The 1982 movie Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance was a fascinating experimental film that combined slow motion and time-lapse footage with music by Phillip Glass to illustrate humanity’s impact on the world. Monkeon’s Gifaanisqatsi generates movies using a similar technique, only with random animated GIFs.
Awesome Slow Motion
The guys from How Ridiculous have yet to run out of ways to destroy things, as proven by their latest bit of industrial machinery. What they built was a motorized rig with two gigantic metal fly swatters attached to it. Once it got up to speed, they dropped various objects into its path to see what kind of damage it could do.
The most powerful pool breaks rarely exceed 30 mph. At least, that’s the case with human players. But The Slow Mo Guys tend to do things with a bit more impact. So they got their hands on a special canon that’s exactly the right size to launch a pool ball. Once they dialed in their aim, they recorded the carnage at 80,000 FPS.
The Hydraulic Press Channel has figured out that you can get metal objects to explode even more dramatically by pre-scoring them. In this clip, they start by crushing a series of progressively larger ball bearings, then try the same with one they put cut marks into. The slow-motion footage is really impressive.
Made from a flexible rubberized material backed with a strong adhesive, Flex Tape is an incredibly durable repair tool. The guys from How Ridiculous put the sturdy and sticky stuff to the test by covering a platform with it, then dropping various objects onto it from a 150-foot-tall tower. But can it survive a wrecking ball?
Mehdi Sadaghdar from ElectroBOOM has made a career out of playing with electricity. He teamed up with Gav and Dan of The Slow Mo Guys to shoot some high-voltage sparks from his tesla coil and Marx generator. They managed to capture some incredible shots at speeds up to 1,750,000 frames per second. Here’s Mehdi’s video.
With enough power, lasers can engrave and cut materials. In this video from WIRED, laser expert Alexander Sellite explains the physics at work as a fiber laser works its magic, vaporizing designs into sheet metal. By adjusting its scanning speed, pulse length, and power level, it can mark different metals and even create colors.
The Slow Mo Guys have a tendency to get messy making their videos, but this time they’ve outdone themselves. After seeing other slow-motion videos with powders bounced off of a tennis racket, they super-sized the idea by covering a trampoline with colorful paint pigments – then Dan took a flying leap into it.
Ant Lab’s Dr. Adrian Smith is an expert at capturing slow-motion, macro footage of insects in motion. In this video, you’ll get up close and personal with a dozen species of moths and beetles as they take flight. It’s amazing to see the details of each insect’s wings and bodies and the subtle variations in their movements.
The Slow Mo Guys offer up a brief lesson on how bullets work, then show us what happens when you fire a projectile from a tiny pinfire gun at the primer from a normal-sized bullet. It’s fascinating to see how a bullet behaves when it doesn’t have a gun to contain it.
This wouldn’t be the first time we’ve seen Stretch Armstrong destroyed in horrible ways. But The Slow Mo Guys added their spin to the genre by capturing the carnage in slow motion. Like others, they filled the gooey kid’s toy with enough water to make it explode. Their high-speed footage also revealed Stretch’s true Achilles’ heel.
Nature filmmaker Lothar Lenz is an expert at capturing macro footage of insects. In this video, we get to watch some hornets competing with a colony of ants for a drink of water. The incredible audio recording puts you right there in the action. The ants get a little feisty in this other video.
Macro photography usually remains at a constant distance from the object being photographed. But Macrofying pulled off this slick shot which starts out wide on a hot pan filled with popcorn and oil, then zooms in on a single kernel to see it pop in ultra slow-motion.
The Slow-Mo Guys do their best How Ridiculous impression by testing how many panes of glass they can shoot through with a single bullet. But it’s not that answer that’s the most interesting thing in this video; it’s the amazing high-speed footage of each bullet’s path and the destruction left in its wake.
The Slow-Mo Guys captured some of their most amazing explosion footage with the help of the Colorado School of Mines and a special high-speed camera from Shimadzu that can shoot up to 5 million frames per second – though only in a 256 frame burst. It’s not as colorful as the faster footage but it reveals never-before-seen details.
Over the years, Gav and Dan from The Slow Mo Guys have produced a number of videos which involve doing silly things with giant water balloons. This time, they sandwiched Dan between two of the heavy balloons and then popped them to capture a new perspective on the water-soaked action.
Warped Perception has made several project vehicles that incorporate small turbojet engines. For this video, he built a custom transparent housing for one of the jets so we can see exactly how it works to create thrust. Along the way, he offers a great layperson’s explanation of jet propulsion systems.
Originating from Southeast Asia, Sepak Takraw is a unique variant of volleyball where players use their feet instead of hands and head to send a small ball over the net. This brief slow-motion footage shows just how flexible, acrobatic, and agile its players must be.
Editor Casper Langbak of CLS Videos created this montage of scenes from movies that effectively used slow motion to enhance a mood or to punctuate action. That Quicksilver scene from X-Men: Days Of Future Past is still one of the best things ever. The track is Love…Thy Will Be Done by Martika, and here’s the full list of movies.
We’ve seen how pinball machines are made. Now, thanks to Gavin of The Slow Mo Guys, we can see exactly how they work as they kick steel balls around. He spent some quality time with Jersey Jack’s tricked-out Willy Wonka pinball machine to observe how its electro-mechanical playfield components work.
You’ve gotta break some eggs to make a YouTube video. The Slow Mo Guys broke out the big guns with the Phantom TMX 7510 high-speed camera to capture footage of eggs being pierced with a bullet at as much as 1 million frames per second. While the slowest shots are amazing, the resolution drops off dramatically around 100,000 fps.
Blowing and popping soap bubbles is fun – other than the slippery mess left on the floor afterward. The Slow Mo Guys had some fun making soap bubbles so big that a human can stand inside of it. The 50,000 fps slow-motion footage gives us a unique perspective on what it looks like as each bubble bursts.
When you pump too much voltage into a capacitor, it will eventually fail by exploding like a tiny bomb. Gav and Dan of The Slow Mo Guys pushed too much power through some of these ubiquitous energy storage devices to see what they looked like as they failed. The footage tops out at an incredible 187,500 fps.