Páraic Gloughlin’s short film, Chase examines how natural and unnatural spaces tap into how it feels to be alive in a city.

Chase, from photographer and filmmaker Páraic Gloughlin, is a frenetic three-minute journey that uses natural and urban infrastructure to tap into what it means to be alive in a city. The idea for the film, which was shot over two years in Ireland and Poland, initially came to Gloughlin when he started using his camera to observe people, places, and objects that shared common properties.

Scenes jump between sites man-made and natural, traveling down a brush-lined road one moment and hurtling through a subway station in the next. “Showing different routes of transport—from a muddy country walk way to a motorway or cityscape—was also an attempt to symbolize choice, decision, possibility, and change,” says Gloughlin.

Gloughlin explains that Chase “comes from the meaning of searching or hunting for something, how everyone is searching…and how our journeys are often very alike even in the different lives we live.”

The film is preoccupied with the roads and walkways people travel on, but also probes the human element of cities. At various points in the film viewers look down on full crosswalks and city squares, watching as groups of people are rapidly replaced by others moving about their daily lives.

“Living in a city is fast. You quite often miss what's going on in your surroundings, catching countless glimpses of peoples' lives as you continue on your way,” Gloughlin says. “I guess in this manner the fast-paced nature of Chase captures something of what it is to live in a city.”

Overall, Chase captures the feeling of switching between and living in spaces defined not only by land and urbanization but by other people, in what Gloughlin calls, “some kind of bizarre, impossible journey.”

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A neon sign spells out "66" on historic Route 66.
    Life

    Get Your Kicks Biking Route 66

    Cyclists are now rolling on U.S. Bike Route 66 in Missouri and Kansas, the first stretch of a route planned for the whole length of the historic 2,400-mile highway.

  2. Democracy in America

    Santa Monica Passed a Law to Stop Parties at One House

    When your parties require special legislation, you know you're doing something right.

  3. Design

    The Sensory City Philosopher

    Architect, engineer, and inventor Carlo Ratti envisions a future for urban design that's interactive.

  4. An illustration shows two alleys in Detroit.
    Design

    Finding the Untapped Potential of Alleys

    “We’re starting to realize they’re just as powerful as a park or plaza.”

  5. Equity

    What Cities Do Right to Integrate Immigrants, in 4 Charts

    A sociologist interviewed hundreds of immigrants in New York, Barcelona, and Paris. Here's what he says those cities get right—and do wrong—when integrating foreign-born residents.