FILMIC GRAMMAR: THE RULES OF FILMMAKING

Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809
edited May 28 in Carrara Discussion

I recently watched "Yojimbo" (1961, Director Akiro Kurosawa) on the Criterion Channel, with a full commentary by Stephen Prince, American film critic and professor.  He talked a lot about Kurosawa's "filmic" technique (depth of field, camera angle, layout on a wide frame format- see attached, etc.)  I have done some reading on this, but I still tend to overlook the "rules" too often.  Given the current interest here on animation, I thought this brief overview might be of interest:

https://2822digitalcinematography.wordpress.com/filmic-grammar-the-rules-of-filmmaking/

Yojimbo Wide Frame.png
1189 x 478 - 417K
Post edited by Steve K on

Comments

  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 13,088

    Thanks.  Great stuff.  yes

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    Diomede said:

    Thanks.  Great stuff.  yes

    You're welcome.  I do enjoy the "Making Of" features, some good ideas in there.

  • mindsongmindsong Posts: 1,648

    Diomede said:

    Thanks.  Great stuff.  yes

    ditto - some very cool stuff in that link, tnx!

    --ms

  • ed3Ded3D Posts: 1,352

    ~  an interesting subject , none the less  ~

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    mindsong said:

    Diomede said:

    Thanks.  Great stuff.  yes

    ditto - some very cool stuff in that link, tnx!

    You are quite welcome.  Just to mention it, the article does talk about "breaking the rules", just not very often.  Reminds me of a favorite saying, "You should always tell the truth, so that when you lie, people will believe you."  

    Some examples (mostly about the screen play, e.g. a movie about a diamond heist that never shows the heist):

    https://thescriptlab.com/features/the-lists/1464-top-10-movies-that-broke-the-rules/

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    ed3D said:

    ~  an interesting subject , none the less  ~

    I think so.  I have said that the good news about animation in Carrara is that you have complete control over every element.  The bad news is ... you have complete control over every element.  surprise

    When you get to the video editor, the water gets even deeper.  Transitions, clip editing, special FX, sound effects, music ... I recall one famous director (Spielberg, maybe) talking about a movie from long ago. He said if he had his way, he'd still be editing it ... a decade or more later.  One of the attractions of the 48 Hour Film contest is you just go ... no mulligans.  Got a bad scene?  Bend to fit, paint to match.

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    Maybe one can go too far in "breaking the rules", like an "X Rated" animation ... but it became the highest grossing independent animation, making $200 million worldwide.

    https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0068612/

    Fritz_the_Cat_(film).jpg
    261 x 380 - 29K
  • mindsongmindsong Posts: 1,648
    edited June 4

    Ralph Bakshi did the movie 'Wizards' as well (a formative piece for me), and I think he was involved in 'Cool World' too. While the 'sex sells', thing is certainly universal, I think he is like a 'Prince' (of the music world) in the animation domain. Some folks just have a different perspective, and we're happy (and fortunate) for it when it works.

    To be honest, I think Wendy is kind of a 'Prince' in our community, and I'm so glad I bumped into her here. I'm far more traditional, either out of fear or a simple lack of 'vision' - I'm happy, but far less interesting - so far. The inspiration persists.

    Bless those with both new ideas and courage.

    (thanks for the posts, @stevek),

    --ms

     

    Post edited by mindsong on
  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    mindsong said:

     ... 

    (thanks for the posts, @stevek),

    --ms

    You're quite welcome.  Another movie that comes to mind is "The Tripletts of Belleville", the 2003 French animation.  I recall a making of where the director said they worried about the US rating, since there was some cartoony, pixellated nudity and some other stuff not suitable for small children.  E.g. one review (one star ouf of five): "What??  In the first 5 minutes, the movie starts with smoking cartoon characters, a topless dancing woman wearing only, well, either bananas or leaves around her waist, and a bunch of tiny people come onstage and pull them off her. It started out excessively mocking of obese people, which had no relevance to the story, and then became sad and bizarre ... "  

    Happily, it got a PG-13 nrating and a 7.7 score at IMDB.  Critic Roger Ebert (3.5 stars oit of 4):  

    " 'The Triplets of Belleville' will have you walking out of the theater with a goofy damn grin on your face, wondering what just happened to you.  To call it weird would be a cowardly evasion. It is creepy, eccentric, eerie, flaky, freaky, funky, grotesque, inscrutable, kinky, kooky, magical, oddball, spooky, uncanny, uncouth and unearthly. Especially uncouth ... "

    So, yeah, a "different perspective".  yes

     

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809
    edited June 8

    I recently watched "Tunes of Glory" on the Criterion Channel (1960, 7.5 at IMDB).  In a decades later interview, the director said he did not want the camera to be noticeable by the audience.  So e.g. he would never cut during a camera pan, but let the camera settle to a stop first.  He realized movies had gone to "cut,cut,cut ... " but that was not his style back then, he wanted the actors (Alec Guiness and John Mills in this case) to tell the story.  There is an infamous 2015 movie clip floating around with 15 cuts in 6 seconds ...   

    Post edited by Steve K on
  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    Surveying the RKO backlot in Hollywood, Orson Welles said, "This is the biggest electric train set a boy ever had!"  This was quoted in the context of a short documentary on the early Alfred Hitchcock, who was lured from England to the US by David O. Selznik, head of RKO.  For me, this is the appeal of making animations in Carrara.  I have (mumble, mumble) GB of actors, props, scenes, mocaps, sounds FX, music, special FX, etc.  All great fun to assemble into a short animation, just need a story, the hardest part.

    Attached: RKO Forty Acres Backlot (site) - Culver City, California

    P.S. Anyone else play the old PC video game "The Movies"?  You run a movie studio including a huge backlot with lots of sets, actors, etc.  Lots of fun, screen grab attached.

    RKO Backlot.jpg
    468 x 600 - 147K
    The Movies GAme Screen Grab.jpg
    728 x 466 - 150K
  • 3drendero3drendero Posts: 1,912
    edited June 26
    Adding some quick infographics, need to find a good set for a quick repeat every now and then;
    7e5e85be1000db84995f40e5feac6216.jpg
    382 x 563 - 54K
    8e5bc82fff42205a0ed1dac8fa6942ae.jpg
    736 x 920 - 165K
    28287b696d572a9b8d2a8d6286a84fe0.jpg
    2000 x 2000 - 382K
    2426e33c03896cd31156e6f83bb7e39b--video-film-a-video.jpg
    612 x 1061 - 123K
    597b6a910ef2659b10cb03d36399c5fb.jpg
    735 x 1102 - 114K
    Post edited by 3drendero on
  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 13,088

    Thanks for the graphic reminders.  yes

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    Diomede said:

    Thanks for the graphic reminders.  yes

    Ditto.

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,809

    Spike Lee techniques:

    Faces in the Crowd, the double dolly shot, squeezing the frame. 

    The first two look interesting, the third one just looks wrong. 

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/02/movies/spike-lee-movies-visuals.html?campaign_id=20&emc=edit_wg_20220629&instance_id=65349&nl=watching&regi_id=1017515&segment_id=97148&te=1&user_id=b85b4e9f39030ce135e20f256002176d

Sign In or Register to comment.