Thursday, 10 February 2011



Here are some thoughts on the prelim, there are some real strengths that you can focus on and try to use in your film and also a couple of areas that I think you could make little changes to improve.

I really like the concept of the fragmented opening shots of the body. The music you have used works extremely well with this and together the film  elements (sound/camera/editing/mis en scene) change the perspective of a grizzly murder scene from 'yuk, blood and a body' to something beautiful and serene. I like this because you are presenting a different perspective to the audience and that is something that could be followed up in an interesting way, it introduces the question,  who sees death scenes as a thing of beauty?

I really like that the camera is handheld and moving around. However, I think you have cut the shots too short in the edit - just 10 seconds all together! I think that scene could easily run to 30 or 40 seconds or indeed considerably longer if you slowly began to reaveal some details with the different individual shots. With these tight close ups of the body you are  witholding back the answers to questions that the audience want answered, who is the dead guy, where is he, has anyone found the body yet, how did he die, who killed him... you need to leave more time for these questions to develop. The poetry of this edit would also work beautifully for a title sequence, but you would need to think of whether the titles are going to come over the pictures and if so frame some shots in such a way that you leave an area for these to go in.

Speaking of titles, woah slow down! As a rule of thumb put them up for as long as you need to read them and add on two seconds for good measure. If in doubt have a look at some of the clips on the blog and time a couple of the titles to see how long they last. Also obviously make sure that black titles dont appear on a black screen!
Did you intend to have a jump cut of Azeemah approaching the door? Really? No I didn't think so. The angles and shot sizes are too similar between the shots. But the next shot (overhead turning the door handle) is great! Shots with innovative and original but still effective will really lift the overall quality of your film, let's some of them (if appropriate) please. I think you need to shoot a greater range of shot types and angles in general.

Shot reverse shot on the conversation are fine, however the framing is not good, far too much dead space in the frame on both angles. Remind me of this in the next lesson if you are not sure what I mean and we can have a look together.

BCU of Azeemah's eyes is good but I think you had the ND filter (sunglasses) on when you didn't need too and therefore it looks a bit dark.

Again nice BCU of hand holding pen, this kind of cutaway shot is really useful when editing, make sure to get a selection of these again.

The sound of the dialogue is echo-y that is because you are using the wrong type of mic. Dialogue is not really encouraged in your films, it is not really very typical in the first two minutes of a film opening. However if you must record some please ask and I or one of the other teachers will kit you out with the correct mic and give you some tips for recording dialogue.

That's it, good prelim, but now on to the real thing... good luck!


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