All work and no play makes Kaylie a bored ds106 student

I love movies. I love all the behind the scenes knowledge of anything that has to do with movies. The making, editing, thought processes behind certain scenes and themes, all of it. In my second semester of junior year at Mary Washington, I took a class called “Intro to Cinema Studies” and it completely changed how I look at films. I learned about camera shots, lighting, mise-en-scene, all of it. And I absolutely loved it. If anyone has these interests like me, I highly recommend taking this class.

A lot of the knowledge and pointers I gained from this class were actually re-iterated in Roger Ebert’s “How to Read a Movie”.

My favorite part of the article was the massive paragraph on the many “rules of thumb” that started off :

“Right is more positive, left more negative. Movement to the right seems more favorable; to the left, less so. The future seems to live on the right, the past on the left. The top is dominant over the bottom. The foreground is stronger than the background. Symmetrical compositions seem at rest…”

and then continues for more great rules that you see in films all the time, but once they are pointed out to you it’s just like of like… oh yeah, duh. He also listed some literature that changed his perspectives that I’m definitely interested in reading.

I am also a huge fan of filmmakers. Francis Ford Coppola, Sofia Coppola, Wes Anderson, Darren Aranofsky, all of them.

My favorite film of all time is The Shining. I am a HUGE Stephen King fan, and HUGE Kubrick fan. So obviously I had to watch the video on The Shining’s famous zooms.

I could talk about the camera work and metaphors they hold in this movie for years, but I won’t because there’s no time for that. The zooms in this movie are unparalled, and hold so much meaning. The whole premise of the movie is about slowly descending into madness, and the slow zooms into and away from the characters are a good way for putting that thought into visualization.

Also on the lines of Kubrick, he is one of the top masters of visualization of shots, specifically parallelism.

His one-point perspective is a key in every single one of his films. From The Shining, to 2001, it’s just extremely important in the perspective Kubrick is trying to explain in his films.

I may disagree with a lot of things about Tarantino personally, I can’t deny that he makes masterpiece films. He is also a brilliant filmmaker in the sense of perspectives. While Kubrick does it from straight on, Tarantino does it from below.

It’s a phenomenal way to put the audience in the movie without losing the storytelling and breaking the fourth wall.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch The Shining for the hundreth time.


  • Katelyn Colombrito

    Seems like we both agree that The Shining is an incredible movie. I also took Intro to Cinema Studies and I loved it! Couldn’t agree more that it gives you a new appreciation for film, even if you already love it. Excited to see your video assignments for this week. 🙂

  • Kelsie A Burt

    First let me say that your are very funny. I love the enthusiasm you have in your writing. It is really is a great way to keep the viewers engaged in what you have to say. I like what you got from the reading by Roger Ebert, and I have never watched of The Shining, but I like your analysis of the camera work; and if I ever do see it, I know what to look for in the camera work.

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