Watch this: Ridley Scott's impressive Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra short film

Still from Behold
(Image credit: Samsung / Ridley Scott Creative Group)

Sir Ridley Scott is no stranger to experimental filmmaking, and the Blade Runner director has once again proven his willingness to go against the grain with a new short film shot entirely using the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

The three-minute production is intended to showcase the S23 Ultra’s impressive camera capabilities. In addition to boasting improved ‘Nightography' powers over the Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung’s latest flagship packs a huge 200MP sensor and integrated Expert RAW shooting that supports up to 50MP footage. 

Titled Behold and written by Luke Scott, the short film follows “a young man, confronted by hostility and aggression, chased into a world where he is forced to find his escape [and] his own version of peace.” Check it out in 4K below:

Owing to its length (or lack thereof), Behold is clearly a more meditative film than others in Scott’s feature-length repertoire. Per a press release sent to TechRadar: “Behold refers to a maxim – beauty is in the eye of the beholder, inviting the audience to find the glimmer of beauty within the frame of a challenging environment, looking for the value in things that have been discarded.” 

As for how Scott found the experience of shooting with the Galaxy S23 Ultra, the director explained in a behind-the-scenes featurette (which we’ve embedded below): “I thought it [was] a great challenge. A very interesting challenge. Because the scary thing is, this small object is going to take the place of all the big cameras, which is great. And shooting on a phone, we were able to access real environments and smaller spaces.” 

Scott’s cinematographer on the project, Flavio Labiano, added that although he “feared” the Galaxy S23 Ultra wouldn’t give him the “range of options [he normally has] available when working,” he was “pleasantly surprised” by how versatile it was, praising the “quality of image and the dynamic range of the sensor.”

Of course, Behold was made using a suite of camera mounts and professional lighting equipment, but the fact remains that the Galaxy S23 Ultra is almost certainly among the best camera phones money can buy (its predecessor currently sits top of our list, but it’ll likely be dethroned once we’re done testing the S23 Ultra). 

Wide shots, in particular, have a real cinematic quality in Scott’s short film, and the S23’s Ultra superior ‘Nightography' capabilities over the S22 Ultra are plain to see throughout. Take a look at a few stills from Behold below: 

This isn't the first time Samsung has partnered with a renowned filmmaker to show off its latest handset. In 2021, Anna Karenina director Joe Wright released an award-winning puppetry short, Princess and Peppernose, which he shot entirely with the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra. A separate S23-shot film, from South Korean director Na Hong-jin, is also on the way. 

Perhaps, next year, we’ll see Scorsese take the Samsung Galaxy S24 for a spin? 

Axel Metz
Senior Staff Writer

Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion. 

Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.