Short Film Profile

Neon Skin

Two young men – one sighted, one blind - see the world and their bodies in different ways. Unexpectedly, they find a connection beyond the visual in the collision of taste, touch and sound. The connection is sensual, and within it they each find something new.

Film notes

Neon Skin’s story is a simple one –of a young man who wants to show his blind friend something new, but ends up having something new awakened within his own self. A new way of seeing himself. A new way of seeing his friend, perhaps. The surprise is that the one who cannot see him is the one who truly sees him.
This spark of a connection between the two men is built upon the sensual and not the sexual. Neon Skin is really touching on my impression of the senses, particularly of sight – in both a physical sense, as well as a exploring the irony of how we build up a picture of ourselves through the eyes of others.
Body image issues are not confined to the realm of women. Many young men silently equate self-worth with bulk muscle. The laws of attraction, however, are complex and not confined to sight. In Neon Skin, the power of attraction is in the transformative reaction of skin against skin. I wanted to make a film that went right to the moment where the senses unexpectedly collide, because that is where we can begin to appreciate the gap between our subjectivities.
Neon Skin is a child of opportunity and a labour of love by the many generous folk involved in its production. Firstly, producer Jannine Barnes, who got her hands on two rolls of 35mm night stock that was not used on the Australian feature Noise, and threw me the challenge of writing a 5 minute short film set only in low light. Secondly, a great crew who worked through the night, conscious that we could only shoot the film with one or two takes of each shot, and two brave actors who gave such gentle performances teeming with tension. Thanks to all, and finally to our major supporter Deluxe, who graded and finished Neon Skin to 35mm, giving the most precious and appreciated support.
Finally, Neon Skin is an offering to my love, the city of Melbourne, the lady who performs nightly on the banks of the Yarra. It is a show I shall never grow weary of, and secretly think is just for me…
senses melbourne blindness




Copyright © 2009 Happening Films & Grant Scicluna

Previous screenings

26 May – 31 May | Melbourne, Australia
Film Fest @ Falls | 2009
5 Jun – 7 Jun | Falls Creek, Australia
5 Mar – 13 Mar | Byron Bay, Australia
17 Mar – 28 Mar | Melbourne, Australia
25 Feb – 27 Feb | Bangalore, India
Shepparton Festival | 2011
11 Mar | Shepparton, Australia
6 Oct – 16 Oct | Tampa, United States

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Information on this profile is provided by the film owners and/or compiled from available sources | Profile updated 11 Mar 2010