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Basicfilmanalysis (1)

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An introduction to film analysis

Published in: Art & Photos
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Basicfilmanalysis (1)

  1. 1. Film Analysis Basic Concepts
  2. 2. Aspects of analysis  Genre  Narration  Image  Sound  Filming  Editing/Montage  Production
  3. 3. Genre  Genre—organization of films by category, type and function, based on similarities and dissimilarities.  Examples of film genre include, documentary, interview, fiction (western, mystery, melodrama), etc.  Genre raises the question of the form and function of the film
  4. 4. Examples of Genre What is the genre of this film? What visual elements suggest this genre?
  5. 5. Narration  Narration encompasses everything having to do with the story, the structure of the story, and how the story is told  Focus is on the events that make up the story, causality, temporality, and chronology of representation
  6. 6. Image  The visual field of a film comprises:  -people  -settings, objects, costumes  -lights and sounds  -a representation of time expressed through the frames that compose the film  -a way of seeing space through the shot  -an imagined but unseen space (offscreen space)
  7. 7. What do we look for in a shot?
  8. 8. What do we look for in a shot?
  9. 9. A film sequence vs. scene  A sequence is an ensemble of frames suggesting a single action.  A scene is a series shots arranged cut to cut
  10. 10. Sequence: Once Upon a Time in the West
  11. 11. Frame and screen  The frame or screen designates the space seen or recorded by the camera.  We make a disctinction between onscreen space (what is shown) and off-screen space (not shown but implied)  The relationship between on and off-screen space is important  The totality of what can be seen in a scene constituties the visual field  In a still frame, the onscreen space or visual field is equal to the frame  With a mobile frame, the visual field is only completely revealed through a series of frames, and therefore screen space and visual field are not identical.
  12. 12. Different ways of framing /shots  Shot frame our view and therefore understanding of the filmic (diegetic world)  They can frame our perception, or point of view, and subtly convey information about characters, setting, or other aspects of the story
  13. 13. Establishing shot
  14. 14. Long shot
  15. 15. Close-up
  16. 16. Close-up
  17. 17. Extreme Close-up
  18. 18. Medium shot
  19. 19. American shot
  20. 20. Shots emphasizing people  Medium shot: the person is visible in the frame from the waist up  Close-up: one complete part of the person is visible in the frame (usually the face)  Extreme close-up: one aspect of one part of the person (the hand, one eye) is visible in the frame  American shot: the person is visible from mid-thing up (classic Hollywood shot)
  21. 21. Montage  Montage or editing refers to the sequencing of shots within a film and to the transitions between shots  It creates not only the structure and chronology of the film, it also constitutes a language that forms the spectator’s sense of time and space (and causality)
  22. 22. Types of transitions/editing structures  In terms of structure, filmmakers can use continuity editing, parallel editing / montage (cross-cutting), or discontinuity editing  Continuity editing is the dominant form of editing  Continuity editing emphasizes linear, progressive time  It tends to condense time and space  Classical narration (linear and progressive) relies on continuity editing for strong character focus, unified point of view and unified action
  23. 23. • Continuity editing typically follows normal chronology of events (A follows B) •Parallel editing/montage represents two simultaneously occuring sets of events •Discontinuity editing disrupts or ignores typical chronology •The most famous proponent of discontuity editing, Sergei Eisenstein, considered continuity editing a form of seduction that lured spectators into accepting social and economic hierarchies •Eisenstein saw the cinema’s role as exposing and overturning those hierarchies, which is why he advocated an editing style that disrupted continuity (discontinuity editing)
  24. 24. •Even in classical cinema, the normal chronology of events is sometimes disrupted •Flashbacks have been a part of cinema since the very early years •Flash forward is another technique that has been used increasingly
  25. 25. Meaning of montage  Heighten the sense of « reality » in the film  Create thematic connections through metaphore, analogy, comparison, contrast  Create a temporal or spatial structure or message

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