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  • Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks

    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks

    January 27, 2010, 5:58 pm
    Every little kid goes through a dinosaur phase, and I was no exception. In fact, when Jurassic Park came out on VHS I bought that over a gameboy (I was 8 years old). In any case, meeting prehistoric creatures always gets movie crowds going, even from the very beginning of film (the first animation that could be considered a movie was Gertie the dinosaur in 1914). Special effects have come a long way since 1914 (or even 1925 when The Lost World featured stop motion dinosaur action), and consequently have brought them back from a kind of extinction. Even if only to make humans a thing of the past...

    -Dinosaurs must be attacking humans. The two were never meant to meet, which makes this more fun
    -Proper editing and montage technique (Eisenstein’s theories are not extinct)
    -Bonus points for getting the viewer to feel like he/she is also being attacked
    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks
    5. Night at the Museum (2006)

    This film gets number 5 because Ben Stiller isn’t really being attacked, but it’s worth mentioning because his character (and the viewer) thinks he’s being attacked. It’s also incredibly smooth and the montage is one of the more logical shot to shot sequences that I came across this time around. Also, who wouldn’t want a pet T-Rex to play fetch with?
    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks
    4. The Lost World: Jurassic Park 2 (1997)

    There are (obviously) a couple of attacks in this film, but the one that stood out to me as the most interesting was the one where the Compys (the little green dinos) go after Peter Stormare. The scene successfully uses the "Compy-POV-cam" to show that these little buggers are swarming him as he’s lying on the ground. First they follow him over logs and through bushes, and then they come right at him, much to his chagrin. The camera pushes into his face as he realises he’s being overwhelmed one by one, and it’s well timed to make you, the viewer, feel a sense of panic.
    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks
    3. Land of the Lost (2009)

    This is the most ridiculous movie I’ve ever seen. Everything that happens is completely out of left field and as a result it’s hilarious. I’m focusing on the scene where the Veloceraptors attack the ice cream truck. It was fast-paced, well-timed, and just plain silly. The montage was decent— only breaking from form a couple times. Really my only complaint was that they overdid the handheld jiggle, and that’s a very specific technical note that’s largely personal opinion.
    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks
    2. Jurassic Park (1993): Tyrannosaurus Rex attack

    The first time you realize what’s happening in this scene you can’t help but feel a twang of curiosity that is mixed with fear. Even though everyone knows what a T-Rex looks like, the viewers find themselves on the edge of their seats wondering when we’ll see it. Editor Michael Kahn made it so that we don’t see the T-Rex— we see the environment, a flash of a claw, the rustle of a tree in the wind, and the release of the (newly non-) electrified fence. The tension is so peaked, that when the dinosaur finally does emerge, the viewers find themselves still terrified, even though they know the creature so well already from books, kids, and toys. This is further emphasized by the fact that the special effects are so good that they still hold up without any effort almost 20 years later.
    Top 5 Edited Dinosaur Attacks
    1. Jurassic Park (1993): Raptors in the Kitchen

    That’s right, this movie did it so well that it gets the two top spots with different scenes! This scene is notorious, and is just as creepy and exciting as it was when I was little kid. The timing is impeccable as we just find out that the Raptors are smart enough to open doors, and they sneak in to continue their pursuit of the tasty morsels kids. The pace is slow and menacing, with a hint that something could spring at any moment— perfectly reflecting the personality (if you will) of the Veloceraptor. I definitely would not want to meet one of these face to face.

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  • Other Postings By Member
    • The Top 5 American Western Standoffs

      The Top 5 American Western Standoffs

      August 5, 2009, 12:24 pm
      To kick off the first post for the Edit Decision List, I thought it would be fitting to choose a topic that relies on one of the most fundamental techniques in editing film: building tension. There are many places for using this technique, but it is in its most blatant use in the Western Standoff. Therefore here is The Top 5 American Western Standoffs based on editing.

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    • Top 5 Edited Live Action Movie With Talking Animal

      Top 5 Edited Live Action Movie With Talking Animal

      July 17, 2009, 12:32 pm
      I just recently finished compositing some shots for a live-action Disney DVD film (soon to come) involving talking animals. This is the first time that I’ve really done anything like that, and although I wasn’t editing, I could appreciate how difficult it can be to edit a film with animal actors as I saw the shots come in. And it’s difficult regardless of if they have moving mouths or not. Animals aren’t really "acting" on their free will as humans do, so discerning which take is the best has to with a mixture of the action being performed properly (pun intended) as well as juxtaposing the action with another action to convey an accurate sense of emotion, which 95% of animals (arguably) don’t naturally exhibit.

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