Cuts in movies, and their impact on memory

When we watch a movie, we're usually not conscious of the cuts made by the editor. The camera angle may change dozens of times during a scene, and we follow along as if the flashing from one viewpoint to another wasn't at all unusual. You might think this is just because we've been accustomed to watching TV and movies, but researchers have found that even people who've never seen a motion picture have no difficulty following along with the cuts and different camera angles in a video.

But little research has actually been done on the impact of changing camera angles in a movie on our perception and memory of a scene. While cutting abruptly between camera angles seems unnatural, moving a camera from place to place while filming can be quite realistic: after all, people walk around all the time; their own viewpoint is constantly changing. One study did find that people have better memories for a static scene filmed with a moving camera, compared to two still shots taken from the beginning and end- points of the camera's motion.


"A movie in the eye of an editor..I wonder how movies would be perceived differently from different camera angles or different cuts?"

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