As done by Fitz:
For the Video Essay assignment worth 5 stars, I chose 3 scenes from Season 4, Episode 3 of The Wire, “Home Rooms.” I downloaded the episode from the Wire 106 website and then imported it into iMovie. I only moved the scenes I was providing commentary for to the actual timeline in iMovie. Then, I recorded my commentary using iMovie’s recording feature.
The scenes I picked were the most enjoyable/most intense scenes in my opinion from the episode.
Here’s my final product:
-embed coming soon, youtube decided to flag it for copyright-
For the Activity Time Lapse assignment, worth 3.5 stars, I chose to make a time lapse video of me braiding my hair in a basic side braid. I used the time lapse feature on my iPhone to record it. However, that made the time lapse 4.0 seconds long. So, on the Youtube video editing settings, I slowed it down and I added a filter to it because the lighting my apartment is not very great, so I wanted to mask it.
Here’s the final product.
Maggie and I decided to so our swede on Season 3, Episode 11 of The Wire. We wanted to try to include as much as the plot as we could, so we broke the episode down into 13 main scenes. Next, we planned out the days we’d shoot, the times, and the locations. We even asked DTLT and fellow DKC tutors to help with being extra parts. Maggie created a Google Doc that had all of swede planned out and she wrote the script. We used my camera, but we edited it together. We tried to make sure we each played the same character(s) throughout the scenes to provide some continuity. This swede was for the assignment, “Swede a Scene” worth 4.5 stars.
We tried to make some of our props/costumes fit the characters, such as Omar’s trench coat, and Brother Mouzone’s bowtie and blazer. Once we got all of our clips, we imported them into iMovie and trimmed down all of our outtakes. We also got some footage for our title sequence and added that to the swede as well. Lastly, we downloaded the intro and credits songs and sped them up to fit our swede.
Here is our final product!!
I did the
Movie TV Scenes That Changed Our Lives assignment worth 5 stars. For this assignment I picked out 3 scenes that were very memorable to me, and provided some commentary on what the situation of the scene is and why it moved me.
These are three scenes from various tv shows that have really stuck with me overtime:
1. The end of “Symphony of Illusion” from How I Met Your Mother (7×12)
2. Vincent in the Museum from”Vincent and the Doctor” from Doctor Who (5×10)
3. The Lion Turtle from “Sozin’s Comet Part 2: Old Masters” from Avatar: The Last Airbender (3×19)
To make this video, I downloaded the episodes that I was picking these scenes from. I imported them into iMovie and cut them down to the led up of the scenes and then to just the particular scenes. I then added in either a freeze frame, or silent video leading up to the scene in order to provide space for my commentary about the scenes. I used iMovie’s ability to record from the webcam to import my commentary. I also used one of the pre-made themes for the transitions. Lastly, I inserted some titles to display which episode and show the scenes are from.
Two of them are pretty emotional, but I think that’s why I can remember them so well. I know in the moment, when I first watched the first two episodes, I started tearing up during these scenes. I’m not entirely satisfied with my explanation/analysis of the scenes, but I also didn’t want the commentary to sound scripted, so I just did a couple takes of my thoughts and picked the best one for each scene.
I made a music video for the song Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People that features scenes with Omar Little from The Wire. This assignment was worth 5 stars. I found a compilation of scenes of Omar on Youtube that was originally fourteen minutes long. I downloaded it as well as downloaded the song “Pumped Up Kicks.” Then I imported both of those into iMovie. Next, I went through the compilation to cut out the parts that I didn’t think were as intimidating as some of the other parts. I had to basically cut out ten minutes of the compilation in order for it to match up with the length of the song. After I found the clips I wanted to use, I try to make some of the parts sync up with the lyrics. I couldn’t do this very well for the first two verses of the song, but I got the bridge to match up nicely with the clip I chose. For example, “run, run, run, run” with the boys on the street running from Omar, the whistling in the song matching up with the scene where Omar actually whistled, and “bullet” as the last word lines up with Stringer being shot. What I thought was going to be a somewhat easy assignment turned into slightly a pain to work out, but I’m glad I stuck with it and tried to make I envisioned happen!
For the 5 Second Film assignment worth 4.5 stars, I chose to condense the Emperor’s New Groove in 5 seconds. Originally I thought this assignment was going to be really easy, but then I discovered just how fast 5 seconds go by. Another issue I ran into was that all of the best parts of the movie don’t really make the plot understandable when they are isolated, so what I ended up doing was just trying to convey the basic plot within the 5 seconds. The entire movie wasn’t available on Youtube, but I found the areas of the movie I needed to download. I used Video DownloadHelper on Firefox to download the video clips from Youtube. Then, I imported my clips in iMovie and trimmed them down significantly that when when they were altogether they only added up to 5 seconds long. After that I added in my title and credit sequences. Lastly, I found an instrumental version of the opening song for the Emperor’s New Groove and downloaded that from youtube as well. I trimmed the music down and had it fade down during the 5 second movie sequence. Then I simply “Shared” it as a file and then uploaded it to Youtube!
I imported the trailer of Moonrise Kingdom into a video editing software called Final Cut Pro. Final Cut Pro is very similar to iMovie but it allows you to do much more with your video. I had never used Final Cut Pro before making this video, and so I click around and Google tips quite a bit, but overall it was a pretty straightforward piece of software to use.
In order to the make the video become silent, I separated the audio and video by right clicking on the trailer clip and selecting the “Expand Audio/Video.” Then I deleted the trailer audio and imported the music file from the Moonrise Kingdom Soundtrack to serve as the music for the silent trailer. Next, I added in the title cards with some of the key lines of dialogue from the trailer and put them in the appropriate places within the trailer. I used the Blade tool to split the video file to make a spot for where the title cards could go. Then to make the trailer look old, I added some effects to the entire trailer. I added the Black and White and Aged Film effects, as well as the Crisp Contrast Effect to the video parts. Lastly, I realized that my music track was longer than the video, and that end of the song would fit nicely with the end of the video, so I trimmed down the beginning of the music and slid the entire file backwards to the beginning of the trailer.
The first week of classes is always pretty hectic, mostly because I’m just trying to figure out a routine to get into. Nevertheless, I still managed to do my four introductions for this and watch episodes 7-9 of The Wire, as well as complete some daily creates! I already had a domain and blog set up for this course, and accounts with the various social media sites we were supposed to get accounts on. So, I added my Gravatar, did my introductions on Twitter, Youtube, SoundCloud, and Flickr, did a few Daily Creates, and watched the The Wire. Below you will see my four introductions, my thoughts on The Wire and reactions to the discussions, and then finally, my Daily Creates for this week.
Youtube (My Channel)
My thoughts are the first nine episodes:
For me, the first couple of episodes started out really slow and although the plot was progressing, it was not very exciting to me. The only person I found particularly interesting was McNulty, and that was because he seemed to be the overarching “good guy,” since he wants to actually stay with the Barksdale case and try to take down one of the biggest drug dealers in Baltimore. For the first few episodes I also had a difficult time keeping track of the characters and what they did. There was an obvious difference between the gang members and the cops, but within the gang and within the police force, I was not too sure of how they were connected. However, once the cops finally copied the gang members pagers, that’s when I really started to enjoy it, mostly because the cops could actually have a chance at arresting the various the gang members. After episode five, the gang members story lines were more appealing to me, and just because they seem like deeper characters than the cops. Yes, McNulty has an ex-wife and kids, but for the part he appears to just drink in his car, get angry, and investigate, whereas D’Angelo, for example, is much more complex. D’Angelo is connected to Avon by blood, and therefore, is connected to game by blood, and so if he ever wanted to leave the game, I bet it would be much more difficult for him to do so. We also see that D’Angelo does a moral code, but the rules of the game do not line up with moral code, so he forced to do things, he might not have necessarily done if he were not in the game.
There have been a few themes or plot/character points that have really stuck to out me throughout the first nine episodes.
1. The morality of the cops v. the morality of the drug dealers
- The cops beat the people they are arresting, made a kid blind in one eye, cheat on their wives, and they don’t seem to have much remorse for their behavior.
- Although most of the drug dealers are nearly 100% in the game, D’Angelo and Wallace are different. They have this internal struggle with knowing that what they are doing is harmful and can have some terrible consequences but they continue to do it anyways. D’Angelo also lets Wallace out of the game when he asks and does not punish him. Omar also tells he cops that he knows he has dirt, but he would never torture a man and display his remains out in the open like Avon and Stringer did to Brandon. It shows that not all of the drug dealers have lost their sense of humanity.
2. The openness of homosexuality
- Considering this show began in 2002, I found it very surprising that in the first nine episodes there were two homosexual couples. There is Detective Kima and her girlfriend, and then there is Omar and Brandon. Both of them are very open about their sexuality and their relationships. 2002 was not like it is now, where same sex marriage is legalized in many states across the U.S., and so it seems like The Wire is pretty progressive in terms of sexuality. Omar and Brandon’s relationship particularly caught my attention because it shows that even though the drug dealers may be shady and commit crimes, they can be accepting of homosexuality, which is definitely (and unfortunately) a contentious issue in the U.S. and can be considered taboo issue.
3. The culture of the Projects in Baltimore
- One of my favorite moments so far occurred in episode 9, and it was when the cops were driving around the Projects and the whole area seemed to be deserted. Little did they know everyone from the area was at the basketball game between the East Side and West Side. Once the cops realized everyone was at the basketball game, they ended up just watching it while standing next to one of the drug dealers they had arrested before. Both of them said they were on break, and just watched the game. I loved how both parties from opposing sides just dropped everything and watched the basketball game. The game also showed how Avon Barksdale and Stringer are more than just the drug dealing overlords, but they are also coaches for a basketball team and are active in their community in a more positive and hopefully legal fashion.
Reaction to the discussions:
I liked how Jim and Paul pointed out the the uses of lighting and colors as well as how the epigraphs tied into the episodes. I had not been actively looking for some of the more visual elements besides when the camera does close up shots of certain things. As for the epigraphs, I mainly close tried to figure out when the line was going to be said in the episode, whereas Jim and Paul tended to focus on them more. Clearly they are important line, since the makers of the show specifically pulled them out to use as epigraphs, but I suppose I was too focused on other themes within the episodes. Jim and Paul also talk about the themes of Technology, Surveillance, and Paranoia, which definitely are major themes since not only do the cops watch the drug dealers, but the drug dealers also have eyes of their own. The cops are also pretty behind on their use of technology, but don’t seem to choose the old technologies , whereas the gang purposefully chooses to use pagers instead of cell phones that way they can’t be monitored as easily.
I know these don’t start until next week, but I just wanted to see what they’d be like, so I did some.
8/25/14: Make a photo of something in transition and post it on Flickr.
8/26/14: You Have Some Time To Think About The Phone Call…Write the Story. “A Fluffy Conundrum” So honey…I know what you’re going to say; that we cannot have another dog, but please just hear me out! He’s a 3 year old Goldendoodle named Peanut and he’s already house trained and knows commands and is friendly with other dogs and everyone, including men, unlike Mandy and he’s super duper sweet. So what do you say? Can we adopt him? I know we don’t really have the space for a Goldendoodle but…it’s kind of too late and he’s in the backseat now, so I’ll see you in a half an hour! Bye! I love you!
8/27/14: Take a photo for Willa Cather. The Sky! The Sky! Upload it to Flickr.