Constructive Editing and When Filmmakers Apply the Technique

HK Cinema

The paper argues that Constructive editing is utilized to describe the commands that replicate entities that do exist or alter their appearances and the way filmmakers do frame the action they are shooting and a lot of compositional decisions depend on the image ratio aspect. According to Bordwell, many filmmakers in the 1910s depended a lot on close views which framed only two or three people and in some incidences it only framed one person. These kinds of portrait framing were best for the 4:3 formats that were common in the silent era. Therefore, it is important for the filmmakers to apply the constructive editing technique when there is a need to compose in wider frames especially in the 2.35:1 format that is common in the Cinemascope. I will tackle the issue of constructive editing using seven films.

By comparing two films, one of the past and the other one recent, it is evident that the early filmmakers most of the time favored distant, ensemble staging that was spread out that had great or less depth. An example of that is the Asia Pol 《亞洲秘密警察》 of 1967. However, when technology began to improve, filmmakers began to shoot movies that had close and medium shots in the wide format and an example of such as a movie is the Comrades, Almost a Love Story 《甜蜜蜜》 of 1996. In addition, they interpreted scope as a continuity of the traditional way of editing films and there was a pressure to intensify the continuity and filmmakers began to adopt those tenets of the scope. More so, they gave fast cutting, close-ups and roaming movements of camera within the array of a widescreen. Compared to all solutions they also entailed trade-offs. The 4:3 was best for the human body and even the facial close-up could fit it properly. However, a two-shot or a single widescreen could make a lot of the frame less significant.

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It is also clear that the space that is within the frame should be wholly utilized up in the composition. However, close views in the widescreen will be left with too much space that is not utilized and if the filmmaker puts the figure in the middle of the frame then it is evident that the empty space can be on both sides of the frame. In addition, constructive editing has been one of the big collective inventions of the filmmakers. It has been adapted to many of the narrative situations. The effects of constructive editing include; offering the filmmakers with routine patterns or style schemas that provide room for adjustments in all directions. The development of the complexity of motion pictures have been driven by a continued technological evolution such as constructive editing and that has helped the filmmakers to come up with more complex stories. For example, in the movie; Office 《華麗上班族》 (2015) there is a great use of constructive editing which has made the movie very interesting to watch. It is also evident that constructive editing contributes to saving money since the person watching the movie is most likely to think that the people who are seen in different shots were in the same place.

Due to the fact that constructive editing is less costly then a filmmaker who does not have money to travel to different places so as to shoot a movie he or she can just use the technique to edit the movie and make it very interesting to the viewers. An example of such a movie that has made good use of constructive editing is Echoes of the Rainbow 《歲月神偷》 (2010). Therefore, because of constructive editing, the audience will be forced to believe that all the scenes in the movie were done in different places but the fact is that they were just done in the same place and that is done using less cash. More so, in constructive editing, the amount of space that is used to shoot the movie will to a large extent determine the cost that will be used in coming up with the movie. For instance, if the filmmaker uses less space to shoot the movie then it is automatic that he or she will also use little lighting in the process. It would also eliminate some of the people who should not be in the movie and that is a clear indication that the film maker will only be required to rent little space for the purpose of producing the movie and that will cost him or her less cash as compared to when they would have used other forms of editing. That shows that when somebody knows how to work around problems then he or she has an edge and at times restrictions can force inventive and imaginative thinking that can offer moments that are inimitable.

It is also clear that constructive editing does not just help the filmmaker to save money but it is also a choice that is stylistic. The technique helps the filmmaker to make use of quick and close shots of faces that feature expressions that are enigmatic that makes the viewer of the movie to consider the person performing the action. In addition, constructive editing breaks the boundaries of classical editing such as in Bodyguards and Assassins 《十月圍城》 (2009). It is also clear that constructive editing is based on the idea that the director of the movie does not want to adapt reality but he or she uses it for the creation of a new reality. For instance, the scenes in the movie are comprised of pops, landscapes and real men but rather they are comprised of their images. Therefore, the filmmaker uses that to create his or her own space that is filmic.

Considering the fact that poets make use of word to come up with a new reality perception, creative editing also helps the film maker to make use of shots as his material. The technique also helps the filmmakers not to only tell the story but to also come up with conclusions that are intellectual from them. Kung Fu Hustle 《功夫》 (2004) has also made use of constructive editing to show he main actor jumping form a high building, the first shot would be shown when the man is jumping from the window to a net but the net would not be shown and thus the viewer would not be able to see it. In addition, the truth of the matter is the fact that the man is just jumping from a short distance and not from a very tall building as it is being displayed by the movie. Therefore, when the first shot is put together with the short distance it brings the illusion of the man jumping from the tall building. More so, if some details of the scenes were all shot in one shot then it is clear that they viewers would not be bale to notice them and that is the main reason why they have to be shown separately so that the audience can have a clue of what is going on.

Constructive editing also gives the filmmaker an opportunity to realize that by the use of juxtaposition, shots could then possess some meaning which was not really the case with the previous filmmakers. For instance, if there was the shot of a smiling man and then a revolver shot, followed by the man seeming to be terrified then the viewer would come to a conclusion that the man is a coward. However, if the shots could be reversed then the audience would come to a conclusion that the man is a hero. Therefore, it is clear beyond a reasonable doubt that applying various emotional effects while shooting a movie can be attain in accordance with the order that the filmmaker has chosen.

It is also evident that is constructive editing there is no use of established shots and scenes are constructed from the close ups and medium shots. In addition, the significance of the movie is placed on the characters and how they express their faces. The technique also tends to be on the one hundred and eighty lines or it might change and the person viewing the movie is also not told much about the scenes but rather he or she needs to take time and think what is going on in the movie while he or she is watching it. In addition, in constructive editing, the reality elements are fixed on images by combining them in a sequence that has been selected, lengthening and shortening them in a sequence that the filmmaker desires and that is a clear indication that the director comes up with his o her own filmic space and filmic time. It is also clear that constructive editing is a form of digital editing that is being used by most of the filmmakers in the industry and it has helped them to witness a lot of benefits as compared to filmmakers who existed in the past.

The technique has also helped many of the filmmakers to do a lot of experiments on the movie without having to fear the risk of interfering with the original shot. Due to that they have been in a better position of coming up with many illusions that have made movies very much interesting in the eyes of the audience. Therefore, the technique has also helped them to expand in terms of sales as people do buy these films in very large quantities even if they are not aware of the constructive editing idea but that is to the advantage of the filmmaker. It is also clear that there is certain software that is used to do the constructive editing and that ahs made work easier for the filmmakers as they are able to shoot movies in manner that saves time and also less expensive. In addition, constructive editing has enabled the filmmakers to improve some of the sound and light issues that were not easy to avoid previously and at the end the film is produced with the highest quality that is appealing to the eyes and the ears of the people watching the movie.

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The idea of filmmakers using the idea of constructive editing has changed over the course of Hong Kong film history. The reason behind that is the fact that filmmakers have benefited a lot in terms of saving time and money. For instance, in the past filmmakers used to travel long distances so as to shoot the movie but the discovery of constructive editing has changed the manner since filmmakers no longer need to travel to long distances wasting a lot of time and money just to shoot a movie and that is a clear indication of an improvement in the industry. An example of such a movie is The Mission 《鎗火》 (1999) where all the scenes were shot in one place but the movie appears as if the scenes were shot in very different places. Thus, the viewers enjoy the movie thinking that they are watching different places but the fact is that they are just watching one place that has been edited constructively. The technique has also helped the filmmakers to edit the film using a fast speed and a tremendous flexibility. Therefore, the technique is advisable when it is compared to other editing techniques that exist. More so, since the technique does not require a lot of space to shoot the movie then the filmmaker can also shot the movie while at home since one needs to play with colors and the type view and that is a clear indication of a low cost technique that is able to realize much profits if put into practice.

The technique has also changed the Hong Kong film industry in a manner that filmmakers have been able to come up with many scenes that have imaginary ideas that can be merged together unlike those that were produced in the past. Constructive editing has also helped filmmakers to shoot independent horror movies since they pave way for a lot of illusions and that is something that was not possible in the past movies since the type of editing that was used did not give the filmmakers an opportunity to bring illusions in the movie. The reason is because the filmmakers feared the risk of destroying the original shot of the movie so they were not bale to make many changes so as to make the movies appealing in the eyes of those who will be watching the movie. Therefore, it is clear beyond a reasonable doubt that constructive editing has changed the film industry at a very great extent as it is evident in the manner in which filmmakers are able to merge ideas in the shots without interfering with the original one and that has also helped them to save on time and money and more so, the industry has been able to attract large revenues to the filmmakers unlike how the situation was in the past.

My paper sheds light on constructive editing and it demonstrates that it is utilized to describe the commands that replicate entities that do exist or alter their appearances and the way filmmakers do frame the action they are shooting and how a lot of compositional decisions depend on the image ratio aspect. In addition, constructive editing has been one of the big collective inventions of the filmmakers. It has been adapted to many of the narrative situations. The effects of constructive editing include; offering the filmmakers with routine patterns or style schemas that provide room for adjustments in all directions. Therefore, it is clear that the technique has also changed the Hong Kong film industry in a manner that filmmakers have been able to come up with many scenes that have imaginary ideas that can be merged together unlike those that were produced in the past. More so, filmmakers should use the technique when there is a need to compose in wider frames especially in the 2.35:1 format that is common in the Cinemascope. Thus constructive editing is advisable since it has been discovered that it saves a lot of money and time and the filmmaker is guaranteed of generating a lot of income if he or he applies the technique as it has been proven to change the Hong Kong film industry in a positive manner.

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