This week I learned how to “read” movies and got some insight on editing movies from a movie-maker’s perspective. It all started with a quote from Roger Ebert’s article “How to Read a Movie.” Although sitting through a movie shot-by-shot sounds extremely tedious, I think that the overall observations Ebert makes can be found in most shots of a movie and are true whether or not we even notice them. What was also interesting was that many of the techniques he speaks of ring true of photography as well such as the rule of thirds, and the dominance positions.
Ebert states that “A POV above a character’s eyeline reduces him; below the eyeline, enhances him.” This related to another video I watched around editing and Tarantino’s tendency to shoot from below. Most of the clips used are from the perspective of a victim and include laughing, guns being pointed to the camera, the camera angle being from the inside of a truck, etc. This seemed to emphasize Ebert’s point as I noticed that the POV from below gives the actors power over the audience.
The second video I watched was on editing techniques. As I plan on having video editing as a major piece of my final project, this video was particularly useful. I think I will narrow down a couple of these techniques, especially the jump cut (because my story is from three perspectives), tempo/rhythm (as I will be adding songs and music) and thawed/freeze frames as I include pictures.