Japanese cinema is in a league ofits own where they have their own particular approach towards how to go aboutmaking an effective film.
They are heavily influenced by their traditionalvalues that relate to their people and the zeitgeist that has formed out ofcenturies of art that the nation has created. This approach allows them to keeptelling effective stories but also slowly develop in order to create somethingfresh or something distinct. These then later turn into prominent techniquesstarting off as a director’s signature, to an effective way of conveyingnarratives. In this dissertation, I will beexploring a sequential editing technique known as “aspect to aspect transition”(or dubbed “pillow shots” in cinematic terms) that is mainly only seen inJapanese media and their cinema. I will be starting off by looking over editingin general first and delve into Western film approaches of Alfred Hitchcock tocreate a contrast to see how film makers use specific styles and techniques tomake their film reach out to their audience and why Western filmmakers may not thefavour to use this particular technique. After, I will introduce a film fromthe Japanese cinema by the film maker Mamoru Oshii to juxtapose and seepossible reasons and delve further into the cultural difference in betweenthem; to discover a possible cause for this choice in editing. I will be looking into examples ofthese and going over its effectiveness, its distinct feature, possible originfrom references to pinnacle works of Japanese arts over centuries and itsdevelopment over time.
I will then be exploring recent art forms that conveynarratives such as films, manga, and anime mainly, and looking into theutilisation of this technique whilst analysing their reasons as well as seewhat significance this choice has created in the overall conveying of the story.I want to understand why Japanese cinema differs so much and if this sequentialtechnique plays major role in this. I will also be preparing experiments of myown where I will be creating sequences inspired by directors I would beanalysing in my case studies.
I believe putting my knowledge into practicemight help me understand how to go about making one and even improve its effectas well.To understand the purpose ofediting in general; editing in a film is the most crucial part of puttingtogether the load of various footage that has been shot for your film. Beingvague during this process can make even the best footage in your film seemineffective. It helps to make your film expressive and build an emotionalrelationship with the audience to give a meaningful experience that they can take away; “psychological history of cinema…an external aggregate that neurophysiologically gathers and transits humanfeelings,… regulating human emotions, sensations, and experiences withapparatuses”. Ute Holl writes about the use of pre-existing knowledge ofhuman affiliation to things in general such as pop-culture, political views,networks/communities, etc. to create films in an almost industrialised,production manner.
With an emphasis on manipulating what is shown, a good editoris able to make you believe what you see on the screen is true instead ofasking you to believe that it is happening.