As a precursor to actually discussing this “video essay,” I first want to mention that I struggled to actually decide to write my commentary about this video. One thing I have started to learn from this class and discussing video essays, is that video essays don’t need to follow a specific form. People can adapt their own styles and incorporate their own twists. While this supercut is maybe not a full “video essay” I decided to write my weekly commentary about it because it is a video that has stuck with me for years. Similar to some of the examples that Kevin B. Lee gave in his list of his favorite video essays, this videographic criticism is different than what someone might think of as being a typical influential video essay.
Moving on to actually discuss the video essay, this video is simply a supercut of Shia Labeouf in three different movies saying “no.” Particularly though this video focuses on the original transformers movie. In terms of content, this video stood out to me because it tells most of the whole story of Transformers, all through short snippets of Shia Labeouf saying “no.” We don’t get the whole plot, but as a viewer, I still felt like I was able to piece together the story. This was impressive to me because each clip seemed to only encompass Shia Labeouf’s characters actually saying “no,” there was no extra time on either end of the clips showing the rest of what happens in each scene.
Another reason I am intrigued by this video, is that it managed to choose a near perfect topic for a supercut. One aspect of supercuts that we talked about in class, was finding an event in our movie that happens often enough that it is interesting to see, but not so often that the video drags on. While this supercut might not contain every single instance of Labeouf saying “no” in each of these films, this video still struck a nice balance. This video also makes me wonder what words are most often said in certain movies, or by certain actors, and whether it would be worth experimenting in Premiere to find the most common said word in lots of famous films, or the most common words from famous actors and actresses. Essentially this video makes me want to explore more with Premiere to find out what types of themes make for good supercuts.
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