Media Production Mentoring

Free online film school designed with beginning filmmakers in mind.


Extra Frames

A tell-tale sign of a novice editor is the presence of extra frames in every single shot. I bumped into this today when a mentee asked what I thought of his film. The short consisted of cutting back and forth between two characters. Unfortunately, the video didn't "flow" because each moment consisted of a slight pause, the action, another pause and then the cut. Much like this:

Awkward Pauses

As an audience we're left waiting for the next thing to happen and we even know what it has to be. At one point one of the characters runs into a bathroom and shuts the door. We wait while the door fully closes. Then we cut inside and there is a slight pause while the actor gets ready to continue running into the bathroom.

It completely ruins the momentum of the film. What's worse, since this was geared to be a comedy piece, the poor pacing killed every single joke.

I suggested that he try cutting at least a second from the beginning and end of every single shot in his film. Since it was 1:12 seconds long with about 20 cuts, I'm guessing his film could easily get down to a smooth 30 seconds. And it would be much, much better.

Remove Extra Frames

Of course, it's possible to go too far the other way... a topic we will explore tomorrow.

 ~Luke Holzmann
Your Media Production Mentor

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