Soviet Montage Theory Primer #1

A shot is not only a piece of an edited scene.

A shot is like a cell or a molecule:

They’re self-contained.
But when many are grouped, they create a whole.

So what’s the spark of an edited scene?


Scenes are defined by the conflict two shots have in opposition to each other.

A shot smashes into the other;
all the feelings & thoughts from the first shot spill over into the next shot.

And this goes on from shot to shot – crash, conflict, collision.

A shot by itself only shows you what you can see.

Emotions kicks in once the shots are edited together.

This is because each individual shot reminds you of something, or makes you feel a certain way… and these feelings & thoughts spill over into those of the next shot, and mix, and then spill over onto the next shot's feelings & thoughts.

This spilling over of thoughts & feelings
create emotions.

What does this have to do with the individual shot?

Well, according to Soviet Montage Theory, shots should be self-contained.

That means there's a connection between the way the image looks and what it means.

Somebody who is intimidating, for example, would be filmed in close-up from below.

But when this shot is added with other shots, like many cells creating an organism, the entire sequence of edited shots creates a macro SUPER SHAPE.

This is the first aspect of Soviet Montage Theory.

Soviet Montage Theory Primer #2

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