Evaluation of First Edit:
Overall I am really pleased with my first edit, primarily because I feel as though I have portrayed Kieran’s mad, toxic persona really effectively through the use of close-ups, shadows, certain effects and transitions between clips. However, I am most pleased with my use of cuts in order to produce an opening with a very fast editing pace, as I think this keeps the audience captivated, yet also puts them in Kieran’s shoes and makes them feel very claustrophobic and disorientated, which was one of my original aims for my thriller opening.
On the other hand there are many things which would help to make it a higher quality opening. Firstly, one of the initial problems which I knew would affect my filming, was the weather change. There are many consecutive clips where in one it is cloudy, the next its sunny and the next its raining, which means that my opening is not as continuous as it could be. After some thought I found the colour board a very useful tool in lowering the exposure and light in the brighter shots in order to match the gloomy ones, this means that the clips look more similar. I will re-film the clips which have rain in them, however I also discovered that the change in weather could possibly assist in portraying his absurd self and moreover show his dizziness from taking the drugs. Furthermore it doesn’t make sense as to why the weather keeps changing therefore portraying his confused, chaotic mind. Secondly, I will add the music to it, as it instantly brings it all together and adds more tension. I’m planning on using the music to show the sudden appearances of the visions with a high pitched screech of violins which juxtaposes the calm, silent watching from afar.
- Create more storyboards for extra shots- over the shoulder shot of the spy walking, Kieran running and hiding behind a tree with jump scare, more close ups of the spy and hand-held camera running next to Kieran. (and why!)
- Use the colour board to edit the sunlight out of some shots to keep the lighting continual.
- Add the music.
- Add the opening credits, in a continual font size and colour and leave them on the screen for 3 seconds each.
- I need to stabilize many of my close up shots at the beginning.
- SFX of a man screaming, to add in when Kieran falls over round the corner.
- Add pupils comments to the blog (screenshot) and how they are useful.
The comments helped to give me an insight in to what improvements other people can see for my thriller. Its really useful having a fresh pair of eyes watching it as they have noticed things and thought of ideas that I hadn’t. Firstly, I will definitely be filming an establishing shot to use at the beginning, because it fits with the conventions of a thriller and also portrays Kieran’s seclusion from society. Moreover it helps to set the scene. Secondly, Ollie made a good point about using a sound effect for when Kieran trips round the corner, in order to make it more realistic, therefore I have added this to my to-do list. I will take on board Shay’s comment about creating a preset colour pallet for Kieran’s scenes, and edit the lighting in each shot to try and keep it all as continual as possible, as I ended up with shots in the sun and the rain. In terms of Jake’s comment, I am going to wait and see if the fall looks anymore convincing with a sound effect over the top, before I think about re-filming it.
Evaluation of Second Edit:
My second edit is very different to my first edit as I have completely rewritten and re-filmed my ending. I am glad that I made the decision to change it, as looking back at my first edit, there are many shots towards the last 1 minute that are not stable and not the quality I had hoped for. Furthermore there were too many storylines in my opening, which made it very confusing. I am really proud of my re-filming, as I have ensured I included a wide variety of shots, such as a master shot and a POV shot. The whole sequence flows more together, with the quick cuts still included, giving it an erratic pace. Moreover through adding more close-ups of the spy watching Kieran, it has made his persona more ambiguous and mysterious.
- Add the music.
- Add in a black screen at the beginning that reads: “A Holly Gorton film…starring” that fades into the first shot.
- Undo all the colour pre-sets to eliminate it looking too edited (as they are too dark).
- Add in the sound effects, e.g. the opening of a gate, sci-fi sounds?.
- Change the font and style of my opening credits to suit the context more- possibly have them a bit irregular to show his madness.
- Need to find a clearer way to show what Eddie is doing at the end.
- At 1.27 I am going to crop it in order to make Harry more centre frame.
- Do some more editing with the colour board, in order to take out the sun in the shots of Harry running through the gate.
Evaluation of Third Edit:
I am really pleased with my third edit, as now I have began adding the music it has given the sequence a more dramatic and eerie ambiance, which is what i wanted to achieve. At the beginning when one of Kieran’s hallucinations makes him jump, I made sure to increase the intensity of the sound effect- ‘impact metal hit’- because it makes the viewers jump as they are not expecting it. I think my choice of music suits the physcological theme really well because its a very unsystematic soundtrack with a few odd sounding effects which all help to represent Kieran’s muddled and perplexed state of mind. For my next edit I am going to film three extra shots to add in to the end, as I feel as though they will help to explain what Eddies role is at the end, as my peers told me it wasn’t clear in the comments they made. This will also include some dialogue, in which Eddie will say: “You were right…he couldn’t handle it…he’s dead”.
Joe W Turberville:
“The role that Eddie plays is confusing (who is he?), good use of different shot types, use of sound is good at the beginning however towards the end everything seems a bit too quiet (maybe the music needs to be slightly louder). But a really good improvement.”
“Eddies role is quite unclear to me, seems like we need more build up of who he is at the start etc. at around 2 mins the sound volume changes slightly, try to keep the sound the same volume throughout other than when supposed to be. other than that, its a good improvement:)”
- Add some more close-ups of Eddie with dialogue to explain what his character is doing.
- Increase the volume of the music at the end to make it more dramatic.
- Crop in at 1.27 to make Harry more centre frame.
- Slightly crop in the second shot of Harry throwing the stone in the water as it looks quite forced.
- Add in a close up of Harry’s hand dripping with water at the end to show he has drowned.
- Find a sound effect to slot in when Harry steps into the water, for instance a realistic splash sound effect.
The screenshot above is the website which I used to find some more dramatic music to join with the music Eddie made for me. As you can see clearly it is not a copyright website as I have used it for school/education purposes.
Evaluation of Fourth Edit:
My fourth edit is definitely an improvement from my third, my music was not strong enough therefore I have added a couple more low toned, tension building soundtracks. I have stabilised all my shaky shots and cropped in on some to edit my framing and ensure the main characters are in the centre, in order to make them the audience’s focus. The only aspect I need to add is some extra clips of Eddie at the end, which I will be filming this weekend. It also includes dialogue and some more interesting shots to help boost my grade, for example side angle and hand held cameras to increase the sense of action. I also changed the colour and six of my title: “Toxic Choices” in order to make it bolder. I changed the colour of “choices” from white to black because black connotes the idea of death therefore foreshadowing his growing in the lake.
Evaluation of Fifth Edit:
I am super pleased with my fifth edit, as I feel the whole storyline is alot more clear with the added shots of dialogue and the close-up of the text message, which helps to make Eddies motives more apparent. My music has increased in intensity meaning its very thrilling to watch, which was what I had hoped to achieve. I have re-cropped many of the shots in order for the characters or point of focus to be centre frame, so the audience concentrate on them. After Harry steps into the lake- committing suicide- I added a custom black screen, with a sound effect of a splash and a close up of the bubbles coming out of the water, to make this more evident.
Above is a screenshot of how my title has adapted over the edits. It began as a slide in title which appeared during the long stable shot of Harry running down the avenue. It was centre frame, however at the bottom of the screen, in order to not distract the audience from the picture. The font was regular and in capitals, with “TOXIC” in red and slightly bigger than “CHOICES”, which was in white. After feedback from my peers, I realised that the style and placing of the title didn’t suit my psychological thriller. Therefore I made it slightly bigger, changed the colour of “CHOICES” to black and took out the transition effect because the slide in was too slow for the pace of the music. However, after watching some thrillers I remembered that most of their titles appeared after the opening sequence, so I completely changed it by using a black custom screen at the end. I typed every single letter individually in order to make them appear straight after each other, as this reflects his constantly frenzied mind.
I used a different font for “TOXIC” to make it stand out and highlight his toxic lifestyle, I also feel like it creates the dizzy images that he sees. Using a regular, white font for “CHOICES” further justifies just how noxious and irregular he is due to drug use. The colours red and white are also very juxtaposed, as white shows the pure, good choices you could make in life, however the colour red stands out more and connotes the idea of danger and threat. Finally I moved the title towards the beginning of the sequence, on top of the handheld camera of Harry’s feet running.