Thursday, 27 October 2011

The Eager Student - Editing

This post was originally written as a reflection a practical exercise undertaken in the Planning and Making a Film module I undertook in the penultimate year of my BA (Hons). The module's practice was undertaken between October 2011 to June 2012 and it provided me with a hugely enriching experience. For a more detailed overview of the module and the projects I undertook as a part of it, see Planning and Making a Film: The student filmmaking experience.

The Eager Student was a 1 minute practice film we had to produce for the Planning and Making Film module. Told in two scenes, the story is of a student going to her class and realising that she has arrived at the wrong time.


It was when we came to edit The Eager Student that the problems of continuity became apparent. While filming we had tried to illuminate as many as possible, but the constrained time limit prevented us from being perfect in this respect (a storyboard would have also helped here).

The main problem with continuity was that Sally’s actions didn’t always match-up between shots. In the LS she would be sitting back in her chair and MS she would be sitting forward. 

An example of bad continuity

Initially, we rearranged the order of the shots, away from how they were set out in the script, in an attempt to revise these continuity problems. But we found that it changed the rhythm of the action so much we lost the beats that were established in the original script.

So we went back to the order as the script dictated and eliminated the continuity problems as best we could. The final cut is still, exceedingly, far from perfect and, indeed, the usefulness of storyboarding and rehearsing before filming become very apparent. Also, the first scene could use some colour correcting; that is, currently, beyond our capabilities.

Aside from the issues with continuity and a very brief one with the sound, we spent an hour and a half editing and it went very well. Emily operated the Mac while Jenny, Sally and I made suggestions, and only when we were all happy did we export a final cut. Certainly, this experience has taught us the importance of having good continuity! As well as allowing us to get to grips with using Final Cut Pro (not to mention the horror of using a Mac). 

Want to see the result of the editing? The Eager Student - The Final Cut

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