wedding photographers, and most of us have tried to stay away from doing this kind of work, so a couple of days before the wedding, I suggested we throw a RED Epic camera in the corner of the reception hall to shoot guests in slow-motion and then cut it together with some music from the wedding. That way Quang would hopefully forget about the other footage we shot and we could avoid editing the full video for a while. "
The wedding took place at the University of Washington, with the reception following held at Seattle's SODO Park. There, in addition to the RED camera, Super Frog set up four LED lights, a simple white backdrop, and some props comprised of bubbles, confetti, and other exploding party favors. They then manned the Slow Motion Booth with Super Frog's producer, a man particularly skilled at getting people to do things they normally wouldn't do.
And that was it. But while the setup was super simple, the video itself turned out to be extraordinarily winning. "We had attractive people, an open bar, and a lot of diversity. Quang said we made a United Colors of Benetton wedding video," says Gaston. At over 100 frames per second, party guests make motorboat sounds with their lips, slap each other, dance, and kiss. Bubbles are blown, poppers popped, confetti sprayed, and people are hosed down with alcohol and have glasses of champagne dashed in their face. The end result is pure magic.
Another genius touch is the way the video synchronizes its slowed-down slices of wedding white noise with the lyrics to Robin Thicke's hit, "Blurred Lines." "The song really helped the video come together," says Gaston. "We were able to juxtapose the lyrics against these scenes of domesticity, wholesomeness, seduction, and so on until it really subverted the way people viewed the song. We've had people tell us they hated 'Blurred Lines' until they saw the video. Robin Thicke, we'd be down to shoot your next one!"
But while Thicke might have an open invitation to get down with Super Frog, the studio isn't necessarily ready to shoot your next wedding video.
"We've been contacted by a lot of people to do weddings, but we aren't a wedding company and aren't really structured to take on that kind of work," admits Gaston. "Everything we do is an opportunity for us to develop our social theory, but to be honest, we didn't expect this to get the attention it has gotten. So that's embarrassing. We should have known, right?"