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  • Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films

    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films

    May 19, 2010, 12:25 pm
    After the last blog entry with the book list, I found myself inspired to revisit Tarkovsky’s body of work. If you’ve read it, you’ll know that he was a stickler for long takes and very little cutting; each cut has a specific purpose and is used more for bringing the viewer into the next part of the story and the rhythm of the story rather than the cut itself or for montage. So, we’ve seen long takes with the emphasis on performance (i.e. Keitel), and now let me wrap up with long takes with the emphasis on story rhythm.

    After the last blog entry with the book list, I found myself inspired to revisit Tarkovsky’s body of work. If you’ve read it, you’ll know that he was a stickler for long takes and very little cutting; each cut has a specific purpose and is used more for bringing the viewer into the next part of the story and the rhythm of the story rather than the cut itself or for montage. So, we’ve seen long takes with the emphasis on performance (i.e. Keitel), and now let me wrap up with long takes with the emphasis on story rhythm.
    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films
    5. Ivanovo Detstvo (1962) (Ivan’s Childhood)

    This was Tarkovsky’s first feature, and you can see where he really starts to explore the long take without actually having painfully long takes. That said, there are some killer transitions from one scene to the next (most especially coming in and out of the dream sequences), which is another trend that he continued throughout the rest of his career. Each scene flows nicely into the next, and this is one of his most easily digestible feature films for people who view movies as entertainment rather than art.
    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films
    4. Solyaris (1972) (Solaris)

    This is the film that everyone knows, probably because of the remake starring George Clooney, but this one is done Tarkovsky-style. The biggest benefit to doing it Tarkovsky-style is that the long takes and awkward silences make everything so much creepier. Especially considering we’re following the story but not really sure what the "fog-goo" is doing until the second half of the film (and even then it’s really up to the viewer’s personal conclusions).
    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films
    3. Offret (1986) (The Sacrifice)

    As much as I actually do "get" Tarkovsky and appreciate his work, most of his movies are difficult for me to watch. I guess I’m plagued by the Y generation’s short attention span. In any case, if you want the epitome of long takes, this is the only film you need see. Consequently the film feels more like a stage play than a film at times. That said, even though each take is somewhere between 3-5 minutes long, the cuts all make sense, and the scene transitions are brilliant. Anyway, this is a film that I need to spend more time with, because for many it is a "life-changing" film. But, it’s only life changing if you can muster up the patience to watch it all the way through.
    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films
    2. Andrey Rublyov (1966)

    For Tarkovsky fans, this film is the favourite. Everyone goes on and on about how "this is the best film that’s ever been made!" Well, editing-wise, it’s pretty darn awesome; it includes both of Tarkovsky’s signature moves. My favourite aspect is how he manages to tie in scenes together by transitioning in cool ways. For example, after the attack in the woods there’s a cut to a blank wall that is splattered with paint (similar to blood...). It sounds like a clich? move, but I don’t think too many people were cutting with such purpose like this when he made this film. It has since become a clich?, thanks to Tarkovsky. All that said, for me, the time span of the long takes make it difficult for me to sit still.
    Top 5 Edited Andrei Tarkovsky Films
    1. Stalker (1979)

    Ok, I confess that I’m a little biased to this one, because this is one of my favourite films of all time (it’s on my personal top 5 favs!). Before you ream me for not putting Andrey Rublyov at number one hear my story. I first saw Stalker a couple of years ago at the Cinematheque Ontario because my Film History professor required that we see a minimum of three films there per semester and write reports on them. I used the closed-eyes-with-finger-in-the-phone-book technique on the programme, and came out with this as one of my three. Not knowing what to expect, I go to the screening and the first thing I see is an incredible sepia image. The mixture of the image quality and the length of all the takes put me into a trance that I have never experienced before and haven’t been able to forget since. Watching it again, now, the movie is even better. Each cut is purposeful (as usual) and the viewer is hypnotically sucked into this world that Tarkovsky created. The takes are long enough to be interesting and draw you in, but not so long that you’re squirming for the next cut. It is the perfect balance between pace and content in cutting, image, and story. On top of that, the philosophical and spiritual content is mind blowing. If you’re ready for it...

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  • Other Postings By Member
    • Top 5 Edited Moments of Despair in a Xmas Movie
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Moments of Despair in a Xmas Movie

      December 16, 2009, 12:26 pm
      Christmas time is here and I am very open about my emotional resemblance to Ebenezer Scrooge regarding the season. To be completely honest, the overdose of Christmas music and decorations in every supermarket, shop, and restaurant I frequent gives me the urge to bust out my chainsaw and do a hyper-realistic Jason impression rather than be jolly. So, to kick off my first ever Christmas blog I thought that I’d watch people having crappy Christmases and subject my readers to the same Christmas pain by way of the top 5 MOMENTS OF DESPAIR...

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    • Best Edited Lightsaber Fight in a Star Wars Movie
      EDITING

      Best Edited Lightsaber Fight in a Star Wars Movie

      December 2, 2009, 12:17 pm
      I don’t really have a good reason for choosing this week’s topic beyond that I just felt like watching all the Star Wars movies for the hell of it. So you’re going to get the brunt of my passing urge this week!

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    • Top 5 Edited Humankind Obliteration Sequences
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Humankind Obliteration Sequences

      November 18, 2009, 12:11 pm
      The hot conspiracy theory of the time is Earth’s impending doom, which has always been a popular movie scenario. However, it’s one thing to ward off impending doom and another to be right in the centre of destruction. In any case, it’s interesting to see humanity’s obsession and awe with the concept of obliteration—hyper-real special effects movies about the apocalypse always do really well in the box office. With the recent release of <em>2012</em> the film (and what seems to be a slew of other apocalyptic-themed movies), I thought it would be appropriate to showcase the best sequences featuring the main character known as "Armageddon." Just remember that should something as catastrophic as anything in these films actually happen, there will always be at least one survivor: the earth.

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    • Top 5 Edited Disaster Wedding Ceremonies
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Disaster Wedding Ceremonies

      November 4, 2009, 12:03 pm
      This weekend I’m getting married— so I thought it would be fitting to do a topic this week on wedding scenes. But not just any wedding scenes... wedding disaster scenes. Don’t get me wrong, I’m 110% sure that he’s the one I want to marry, and I’m pretty sure that there are no evil villains planning to kidnap me in the middle of the ceremony, but I figured I’d get all these situations out of the way vicariously through these films before my own wedding!

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    • Top 5 Courtroom Cross Examinations in a Feature
      EDITING

      Top 5 Courtroom Cross Examinations in a Feature

      October 21, 2009, 6:16 pm
      I love courtroom scenes. There’s something particularly exciting about watching evidence and clues unfold in a courtroom scene. Maybe it’s the fact that each case that’s ever brought into one is inherently mysterious in nature. Maybe it’s the actors portraying lawyers as the epitome of a battle between good and evil. Or maybe it’s just fun to watch people argue. In any case, no one can ever help but feel sorry for the person in the chair who gets the tough cross examination. ...unless he’s guilty.

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    • 5 Sequences That Integrate Food ina Bigger Context
      EDITING

      5 Sequences That Integrate Food ina Bigger Context

      October 7, 2009, 6:08 pm
      It’s funny how images of food can make us hungry. It’s also funny that if you change the context in which we see the image of food that that hunger can change into disgust, lust, or even produce existential thoughts within ourselves. As our editing deity Eisenstein taught us, context is almost always built in the editing room because it has to do with the juxtaposition of one image next to another, and food is one of those things that can go in any direction if placed next to the "right thing."

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    • The Top 5 Edited John Hughes Films
      EDITING

      The Top 5 Edited John Hughes Films

      September 23, 2009, 4:32 pm
      Last month, John Hughes passed away and left a legacy of high school experience films and influenced how they would be made from then on. Every kid that was born in the 80’s feels a connection to the high school situations and labels that he so perfectly conveyed in celluloid—probably even more than the kids that were actually <strong>IN</strong> high school in the 1980’s did. This week is dedicated to a (rather late) tribute to John Hughes by showcasing:

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    • Disney’s Most Awkward Transitions into Music
      EDITING

      Disney’s Most Awkward Transitions into Music

      September 9, 2009, 4:23 pm
      When deciding how to add a song and dance sequence into a film, one always hopes that the transition is relatively smooth, seeing as most people don’t usually break out into song and dance at random intervals. However, the transition into singing isn’t always the cleanest that it could be. Consequently, the viewer is left wondering why the heck the directors decided that the song was good enough to be kept in the movie without putting enough effort into making it fit properly into the film. In the interest of keeping this top 5 blog not just about the "best" but also about the worst, weirdest, and more... I bring you...

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    • Top Car 5 Chases Based on Editing
      EDITING

      Top Car 5 Chases Based on Editing

      August 26, 2009, 4:09 pm
      The tires of the Mustang squeal as the car drifts around a corner. Our hero is holding onto the steering wheel for dear life as he attempts to get away from the evil bad guy. The suspense continues to build in the audience as they hold their breath. Will he get away? Will he crash? This weeks Edit Decision List covers the top five car chase scenes based on editing.

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    • 100 to 1: Overwhelmed Protagonist Fight scenes
      EDITING

      100 to 1: Overwhelmed Protagonist Fight scenes

      August 19, 2009, 3:47 pm
      The protagonist walks into a room, ready to pick a fight with the bad guy and save the world (or some damsel in distress). The moment is akin to the last level of an old video game, where the mega-boss stands 5 inches in front of your character on the screen then laughs as the controller freezes— preventing you from moving your character to attack the boss. Suddenly, the rest of the boss’ lackeys pour out from every orifice in the room and threaten to take our hero out. He’s outnumbered 20 to 1... how is he going to get out of this one? Well, thanks to the magic of movie editing (and some nice choreography) he can beat an impossible amount of attackers all by himself!

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