A New Movie, Starring You

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    Embed <iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/138609894/138660280" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
  • Transcript
Hiroaki Aikawa and his son, Taiji, mourn the death of Hiroaki's wife, in Kevin Macdonald's Life in a Day, produced by Scott Free UK.

Hiroaki Aikawa and his son, Taiji, mourn the death of Hiroaki's wife, in Kevin Macdonald's Life in a Day, produced by Scott Free UK. Scott Free UK hide caption

itoggle caption Scott Free UK

Director Kevin Macdonald, known for major Hollywood movies like The Last King of Scotland and State of Play, had an even bigger idea last year: to capture 24 hours of everyday life around the entire world.

YouTube users from more than 192 countries uploaded more than 4,500 hours of video to his channel, all of it shot on a single day: July 24, 2010.

Macdonald and his team, which included directors Ridley and Tony Scott, took that footage and made it into a 90-minute documentary called, aptly, Life in a Day.

"We were looking for stories which resonated, or more than that, served as a metaphor for something bigger in life," Macdonald told weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz.

Director Kevin MacDonald i

Director Kevin MacDonald National Geographic hide caption

itoggle caption National Geographic
Director Kevin MacDonald

Director Kevin MacDonald

National Geographic

One of those resonant moments came from a Japanese father and son going through their morning routine. In between brushing his teeth and watching TV, the young boy says good morning to a shrine to his deceased mother.

"It's a masterful piece of filmmaking, maybe unintentionally," Macdonald says, "but it highlights what I'd call the aesthetic of amateurism. There's a beauty in the home-video style."

Macdonald says watching the film is a philosophical experience, and can change how one sees the world.

"It made me realize that cultural differences, which are the things we're mostly preoccupied by, those things are actually the superficialities of life," he says.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.