Weekly Assignments

Movie Analysis: The Royal Tenenbaums


This week in #ds106 we are focusing on reading movies. I was tasked with creating a video essay. The details can be found in Week Ten: Reading Movies. Summary: Identify some particularly effective scenes from a video related to our theme that you’ve watched. Pick one of them to analyze in a video essay. Use the critical lens of this week’s reading and resources. This means you are going to make a video, using a scene from a movie, and discuss the scene in voice-over narration. You can upload your video essay to Vimeo or Youtube.

Behind the Work

In order to better understand how to read movies, I read How to Read a Movie, watched How Does an Editor Think and Feel?, and then watched some more videos by Tony Zhou from his Every Frame a Painting . In How Does an Editor Think and Feel? at 2:30 we are asked “What do you feel while watching this?” Answer: Nothing really. It is hard to read the man in the clip. We are asked again at 4:30, but looking at a longer edit of the same clip. Answer: The facial expression in the man’s face shows he is happy. Whatever he was thinking of took such hold of them, so he smiled. Making me feel happiness as well. This question is something I carried in my head while diving more into movie reading. I also kept thinking about a question poised by Professor Bond: “ How much of what we consider good acting is really good editing?” Besides focusing on just the cut of the scene, let’s also think about the reverse shot and how colors play a role in a scene when doing a movie analysis.

During the Work

I decided to do a video essay on the crash scene from Wes Anderson’s The Royal Tenenbaums. I used y2mate to download the crash scene from Youtube, then uploaded it into iMovie. I have used iMovie in the past for assignments, so I did not need to spend anytime getting to know how to work it (which was very nice). After splitting the scene into 3 parts: the crash, the fight, and the aftermath. I used Canva to create a video title scene and title screens for each of the 3 parts. After adding these to the video, I picked out a transition I liked to help everything flow better. Finally, I added my voice overs using the record feature. I had a lot of fun making this video, I’d forgotten how much fun it is using iMovie!

2 replies on “Movie Analysis: The Royal Tenenbaums”

The car crash scene was a great choice because it demonstrates a way to show something without actually showing it. Due to the way it is edited, the scene doesn’t lose any impact or effectiveness when the crash happens off-camera.

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