"Around Europe in 16:9" Notes on editing and new road movie aesthetics. Abstract
There are many ways a movie that involves travel may be labeled as “a road movie”. But what are the characterizations that distinguish a typical “road movie” from a movie that simply has roads involved? Usually, in road movies, a character embarks in a journey to accomplish a goal, to reach an objective, sometimes even to save the world. Not always though, as the anthropological literature testifies, the journey is more important, or effective than the place to reach, nor the story, for its flow, needs the whole trip to be shown. Therefore, editing plays a great role in this process, allowing characters in different locations to be put on the same page, and making possible to the viewer to keep track of the places and times of the movie. This paper attempts precisely to draw a general picture of of the different editing techniques that characterize the contemporary road movie, highlighting the way in which, by means of editing itself, the definition of road movie is questioned. The resulting observations, and the considerations dealing with a possible new aesthetics of the contemporary road movie will work as a theoretical background for the early draft of a screenplay. Even though it’s only hypothetical (the screenplay is a work in progress) the different ways the camera moves from a character to another, and follows three connected stories might be, and this is the final goal of this research, a good empirical basis to get deeper in the new aesthetics of the contemporary road movie.
The Film studies dictionary gives the definition of road movie as: “Film genre characterized by a journey narrative involving one or more characters, often with an episodic structure comprised of people and situations encountered en route, the physical journey across space reflecting the inner, psychological journey of the...
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