Tag Archives: miscellany


I have just removed the following from an essay I’m writing on virtual video.

In classical film studies while there has been an overstated tension between montage (epitomised by Eisenstein and his copious writings) and the ‘realism’ of the long take (championed by cinema’s first major scholar, André Bazin) both have a basis in the problem of the edit. For the former the edit was seen as the basis of the cinema while Bazin’s realism had to respond precisely to the problem of the edit through various arguments of revelation and deferral. My point is that both positions implicitly require the recognition of the role of the cut, one embraces this as a productive essence (which of itself is a highly problematic essentialism dressed up as formalism) while the other wishes to defer the edit to a catholic inspired phenomenal realism. While Eisenstein’s position is easily understood in the light of the edit, the traditional notion of the long take and deep depth of field – Bazin’s basic legacy – can only make sense as a position by virtue of cinema’s immanent logic of being able to break shots into smaller but whole pieces and place them in variable new relations.