I have done video editing before, but not in a while. I used to make game-play videos for the computer game Counter-Strike. This involved recording gameplay video, turning it into a series of screenshots, compiling all of the screenshots into a clip, and then combining tons of these clips with transitions, choreographed music, and special effects. Although that sounds difficult, it was about the same level as this project(although the Counter-Strike videos could take weeks to months even when I worked on them daily). A good example that people may find cool, with good music, a lot of the shots we talked about in class, and even a little CGI is Mousesports. This is still a team, but this video is from their 2006 season. My experience making these movies was with Vegas Video. Even though I knew Vegas Video better, I decided to learn how to use Premier, and it was well worth it. Transitions were a little less intuitive, but once they were set up, I tended to think, “that was so obvious.”
For my movie I chose to remix Beauty and the Beast(1991). I chose this movie because it’s
something I love( I almost know the movie line for line). I originally decided to remix the movie to have Belle as an abusive ruler of the beast, commanding him to attack and kill other people. However, after working through the video, it came out much better if I had Belle be the beast, sort of like a werewolf kind of thing, and she goes and kills people while in Beast form.
To change the movie from Disney to darkness, I employed semiotics. I focused on all of the scenes with dark colors. Dark being synonymous with…well…dark. The shots I used of reactions featured “low” lighting that cast shadows on the face and made them look evil. I frequently showed people in silhouette, which is a common signifier of evil intent. These signifiers in all of my scenes(except the beginning ones) helped changed the meaning from a “Disney” movie to something more sinister.
I had a really difficult time finding music for my trailer. I probably spent about 1/3 of the project just searching for music for my trailer. I finally had help from some of my family and they managed to pitch two good songs. The first song I chose was Dream a Little Dream of Me by The Mamas and the Papas. I used this at the beginning to show Belle pre-transformation. The music fit the scenes perfectly. The lighting was bright, with smiles and greeting from the other villagers. The lyrics fit even better, “Night breezes seem to whisper ‘I love you’,” implying that the love is false, it seems to whisper. The title functions as an indicator, Dream a little Dream of Me. Belle is the center of everyone’s desire in the original, and I tried to convey that idea here with the song.
The second song I chose was Unforgettable by Nat King Cole. This was the song at the beginning of Watchmen(2009). I really liked the song because it gives the movie a real eerie, “somethings not right” sense. It reminded me of the game BioShock. The soundtrack to that game is essentially the same style of 1940’s and 1950’s music, but when they set it to the background, a dimly lit and haunting scene, it makes the music so eerie. I don’t know if this is technically the Kuleshov effect because it is with music, but I think so. Either way I hoping to change the music from a song about someone being unforgettable because of love, to one about being unforgettable because of terror.
The shots I used were quick cuts(except for fade in and out with the text). Movies with quick cuts imply fast action and a bit of anxiety.I wanted to utilize this idea to imply that the fight between Gaston and the Beast was at a really fast pace.
I chose to use black outs to make the watcher employ Scott McCloud’s idea of closure, from his book Understanding comics: The invisible art. Somehow in horror movies, using closure makes it much worse. We tend to think the absolute worst thing possible would happen. I hope I used this properly to imply that the Beast killed Maurice and Gaston.
Something I was proud of was the text that appears on the screen. It is exactly the same text words sung by the crowd at the beginning of the movie. However, by setting it next to a whole different set of images, it changes the meaning to imply something sinister. It originally implied that Belle was different in a good way, she was smart and intelligent. However, thank to the Kuleshov effect, it implies that Belle is hiding a dark secret.
I saw this in someone else’s post and had to mention it, “the infamous professor Delwiche was telling audio horror stories on a daily basis” (toriperko). This was absolutely true. If Delwiche had not told us to save in different versions, I would have lost everything. I don’t know if this is exactly the same problem, but the sound would not disappear from the exported trailer, but from Premier when I went back. So I would like to heartily thank everyone who discovered the problems with the sound, because it saved me from re-doing the whole project at the very end.
It was nice to revisit something I once knew. I had never seen a movie mix up until this class. The best piece of advice I can give is to save often, and under different version names. It will literally save your life.