On Directing Film by David Mamet

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David Mamet "On Directing Film"

In “On Directing Film” David Mamet asks: What does a director do?

Films are just moving IMAGES telling a story… 

“A film is a succession of images juxtaposed so that the contrast between these images moves the story forward in the mind of the audience.

If you listen to the way people tell stories, you will hear that they tell them cinematically. People say, ‘I’m standing on the corner. It’s a foggy day. A bunch of people are running around crazy…’ If you think about it, that’s a shot list… This is good filmmaking!”

And THAT’s the job of the  director…

“The job of the film director is to tell the story through the juxtaposition of uninflected images”

Music videos are great examples of storytelling with images…

Check out this example: Kenna’s “Freetime“.  video there’s a beginning, middle, climax and resolution all with just shots of people’s feet.

It’s not directed by David Mamet, but it’d make him proud.

Check out On Directing Film if you want to read more. It’s only 106 pages, and it’s a pretty sweet view of film through a director’s eye.

Got some other good examples of music videos telling stories with images? Let me know… and I’ll add them to the post.


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