In the early days of 2012, a small startup called Dollar Shave Club unleashed the greatest startup video of all time upon the unsuspecting Gillette wielding world. The video was titled “Our Blades Are F***ing Great” and it masterfully combined elements of Old Spice’s classic “Man-Your-Man-Could-Smell-Like” campaign with more traditional notions of rugged blue-collar American individualism. More than five million views on YouTube vaunted Dollar Shave Club into the mainstream.
This brings me to today’s news – Flixel, a MantellaVP portfolio company and a leader in the emerging “living photos” or Cinemagraph space, has released what is in my humble opinion the 2nd best startup video – the release coincides with Flixel Verion 2 hitting the App Store. One of the Flixel co-founders, Mark Homza, in conjunction with actress Cassandra Sorokopas (and production team Randy Cole, Adam Zivo), has created a video which feels like an Instagramed music video mixed with a love story in the vein of Joel and Clementine from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Congratulations to Mark and the team.
Mark’s video demonstrates to me the power of the Flixel app, as well as the broader implications of the emerging Cinemagraph movement, for mass artistic and commercial expression. Historically new mediums rose to prominence over long time horizons. Joseph Niepce created the first photographic image in 1827 but it took another 136 for Kodak to release the mass-market instant color Polaroid camera. Sony put out the world’s first digital camera, the Mavica a full 154 years after Niepce’s breakthrough. In the five short years since the release of iPhone we have seen improved versions of traditional mediums (photos/videos) gain mass acceptance (Instagram/Viddy et al.). What we haven’t seen are fundamentally new visual mediums, mediums made possible by rise of the high powered mobile computers we call phones. With Flixel, and the broader Cinemagraph movement, we will.