Fangirl and Her Fandoms


Dick simply defines long take as “a shot that lasts more than a minute” (95).  Average shots length in movies last for about ten or twenty seconds.  In my terms, I would define long take as a shot in a movie or TV show that is longer than the normal length.  I would also say that these long takes follow the character(s) while they move around, without cutting to look at their face close up or to a different part of the setting.  I know of a couple examples, but the one I am using in this blog is the opening scene from the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice.  (There is also the opening scene in the 2007 version of Persuasion- another Jane Austen book; however all clips were blocked on Youtube). This scene explores the Bennet’s house and introduces and observes the other members of the Bennet family.  It briefly gives the audience an idea of the personalities of the four other sisters and the mother and father.  Opening with a long take, I felt like the director wanted the audience to feel they were the ones walking through Longbourne and would feel somewhat a part of the Bennet family.  At one point the camera stops right behind Lizzie as she is listening to her parents talk about Mr. Bingley.  The audience get this sense of eavesdropping on the Bennet’s family matters, which can be exciting for the audience.  I think the director, Joe Wright, wanted to create this intimate opening that gets the audience intrigued.  The long take follows Lizzie around, pauses at the piano where Mary is playing and at the messy dining table.  The long take was paced appropriately, in order for the audience to understand the individual characteristics of each character.


“In an associative sequence [montage], the scenes are linked together by an object or a series of objects” (67).  In my words, an associative montage is many different scenes from the characters past or memories collected into one compiled scene- brings back memories for character and audience.  In my example my “objects” are people.  I am using the scene from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix when Voldemort possesses Harry’s body.  During this possession, Harry has this inner montage of all the terrible things that have happened to him: his mother’s sacrifice, dementors attacking him and Dudley, Sirius’s death, Cedric’s death, Mr. Weasley being attacked by Nagini, and the fact that he has felt so alone and separated from everything and everyone.  Then, once Harry can get control of himself again, there is another flashy montage of all the things that makes Harry happy: when he saw his parents in the Mirror of Erised, when he is with his friends, and when he spent time with Sirius. And finally, when Voldemort is backing down after Harry told him he would never know love or friendship, there is a montage of Harry recovering and taking himself back: seeing his own head on his body, not Voldemort’s, punching mirrors, Dumbledore guiding him and standing up to Voldemort, and all the evil backing down.  I think David Yates, the director, chose to do these three separate montages to show a very epic moment in the series.  Harry is realizing his dreadful past and past sorrows, but he needs to fuel this rage and fulfill his prophecy. Yates reminded the audience of all the past, and provided a fire in our bellies.  The message this montage conveys is the hope and belief someone can have in themselves to overcome evil.  He gave the audience what they wanted: to cry and to feel determined as if it was there job or their prophecy to fulfill.


“In a contrast cut, the images replacing each other are dissimilar in nature” (69).  In my words, a contrast cut is when a scene changes suddenly to a very opposite mood or ambience.  I am using the tracker jacker hallucination scene from The Hunger Games as my example.  After Katniss got stung by some tracker jackers, she passed out and dreamed about the mining accident her father was killed in. This scene is intense with emotion: Katniss is screaming at her mom that cannot hear her, her house is being blown up in correlation to the mining explosion, and she is worried about the other tributes getting to her. In the middle of her hallucination, she is interrupted by a screaming Peeta telling her to run and get away.  Then all of a sudden it cuts to a quiet part of the forest, where Katniss is recovering from the tracker jacker stings. The scenes went from chaos and yelling and explosions, to a peaceful sanctuary of the forest.  Contrast cuts go perfectly with this movie because Katniss is in this very beautiful, quiet forest, but sometimes all of a sudden it will become chaotic and there are killings and muttations running around causing panic-very opposite moods. Contrast cuts convey an urgency and unexpectedness, which is how this movie goes.


About akgipson

Trinity University Communications Sports Management
This entry was posted in Blog #2. Fleshing out film jargon. Bookmark the permalink.

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