I want a Spotless Mind
Is it better to forget? Or remember? Does it make a difference? Would it all turn out the same?
If I had an eraser I’d remove the part of my brain that decided to do this assignment 3 weeks ago and then refused to quit even though hours, days, weeks passed by with so little sleep and so little accomplished. I uploaded it to YouTube and Vimeo which both blocked due to copyright material.
So, I’m using the WordPress Plugin: Embed QuickTime. Sometime I’ll figure out how to resize the video. Not. Today.
This was almost the assignment that stopped me. It certainly dragged me to a very slow crawl. But I prevailed- as Leonard Cohen says: “I’m as stubborn as those garbage bags Time cannot Decay!”. Damn it was hard, though.
There is a lot to consider in a video essay after you get over the technical and copyright limitations.
The biggest drawback is that working with audio and video seriously interferes with my ability to watch ds106tv and listen to ds106radio. Add that to family, work and histrionics from an ex-spouse. Too. Much.
The assignment affords so many opportunities to think critically; it is a multi-layered assignment. Obviously it’s multi-media, multi-modal but to select appropriate visual, audio, textual, and symbolic elements is quite a challenge.
Most importantly- you have to choose a film that’s worth watching over and over during editing yet it should still be worthy of a university level course. Of course, it should have nice visual elements, perhaps some symbolism and metaphors. Ideally, it a should be film that helps you learn something too. For instance, I learnt the difference between metaphor and metanym and this film has both.
The opening and ending scenes have Clementine & Joel discussing Clementine’s name. Huckleberry Hound is a metanym for Clementine because he is a linear association between her name and the song he is well known for singing.
The scene shifts to metaphorical. Even after brain erasure, Joel is still able to associate her name with clemency- forgiveness.
I love how her hair changes throughout the film. In the intro scene she names all the colours we are about to see and even exclaims, “I apply my personality with a paste!”
Starting with “Blue Ruin”, moving backwards through Joel’s memory from the breakup “agent orange”, comfortable stage: “tangerine” (matching her signature sweatshirt); passionate loving stage: “red menace”; to the beginning- when they first meet: “green fever”.
I’m considering using this as my mashup assignment too, since I put a little easter egg at 2:49. I have a ton of mashup ideas much better than that. Though it’s not for lack of ideas that slows this process down. It’s getting the time to implement. I’m doing these projects in the middle of the night, so my artistic “vision” can be realized. I think this assignment is not quite as coherent due to how often I ended up working on it at 3am.
I actually read a few articles about hollywood remix culture, too, since it coincided with the broadcasted class. Chuck Tryon even sent me his chapter directly! Twitter is so cool. I wish I had a deeper insight integrating Chuck’s work but my brain is mush and a successful upload to Vimeo will have to be my measure of success this time around.
For those who care: technical specs: I used Screenium screen capturing software to record the segments I wanted. Handbrake to make those clips importable into iMovie. I recorded the audio using Nicecast because GarageBand and iMovie were being too uncooperative. I hate hearing my voice and I’m horrified at the number of times I say “actually”, actually. Semi-technical note: if I were to be insane enough to try this again I would chose a much more obscure film, like The Saragossa Manuscript one or even Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are dead.
Final Disclaimer: I’m also concerned that a certain someone will read more into my film choice than they should. So, to clarify: this has NOTHING at all to do with any person or past relationship. It’s just a film I like, that a professor that I respect uses in her first year English course (Literature in English: Forms, Themes and Approaches). Period.