3/3/10

I really liked how Bela Balasz spoke about the close-up being such a great tool which brings the small things we take for granted into perspective. I especially like the analogy of the landslide, and how even something like that is caused by the smallest particle which we give no mind to on a day to day basis. Although I agree that we should pay attention to the small things in life, even what we sometimes think of as insignificant at times, I feel that if we were to focus solely  on that our lives would consist of carefully planned out steps that would lead to complete boredom because of all the things we’re missing by paying attention to the minor details and not the big picture. In other words, there has to be a balance. Sometimes it’s actually nice to not know why everything happens. It makes you wonder and possibly even leads to using your own imagination. It’s funny how Balasz speaks about the hand and how the quality of the gesture of the hand can be more expressive than a play of the features. I feel like in very rare instances these gestures, unless they are very carefully planned out, will actually allow us to know more about the emotions or situations that a person is going through. Of course, close-ups allow us to see the more subtle expressions of the body to help us figure out whats going on, but if it’s scripted out more than likely it will be exaggerated to the extent that it takes away from the true feeling that it’s supposed to transmit to the viewer. Yet, I believe that this can in turn lead to people looking at the minor details and seeing what is real and what is not, just like what we “choose” to pay attention to and what we “choose not to” pay attention to. Because our reality is basically what we make it out to be. It’s not the same as anyone else’s reality simply because we are not exposed to their situations or simply because we rather not pay attention to the same things that others pay attention to, despite the fact that we all live in the same planet, or even in a the same community. I don’t know, maybe I’m looking into this too much and straying away from what Balasz is trying to get at….

Balasz also speaks about how close-ups are lyrical. He compares the medium shot of two people having a coversation as opposed to a close-up of the hand trembling while these two people have the coversation. I agree that the close-up exposes the true emotion that we might not see in the medium shot, but then doesn’t this them make us lazy? If we didn’t notice the trembling fingers in the medium shot it could very well be because we didn’t want to see them. Our attention to details are hightened when we realize that there is something that we should be looking for (in this case physical actions of the body to portray emotion), but if it is simply shown to us, we no lnger have to force ourselves to look for it which kind of takes away from the merit of noticing the small things in life. I guess it’s kind of like playing “Where’s Waldo?”, the fun gets spoiled if someone keeps telling you where to look.


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