Anthony Roca ponders:

> Recently, I was asked to speak on defining PACE in film. I was asked to
> define PACE AND to describe it use in film. For me this primarily has to do
> with editing and blocking and maybe scoring BUT it has been a few years since
> film school AND does anyone have any other thoughts. I would love thoughts on
> both areas I mentioned and others that might be part of pace.

I suspect that actors, editors, directors and cinematographers may all
have differing definitions, but that points out how "pace" may involve
different (and conflicting) elements of acting, cinematography, music
and editing.  Overall, the word may connote simple speed, usually a
matter of editing and movement (as in "MOULIN ROUGE is frenetically
paced" or "Bresson's films are slow-paced"), or much more complex
notions of appropriate timing in any combination of those elements (as
in "In HENRY V, Oliver attempted to match the pacing of camera movement
and editing to his delivery of Shakespeare's lines" or "The slow pace
of Barber's 'Adagio for Strings' contrasts sharply with violence and
pace of the action in scenes from PLATOON").

Delivery of dialogue can be another factor.  My students are sometimes
put off by the fast patter of characters in films from the 1930s and
they get used to it.

Such definitions can apply to individual scenes as well as to films as
a whole.

Don Larsson

Donald F. Larsson, English Department, AH 230
Minnesota State University
Mankato, MN  56001

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