“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.
the thing that intrigued me the most about this film was the camera movement, both of the subject within the frame and that of the camera itself. it became apparent quite quickly that the overall thematic feel of the film was movement as there was never a truly still moment throughout the film. there was always an element of something moving. however, the pacing often changed, and again this came both from the movement within the shots or the editing between shots. at times there were long shots with little edits but then a period of fast music would begin with quick and sharp edits between shots and even though the content of the shot was still for that sequence, it still felt as though everything was moving because of the quickly changing edits and fast paced music.
what fascinated me the most was right at the beginning of the film where the camera followed various people along the street. the things or people who were being tracked by the camera were moving a great deal slower than everything else in frame and were often completely obscured by fast moving cars. the camera was impressively still managing to follow its subject and the tracking was so smooth and everything around the subject was moving so fast that it often felt as the the subject wasn’t moving at all, even though you could see it moving along the street. it was almost mesmerising to watch something that appeared to be stationary even though it was moving because everything around was moving so quickly and the camera movement was so smooth. i was very impressed.