Ascent is a commented montage of carefully selected videos of the launch of space shuttle, made by the Glenn Research Center. A DVD and a Blu-ray were produced but are apparently yet to be distributed reliably, so meanwhile the DVD ISO can be downloaded on this unofficial website.
The document is 45mn long, and presents outstanding footage taken during launch of missions STS-114, STS-117, and STS-124, from some of the 125 cameras used to ensure vehicle safety. Views include close ups of the ignition and of the launchpad at 400 fps, mid range footage, and up to footage taken from over 30km away (with the equivalent of a 4000mm lens). The comments give abundant detail about what is happening on the picture as well as the camera involved (lens, film, speed…).
As mentioned this video is 45mn long, but I’ve found it so captivating that I hardly noticed the length. If you only have 8mn available though, this other montage shows the launch from the cameras attached to the solid rocket boosters (SRB) with the recorded sound, from ignition, up until separation, then down to landing in the sea.
Base jumper Subterminallyill posted on his Vimeo page a very impressive, immersive (seemingly a helmet mounted GoPro) slow motion footage of his last jump off a cliff, which as it happens didn’t go well at all. As the seconds slowly pass by, the moment almost feels like a soft, skimming interaction. But as soon as the actual speed is revealed, it shows a brutal, violent accident happening in a split second.
After mentioning it during lunch, I realized I never posted this here: Embrace Life is the name of a brilliant short, written and directed by director Daniel Cox and produced by Sarah Alexander, for a British safety campaign back in 2010. Far from the usual shocking images, it chooses to convey its message through a metaphor and yet manages to deeply move the audience. The film uses slow motion, which was made possible by shooting with a Phantom HD camera.
“I wanted to create a visual metaphor addressing how a single decision in a person’s day can greatly influence both their own and their loved ones’ lives. Choosing to film the story inside the family living room represents the feelings many people equate with their own car, in that it represents a level of safety and protection from the ‘outer’ world. So to create the emotion of this dramatic moment, I wanted to tell the story using slow motion to allow the audience the time to be drawn into the film’s world and to let them connect with and project their own feelings onto the scenario playing out before them. I wanted to give the audience the time to breathe, to absorb our message and using slow motion was the right technique to allow this to happen.” (Daniel Cox)
Unfortunately I have never found a HD version of it.