Continuity Techniques

THE 180 DEGREE RULE

 This rule explains that the characters used must always have the same left – right relationship with each other. So if two characters are sitting at a table, then the camera must always show one on the left, and the other in front of them. This way we can see the angle they are sitting at. If however, the rule must be broken, then it can only be done if the camera is shown to be changing sides. So instead of cutting from one side of the person to the other, then it must pan round them, on screen. If it cuts from one side to the other then they don’t have the same left – right relationship.

MATCH-ON-ACTION

This technique consists of cutting from one shot to another, showing the same amount of energy and the same action, which bridges the two shots and gives the impression of continuous time in an edited film. It would be strange if there was one shot with little or no energy of a ball being thrown, and then the next shot, the ball has tonnes of energy and is thrown very far. The action does not match.

SHOT/REVERSE SHOT

This rule states that one character is shot looking one way, often off screen, and then a new shot is taken of another character looking the opposite way, so that to the audience it looks as though the two characters are facing each other, through two different shots.

EYELINE MATCH

The technique is when someone on screen is filmed looking at something, off screen. The shot then cuts to another shot of what the character was looking at. So if someone was looking at a photograph, then the first shot would be of them looking at something off screen, and the next shot would be of the photograph.

MY ANIMATIC AND HOW THESE ARE USED

Shot two is the first shot using one of these techniques. it uses match on action of the door opening, as first we see the door on a long shot opening, and then the close up of her face still in frame, so the door must match how far it is opened.

Shot four uses the eyeline match of her looking at the room at large, and then the fourth shot is the room, at her eyeline.

Shot six and seven use shot/reverse shot to see the two characters reactions to each other.

Shot number twelve then uses the camera to break the 180 degree rule by spinning round the two subjects sitting down, so we see the change in relationship.

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