September 2014 archive

Analysis and Reflection 4

In this clip from Forbidden Lies, Anna Broinowski’s 2007 film: describe in detail all of the audio, how it may have been recorded/sourced and how you think it has been edited / layered in post. (You do not need to describe how the music was recorded)

Broinowski’s Forbidden Love begins with a short advertisement/musical piece. The song lyrics describe the culture surrounding marriage in Muslim culture. The song is somewhat cheesy in nature and this corresponds with the SFX, which appear to be part of this piece. The SFX are heavily echoed and add to the dreamy nature of the clip (achieved through heavy filters and vignettes). This clip has an abrupt ending with a woman’s voice saying, “This is not the truth”. This voice cuts into the music, creating an abrupt end to this surreal clip. The non-diegetic sound effects in this introductory clip are layered over the music and they have been edited to add some kind of echo-y sound effects.

Most of the rest of the audio is the interviews of two women disproving the author, as well as the woman reading her book. This would have been recorded when they were shooting. Some of it is overlayed over other footage they have recorded, however most of the audio and video that has been shot together is used together. Some of the clips (e.g. the footage of the unisex salon shop, the women smoking cigarettes, and the gym) are accompanied with audio (with no lyrics) and the audio of the woman reading her novel. This music is layered over all of the clips in this sequence, again coming to an abrupt end when the woman closes her phone and laughs.

Most applications reserve keyboard shortcuts for the functions that you use most often. It is really good to learn all of these as it will speed up your editing and additionally alert you to functions that the software developers and other users find important. (You can learn much about the software by looking at keyboard shortcuts). Find the keyboard shortcuts for Premiere (hint, film-tv blog) and note four or more functions that you’ve never used before and why they may be invaluable to your editing. (Different functions to what you wrote last semester)

Speed/Duration – Cmd + R
While editing the footage we’ve shot already for Bluestone, we have found that we are trying to create a view of Pentridge Village as a slow-moving place, where nothing much happens. Through slowing down clips, we can increase this feeling in our footage. This shortcut will make selecting and affecting our clips much easier, as it will speed up the process.

Ungroup – Shift + Cmd + G
This tool will be invaluable in our editing process, as our film will rely heavily on the use of overlay and voiceovers. Our heavy focus on interviews in Bluestone means that we will be utilising a lot of our footage shot in Pentridge to ensure that these interviews don’t become visually boring for our audience. By unlinking the video and audio we record, we can insert other clips (i.e. voiceover from interviews) over the top of clips we have shot in the Village to make for more interesting viewing.

List/Icon – Cmd + Page Up/ Cmd + Page Down

This way of toggling the ways the bins are organised makes it easier to view and sort the footage we have shot. Because we are importing the footage through Premiere (and naming all of our clips), we have encountered times when it would be easier to view the clips via lists, or via icons. By knowing this shortcut, it will be easier for us to switch between the two views, rather than manually going through the menus every time we want to change the view.

Trim Forward by One Frame – Opt + Right
Until researching for this analysis, I did not know this shortcut was possible. Last semester in Film & TV 1, this would have been a helpful tool to know about in our editing process. As we shot a lot of action last semester, we were advised that modifying our cuts by one frame would make the action appear smoother. While this may not become as handy this semester for Bluestone, (as there is significantly less action involved) it may become handy at one point or another in our editing process this semester.

“From a distant gaze…” (1964) directed by Jean Ravel, picture Pierre Lhomme & Chris Marker, words by Louis Aragon, narrated by Jean Negroni, music by Michel Legrand. Describe a few things that intrigue you – it might be shot construction, camera work, editing, overall structure, thematic concerns etc. Describe the camera work and why you think it has been shot that way.

This piece of film was an incredibly interesting piece of film to watch. One of the things I liked the most about it was how succinctly it demonstrated the spirit and feelings of the people. I loved the fast moving camerawork, which captures the bustling streets of Paris and the people who live there. I feel like the culture of the people has been established through the use of close ups and the fast moving camera work. This style of ‘fly on the wall’ shooting has been used to great effect in this clip. The music that accompanies this clip adds to the fast paced feel of the clip.

One thing that intrigued me most was the use of voice over (particularly 0:57-1:39) by Jean Negroni added to the ‘fly on the wall’ or ‘people watching’ feel of the clip. The mysterious nature of this clip was confusing, however I feel like it would make sense when watching the whole film, rather than this short clip. With out context, this mysterious voice over takes on a rather ominous feel, which is very contradicting to the joyous or happy tones of the footage and music used in this clip.

The fashion of the people, particularly the women, is particularly important in establishing the geographical and historical context of this film. By only seeing a few clips, even before the voiceover comes in, the audience quickly understands that the film was filmed in 1960’s Paris, purely through the way the people are dressed. This quick establishing of context through non-verbal means is really interesting, as it is not often seen in films made in the present day.

Select from one of the readings and briefly describe two points that you have taken from it. Points that interest you, something you could apply to your own documentary.

“It’s not shooting like a fly on the wall because a fly doesn’t have a brain” (Maysles, cited in Cunningham, 2005, p.89)

This discussion of ‘fly on the wall’ style shooting (or cinema verite) is an interesting one because of the discussion of how real life can be manipulated or pushed by filmmakers to create more of a story. Haskell Wexler, interviewed by Megan Cunningham, tells a story about when he was shooting Salesman, (a cinema verite piece), in which the filmmakers pushed action onto the participants in order to help forward the narrative. They discuss how this kind of choice is the same as a choice about which camera/lens/shot type you chose, the editing choices you make, when you shoot, and whom you shoot. This stimulation of natural drama is really important for our piece Bluestone, as it is an interesting way of considering how to construct a story. Throughout our preproduction, we have struggled with our overall vision and contention, as well as finding people to interview. By considering that we can push the conventions of cinema verite into creating drama, it gives us freedom to create a narrative where they may not have previously been one.

“There was a lot of experimentation in that project, and it gave me a lot of confidence in the different ways you can film what is real” (Johnston, cited in Cunningham 2005, p.156)

Kirsten Johnston, a filmmaker who has worked on several independent features in the last 25 years, discusses working with French critic and philosopher, Jacques Derrida, who had very strict control over how he wanted to be shot in his documentary. Johnston talks about how this impacted on the documentary that was created in the final product. This reflection of Derrida’s thoughts became a founding aspect of the documentary, which went on to win several awards and was screened at Sundance film festival. Because the subject had such strict rules about how he was going to be framed in his piece, Johnston talks about how she was forced to think outside the box in relation to the framing of the shots. One of the more interesting things I took away from this documentary was when she talked about how, when shooting Derrida working in his office, instead of shooting him behind from inside, she chose to shoot him from “in his garden, filming him through the trees, through the window, into his office” (p.156). I liked this because it made me think about how our interviews for Bluestone can be shot, outside of the traditional and conventional ways to shoot interviews.