Thursday, July 30, 2009

Editing the music video: a primer

Now, this highlights music video editors and their prowess behind the clips.

A well edited clip doesn't just illicit perfect harmony with the visuals, it's got to make you feel them through assembly, arranging it like a good jazz session would.

I liken this way:

Jay Z "99 Problems" Ed: Robert Duffy.

Robert Duffy constructed an editorial masterpiece out of fragmentation, jump cuts, and perfect timing. Flawless, and textbook example of how GREAT editing is.

Jay-Z "99 Problems"

Prodigy "Smack my bitch up" Ed: Jonas Akerlund.

Watch it again. Look at how it stays in character, just like what it portrays.

Michael Jackson "Thriller" Ed: George Folsey Jr.

Thiller is everything a video should be, the holy grail. But the editing of George Folsey has been overlooked for Michael's gravistas, and credit should be due. This is how a dance performance is cut, period. That shit just kills. Every video done ever since has taken the same style and refined it, but 3,000 angles does not equal better editing. Selected shots and rhythmn does, evidenced here. Trivia: He also cut Hostel...and Animal House.

Squarepusher "Come down my selector" Ed: Chris Cunningham.

Every single edit is perfectly timed to the beat of the song, and it all fits. Remarkable. Chris is a better editor than most of them, this was his first. All the other ones were done by Gary Knight. Afrika Shox is a highlight.

R.E.M "Everybody hurts" Ed: Pat Sheffield

Form follows function in this clip. Perfectly lends itself well to the video's theme, and the edits don't intrude they illustrate. With that kinda footage, i'd be hard to fuk that up.

REM - Everybody Hurts

Justice "Stress" Ed: Romain Gavras.

Romain fucking killed it with this clip. Easily the best edited clip in awhile.

CSS "Move" Ed: Keith Schofield.

A more recent example. It's so simple in theory and moves at a good pace. Take one shot out and it all falls apart, I think Keith understands the "house of cards" approach to editing: every one counts. Put one in the wrong place and the house comes crashing down. I wish hip hop video editors understood this concept.

More to come. List to be updated.

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