Ethan Bull posted an interesting idea to study filmmaking. Count the edit points in a commercial. It gives you a glimpse of how much decision-making, and thought (and caffeine!) goes on in making a film. I agree. Having scored a fair share of spots, a 30 second commercial can take several demos and weeks of revision to come up with that final. A feature film is exponentially more work.

However, if anyone has seen Rodrigo Garcia’s film Nine Lives can attest, one long shot can be highly effective. Each of the nine vignettes in this film is filmed in a single continuous take. It’s not meant to be flashy or show-off, and the story soon pulls you in, you forget about the gimmick. What it does allow for is live theater type performances yet with incredible intimacy that only the camera can capture. Truly impressive and awe-inspiring is the writing. The cast is stellar with notable performances by Robin Wright Penn and Jason Isaacs, Glenn Close and Dakota Fanning. It’s so magically deliciously real it’s no wonder that Rodrigo is the son of Nobel laureate for Literature Gabriel Garcia Marquez (viva Colombia!). The film premiered at the IFP Market in New York. If it’s still playing by you – run and see this!

Andrew Ingkavet is a composer with over 2 decades experience creating music for film, theater, advertising and new media.
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