Reversing a Video Clip

Reversing a Video Clip

I’m working on a short video promoting my transfer business. I thought about the Bob Dylan video Subterranean Homesick Blues where he holds up cards with the lyrics. Yes, the technique has been used, but wait I thought. How about reversing a video clip so instead of the cards being dropped to the ground they fly into your hands from above and below.

Reversing a video clip is easy to do in most editing apps. In Sony Vegas just right click the clip and choose reverse. I shot a little test of myself throwing the cards up or down. The test results are pretty good. Instead of myself, I’ll use an 8 year old. I will post the video here when it’s finished.

Reversing a video clip is nothing new. One of the most famous reversed scenes in movies is the Swedish Book Store scene in the 1984 film Top Secret. Imagine the rehearsing and planning it took to film it in reverse. One of the gags is that running it backwards makes the dialog sound like a fake Swedish. And if you play the scene backwards, you will find all of the dialogue to be in English exactly the same as what is shown in the subtitles except for the title of the book Hillary asks for. The title she actually asks for is “Europe On 5 Quaaludes A Day.” That’s a hidden joke in the scene.

A lot of movie effects scenes are shot in reverse, but that’s a different intent because they are not saying – see this is reversed like the book store scene above. They are trying to fool you into seeing something that didn’t happen. For instance in The Wizard of Oz to show Dorothy’s house falling into the Land of Oz, a miniature house was dropped onto a sky painted onto a canvas placed flat on the stage floor. Then the film was reversed so it appear as if the house was falling from the sky and towards the camera.

Reverse motion is in fact a long standing special effect in cinematography whereby the action that is filmed ends up being shown backwards or time-reversed on screen.

Reverse motion can be used for comedy or it can be used to bring something back to life such as reversing a building collapsing.

Jean Cocteau’s Beauty and the Beast (1946) shows an actor placing a piece of paper in a fire and then walking backwards. When the film was reversed, it appeared as though the character walked up to the fire and pulled the paper out of it. Cocteau used reverse motion so often in his films that critics ridiculed his overuse of it.

Another use of reverse motion is for helicopter shots which appear to precisely dolly into an object or scene. In reality this is very difficult because the final frame must be in focus and perfectly framed. What they do instead is to start on the object or scene and then pull away into the sky. Then the shot is reversed so that it ends with a perfectly framed and focused image.




 

Keep Reading...

ChromeCast brings YouTube videos to your TV.

Chromecast Delivers YouTube On TV

Chromecast delivers YouTube and more better than expected.

Read More

Quadcopter Crashes on Busy Manhattan Street

I've written a lot about quadcopters, most notably Quadcopters, Cameras, and the Law. Today, some fool didn't obey the law, common sense or common decency. Monday evening a quadcopter took off from a high-rise terrace in mid-town Manhattan during evening rush hour. It flew 300 to 400 ft in the air past luxury apartment buildings as well as business buildings. 3 minutes later it crashed in the street nearly clipping a businessman.

Read More

Best Shared Videos 2015 That Could Have Been Produced On Low Budgets

These are some of the most shared video ads in 2015. I did not include movie trailers, music videos for popular artists or any videos that are not possible without a large budget. I’ve tried to include only those that could be produced by a videographer like you or me. Most of the Best Shared […]

Read More
How to Get a Grant For A Documentary

How to Get A Grant for A Documentary

Learning how to get a grant for a documentary is one of the first skills a documentary producer must learn.

Read More




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • Forbes Magazine calls VideoUniversity one of the best business-to-business sites for digital video production.
  • WINNER
    Videography Magazine's
    "Website of the Month" Award
  • WINNER
    PC Magazine Online "Best Desktop Video Site" Award
  • WINNER
    CyberFilm School's "FOUR STAR" Award