a filmmaking duo dedicated to framing a creative reality

our experimental films

"Words" from Secretary's debut album, "Parallels."

Music video by The Smyth Brothers. Images shot in Bali, Indonesia in 2013 on a 16mm Bolex camera.

Secretary is a Seattle-based band comprised of two people: Ellison & Em.

"News from the Sun"
3min, 16mm in-camera edit, 2016

*please watch with headphones and/or professional audio equipment as the bass levels are very low*

An apocalyptic narrative unfolds through the words of "The Sun", a British tabloid created by media mogul Rupert Murdoch. 4000 single frames were exposed, unedited, and accompanied with the pulsing rhythms of the sun collected by NASA, resembling the Buddhist "Om", the sound of our universe.

The Smyth Brothers were commissioned to make this film by Ben Russell for Moogfest 2016 in Durham, NC as part of a 9-part screening series entitled "Memories of the Space Age". Thanks to Josh Lewis at Negativland Motion Picture Lab for his beautiful processing/printing work!

2017 Short Circuit's screening "Truth and Lies" (Brighton, England)
2017 Off the Wall (Madison, WI)
2017 Girona Film Festival (Girona, Spain)
2017 Moviate Underground Film Festival (Harrisburg, PA)
2017 FEST - New Directors/New Films Festival (Espinho, Portugal)
2017 Chicago Underground Film Festival
2017 Minneapolis St. Paul Int'l Film Festival
2017 Athens International Film+Video Festival (Athens, OH)
2017 Short. Sweet. Film Fest- WINNER Honorable Mention (Cleveland, OH)
2017 Big Muddy Film Festival (Carbondale, IL)
2017 Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival- U.K. Premiere (Hawick, Scotland)
2017 OtherZine Issue #32: cinema of resistance (San Francisco, CA)
2017 Oxford Film Festival (Oxford, MS)
2016 Virginia Film Festival (Charlottesville, VA)
2016 Black Light Film + Video Series: Trouble Found Me (Richmond, VA)
2016 Antimatter [Media Art]- Canadian Premiere (Victoria, Canada)
2016 BIDEODROMO- European Premiere (Bilbao, Spain)
2016 Moogfest- World Premiere (Durham, NC)

"Death Songs & Car Bombs"
6.5min, 16mm in-camera edits, 2013

Guided by a ceremonial death song, an attempt to reach the unholy sea transforms into a chaotic place study of Bali's infamous tourism district- car-bombed one year after 9/11. Osama bin Laden declared the attack to be a direct response to the United States' War on Terror. Now, a dimly-lit memorial stands amidst a sea of Western signage, and by fate, an identical Mitsubishi L300 passes ground zero as the roll flares out.

[ Published by Ohio State University's Journal of Short Film: click HERE to purchase! ]


2014 Milwaukee Underground Film Festival
2014 Anthology Film Archives "The Improbable Made Possible: Farewell From A Dying Star"
2014 Winnipeg Underground Film Festival (Canada)
2014 Edinburgh International Film Festival (Scotland)
2014 Kolkata Shorts International Film Festival (India)
2014 Columbus International Film & Video Festival
2014 Antimatter [Media Art] (Canada)
2014 Transient Visions Festival of the Moving Image
2014 Virginia Film Festival
2014 Published in the 33rd Volume of Ohio State University's Journal of Short Film
2015 Florida Experimental Film Festival
2015 $100 Film Festival (Canada)
2015 Ethnografilm Festival (France)
2015 BronxArtSpace curated by Mitsu Hadeishi entitled, "Synthetic Zero Event"
2015 Moving Film Festival (Japan)
2015 Speechless Film Festival
2015 Atlanta Film Festival
2015 Athens International Film and Video Festival
2015 Published in OtherZine Issue #28 (
2015 Brooklyn Film Festival
2016 Curated by Roger Beebe (Echo Park Center LA, Microscope Gallery NYC)
2017 Curated by Catalog (
2017 Curated by Lute & Drum (

"Rice for Sale"
31min, 16mm to video, 2013

An experimental tale distorting Bali's modern world into a historical account depicting the demise of its former cultural motto, "Rice is Life." Ten wordless vignettes, all in-camera edits, are strung together to compose a two-part mythological venture down the heavenly mountain toward the demonic sea, culminating at the site of the 2002 terrorist bombing.


2014 Chicago Underground Film Festival - World Premiere
2014 Indie Grits Film Festival - WINNER Best Experimental Film
2014 Iowa City International Documentary Film Festival
2014 Brattleboro Film Festival - WINNER Best Filmmaker 25 and Under
2014 Vinyl Perk (Carrboro, NC)
2014 Mono No Aware's Connectivity Through Cinema (Brooklyn, NY)
2014 Sight Unseen Screening Series (Baltimore, MD)
2014 Big Mama's Cinematheque (Philadelphia, PA)
2014 The Other Room (Lancaster, PA)
2014 Mechanical Eye Microcinema (Asheville, NC)
2016 Cooper Union (NY, NY)
2017 Duke University (Durham, NC)

"Por Dinero"
31min, 16mm to video, 2012

Quotes from an ancient Mayan hero tie together the life of an undocumented Mexican, his indigenous family, and their dying language in this experimental documentary.


2012 Cincinnati Film Festival- WINNER Special Jury Prize for Emerging Filmmakers
2012 Atlanta Underground Film Festival
2012 Louisville's International Festival of Film
2012 Costa Rica International Film Festival
2013 Big Muddy Film Festival- WINNER Honorable Mention
2013 Chicago Underground Film Festival
2013 Indie Grits Film Festival
2013 Iowa City International Documentary Film Festival- WINNER- Inter/Trans/National Award
2013 Seattle True Independent Film Festival- WINNER Best Short Documentary
2013 Antimatter [Media Art]
2014 Atlanta Film Festival
2014 Anthology Film Archives curated by Tova Beck-Friedman entitled "Experimental Documentaries"
2014 Mono No Aware's Connectivity Through Cinema (Brooklyn, NY)
2014 Sight Unseen Screening Series (Baltimore, MD)
2014 Big Mama's Cinematheque (Philadelphia, PA)
2014 The Other Room (Lancaster, PA)
2014 Mechanical Eye Microcinema (Asheville, NC)
2015 Ball State University (Muncie, Indiana)
2016 Duke University (Durham, NC)