Analyzing What Cameras Do

As I read How to Read a Movie, I thought some of the things Ebert listed, such as the left side being seen as negative and the downward or upward angle of the camera, would not be evident in any movies. However, I was proven wrong, especially in the scene I chose to analyze later on. It has always fascinated me that there seem to be unspoken “rules” about recording, and I always wondered if this was a conscious decision made by those filming (it isn’t!)

I then watched the videos One-Point Perspective, Zooms, From Below, and Editing Techniques. I discussed everything other than one-point perspective, which was evident in one part of my scene when she is at the top of the stairs, but I decided that the different zooming taking place at the same time was more important to discuss. I found each of these videos interesting, especially the one about editing techniques. I have seen jump cuts and flash cuts before, but was not aware of the difference between them, or even that they had names.

After all of this was completed, I decided to watch 10 Cloverfield Lane because it is on Hulu, which I have. I am always pleasantly surprised when I enjoy the films that are assigned as “work.” As I was watching, I immediately knew which scene I wanted to use as soon as I saw it. This scene incorporated so many different techniques, and each played a big role in the emotion and tension that was taking place. Thankfully, this scene was available on YouTube, although there is a watermark of the channel on the bottom corner, and I was able to easily add my narration on iMovie. The tips and resources page was very helpful in this process!

I had a debate with myself of whether or not I should leave any of the audio from the original movie since I am analyzing the video only. I decided to leave it at 10% so that there is still some background noise during the video, but my voice is also in the foreground. If I had to change anything about this assignment, I would use a better microphone. I was able to use my earbuds, which is better than using the computer speakers since less background noise is picked up, but they are not the best option out there!

You can check out my video essay assignment down below!

About the author: Samara

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