Tag Archives: Continuity Editing

Preliminary Task – Take 2/Getting It Right

Now we know much more about rules to do with continuity editing such as the 180° rule, match on action and shot reverse shot. Because of this, we have been given the task to redo our previous task but incorporating these features in hope that our final product will be better and more professional than our previous one.

We were given the same task, to film and edit a character opening a door, crossing a room and sitting down in a chair opposite another character, with whom s/he then exchanges a few lines of dialogue. This time around we were placed into new groups. I was placed in a group with Emily Jackson, Sean Stubbs and Kieran Cross. Due to there being more of us, we could have one person per piece of equipment.


For this task our focus was getting it right. Because of this, we were given two lessons to complete the task rather than one like before. We had lesson 3 and lesson 5 to finish filming our short film. Firstly, I went to the office in order to book out a room for these two lessons so that it was ours to use. However, this is where we encountered our first problem. There were no rooms available for the two of the sessions and so we were given the Irrational Room for lesson 3 and Room 11 for lesson 5. This was a huge problem as the rooms are vey different and using two different locations would ruin our film. The only solution to this problem was to make sure we had everything planned so that we could get our filming finished in one lesson. Next, we decided to brainstorm our ideas. We all had different viewpoints and opinions about what would be best but the two most popular ideas were a first date and a dramatic twist of someone getting hit by a car. Both sides wanted to do their film and so we decided to merge the two together to keep everyone in the group happy. Our next task was to create the script. We did so and planned out a simple storyboard sequence. Our next challenge that we had to face was to find three actors. Our actors, Georgia, Oliver and Harrison volunteered to help.


Due to problems with booking out rooms we had 50 minutes to film our short video. Firstly, Emily collected the equipment whilst we found our actors. Bearing in mind feedback that we received before, our next mission was to move all of the tables and chairs because you should not film against a wall as this eliminates depth to the shot. This time around everything went well with setting up the camera and sound recorder. Our next problem was to do with the actors. Our actors did not take the task at hand too seriously and so many of our shots include smiling and giggling. We did not think this to be too much of a problem as on a first date if you’re nervous then maybe you laugh in a nervous manner. However, when watching the shots later on this looked unprofessional. Although we only had the 50 minute time slot and giggly actors, we managed to film all of the critical points in order to succeed in the task. Redoing the task also allowed us to have extra practise with using the equipment. Our main problem when filming was our lack of communication throughout the team. Some teammates had a laugh with the actors and everyone was unsure of what their role was. Everyone’s perception of what the 180° rule is was different and so shots were taken from the wrong side which broke the rule. Due to the fact that this was the main purpose of redoing the task I knew that this attempt would not be as good as we had hoped…


To edit our take 2 of the task we used the same software, Final Cut Pro X. Firstly we had to download all of the footage and recordings and place them into a file ready to be downloaded onto Final Cut Pro X. Next, I began to view the footage and begin to order the scenes. From here I began to edit the video together. Many of our shots were not focussed correctly and were taken on an angle. However, to resolve this we managed to cut down the clips. Although this reduced the dodgy filming, it made our video much shorter than intended. When editing and trimming the various pieces of footage together I noticed that we had broken the 180° rule in one of our most important scenes. We had not filmed this scene from any angles that stuck to the rule. It was then that I knew I would have to redo the task. Pieces of dialogue had to be cut down drastically in order to cut out the laughter and make the video seem convincing. Our second shot of getting it right had gone so so wrong…


Here is the final video from our take 2…


From watching my final video I have decided to redo the task. This time I will try my best to incorporate all of the rules we have just learnt. I have decided to work with Emelia Rodgers. Due to the fact that there is just the two of us we may find it difficult to use the equipment. Also, this is the first time that the both of us will be using the two pieces of equipment due to other team members wanting to do that in our past tasks. Due to there only being the two of us, we will need actors. Also, because we can no longer work on this task in lesson time due to the fact that we need to move onto some textual analysis work, Emelia and I will borrow the equipment from school and work on our video this weekend. We will need to keep it simple as we want to solely display our new understanding of new rules in media. We shall consider pieces of feedback from our previous tasks. Carrying out this task one last time with Emelia will allow the both of us to learn how to use the equipment before having to use it in our final piece. Hopefully this time we can get it right…!

Getting it Right… Take 3…

Due to the mistakes made in our take 2 I decided to re film our preliminary task. This time I worked with Emelia Rodgers and we borrowed equipment from school to film over the weekend at home. To do so, we had to ask 2 people to be in our film as we needed one of us for the camerawork, Emelia, and one for the sound recording, myself. Although we did not break any of the rules that we recently learnt, for example the 180 degree rule, this was the first time that we used the equipment firsthand and so were unsure on how to focus the camera. Because of this our re film is much more blurred than previously. Here is our take 3 preliminary task…

Shot Reverse Shot

Shot Reverse Shot is another commonly used technique in film used for continuity editing. It is mainly used when characters are having a conversation, sharing various expressed facial reactions or looking at objects. In order to use shot reverse shot correctly, directors must tie in the 180° rule. This is because shot reverse shot focuses on placement and conversation and so for this to be used correctly and effectively, the characters must remain in their set positions otherwise the audience’s sense of location of the characters is lost and the scene will not flow.

An example of using shot reverse shot could be when character 1 is looking at either a person or object, the audience may view this through an over the shoulder shot. This shot would then be followed by character 2 looking back at character 1. This is shot reverse shot as the original shot has literally been reversed so that the audience can see the two sides of the conversation. Doing so allows the viewers to feel more involved and to be able to follow the action or dialogue easily and continuously.

This series of screenshots from the first episode of ‘Stranger Things’ displays this feature…