Friday, January 21, 2011

Children of the Hydra's Teeth - Part Four

Continuing from yesterday, this sequence from "Jason and the Argonauts" hasn't even kicked it in action mode yet.

Following the close shot on the Argonaut, we cut back to the process shot with the animation.

It's not really a "process shot", per se I suppose since it's not a lab composite.  But it's a mixed media thing, sort of.

To be unnameable when it comes to animation and effects is an accomplishment.  It becomes simply "film".

During this scene Aeetes quickly summons a few more soldiers.  In terms of pacing, there's no more drama to be had from seeing these guys sprout up -so their birth happen quickly and are done.

People sometimes draw things out overlong these days because they think it's funny.  Me, personally, I don't laugh.

Jason's reaction.

Red Shirt Argonaut's reaction.

The soldiers at attention.

This is a "standoff".  These cuts back and forth draw out the sequence long enough to create tension.

We know what's going to happen, it's just a matter of when.  This isn't as elegant or dynamic as "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly", but some of the same editorial principles are at work.

Cut from one side to another and work on a strict cadence of edits.  In "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" the shot sizes/framing are the crowning brilliance.  Here, the editing and cinematography are workmanlike.

Also note, Jason's framing is the same throughout (after the first scene with quick truck).  These are all cut from the same take (most likely).  Important for animator's to note -in live action films, it's common to revisit the same angles on a character.  They don't reinvent the frame every time a shot gets filmed.  As a result, the audience has a level of comfort with the cinematic environment.  This comfort allows a performance to work on the audience instead of having the graphic treatment of the do it.

I wouldn't suggest one technique over the other, and as in all things, a mixture of both is probably most effective.

In this scene Aeetes walks a few steps forward.

and the camera follows him.

Which sets up a very important animation "process shot".

By moving to the side of the Skeleton Warriors (and keeping Aeetes in the shot), Harryhausen and company solidify the geography of the scene.

More to follow...

1 comment:

Liesje said...

A true nerd would have said 'Ensign Argonaut'.