Archive for April, 2013

Beyond the Outer Limits of Restricted and Omniscient Narration.

Let’s define “Restricted” and “Omniscient” Narration:

Restricted Narration” in film occurs when the film itself is filtered through the eyes of a character.

Omniscient Narration” in film has the aesthetics of many characters and/or no characters but an “auteur’s” vision.

These narratives have been mixed, Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest is an example, but the “mix” comes in “Narrative Gear Shifts” from 1) Restricted, then to 2) to Omniscient, then back to 1) Restricted, etc. What I’m proposing is developing a “Third Narrative Gear” whereby the spectator experiences both narratives simultaneously.  But how is this achieved?

The answer is in the division of “Visual” and “Audio” tracks. Or [V+A].

Say for example we are “Visually” experiencing a “Omniscient Narrative”, [V]. What we juxtapose it with is a “Restricted Narrative” auditory track, separated, but still relevant to the “Visual Track”, or [A]. The results are something uniquely cinematic. We may be “Visually Experiencing” a world through no ones eyes, but out ears tell us something entirely different, that of the mind of a character, perhaps in the visual world of the film, or perhaps outside of it entirely. Of course, this idea is not wholly “new” there is of course “The God’s Perspective” seen in many documentary films, but I think it should be adapted more in the realms of fiction.

The key here, is that since cinema works with both visual and auditory tracks, I think the art of it, what makes it cinema unique, lies mostly in it’s division of “perceptions”, rather than it’s symbiosis. Or perhaps something that exists in flux…


Leave a comment