The Scarecrow

When a lonely scarecrow decides to leave its place far out on a field and runs into a funny vagabond, magical things start to happen.

This unlikely encounter of two outsiders is full of melancholy and humor. We shot it in the midst of winter for the 2022 edition of London-based Straight8 competition which is all about making a short film on one cartridge of Super 8 with only in-camera edits and an original score produced blindly. In French this style of filmmaking is called “tourné-monté” and it is an art form in its own right.

Filmed on location in Hamburg, Germany in January 2022.

Credits / Collaborators / Cast

A film by LARS KEMNITZ |

Starring ALEXA HARMS |


Shot on KODAK VISION3 50D super 8 film stock
Processing and telecine by Cinelab London, UK

The story behind the film

When I thought about a story I can tell and that works in the Straight8 context, I came up with this setting of a wintery field and a scarecrow that has been abandoned out there. I had this picture in my head. From this starting point the story developed. I added the character of the vagabond which appears out of nowhere like a good soul who wants to help the scarecrow to feel better. It is an encounter that is unlikely to happen in real life, but unfolds its magic on screen due to the charming performances by Alexa and Niklas.

Alexa whom I worked with before has a stunning presence as scarecrow. She is playing a sad character who feels lonely and not beautiful and who is lacking confidence. That changes when the vagabond appears. Niklas plays this mysterious character who can do magic and acts like a mime artist with all his verve. I had wanted to work with him before, but it was this film that brought us together for the first time.

I like the idea of two outsiders meeting on a foggy cold winter day making the best of their actually quite depressing situation. Even though the mood is melancholic, the film is supposed to transport a very positive message that is all about helping and encouraging each other in a selfless manner. And about discovering the joy of life even in unlikely situations. I guess that is what we all need from time to time. And I wanted to wrap this feeling into a little film that has humor and strength underneath its melancholic surface.

As there is no dialog in this film and no voiceover, the music was very important to set the mood. I created it myself – as always. And I had the compositions of neo-classical artist Ólafur Arnalds in my head and this very tactile piano sound where you can hear the player hitting the keys. I wanted to have this sound as a backdrop for this film and I mixed it with ASMR-like ambiance sounds of rain and wind and wooden sticks. The sound track complements the images quite well I think and really helps to create the melancholic atmosphere.


Genre: Comedy / Fantasy
Country: Germany
Language: English
Length in minutes: 03:25
YEAR: 2022