We finally finished our film, Jouska. Jouska is a Japanese word which means having a hypothetical conversation in your head that you compulsively play out in your head. For example (SPOILERS!!) confronting your bullies which is what I do at the end of the film. We first started with puzzles. Ms. St.Clair suggested that maybe after completing a puzzle the scene could change where I'm stuck again with my bullies. After some time we changed the puzzle pieces to a mirror as a motif. The film is actually pretty hard to understand if you don't know what the mirror does. When I'm looking at the mirror, I'm traveling to an era when a particular film movement started. The first scene is from today. As I'm climbing the stairs and checking my mirror, I'm time-travelling to the Golden Age era. In this scene, we also included some shots which we were inspired by the party scene on Breakfast At Tiffany's. The next scene is inspired by Surrealism. This scene may look silly to most people, as a film student it doesn't really make sense to me too because I just don't understand Surrealism. The next scene is from Film Noir and it is my favorite. Besides the effects and the talking, I think we captured Film Noir movement cinematically. I really like the contrast when I'm sitting down, resting against the wall. I love the transition between this scene and the last one. I think the falling is on point. At the end of the last scene, we didn't plan to put slow-motion but I believe it got better with the slow-motion. We could have finished with me walking until I'm not in the frame however we think it's kind of better to put black screen when credits are rolling because it is more matched with the music.
In this film, all four of us basically did every job. The only thing that is done individually was creating the music which what I had done. The challenge of it was to get it matched with the scene and the era. For instance I couldn't put electronic music to Film Noir, electronic music and Film Noir have no relations. I think the hardest thing we did in this film was deciding if we have to shoot again or not because in Film Noir, some scenes weren't exactly in the same frame so when edited together, it would be obvious that some parts of the footage got cut off. Our mistake was not really paying attention where we stood in the scene so it created problems with the camera too. When we were still filming I thought that our biggest problem was planning and shooting the scenes separately. However the mirror and the effects (dissolves and such) helped us connecting the scenes.
What I learned from producing this film, is that you have to plan each scene like which angles or shots you're going to use, how will you connect the scenes together so they will flow when edited. Other than that, it is really fun to shoot a film.
We have been working on our film for 2 months now. At first when we were exchanging our thoughts, we almost had a definite idea what we wanted to do. The main idea is to mix different film movements. We all agreed on this thinking that it is unique. I believe our problem is with the plot line. It has been 2 months and I cannot tell you what our plot line is. The reason for that is we only plan what we are going to film a couple days before the filming. For me, that is the most challenging part because it has to be quick and it has to be impressive so that the film will attract our audience. I learned that you should be planning your plot line, your shot types or anything that is relevant to filming before the actual process takes place. If you are organized, you can do more effective work and you will have more time to edit or perhaps re-shoot some scenes.
IB film lessons provided us new ideas on how to shoot our film. They extended our imagination. We studied some film movements like German Expressionism, French Impressionism, Classical Hollywood, Surrealism and such. We have shot scenes from Classical Hollywood and Surrealism for our film. I believe the Classical Hollywood scene was very successful with the help of drama students. I am concerned that our Surrealism scene will not reach the same level but we are editing the shots with various effects so I think maybe we can manage to create something similar to Surrealism at least.
As a filmmaker, I discovered hidden interests in me. Everyone has the experience of shooting something like a performance, or a historical place you visit in a foreign country. Shooting a film is a lot different than those. You have to choose appropriate shot types, angles and movements accordingly to the scene you will shoot. What I learned about myself is that I prefer close-up shot types, I like zooming in and out and panning. I like sequentially arranged shots. In the group we sometimes have disagreements on how to shoot scene but we usually shot in every way we can then pick the shots
We have not reached the whole post-production process yet. I think it will go as how it went so far. We still need to shoot some scenes but so far we edited most of the time. My task is to create proper music for the scenes. I shared some of my creations but it only covers the beginning scene. So between the shootings, I will work on the music and help my friends when they are editing the scenes.
Here are the pictures of our planning processes.
In 15 Slides, each of us chose a still from a film and we analyzed the still in 15 different ways such as composition, subsidiary contrasts, character placements etc.
In 8 Choices, each of us chose a film to analyze different scenes.
Making The Kuleshov Effect was a new experience. None of us knew how to film clips or how to edit them but after some time it wasn't challenging anymore, it was fun. People who watch the video may not understand the content if they don't know the Kuleshov Effect but I have a feeling that we did a great example. At first, the things we thought of filming were a teddybear, a chocolate and an injured cat which strolls around the school campus occasionally. However Ms. StClair told us that we needed to do it right at that moment so we changed ideas. I played the part of a small girl who plays hopscotch and swings. We choose Eda to stare at the camera with a blank face. Leyla is the girl Eda envies. We tried to end some sadness to the video by adding the clip of a cat which lost its left eye.