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Grammar of the Shot, 2nd Edition by Christopher J. Bowen, Roy Thompson

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Know the Rules Before You Break the Rules

We all know that rules exist to establish fair play, set up safety guidelines, and create commonly accepted working practices. Contrary to popular belief, not all rules were made to be broken. Just as there are rules to tennis, golf, and football, we have discovered in this text that there are rules that govern motion pictures. The grammar of the shot—the film language—has evolved over the last 100 plus years but the basic tenets and guidelines have remained the same. As a result of this standardization of imagery, creators the world over are able to tell stories—or show stories—that are understood by a wide variety of audience members. As with your own written language, you can read the images and comprehend ...

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