Adapt Feature Film

Editing a film it’s like adjusting your position to help tell a better, ‘sensemaking’ story based on observation of audio-visual footage of relevant data. Pudovkin learned that “the process of editing is more than a method for telling a continuous story” (Glebas 2009, p.253) that makes the viewer to watch it chronologically. Editing involves a process of creative thinking that moves the story forward, and makes it continuous, meaningful and interesting to watch and to reflect on the film’s message.

While also being able to identify the footage that is emotionally irrelevant and sometimes to go with instincts, “especially when you are evaluating several takes of the same scene where the differences are subtle and nuanced” (Keast 2015, p.37). That is to assess a film research question and to find out what really needs to stay in order to be folded together to represent a story and what needs to go to just get rid of deadwood. This is an important step in this stage of post-production that can’t be ignored before making a rough cut, expressed in images and sounds that are emotionally relevant.

It turns out that this feature of the post-production process seems almost the same as “the film-maker’s right to select and emphasise to show a piece of action in a way which is obviously more suitable to dramatic presentation than is our normal perception” (Reisz, Millar 1968 p.215).

Camera Shots, Angles, and Movements

The short film was recorded on Canon EOS C300. The colors produced by this camera are very nuanced and bright enough and don’t seem to need much attention in regards to grading, maybe some adjustments in the white and black levels. The camera used to shot Teresa approaching the window of her house is from a slightly different angle, which seems to be well planned ahead ahead action. A camera shot filmed from this angle can help adjust the amount to which the person’s movement transforms into a continuous action without changing the set up.

When the shooting starts the crew, in particular the director and cinematographer, are faced with “numerous decisions involving technical, aesthetic, communication, and talent issues”, for this reason careful planning of shots “will help the shot to smoothly. With a script or a shot list in hand, you can go about the business of capturing the shots you need. It is always important to think about how the shots will work once the editing session begins” (Osgood, Hinshaw p. 57).

Synchronizing Dialog

When shooting with Canon EOS C300 camera to make Adapt, the sound and image were separately recorded. In the post-production process the editor’s job is to synchronise “each take of sound to the image by aligning the “clap” sound to the frame where the slapsticks come together.” (Case 1988, p.184).

Cutting Dialog

In the fourth scene when Teresa speaks, it cuts to a middle-shot and we see both characters in a white shot. Cutting the picture when character speaks can be very effective sometimes. An effective use of it we can find in Michael Mann’s The Insider. The family are having breakfast, and the girl asks and her mother while she is speaking the shot changes from close up to medium angle of the female character.

2 Seconds Gap of Scene Continuity and Depth

Problem: Why not to show a shot outside the window when Teresa slides the curtain? I believe it would be an editorial mistake not to show the blue sky which is part of the environment where the main character lives, so it should be thoroughly used to express “physical continuity as much as emotional continuity” (Jolliffe, Jones. p.361).

Solution (approved):
In the first scene, it’s interesting to show two times the landscape that Teresa sees through the window of her house. There is a take that shows for a few seconds of the blue landscape that the cinematographer shot at the location. When Teresa slides the curtain to look outside through the window, to show one second of the blue landscape that will add some color and motion to this scene.

This clip serves to ensure continuity and depth of the narrative itself at a given point. And it can be articulated in the editing process that provides a set of adjustments of parts of the actor’s performance that “are often necessary if it is felt that its pace is for some reason not exactly right“ (Reisz, Millar p.100).

This can also be approached another way, for example, to let Teresa come to the window, and not to show this blue image of a landscape, but in stead to show a slow left to right camera movement until reaches her. When she starts speaking “Good morning” to make a fine cut and show her from inside the house shot “Welcome to Southern bank”.

Solution (not approved):
This was a long shot from left to right that was applied a Timewarp Effect in Avid to show a dynamic change in her mood. It also adds an effective transition to the next scene that is about workplace associated with stress and adjustment problems.

1 Second Gap of Scene Continuity

The moment when Teresa is looking through the window, the view she sees can be used for one or two seconds even if it doesn’t have a meaning in terms of, why is she looking out of her window? If the camera shows how the main character moves for some reason from right to left to look through a window, it implies that it should be referred to a shot from a source outside the space of the narrative, but closely related to it. It makes the scene very poor without showing how the main character interacts with everyone and everything around her, including this not initially noticeable change.

In this case, this is what she really is, a girl that’s always smiling, being passionate about things, her job, living, feeling human being and interacting with people all the time. Even with these two seconds of landscape the scene seems somehow closed into itself, however, with cleverly used shots that follow later the film-maker is able to feature a level of intimacy and emotional closeness with the main character. Finally, used 1 second of the landscape that works really well with the desired effect.

1 + 2 Seconds Gap Conclussion

A few seconds of the landscape that Terresa looks at, it shows kind of interaction that she makes and the scene becomes more interesting when we get an idea about the matter stretched in time and space. It gives more space to the scene, and maybe, to the film. Is most useful to give more space to Teressa’s environment and a little breadth to the scene fleeing its galaxy with lifestyle factors to create eventually an wonderful, spacial flavor.

This lack of environmental details that can bring a scene alive is because there aren’t any shots available to choose from. And I suppose the script can be improved in areas when Teresa is occasionally outside either walking alone, meets her sister or inside a caffe towards the end of the films with shots that have meanings and details that can help the creative aspect of the scenes.

The Look In The Mirror Action Overlap

The sequence where the main character is staring to herself in the mirror is used a technique called overlapping cuts to express and emphasise visible emotions related to an experience of disappointment. According to Dmytryk an “exact matching of position, however, might not result in the smoothest cut, for the reasons to be explained shortly. Often an action overlap of 3 to 5 frames is desirable” (Dmytryk, 2013, pp.28,29). The effect, at the end of this scene, are frames essential to smooth action. “An overlap made to accommodate the viewer’s “blind spot” is useful in most action cuts” (Dmytryk, 2013, p.32). Dmytryk is of the opinion that this principle works best when used in “static” cuts, where “the “blind spot” overlap is absolutely essential for good cutting” (Dmytryk, 2013, p.33).

Panning in Slaw Motion

There is a great long shot in the fourth scene used to make the transition from the streets to a local caffe, where the sisters are going to for a quick chat. The use of this shot is ment to connect the street where the sisters meet with the caffe that they are about to go shortly. So there is no need to show the walking towards the caffe, because the walking is obviously implied by this transition shot. This slaw panning works very well with the overall performance at this moment and it helps to keep a calm mood in the play.

This, the relative movement between points using a pan “perhaps mecause it is desired to maintain a link between the two parts on the scene, then it must be done either very slowly or very quickly (a whip pan) rather than at an intermediate pace” (Samuelson 1984 p.54).

The panning at the beginning of the film when Teresa is seen from outside the window of her house and the panning in the caffe when Teresa meets with her sister are quite similar in rhythm. The choices used to generate these shots is in “coincidence” with the actor’s rhythms, that is to identify the relevant information “to give the story, emotions, and visuals rhythm” (Pearlman 2009) in the task performance.


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