Tuesday, February 26, 2008


EDITING (chapter four)

Night of the Living Dead - George Romero, 1968

Refer to the cubing exercise you began in class, concentrating on a single, edited sequence from Night of the Living Dead. What style of editing does the sequence use? How is the time and space of the action condensed or elongated? What are the emotional or dramatic impacts of editing the sequence in this way? Outline an alternative editing method. How would this change the film's meaning?

Watch the entire film here.


Iddan said...

The scene where the Barbara character is running from the zombie man, uses both the classical and cutting to continuity editing styles. One of the most interesting shots of that scene is when Barbara crashes the car, then starts running. They show him through the car window as far away, then as soon as she gets out of the car and leaves the frame, they cut to him passing by the car. This cut condenses both time and space. Next they condense her running through the forest and cut to her on the road. They don't show them leaving the road, when they cut to the bushes area. An interesting thing here, is that when she is running on the road, she turns around several times and he is not there. Then boom he is on under trees in the bushes. It says you're not getting away from me!! The next piece condenses the bushes scene, by showing the house in the distance, her looking back, then her at the house. Another interesting note is when she looks back, she looks out of frame, so we never get to see how far she is from the zombie. This adds a bit of suspense as we are wondering whether she lost him, or he is 10 yards from her.
By showing only Barbara running, then using quick cutscenes of the zombie the same location she was, the audience is given the impression that Barbara is putting some distance between herself and the zombie. This also makes the situation seem more dire and frantic.
An alternative would be cutting to the zombie more times, but each time he would be closer in view: wide shot then closer wide shot. This gives the impression that he is coming, and gaining on her.

Anonymous said...

The editing style used in "Night of the living Dead" is cutting to continuity. The scene were the black man began to board up the house and finding a gun uses association between scenes. Also the director used close-up to show the discovering of guns and dread bodies in the house. The association of the object and the character was a great way to sequence the movie so that mystery is provoked though the camera in following the story line and discovery of new objects. The use of slow panning and editing-shifting between the clock and the woman on the couch with a nervous look on her face has caused the to sequence of events to be slowed down and to be more psychological. Causeing mystery and then the beginnig of the cutting between those two scenes pull though the action and make to scne seem extemely slow.

If they would have used thematic montage the movie would have been dramatically different. The sequence of the shots would have gave the ending away. They wold of had different scenes going on in different time periods and in different places the movie would have had a less mysterious value.

Yung D said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yung D said...

Davian said....
In the movie "Night of the Living Dead" the editing style is cutting to continuity. The style was very appealing to me, and had a lot of great editing techniques. The first scene in the graveyard was very powerful. The part when the guy was telling the lady praying, that prying is for church, got startle by the sound of thunder and the flash of lightning. In the frame, the man face was a close up shot. The reason for this shot was to show the emotion he was feeling(Fright) and foreshadowing what was about to happen next. It grip my attention more when i saw how well the director use the screen as a tool. When the guy was taunting the lady, you would see him, then the screen would change to her and he would not be in the scene. This is for a purpose as well. This give us the viewer, anticipation of what will pop out of the other side of the screen. For every scary shot, there was a close up to get the emotion of the character on to us as the viewer.
This director in my opinion, use the close up well to get emotion across effectively. Again, the scene with the black man speaking to the white lady was another good example of how the director uses the close up. When the black man told the lady he founded some guns and stuff, the camera went to a close up and the expression on her face was as if she was in shock. This type of effect put us into the characters state of mind, hence, a full movie experience. Even when the lady was listening to the radio, the the cutting to her face and the radio was close up zooming in shots, this show the great importance of the radio and what the lady was hearing. The sound in this movie also play a significant role. The scene where all the night walkers (living dead) were walking to the house, the sound of a old sci-fi movie with insects sounds and a dark taunting sound as if to say, i am coming to get you. Again with the close up of the living dead, that sound made the shot more terrifying and come across more scary.
overall the movie is a good movie with a lot of traditional movie techniques. I like it

Anonymous said...


The scene that appeals to me is where the character Barbara ran into the house when she was trying to get away from the zombie. When they started establishing the scene inside the house they showed quick close up cuts of animal heads. This was classical editing which made the audience have a dramatic intense effect.

Another close up shot that i liked was the shot of the bloody skeleton that Barbra came face to face with that also made me jump.
I also think that the producer could have used better close ups when the man and zombie was struggling with each other to show more emotion from them both or show their muscles at its maxed position. but seeing that it was early times it was still very well put together.

Kyle Dabrowski said...

The opening scene of Night of the living dead, uses Long wide shots of the car driving through the winding mountain roads. This is known as a sequence of shots. It is common in movies to introduce us the the area and surroundings by doing this, We as viewers see where it is that everything takes place. After the main credits we are introduced to the main characters, through classical cutting as they are speaking the cameras cut to look over the shoulders of the person who is listening to see who is doing the talking, this is done to make it seem that the viewers are the people doing the listening in the movie. Pretty much the whole movie of Night of the living dead is done using Sequence editing and Classical cutting, but the opening scene's show this most clearly.

Anonymous said...

In the opening scene of the Night of the Living Dead it shows a shot from far away when the lady that looks like a zombie is walking towards the camera. I bascially called this a sequence of shots because it shows how the woman looks like a zombie from far away especially the way she was walking. As she was walking she started coming towards the camera which the viewer can see how she looked up close. The reason why I think it is known to be a sequence of shots is because in that scene everything happened in order from one shot to the next.
The way the time and space of the action is condensed is in this scene it shows how the images can really look different by shooting different shots from different angles which can capture the viewers attention, and again as I mentioned this scene uses the sequence of shots.
The emotional impacts of editing the sequence in this way would basically give the audience a sense of what is really going on, they will also be able to feel the impact of the film.
An alternative editing method could be the cutting method, and then jump right back to the sequence of shots...basically back and forth. The reason why I say this is because I think it would capture the viewers attention even more and show that the lady is really a zombie.

Anonymous said...

In the scene where she sees the corpse that would be considered classical cutting for the editing style. They make the scene to be dramatic because they make a wide shot on the corpse and then shows Barbaras expression. The space is elongated because it lead up to it. It took them a while to show the corpse. It is very dramatic because you know something is going to happen, you don't quite know what and when you see it it is surprising. Not only to the actor but to the audience as well. (AD)

Anonymous said...

The movie "Night of The Living Dead" is in the form of Cutting to Continuity editing style. This is shown in the scene where the female character is running away from the first zombie shown in the movie. It shows a long period of time of her running away in a manner of at least 8 shots. The time and space of the movie are condensed because they show the characters in one space for a short period of time and then they speed up the time of day and the location. When you edit the film this way it makes the audience seem more in tune with the characters. This is because it heightens the suspense that she's really being attacked and the time of day makes it frightening. It puts the audience in the place with the character. The best way to change the editing that would definitely make it different would be to add more close-ups. It makes the movie more personal. Just like the close-up of the somnibulist Cesare that Dr. Calagari controlled the, that shot was revolutionary and to expose the zombie in this movie more often with closer shots of the countenance of the zombie's and their mannerism. This totally effects the movie.

Anonymous said...

The scene that I would like to concentrate on is when the dead zombie is approaching the house where Barbara has found refuge. The editing style that has been used is cutting to continuity as the zombie keeps approaching then Barbara is shown looking out the window as the zombie keeps approaching towards the house. I would elongate the scene so that the scene where the zombie is approaching the house can be a little bit more appreciated by the audience and then i would try to get a close up of Barbara to impact the audience with fear. This way, I would try to involve the audience more with the feeling of being chased by a living dead. I would try to use the Thematic Montage to bring a new idea of fear to the scene as I cut to continuity.

Anonymous said...

The editing is cutting to continuity in the movie "Night of the living dead'. Many of the scenes carry wide-shot to make the scene look very suspenseful. In the scene where she sees the corpse that would be considered classical cutting for the editing style. They made the scene so dramatic and suspenseful by the reaction of Barbara expression. It makes everyone think about what is going happen. It heightens the tension and makes the scene more better.

Anonymous said...

The "night of the living dead" was edited in a classical format and sharp cuts from scene to scene or cutting to continuity. The time and space of the of the action condensed or elongated, was stretched out in the beginning of the movie, where there were continuous cuts to the car driving symbolizing the distance of the drive. The sound editing impacted the fast cuts to continuity when the civilians were being attacked and the heightening of the instrument or music symbolized the peak of a dangerous moment and the lowering or complete stopping of the music symbolized safety or brief scape in some horror films. This causes emotions like fear and suspense and also curiosity.
I would have did an more closed form of editing. I would try and make sure that the environment wouldn't look as regular or normal rather. I would bring out a more underworld feeling , or a dark era of history such as portraying the end of the world. Something Resident Evil with extreme carnage everywhere and desert wastelands from the beginning to give the sense that something isn't right from the start.