>the long axis & the interpretive camera

>Alexander Mackendrick was a noted filmmaker and an influential teacher. Below are a couple of clips that focus on his teaching and some of his ideas.

“If a film works it is never simply because it followed the rules. If it fails, however, it is almost certainly that the breaking of one or more rules is the root cause.”

~Alexander Mackendrick

I am only now learning about Mackendrick. These clips, however, remind me so much of my days at university. I love this stuff.

2 thoughts on “>the long axis & the interpretive camera

  1. >This “long axis theory” (or is it a recipe?) makes it sound like the deep stage blocking or deep focus plan-sequence is the only way to go in every situations…Sure it makes scenes richer and more interesting for the audience to explore and anticipate. But the resort of narrative strategies don’t always function that way. Frustration and obliterations can be very effective too when used well. Ask Bresson.

  2. >Harry, thanks for your comments. I meant to get back here sooner. The long axis theory does come across as a kind of recipe, or something that one just always does, which it shouldn’t be. I do remember, however, teaching production at university and these kinds of “theories” are great for novices, which they can then break later as they mature. It is a technique that does work quite well, but it also flies in the face of much great cinema. I would have liked to hear one of the interviewees say they liked the long axis rule because they found it so fun to break.

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