Archive for June, 2012

Understanding How to Write the Cinematic Language.

I’ve been contemplating how to go about how to write the “Cinematic Language” for some time, and it seems to boil down to a few principals.

I want to work with two elements that stand out the most:

The Mise-en-Scene, what this is, in it’s very essence, is a Manipulation of Visual Spatial Time Frame. What I mean by this, is say you are given a Visual Variable, let’s call it “x”. This “x” is given a spatial time value, say “x” is 2 minutes long, (or I should say 2880 frames, because 24 frames per second times 120 seconds equals 2880). It could translate to something which is x(2880), (2880 because frame rate can illustrate grander points down the road, you’ll see why.)

The Edit, what this is, in it’s very essence, is the Manipulation between Visual Spatial Time Frames. What I mean by this is the singular act of cutting between Visual Variable “x” and Visual Variable “y”.  There are a multitude of ways to edit, but it remains that the edit itself is cinema’s equivalent of “cutting between time”.

So how does this work in combination? Let’s take a “loose” example of a scene from the Abel Gance’s La Roue:

In La Roue, there the a sequence at which there is a juxtaposition between “Visual Variables”, the length of these “Visual Variables”, and the cuts, their manipulations, between them. So here’s how it works, let’s just use three “Visual Variables”:

“x”=2880

“y”=2880

“z”=2880

This is added (+) to a new “Visual Variable Sequence”:

“x”=1440

“y”=1440

“z”=1440

This is added (+), yet again, to a new “Visual Variable Sequence”:

“x”=720

“y”=720

“z”=720

This is added (+), yet again, to a new “Visual Variable Sequence”:

“x”=360

“y”=360

“z”=360

This is added (+), yet again, to a new “Visual Variable Sequence”:

“x”=180

“y”=180

“z”=180

Etc.

The point in illustrating this concept is say for example, (like this one in La Roue), there is a train about to speed out of control. The Manipulation of Visual Spatial Time, lies not only in the Mise-en-Scene, but the Edited Manipulation between these time frames. So This “Visual Variable Sequence” provided starts out relatively calm, then crescendos to a heightened climax based on the film’s Mise-en-Scene duration value, and Editing values.

I now pose a question, what do you think this sequence would look like in it’s inverse?

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