This week we focused on montages, what it is and what types of montage there are. Montage is a technique of selecting, editing and piecing together separate pieces of a film in order to form a continuous production. Montage editing helps bring two pieces together to form a meaning, this is because when the pieces are alone there’s no meaning whatsoever. For example if we have someone crying, and another footage of a a movie playing, those two clips will appear as just a single version that wouldn’t necessarily make sense. However when edited together we can roughly form an idea that the individual was crying due to the movie being sad and so on. This can be seen as a cause and effect editing (sad movie is the cause, whilst someone crying is the effect).
The following work bellow shows the different type of montages used to create a story.
An analytical montage is when an event is analysed for its theme and its structural elements. This basically means that an event is examined in detail in which we look at its subject or concept and also the way it has been laid out. This is done in order to select the important elements and produced a series of shots that makes an event. However this type of montage event is usually implied, but not made obvious to the viewers.
In the lesson I learnt that there are two basic types of analytical montage which are:
- Sequential Montage
This montage method breaks event it up according to its time, in order to tell a shorthand story of how that particular events emerge over that period of time. It requires the viewers to think and fill in the gaps. This type of method encourages viewers to participate.
The example bellow is an example taken from the ‘Sight, Sound and Motion book’ and also one that was used in class. The image shows a child in scene A, riding a bike. scene B a bike approaching. Scene C a collision has occurred and scene D the recovery. We can see that a clip is missing however based on scene A and be we can infer that a collision between the child and the approaching bike has occurred.
- Sectional Montage
Sectional montage is another type of montage within analytic montage. This type of montage separates a section of an event or a moment by producing a shot that establishes the context and setting the tone. The image bellow is an example of sectional montage in which the situation of the scene has been made. So from here we can infer that the first scene could imply that a student has spoken, next scene students in the class room could potentially be surprised of what they heard and finally the last scene the teacher appears to be angry at this comment. However when we flip the scene around starting from the right-hand side to the left the whole meaning will change.
Therefore sectional Montage is more of a guessing game as it is not necessarily obvious.
Ideal Associative Montage
This montage juxtaposes two events that are not associated with each other and aims to to create a concept that isn’t in the two montages. This montage has two parts within it which are:
- Comparison Montage
This montage compares two shots together that are related in order to express the theme or the idea behind it. This montage is mostly used to compare similar things but expressed in different ways. For example someone eating fast, whilst another can be seen eating slowly and with care. They are both seen eating but in a dissimilar manner. The image below shows comparison footage used in the book (Sight, Sound and Motion) which shows two similar happening but in a different manner. From this we generate the idea of homelessness for the person coping what a dog does to get by.
Comparison montage is one that makes us think differently as our perspective is altered when we see them together.
- Collision Montage
This montage is when two opposite events from different side of the spectrum clash, in order to express a basic idea of what’s happening or a feeling etc. This type of montage is one that is commonly seen on our television screens frequently. Such as EastEnders when a character is portrayed as poor, and another character that is loaded with money but choose not help due to his greediness. These characters are Billy Mitchell and Ian Beale.
This weeks homework was to look research who Sergei Eisentein is and also to find out the five different montages he speaks about in his work.
Who is he?
Sergei Einstein is a Soviet Russian film director, that developed a highly complex theory film montage. Einstein wanted to show the primary theme and the action of an event. Eisentein talks about five different basic montages. These are: Metric, Rhythmic, Tonal, Overtonal and intellectual.
- Metric Montage: This is when editing follows a specific or an absolute length of a film. This is because he wanted to ensure he gets an emotional response from the audience.
- Rhythmic Montage: This is the movement of frames and one that is cut only due to continuity. The length of shot is determined by the content.
- Tonal Montage: The next stage of Rhythmic montage is controlled by the characteristic emotional sound of the piece. This montage aims to reflect on the degree of emotional intensity using sound to achieve this.
- Overtonal Montage: This is developed further from Tonal Montage, it achieved from conflict the tone of a piece. Comparison and collision montage is one that would fit this type of montage.
- Intellectual Montage: A montage that is based on content and the theme of the scene. It is controlled by our brains and therefore it is one that requires the use of a mixture of intellect, emotion and intuition.
This weeks lab was to create a montage that demonstrated the use of: analytical Montage, idea associative, comparison and collision.
This was done in order to ensure we understood what each four meant, and prove it by filming a short clip. The video shows these four montages in action.
Working in groups of 3, we came up ideas that would be appropriate for each montages. These ideas were communicated face to face and also through a Whatsapp group, that allowed each of us to share ideas back and forth. This was to ensure everyone would be able to contribute to the task.
The ideas of each footage is as followed:
- Analytical montage = This footage shows a event of someone running (Temi) down a corridor, whilst another waking who is seen to be distracted by her mobile (Myself). For this montage we wanted to infer that a collision happened but not physically show it by cutting out the physical collision and just show the event being resolved as this was analytical montage is based.
- Idea associative Montage = The idea behind this montage was to show two dissimilar events. A) a person running (Gloria) and B) someone tapping their pencil (myself) in order to create a third meaning this meaning being that the person was running late for a lesson.
- Comparison Montage = Shows two people carrying out two similar events which was throwing a piece of paper in the bin. One person can be seen taking care in how she folds the paper and correctly placing it the right bin, whilst another is seen scrunching up in an aggressive manner and not caring whether it enters the bin or not.
- Collision Montage = The final clip shows two opposite events that clashes with each other and or one that are in different ends of the spectrum. This was someone using a book to gather information, whilst the other using a mac which is known for being pricey and to top it off a mobile. We wanted the audience to infer a student that has money to afford such luxury, whilst the other doesn’t and still gets by with what she has.
This is is what the video looks like
When reviewing the video I felt that our ideas was good as it made sense when reviewing the definitions of the four different montages. However certain footage wasn’t one that necessary would infer the idea we wanted the audience to draw to. For example the idea associative footage doesn’t necessarily draw to a third meaning of being late to a lesson. To improve this further we could adjust this by making it a bit obvious in terms physically showing the classroom as she enters rather than just her face. This is because just showing her face and the tappers face doesn’t seem to create a third meaning. However I felt that footage did demonstrate knowledge of what was learnt in class and if given another opportunity would be considerably better as we would read further into the meanings of each montages more, in order to better understanding them individually.
Sight, Sound and Motion – Herbert Zettl
This week I read the chapter about syntax of complexity editing. Zettl speaks about different type of montages which I’ve explained above and how each creates a hidden story that isn’t obvious to the viewers. Also how it is the building for complex editing. Even though its a montage it is a type of editing as some clips have been removed or manipulated for a purpose. This is what editing is about.
Zettl summarises editing as “to intensify the emotional content of an event and reveal its complexity and to generate feeling”
Media aesthetics is designed to clarify an event for its audience and editing plays a big part of it. It only improves it further.
Other reading sources include