See a stunning afterlife in Park Chan-wook's 'Shot on iPhone 13 Pro' short | Cult of Mac

See a stunning afterlife in Park Chan-wook’s ‘Shot on iPhone 13 Pro’ short


Dead warriors like this one are fierce and playful in Park Chan-wook's short.
Dead warriors like this one are fierce and playful in Park Chan-wook's short.
Photo: Apple

Most people use the awesome filmmaking potential of iPhone 13’s Cinematic Mode to shoot vids of their cats. But not South Korean director Park Chan-wook. In the latest in Apple’s “Shot on iPhone” series, he takes you into afterlife in a short film packed with martial arts wizardry and dream-like sequences. It’s called Life is But a Dream, and it’s shot entirely on an iPhone 13 Pro.

Even if you and your cat had a famous director’s resources — the cast, the sets, the costumes, the rich folklore — you still probably couldn’t come up with anything like this. But thanks to the technology in your iPhone, you can try.

Shot on iPhone 13 Pro: Park Chan-wook’s Life is But a Dream

You may know Park from his theatrical releases — films like Oldboy (2003), and The Handmaiden (2016). And the new short is not his first time shooting a film on an iPhone.

From the opening scene to the credits, Park’s new film is just under 20 minutes long. It tells the story of an undertaker who digs up an abandoned grave to use the coffin to bury the warrior who saved his village. Little does he know that his actions will awaken a long-dead warrior who doesn’t want to give up his resting place. Pretty soon, the two warriors clash and the lines between living and dead blur.

The film’s cast includes Yoo Hai-jin, Kim Ok-vin and Park Jeong-min. You can listen to the original soundtrack by Jang Young-gyu  on Apple Music. Watch Life is But a Dream below. You can also see it and a making-of video about it (also below) on Apple’s YouTube channel.


Making-of video about Park’s short film

In addition to Life is But a Dream itself, Apple also shared a three-minute making-of video about the South Korean short. It shows how Park used Cinematic Mode in his filming, in addition to tricks of iPhone placement and enhancements made to capture video in low light situations. You can see the making-of video below. And take Park’s advice: Just start shooting.




Daily round-ups or a weekly refresher, straight from Cult of Mac to your inbox.

  • The Weekender

    The week's best Apple news, reviews and how-tos from Cult of Mac, every Saturday morning. Our readers say: "Thank you guys for always posting cool stuff" -- Vaughn Nevins. "Very informative" -- Kenly Xavier.