###### Axis of Action

Example 1

Here are stills (read them like a text) from a sequence of shots (each counter-shot indicating a new shot; longer shots are represented by a number of stills) from a sequence of Kubrick's The Shining. This is one of the most dramatic and frightening scenes in the film. It is also very dynamic: she is backing up through a large room and he is pursuing her. Orient yourself in these stills by paying attention to the room in the background (in the last still you can see a view of the whole room from the top of the stairs; they move from the top right of the room to the left middle and then to the right bottom of the stairs, then up the stairs).

Now: look closely and spend some time figuring out whether the axis of action it is maintained throughout.

Ask yourself: what is the position of the camera in each shot and where are we, the audience thereby placed during the sequence?

 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 8 9 10 11 12 13 14a 14b 14c 14d 14e 15 16 17a 17b 17c 18 19a 19b 19c 20a 20b 20c 20d 20e 21a 21b 22 23 24a 24b 25 26a 26b 27a 27b 27c 28

Question: Do you notice any violations of the axis of action?

Question: In the course of this sequence, what is perhaps the most significant change in the mise-en-scene?

Challenge: Describe the effect of these changes.

Challenge: After closely analyzing this sequence you may wish to go here.