I am basically halfway through EDITING the film!
Editing is a blast. It’s not all easy going fun times however. A lot of details are making themselves known to me. Problems with sound, issues with continuity, performances that aren’t up to scratch (mostly me), and parts of the story that aren’t flowing well, to name a few. The saving grace: the majority of these issues can be fixed with time and effort. Good old fashioned hard graft.
That’s a challenging fact to get your head around: sitting down and banging your brain against a brick wall (metaphorically) is often the only way to further the edit and therefore further the making of the film. Trying different cuts, different temp scores, a MULTITUDE of different sound effects, and sometimes when I’m lucky, it comes together. If it doesn’t come together, guess what? That’s right. More hard work. Try trimming shots, try a whole different sequence, try putting things in front of each other, try this and that and the other thing.
SOME GOOD NEWS
I keep rubbing my face with excitement throughout this edit. When I finish a particularly effective sequence and watch it back, I feel euphoric. Rapturous, even. Those are the feelings I want more of, so I’m endeavouring to do a great job with every beat of the film. Makes sense right?
Something I’d recommend all filmmakers editing their own stuff: cut more. I don’t mean make more cuts between shots, I mean trim more of the beginning and end of clips. Most of the time, pacing issues come down to excess flab in a scene. The first ten seconds can often go, so can the last ten seconds of a scene. You don’t have to see someone walk into a room, it’s better to just have them there. The audience is very good at connecting the dots. People have seen a lot of films.
Right now, we’re in an apartment in Berlin that has a home theatre setup so I feel very fortunate to be able to watch sequences back on it. Nice loud sound, a good picture and a comfortable couch have made this edit pretty relaxing. Effective!