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Crossing the axis delibirately


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#1 Liam Howlett

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:23 AM

I will be turning a 2-3 page short story script that has a twist at the end. The entire scene is a table scene with two people. Long story short the twist is that one of the characters simply recalls a memory in their mind - so the actual memory is the film - the table scene. I won't go into script specifics, but I want to shoot this simple two people table scene with slight in camera effects to distort the image - just slightly, and by crossing the axis a few times to disorient the viewer deliberately - the last few moments of the film will make sense however - but I'm shooting for slight ambiguity as well.

Because of the nature of the 'story' - is it ok for me to break the 180 rule a few times? I am not so much asking for "permission" as I am asking experienced DPs whether it'd be a good idea as far as telling the "story"
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#2 Chris Millar

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:21 AM

Ok, I'm not an experienced DP/Director so much as many others here but my take on it is this:

If you can write a thread about it like this it shows you know the ins and outs of what you're talking about ('know the rules before you break them'). If you wont tell us the story we can't really comment for sure so just leap in and do it...

If it works it works, and if it fails then you learned, which is the most important thing.

If someone comes on here and tells you about their situation and how it worked/failed then that is likely helpful info, but yeh, just go for it regardless ;)

Quick thought though -> no doubt you've found examples of where it has worked, but also look for examples of where it hasn't - then figure out why...
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#3 Liam Howlett

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:56 AM

Quick thought though -> no doubt you've found examples of where it has worked, but also look for examples of where it hasn't - then figure out why...


Well the most prominent example is obviously The Shining - come to think of it, when I wrote this thread I didn't consciously have it in my mind - but then I remembered that bathroom scene and it was disorienting. As of now, the way I imagine my approach to how I'll translate the 'memory' portion to the screen, including the crossing of axis - I think it will work. But I guess I won't know until I shoot it and put it all together. Theoretically, it would make sense to do this as it actually does give one a sense of a memory. A disjointed, fragment. Nolan loves to use fragmental editing (see Memento, for the most obvious) but those are glimpses, and editorial techniques. I have an actual 'recollection' of a memory to film - and I believe the way I'll approach it - would be the best for telling that story, and giving the audience a sense of something abstract, like a dream, or a fragment of memory long forgotten - while also keeping it ambiguous. This will be my most substantial project, so that's why I wanted to ask the pros for some input. Because I plan on submitting this to a short film festival

Edited by Liam Howlett, 29 November 2012 - 03:58 AM.

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#4 Paul Salmons

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 12:26 AM

Plan it like you want it (break the 180) and then if you can, shoot a close up that will let you get to the other side just in case you don't like it you can still use the rest of the footage that you continue to shoot from that side.
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#5 Christopher Sheneman

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 03:41 AM

Because of the nature of the 'story' - is it ok for me to break the 180 rule a few times? I am not so much asking for "permission" as I am asking experienced DPs whether it'd be a good idea as far as telling the "story"


Crossing the axis deliberately? Try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light.
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#6 Chris Millar

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 05:13 AM

Crossing the axis deliberately? Try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light.

As a duly designated representative of the City, County and State of New York, I order you to cease any and all supernatural activity and return forthwith to your place of origin or to the nearest convenient parallel dimension.
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Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

Technodolly

Tai Audio

Willys Widgets

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery