Village Mall Ribbon Cutting is a short video made for the SWOCC Studios Special Events Show. It was intended to help generate tourist revenue for the cities of Farmington and Farmington Hills by announcing the reopening of the Village Mall in downtown Farmington. The event took place on September 17th of 2010.
Caren could be seen talking to city officials. A short while later, Mary Engleman was seen greeting a passerby on the sidewalk very excitedly. Her voice, dubbed over to sound like a Winston Churchill speech, had the following to say:
“It is…such a pleasure…to be here and celebrate such a…wonderful occasion…”
A man with scissors claimed he felt that the Village Mall’s reopening was “a great example of private business and government working together to make the community better.” Exactly what he meant by that, he never bothered going into details. Not that those details would have added anything.
A mayor for one of the three cities added that “this is one of those things that makes Farmington better.” Again, with the ambiguity.
After another short clip of pedestrians, the camera focused on a man comically squirting ketchup onto a hot dog bun.
The scissors man reached forward with his scissors to cut the big, red, unnecessary ribbon. A woman near him suddenly made a funny face, as if she were afraid that scissors would somehow curve itself around and bite her in the stomach.
The ribbon was finally cut, and the crowd cheered in their half-hearted bubbly excitement. Speculation on why they were cheering at all for the Village Mall—which didn’t even need a reopening—was a cynic’s dream come true. Other than a few new stores, virtually nothing was different.
A man grabbed a chili dog, while another man that a viewer who didn’t know better would’ve sworn was Snoop Dog carried on a conversation with someone whose face went mostly unseen.
Unlike a lot of other pieces made for the Special Events Show, this piece didn’t really need a lot of narrative. In fact, the final edit benefited from being one of a few Special Events entries that did not receive a traditional narrative. Instead, a music score began playing immediately after the intro.
Frank and Lamarr did most of the shooting for this piece, whereas Nate and Kat were the most involved in setting up the shooting schedule. Due to other projects that Frank and Lamarr were involved with, the Dozerfleet founder was assigned editing responsibilities. This piece was originally going to have a narrative, just like everything else done. But then the thought came:
“There is no substance to this piece and there is nothing a narrative would add to it.”
Therefore, it made more sense to let the story; what little story there actually was, be allowed to tell itself. The hype over this gratuitous ribbon cutting event seemed, well, gratuitous. To the point of being campy. Therefore, KillaTrax’s “Home Stretch” track was played as the background music. It not only perfectly drove the piece; but added that hokey flavor of Silver Age Superman aesthetic needed to give the piece its needed extra oomph of watchability.
An eagle crying overhead as the ribbon cutters were rejoicing was a last-minute editorial decision that became a cherry on an already-melting sundae. Originally, Nate would have ruled that this was unacceptable. But he decided to let the eagle remain in. “Nobody cared” about the Village Mall, according to Frank and Lamarr. Therefore, the eagle stayed in. At the very least, viewers had something to amuse themselves with on an otherwise boring channel.
Number below is based on assumptions of vanity/needlessness of the ceremony and on estimated taxpayer costs. It is not to be treated as an absolutely reliable figure given the lack of raw data. However, given the low score, it is more likely to produce moans and groans with rolled eyes rather than action on city hall.
- Address: 33335 Grand River Ave.
Farmington, MI 48336
- Phone: (248)-477-0157
- Village Mall official website
Village Mall Ribbon Cutting