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10 reasons why super slow motion is awesome

What is one thing you’ve ALWAYS wanted to see in slow motion? Don’t worry, I know. A lightning bolt.

Awesome! It’s really like a lightning web before it becomes a bolt.

The best stop motion animation videos part I

In the last blog we looked at 10 human feats of speed ranging from eating fast to stacking fast. A lot of times it is difficult to appreciate the speed at which those tasks are performed because the human eye cannot process that much information that quickly. That is why we have recruited the help of technology to give us yet another super power. The ability to slow down time.

10 strangely fast humans

Well, not exactly. But we do have the power to slow down film to a rate where we can see unusually fast things in extreme slow motion. And the results are nothing short of awesome.

The history lesson:

The effect of slow motion, or slowmo, was invented by Austrian physicist August Musger. The technique works by filming something at a frame rate much faster than it will be played back, thereby giving the effect of watching time pass by slowly. For example, if a camera films at 48 frames per second (FPS), and the film is played back at the standard 24 FPS, then the effect would be to see the action at half speed.

The use of slowmo was popularized in film making by Japanese director Akira Kusosawa (Seven Samurai), and later saw use in American film making with directors like Sam Peckinpah (Wild Bunch). The concept of slowmo may have predated film making, first being used in Japanese Noh theater.

Since the Japanese popularized the use of slowmo, we see much use of it in popular media and television.

Here the modern samurai Isao Machii cuts a flying bb with a katana. He doesn’t have to dodge bullets, he cuts them in half!

Samurai cuts flying bb with katana

Here is another clip of a katana vs. a bullet. Proof of the incredible strength of Japanese sword making.

I think the best part of the video is the dubbing over the Japanese old man. “I told you! My swords rule!” =)

Katana vs.  bullet

Did you think the last clip wasn’t cool enough? Then how about the same sword, going up against a 50 caliber machine gun?

Katana vs. .50 caliber Machine gun

The incredible sword cuts through 6 .50 bullets before finally giving in. If I ever get a sword for a present, I want a Japanese katana.

The present

Slowmo became even more popular with the invention of High Speed Cameras which could film at thousands of FPS. Things previously not visible to the human eye are now rendered in extreme clarity. For example, we can now watch bullets slice through random objects. Destruction is always best in slow motion.

Bullets in slow motion

When you mom told  you to not play with your food, she never said anything about not shooting it!

Previously used only for scientific research in large industries, High Speed Cameras became more commercially successful as costs for equipment and film became more affordable. Now such cameras are used in the field of media in shows like MythBusters. In the British show called Brainiac: Science Abuse, a popular segment is featured called “Things, but very slowly”.

A face slap very slowly

They sure picked a great subject to be slapped, the ripples through his face are priceless!

A water balloon popped very slowly

What good is a water balloon that doesn’t hit someone? Here we watch a water balloon hitting a face, but very slowly.

Water balloon to the face

Haha, I love how he is always the victim in these clips. His partner seems to have a fun job.

Ever wonder how popcorn works?

Popcorn, but very slowly

His narration makes popcorn sound so, sexy. Oh those spongy endosperms in that hot oil… mmmm….

As more people became interested in slow motion captures, film makers became more creative in what they decided to film. This one is as random as it could get.

A crossbow bolt through a fish tank

Next time you have a crossbow and an empty fish tank, you’ll know what to do.

A karate chop through a brick

This clip makes it even more impressive that he can break the block with his mushy deformed hand.

The future

High speed cameras are getting ever faster. Using new technology that no longer employ a shutter and film, some cameras can film up to 25 million FPS. How anyone can even stand to watch film that slow is beyond me. That’ll really be like watching grass grow.

Hoped  you learned something from this post and got some entertainment out of it. Please comment below!

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