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64 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

Narration: What is a Three Act Structure?

Equilibrium: Peace, Stability, Setup

Disequilibrium: Conflict

Equilibrium: Back to stability, but something has changed.

Narration: What are the aspects of Temporality?

Temporal Order: How the filmmaker choses to present the events

Frequency: How often a single event takes place or is presented.


1. Story Duration: (2 yrs-78 yrs)

2. Plot Duration: The slices of the story presented.

3. Screen Duration: Running time

Narration: What is The Range of Knowledge?

Who Knows What When?

Restricted: We get info from a limited source. Used to create curiosity, surprise, and suspense.

Unrestricted: Omniscent, all-knowing. Viewer knows more than characters. We can anticipate what a character cannot.

What is Form?

It depends on expectations. It's the overall set of relationships among a film's parts. A filmic convention is a dominant style or form.

Narration: Story, Plot, and Diegesis.

Story: Chain of Events in Chronological Order

Plot: how the story is rendered and presented.

Diegesis: The story world

Form: What are the different types of meaning that form creates?

Referential: Plot Summary. Simple meaning that a viewer will understand using basic knowledge

Explicit: The point of the film, and the obvious message that it conveys "There's no place like home". Moral of the story that is told.

Implicit: Interpretation. These may be obvious, but they are not concrete or explicitly stated. They are debatable.

Form: What are the 5 principles?

Function: How elements produce meaning

Similarity/Repetition: Elements are repeated to create patterns like motifs and parallelism

Difference/Variation: Changes in form pattern. They defy expectations

Development: A progression moving from beginning, through the middle, to the end

Unity/DisUnity: Whether it is "tight", or there are holes in the plot. Cliffhangers create disunity.

What is Narrative?

A chain of events linked by cause and effect and occurring in time and space.

Narration: Describe Depth of Knowledge

Objective: The plot confines the viewer only to information about what the characters say and do

Subjective: Perceptual. POV Shots. We see what a character sees and hears.

Mental: Character's thoughts, dreams, and hallucinations.

Mise-en-Scene: Hard vs. Soft Lighting

Hard: Clearly defined shadows, crisp texture, sharp edges

Soft: Diffused illumination. Like an overcast sky

Mise-en-Scene: 3-Point Lighting

Key: Primary source. brightest, strongest shadows. may suggest a light source within the setting.

Fill: Softens or eliminates shadows.

3-Point: Uses key, fill, and back light. Soft, balanced, and romantic.

Mise-en-Scene: High-Key and Low-Key Lighting

High key: Fill+Backlight create lower contrast between light and dark areas. Soft. Transparent shadows.

Low Key: Stronger Contrast, Dark, Sharp shadows. little to no fill light.

Chiaroscuro: Extremely light and dark regions within the image.

Mise-En-Scene: Principles of Acting

A Unique Character who is neither exaggerated or underplayed

Stylization: Attitudes, skills, habits, tastes, psychological drives, and other qualities that distinguish the character.


3-D characters: A character has several varying traits, some at odds with others. Well developed.


Openings: Provides a basis of what is to come and initiates the narrative.

Setup: First quarter of the film

Media Res: "In the middle of things" The film opens in the middle of a series of actions.

Backstory: Actions that took place before the story started

Exposition: The presentation of backstory, sometimes given in the beginning, sometimes broken up and placed throughout the screen duration.

Development Sections

Cause, effect, and change create patterns of development. Patterns of Development encourage the viewer to have certain expectations that can be delayed, cheated, or gratified.

Change in Knowledge: Common pattern for turning plot

Goal-Oriented Plot: Character takes steps to achieve an object or condition. (Searches, Journeys)

Deadline: Specific duration for plot action. Common in goal-oriented plots.

Self- Conscious Narration

Pertains to how the narration announces its address to the audience. Does the film directly speak to the audience? NARRATION

Self Inflictive:

Breaking the fourth wall, interacting with the audience through STYLE. (Music, Technicolour)

Elements of Mise-en-Scene







Mise-en-Scene: Colour

Colour creates mood. Filters, weather, highlighting.

Cinematography: Range of Tonalities

Contrast: Comparative difference between the lightest and darkest areas.

Exposure: regulated how much light passes through the camera lens.

Filters: Slices of glass or gelatine that reduce certain frequencies of light reaching the film.

Cinematography: Post-Production Tonality

Tinting: Dipping film in dye

Toning: Dye is added before development

Graders and Timers

Cinematography: Motion Speed

The rate at which the film was show, and the rate of projection.

The standard shooting range is 24, 25, or 30 fps.

Fast Motion: Projected at more fps than filmed

Slow Motion: Projected at less fps than filmed.

Ramping: Varying the frame rate during shooting.

Time-Lapse: Fast Motion. Low shooting speed.

High Speed: Extreme slow motion, thousands of fps.

Cinematography: Focal Length


Wide Angle (Short): Wide field of view. Lines bulge on edges. Exaggerates depth.

Normal: Avoids perspective and depth distortion

Telephoto (Long): Flattens image. Depth and volume are reduced.

Zoom: Enlarges some part of the shot.

What does editing do?

It is additive and Subtractive. It strings diverse shots together, and allows each shot to replace its predecessor. Influences material structure, forges a link between images

Editing: Types of transitions

The Straight Cut: Sense of particular setting, time and space

Fade in/out: Image Brightens from darkness or darkens to black


Dissolve: A fade out to another shot

Iris In/Out

Editing Dimensions: Graphically

Graphically: Pictorial qualities like shape, size, composition, Colour and lines can be mirrored or juxtaposed.

Graphic Match: Emphasizes graphic relationship between shots. (Prominent aspect of shot one is matched in shot 2)

Editing Dimensions: Rhymically

Rhythmically: Duration of shots: A film's tempo and pacing. How quickly it moves.

Accelerated editing: Short takes. Quick, intense action caused by quick cuts.

Editing Dimensions: Spatially

Editing allows us to believe things that are not really there. that characters exist in the same space, or that a character is looking at something. We can create a reality by alluding to offscreen things that aren't really there.

Analytical breakdown: Establishes a spacial whole, that follows with a closer look at a part of the space

Intraframe: Combines parts of different shots into a single shot.

Editing: What are the dimensions?





What's the Kuleshov Effect?

The idea that the juxtaposition of shots creates meaning that wouldn't be there otherwise. Depending on how images are assembled, the audience will attach different meanings and emotions. Two shots have more meaning than a shot in isolation.

Editing: Constructive Editing

Avoids an establishing shot until later in the scene, smaller parts of the setting are pieced together to make a whole.

Editing Dimensions: Temporality

Time and Chronology. To see the events in a cause and effect order.

Elliptical Editing: Presents an action in such a way that it consumes less time on screen than it does in the story.

Montages: A series of short shots condense space, time, and information.

Jump Cut: Joins two shots that are extremely similar in subject and composition.

Overlapping Editing: Extends the duration of something longer than the time it takes to complete the action

Cross Cutting/Parallel Editing: When there is an action in one scene. which cuts to an action in the other scene, implying that they are happening simultaneously.

Editing: What is Continuity Editing?

Models itself after out most habitual ways of looking at the world. ensures that spectators are given all the information they need to comfortable orient themselves in the diegesis. Privileging a film's chain of cause and effect over any of its other aspects.

Editing: Ensuring continuity through editing dimensions

Graphically: Keep shots looking consistent. (Colour, tonality, exposure)

Rhymically: Consistent shot lengths that set the pace and rhythmic pattern. Lengthening shots elongate rhythm, quick shots shorten it. Correlate shot scale with shot duration.

Spatially: Create spaces that are coherent and consistent.

Temporal Relations: Minimize manipulation of order, duration, frequency, and signal clearly when manipulation does occur.

Rules of Continuity Editing

180 Degree Rule

Establishing/Reestablishing Shots

Eyeline Matching

Match on Action

Shot/Reverse Shot

POV Shot

What is Sound Mixing

The Selection, Alteration, and Combination of sounds.

Sound: Perceptual Properties

Loudness: The audible volume

Pitch: The degree of "Highness" or "Lowness" of a sound

Timbre: The tonal quality or feel of a sound

Sound: Dimensions of Film Sound

Rhythm: Beats and Accents in speech and sound effects

Fidelity: Whether or not it matches the visual source

Spatiality: Diegetic/NonDiegetic

Onscreen/Offscreen (Is the source visible?)

Internal/External (Is it in the character's mind?)


Sound: Temporality

Simultaneous Sound: The image and sound function at the same time

Non-Simultaneous Sound: When the sound occurs at a different time than the image. (A sound bridge)

Synchronous Sound: Filmmaker decides that we hear the sound at the same time as we see what makes it. Related to the viewing time and screen duration. If the sound is synchronous, it matches the visuals onscreen.

Functions of Film Sound

Directs the spectator's attention

Shapes how images are interpreted

Sets a mood

Creates motifs

Defines onscreen space

Creates offscreen space

Masks a cut

Enables silence to signify

Sound: What's a sound bridge?

When the sound is carried over from one scene to another. Diegetically, this doesn't make sense, but it implicitly tells the viewer that there is a connection between the two scenes.

Sound: What's a dialogue overlap?

Occurs when sound carries across a cut within the same scene, usually in dialogue scenes.

Cinematography: Framing

Aspect ratio: The ratio of width to height

Masking: the simplest way to create a widescreen image. Masks block the passage of light to certain areas of the image.

Anamorphic Process: Method of creating a widescreen image using a special lens to squeeze the image horizontally

Multiple Frame/Split Screen: Two or more image with their own framing dimensions appear together within a larger frame.

Every act of framing creates relationships among the things we see.

Cinematography: Camera Position

Angle: Straight on, High, Low

Level: Parallel to the horizon or not.

Canting: The camera is not level

Height: The vertical height of the camera, adjusted by crouching or craning.

Distance: The framing of the image stations us far away or relatively close to the subject.

(extreme long shot to extreme close up)

Cinematography: Functions in Framing

May create motifs or standout due to rarity. They are not restricted to cliches about framing meaning. (Low angle= power)

Cinematography: Types of Mobile Framing

Pan: Movement swivels the camera on a vertical axis. New areas are visible

Tilt: Movement rotates the camera on a horizontal axis. New areas are visible

Tracking/Dolly: Camera travels in any direction, level to the ground. Changing perspective.

Crane: Camera travels in any direction vertically, changing perspective

Handheld: Intentionally creating a bumpy, POV style image.

Zoom: Reduce or blow up some portion of the image.

Reframing: If a character moves in relation to another, often the frame will slightly adjust with a pan or tilt.

Cinematography: The Function of Mobile Framing

When the camera moves, we sense our own movement through space. It creates an interplay between onscreen and offscreen space. Sense of duration and rhythm is also affected by the mobile frame. Since a camera movement consumes time on screen, it can create an arc of expectation and fulfillment.

Cinematography: Shot Duration

Still photography doesn't move, but film deals with temporal form.

Real time: The shot is recording in actual duration

Long take: One long recording of a single shot. When an entire scene is rendered in one shot, we call it a sequence.

Cinematography: Photographic Qualities: How the camera renders and captures the objects before it. These qualities depend on the tools that the director of photography has at his/her disposal like film stocks, lenses, processing, filters, colour grading.

Range of Tonality: How finely detailed? Vibrant or Muted Colour? Contrast? Saturation? Film Stock Used? Rate of Exposure? Filters (expressive qualities)?

Speed of Motion: Speed of which the film is shot or projected. Slow Motion tends to lend the event a degree of importance or focus. It can also be used for a supernatural effect. Fast motion can be used for time passing. Perspective: Renaissance Perspective is representing 3D space on a 2D medium. Creates an illusion of depth by having all lines converge at a central point in the distance. This is why most camera lenses are round. Vanishing Point. Wide Angle lenses have shorter focal lengths. Creates an exaggerated sense of depth. Telephoto lenses have a longer length. Magnifies objects at a distance. Crushes planes of space.

Zoom is a manipulation of the lenses, creates an optical effect that seems like movement.

Depth of field: Deep or selective focus.

Framing: The choice to of what to capture, and what to leave out of the image. Implications include Size, Shape, Onscreen and Offscreen Space, Vantage Point (Distance, Angle, Height) and the movement of framing.

Music: Claudia Gorbman's Seven Principles of Classical Film Music

Invisibility: The technical apparatus of non-diegetic music must not be visible (orchestra)

Inaudibility: Music should not be heard consciously. It must be transparent, and not take focus away from the story.

Signifier of Emotion: Soundtrack music may set specific moods and emphasize particular emotion suggested in the narrative or creates the emotion itself

Narrative Cueing: Music gives referential and narrative cues, as well as interprets and illustrates narrative events. The meaning-making part of narrative music.

Continuity: Music provides rhythmic continuity between shots and scenes by filling in the gaps. Creates seamlessness within a sequence.

Unity: Repetition and variation of musical material and instrumentation, music aids in the construction of formal and narrative unity.

Music: Subordination

Composers must subordinate musical action to the demands of the narrative.





Music: Parallel or Counterpoint?

Parallelism: Image and sound are working together to create unity (Mickey-mousing)

Counterpoint: Image and sound contradict each other

Mutual Implication: Music and Image work together or separately to convey narrative information. It is dependant on the audience making connections.

Music: Erno Rappee

The encyclopedia of music for pictures

A table of contents for music for different types of situations

Music: Richard Wagner: The Leitmotif

A musical phrase, either a complex melody or brief series of notes, which, through repetition, become identified with a character, situation, or idea.

Music: Meta Diagetic Music:

Sounds/Music that has mutual implication but incorporates sound that drops cues and clues to pick up on onscreen activity.

Documentary: Types

Expository: Emphasizes verbal commentary and an argumentative logic. God-Like narrator features explanatory commentary and reality effects like statistics and charts makes the material seem truthful and non-fiction.

Observational: An unobtrusive camera observes the action as a fly-on-the-wall. Shots and editing direct the audience's experience, as there is no commentary.

Participatory: Emphasizes the interaction between filmmaker and subject. The filmmaker is part of the narrative and the subject matter. The film has a thesis that is explicitly stated and is edited to support the argument.

Reflexive: Self-reflective in the documentary form. Calls attention to the assumptions and conventions that govern documentary filmmaking. Increases our awareness of the constructedness of the film's representation of reality.

Documentary: Forms

Abstract: A film that is patterned by pictorial qualities (line, shape, tonality, movement)

Categorical: Non-narrative. About a specific subject matter.

Rhetorical: Makes an argument and tries to convince the viewer of the thesis

Associational: The presentation and arrangement of material created by combining images and sounds together that are rendered to create meaning and connection

What is Documentary? John Grierson

The creative treatment of actuality.

What is different about Avant Garde Film?

-An artisinal mode of production

-Distribution and exhibition outside of commercial contexts

-A small, specialized audience

They are communicating a personal vision. Their primary goal is to have creative control. Film is often only a part of a larger aesthetic agenda.

They have a shared goal of rejecting established cinematic conventions in order to expand the possibilities of film.

Avante garde means "Before the front line".

They push boundaries and take risks.

Avante Garde: Forms

Abstract: The arrangement of material is dictated by visual and oral qualities. What is of concern is not meaning, but what it looks and sounds like. How Image and sound draw attention to colour, line, texture, tone, rhythm, etc. Attention to FORM.

Associational: Through montage, cutting, etc. create meaning. Images and sounds are rendered and combined to create connections that are not necessarily formal. Patterns and repeating images create meaning. They systematically explore the formal potential of the medium (Film stocks, editing)

Narrative: Film tells a story, but does it in a non-conventional way. “Explodes” the idea of narrative. (e.g. scrambled order).

AWhat is unique about animation?

It can take any forms, but what distinguishes it is the conditions of production

1. The presentation of imagery that has no real world status beyond the filmic universe

2. The creation of movement through a succession of individual static images.

Animation: Methods


-Drawn (Cell) Animation

-Cut-Out Animation


-Computer Animation

-Direct Animation (Drawing on Film)


Animation: Live Action

Initial movement gets broken down into successive stages as it is photographed.

Animation: Pixillation

The process by which three-dimensional objects are made to appear to move through stop-motion style.