Category Archives: Video

Live Stream Under the See

by Lewis Manalo

Though paling in comparison to the attention a Michael Bay-brand disaster would receive, the real-life Gulf of Mexico oil spill may be doing more to change the way we see than did Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.

The government is not new to media projects (ever hear of the War on Terror?) but when Rep. Edward Markey demanded that British Petroleum broadcast a live stream of the oil spilling out of their blown-out well, he asked to bring environmental disasters into an entirely new visionary realm. Continue reading


Your Daily Affirmation

No big critical thought here, just a reminder that Anna Karina makes life livable, twenty-four frames at a time.

How Uncanny Is My Valley

by Tony Nigro

It’s ironic that I, who currently makes a living as a visual effects editor, so often have an uncanny valley-type response to digital effects.  That is, the more real it’s meant to look, the more I don’t like it.  Give me Wall-E, not digitized, recognizable actors.

An example of where the unreal meets the real in a way that I can live with is Arev Manoukian’s short film, “Nuit Blanche.”

Beside the minor detail of the car crumpling up against the man, nothing is meant to be visually that unreal.  Or is it?  Slow motion qualifies as less than real in my book, and its prevalence tempers any uncanny moments that might otherwise throw me off.  Add that it’s spun as a dream sequence with a classy sense of style, and “Nuit Blanche” is a great few minutes of my time — plus a nice use of visual effects.

Freak of the Week: Akihabara Majokko Princess

Revel in this mathematical formula:

Takashi Murakami + Kirsten Dunst + Cosplay + “Turning Japanese” =
Guilty Pleasure + Orientalism x McG

How to Judge the Best Editing Oscar

by Tony Nigro

We here at Split Edit are not shy about talking trash about award shows, but I am still an editor by trade and would be remiss if I neglected this video where my friend and colleague Bonnie Koehler breaks down the nominees for an award that’s as elusive as the art behind it.  (Spoiler alert: It’s not just about fast cuts.)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Also by Andrew Bouvé: If Filmmakers Directed the Super Bowl

I should’ve quoted Henri Michaux

by Tony Nigro

Pardon me a self-centered moment as I point out an odd parallel between my life and a dispatch from Rotterdam over at The Auteurs.  Working as an assistant editor at night a few years ago, I became fascinated with decay of feedback created by component video signals.  I briefly wrote about it and spent hours recording video signals from different sources, creating feedback with assorted stock footage, and making a still unfinished video piece I saw as somewhat inspired by Stan Brakhage.  The video isn’t available online, but a still is (above) and the short piece I wrote is here.

Flash forward to 2010.  IFFR happens and Daniel Kasman writes about Billy Roisz’s Close Your Eyes (a Brakhage-inspired title if there ever was one).  Kasman describes Roisz’s video as inspired by Henri Michaux‘s experiments with mescaline, as “a rhythmic, patterned series of colored and black and white animated segments of pristine digital artifacting and other forms of video distortion captured, dissected, and re-framed as the kind of sensory nightmare parents in the 50s probably thought would beset their children if they sat too close to the radiation of the TV.”

That’s much better than anything I ever wrote about my video experiment.  But the still on the Auteurs post takes the cake:

I’m not calling foul or anything.  I haven’t even seen Roisz’s piece.  I’m just saying I should’ve quoted Michaux.

Zoom! Enhance!!

by Tony Nigro

I work in post production.  I am an editor.  We don’t use film anymore, only video, and mostly the digital kind.  It makes the job easier but is far less tactile.  Rather than literally cutting shots together, we push some computer buttons and stuff happens magically.  It’s abstract, and really no different from the last time you “talked” to your friend via IM.  But even with that kind of daily abstraction, I’m still not fooled by the entertainment industry’s lies about “zoom and enhance” technology.  The truth is, few cops could zoom in enough to accurately identify the drunk guy at the 7-11, let alone decipher the inscription on his belt buckle.  Sorry to ruin your day, CSI:Miami fans.

I’ll spare you the explanation about resolution and pixels.  Instead, try this test: Open a book, preferably to a picture.  Put your nose against the page and then try to focus on the page.  Video and digital photos look like that when you get too close.

A man named Duncan Robinson is no more fooled than I am.  He made an amusing montage to illustrate the ubiquity of Hollwood’s ridiculous lie.

The funniest part may be that I know editors who worked on some of those shows.