Film Clip Analysis Exercise in Three Parts. You can get help here at the
Yale film analysis 2.0 website
Choose a coherent sequence totalling around 8-12 shots from any one of the films we have seen in class thus far (and only those films) that we have not discussed in class.
You must capture a image from a DVD or web browser or web-player of each shot and insert the capture into your word document. I require screen captures because they actually help you "read" the film as well as give your reader more information. It's like writing about a poem having the poem in front of you so you may quote from it versus having the poem only from memory.
You'll need a computer that streams the film or has a DVD player or media player that plays DVDs.
You can download a free Mac player here. (I use it.)
This exercise should take you around 4-6 hours to do.
The Film Clip Analysis Exercise is in two parts. (A) Description; (B) Shot by Shot Analysis and Annotation.
All three parts must be completed for you to receive credit.
FORMATTING: Use a table with columns and rows headed with a series of five categories including (1) the shot number, (2) the time stamps for when the shot begins and ends, (3) the length of the shot (how long it lasts), (4) an exhaustive description of the shot, and (5) an annotation (comment, explanation, information) on the shot. For an example of the format (with an oboslete verion of the third part), click here. (Don't worry. The up-to-date version of the third part is below.)
Part One. Brief Description of Film Clip
Write your name on your paper at the top. Now that you have chosen a film clip from one of the films we have viewed thus far, write down name the film, and describe the clip briefly (a few sentences). Please the give the time stamps for your shots your clip begins and the time it ends. On a DVD, web browser, or media player, you'll see the time stamp for the hour, minute, and second. Ditto for a streamed version of the film.
Part Two. Analysis / Exhaustive Shot by Shot Description and Annotation
Give the following information ABOUT EACH SHOT. Here is the definition provided on the Yale film analysis website Yale 2.0 film analysis website
A single stream of images, uninterrupted by editing. The shot can use a static or a mobile framing, a standard or a non-standard frame rate, but it must be continuous. The shot is one of the basic units of cinema yet has always been subject to manipulation, for example stop-motion cinematography or superimposition. In contemporary cinema, with the use of computer graphics and sequences built-up from a series of still frames (eg. Mannequin Challenge), the boundaries of the shot are increasingly being challenged.
HERE is what you need to do in Part Two:
In the description column, describe in detail, as relevant, the kind of shot--extreme close up, close up, medium, long, p.o.v.); camera movement, stationary, pan, tilt, whip pan, dolly in, dolly out, crane, tracking; camera angle--high, low, canted or Dutch, straight on, overhead, from below; sound--ambient, diegetic; extra-diegetic, the kind of music, if any; the title and composer, if available; voice-offs and voice-overs; editing--transition from one shot to another (dissolve, fade, wipe, cut, cut in, and so on); super-imposition; sequence--linear, montage, flashback; mise-en-scène; framing and reveals--what is in the shot and what is not; lighting--source, contrast; blocking; camera focus--racking, spot, soft, or deep; length of take, and so on and so on.
Describe the sound track too. DON"T FORGET ABOUT SOUND!
Yale film analysis 2.0 website
In the annotations column, comment critically on how the shot is working, what it is doing. Don't summarize the plot or quote dialogue.
Part Three. Audiocommentary
Write a transcript of your audio-commentary on the scene you've chosen. When we meet in my office for live grading, I'll ask you to pull up the scene or I can find it for you and then listen to your audio-commentary after you press play. So the length of your commentary will have to be timed exactly to the length of the scene on which you are commenting. I agree with Nick that the best audio-commentary so far was the one on Rebecca. And I agree Jade that the one on Island of Lost Souls is the worst. So I recommend that you focus on the film itself, not on the actors' bios, or what happened during the making of the film, and so on. In other words, do film criticism rather than film trivia. Think of yourself as a teacher and your audience students, just you've been doing with co-leading.
Note: All three parts of the final project must be completed for you and turned in on time to receive credit. All parts of the course must be completed and turned in on time to pass the course.