The key word in continuity is CONTINUE
It is to make sure things are continuous
Did you notice the editing?
Because good editing is INVISIBLE!
The most common type of editing which aims to create a sense of reality and time moving
Also known as invisible editing referring to how the technique does not draw attention to the
editing process but allows the audience to concentrate on the narrative.
Various filming rules and techniques are applied to ensure this smooth continuity.
Basically, continuity editing is so that scenes look continuous. (the flow)
Techniques/rules of continuity editing:
-180 degree rule
-match on action (match cuts)
-shot reverse shot
-crosscutting or parallel editing
Purpose: Is to orientate the viewer, to establish
the placement of characters.
Breaking the 180 rule, it will place the characters
in a different place
1 ACTION = MULTIPLE SHOTS
Is multiple cuts to show one continuous action.
Match on action is part of invisible editing which creates flow when watching a scene.
The cuts MATCH together so that the audience know it is one action.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMx-Az5Da4M Think of how many match cuts there are!
What kind of pace is created in these clips? How? Why
How does sound connect to the editing/pace? How?
Shot reverse shot is when a shot goes from shot A, shot B, shot A,
shot B etc.
It goes continuously back and forth between the 2 shots to show
there is a connection between them
It is often used in conversations so you see what both characters are
It is a form of eye-line matching if the character is looking at
someone and the next shot is what they look at
Imagine if a conversation was just 1 shot of character A and you
didn’t see character B’s face at all?
Shot A: character is looking off screen
Shot B: what character is looking at
Is a following shot that follows what character is looking at, makes cuts smoother the
audience expects the cut to happen and is eager to see what happens next/what
a) A person’s phone rings, she turns and looks in direction of phone
b) Close up shot of phone ringing
This is eye-line match because of the cards she is looking at………..but it is
Her looking at cards her looking at cards
Technique of continuously alternating 2 or more scenes that often happen
simultaneously (at same time) but in different locations.
As they cross, pace gradually gets faster and fast and tension builds
Often the parallel scenes will intersect to create a climax.
2 scenes: a) interrogation b) car approaching
-2 scenes: a) FBI director (outside house) b) criminal (inside house)
What is unique/different about this scene? How has cross cutting been used different? (What is its intention
upon the audience?)
A B A B
(2 scene collide)
A (330pm)B (330pm)A (3:33pm)B (3:33pm)
This video is a good summary of continuity with
examples from a film
A cutaway is video scene that CUTS away to relevant images
Often used in documentaries or in film when a vital piece of
information is needed to show the audience. Usually the
dialogue or voice will CONTINUE during the cutaway (to keep
It is used to have variety in the visuals
SLOW -to make slow/calm/still
-little number of shots/cuts which are long
-to make audience calm or bored (perhaps to pay attention to detail or to
MEDIUM -to make normal and comfortable
-average number shots/cuts which are medium time which could show realism
FAST -to make intense, exciting and thrilling
-lots of shots/cuts which are short
-to make audience tense/excited
Which pace for each clip?
How is this pace created?
Why is this pace created?
How is time edited? How is time shown and/or manipulated to
communicate a narrative?
How is time shown/represented?
Is there a manipulation of time? How? Why?
TYPES OF TIME
STORY TIME: time of the events (ex a film over 50 years ….)
DISCOURSE TIME: time taken to narrate the event (how long to tell
Ex 2 hours )
MORE TYPES OF TIME Example
Summary -discourse shorter than
A film takes place over 50 years but
shown in 2 hours
Ellipsis -establishing discourse
time rather than story
-shot 1: man out of bed….
-shot 2: man in shower…..
-shot 3: man getting dressed….
-shot 4: man driving to work.
The audience can fill in the gaps (…)
Scene -story and discourse time
are equal (to show realism
Soap opera which shows a scene in 5
minutes which is actually 5 mins
Stretch -discourse is longer than
(using slow motion)
Scene in race where it is in slow
motion to show a runner winning and
to capture the emotion
Flashback -character has a flash back
(which is a thought or
memory in the past)
-flashbacks are often in
dull colours, black and
white and altered light (to
make it different than real
-causes non linear narrative
as you are changing order
In hunger games, Kat is thinking
about Peeta at dinner table, she has a
flashback and audience see her
thoughts of her sitting outside the
bakery and Peeta throwing her bread
Flash-forward -when audience are shown
the future scenes or events
(often to give clues)
-causes non linear narrative
as you are changing order
Remember the audience will not see everything,
things are edited in order they get to see what is
◦ Who/what has most time on screen? Why?
◦ Who/what has little time on screen and why?
◦ *link to representation/stereotype
◦ *link to placement (shots/angles) where are characters
placed in the scene? Are they in the middle of the screen or
hidden in a corner or behind other people?
◦ Think of the fast and furious chase scene = who has the most/little time?
Straight cutting – to show realism, in conversations etc.
Graphic match – when 2 shots match graphically, often with an overlap
transition (ex shot of eyeball, then shot of the sun (same size/shape =
to show their relationship) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HG5kPlxzeU
Overlap/dissolve – makes a softer transition, to show ellipsis or time
passing http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvGc6D85fwE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HK6zGWox6S0
Wipe – often used to show new day or new scene/location (sideways
Fade in/out (fade to black or appear from black – often used to
communicate ending or beginning) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0_2ZFdB6Hk
Flash – to show flashbacks or flash-forwards (to show thoughts or
memories) (flashes to white) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0SY_qeOIjIg
B&w –often used to show memory or time period
Contrast – to altar the lighting (or contrast = very light lights and dark darks sometimes with
Colour - to add a colour filter to show a specific mood
Example ‘The ring’ – many scenes are very blue-ish, which show sterile/coldness etc.
Animation – titles of shows or cartoons
CGI – computer generated images (example = avatar, planet of apes, polar express)
Fast forward/slow motion – speeding up or slowing down footage
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIK4Uf9NhJA (fast) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QrlPmK4B94 (slow)
Ghost trail – see multiple actions (overlapped) to show someone drunk or on drugs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5xkFN-pOJc (ghost trail) ….. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XI3bnkWD0Fg (hallucination when stung by bee at
Blur – to show un-clarity, or fuzzy memory/flashback (bee sting scene – some is blurry when
Montage editing is a serious of montage which is a series of
shots that are not in sequential order, continuous or relate to
It is just like pieces of the puzzle, often used in trailers, TV
openings (the show credits/opening)
Takes us to different locations
–Cuts to new place such as a hotel pool, to room, to kitchen
Changes pace (there can create tension)
–Go from slow to fast to show change in character’s feelings (fingersmiths)
Influence our opinions on characters depending on how much screen time they get (time
–Feel sorry for 2nd maid as she is not shown very much
Manipulate the time experienced by characters and audience (showing us different things at same time for
–Think of a scene to show a character is getting more fit over time (montage editing & transitions/cuts of
different locations will allow us to understand time)
–Ellipsis – cutting out time to understand something took place over a period of time
–Split screen or cross cutting (different places happening at same time)
Offer clues about the characters or plot development
–Having an eye line match of something a character can see might reveal more info
–Cutting between characters in a scene may reveal more about each character (linked with MES/CAM SAM) -
think of scene in freedom writers, there is sound bridging when he reads the diary but we actually so
the eyeline matches of the teacher/other students to understand they feel sorry for him