Pirates of the Caribbean – On Stranger Tides

Editing – Breaking the 180-degree rule (Part 3)

In part 3, we will see that inverting characters’ positions on screen by breaking the 180-degree rule is a common way to bring out a shift in power between opposing characters. The temporary loss of bearings it causes on the audience’s side is also very frequently used to describe minor to major turning points Continue reading

Editing – Breaking the 180-degree rule (Part 2)

As we saw in part 1, breaking the 180-degree rule can have a disruptive effect on the audience, which can prove very helpful when tackling disruptive kinds of situations, like a character harassing another one, barging into a relationship or splitting off from a group. Continue reading

Editing – Breaking the 180-degree rule (Part 1)

Now that we have spent some time demonstrating the virtues of the 180-degree rule, let’s have it the opposite way. There are many reasons why you would want to deliberately ‘break the rule’ and step through the looking glass. Continue reading

Editing – The 180-degree rule (Part 4)

Life would be easier (and boring) if we only had one action plane to deal with. But virtually all scenes are based on multiple conflicting action planes. As the 180-degree rule is merely related to one plane only, how are we supposed to comply with multiple planes without breaking the rule? Continue reading

Editing – The parallel-axis cut

If ‘taking a closer look’ is often associated with cut-ins, then ‘closely examining’ is the realm of parallel-axis cuts. Presented in succession, shots of different parts of a subject sharing the same viewing axis Continue reading

Editing pattern – Nested cut-outs

Less notorious than nested cut-ins, nested cut-outs are common place in action and ‘creative’ movies. This editing pattern incrementally moves the audience away from the action either at a slow or quick pace Continue reading

Editing pattern – Alternate scale-ups (Part 2)

Now that we have seen the effect of alternating shots of characters moving towards the camera or alternating zoom-ins, let’s study the effect of alternating truck-ins and even combinations of different scale-up techniques Continue reading

Focus – Perception and confusion (Part 2)

In part 1, we saw how focus could ‘flesh out’ characters’ mental representations of a subject. Let’s dig a little deeper with unawareness and confusion, both closely related with characters’ mind and perception. Continue reading

Focus – Perception and confusion (Part 1)

In part 1 of this article, we will see how shallow focus is used to mimic characters’ eyes focusing on a subject, even in the case of objective (i.e. non-subjective) shots. We will then see how focus is used to bring out that a character is thinking of a subject, as opposed to looking at it. Continue reading

Overlays – Distorting veils

Yes, this article could as well be labeled as “Image distortion (Part 3)” (read more in Image distortion (Part 1)). But here, image deformation is seen through the lens of overlays. Unlike transparent ‘veils’, distorting overlays not only Continue reading