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12 April 2007 @ 03:28 am
New vid: "God" - Lady Jane - Tori Amos  
Vid Title: God
Fandom: Lady Jane (1986 - Helena Bonham Carter, Cary Elwes, Patrick Stewart)
Artist/Song: Tori Amos - "God"
Duration: 4:15
Summary: Overview of the movie, the true story of the 16 year old who was queen for nine days
Warnings: Brief nudity, spoilers

Download the M4V

The movie tells the true story of Jane Grey, a quiet but fiercely independent Protestant girl in 16th century England. Her power-hungry parents forced her into a political marriage at age 15 and then thrust her onto the throne during the chaos after the king's unexpected death. Nine days later the true heir, Mary, reclaimed the throne. The new queen gave Jane a choice: Convert to Catholicism or be executed as a traitor.

There are a lot of things that I find really compelling about the film. First, it's a moving story and just extremely pretty. But I also like that it was among the first major projects for both Carter and Elwes. In fact, Helena Bonham Carter was a 15-year-old department store model when she was originally cast in the role.

Unfortunately, it's full of static postcard shots, which was challenging to vid. Also the song's odd, layered structure gave me fits at times, and I had massive tech problems (as in a fried HD) toward the end. Huge thanks to bananainpyjamas for the very helpful beta under the worst of circumstances.


God - Tori Amos (Under the Pink)

God sometimes you just don't come through
God sometimes you just don't come through
Do you need a woman to look after you?
God sometimes you just don't come through

You make pretty daisies pretty daisies love
I gotta find what you're doing about things here
a few witches burning gets a little toasty here
I gotta find why you always go when the wind blows

tell me you're crazy maybe then I'll understand
you got your 9 iron in the back seat just in case
heard you've gone south well babe you love your new 4 wheel
I gotta find why you always go when the wind blows

(give not thy strength unto women nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings)

Will you even tell her if you decide to make the sky fall?

Hope you enjoy the vid. Please share your thoughts.
Nickyobsessive24 on April 12th, 2007 09:49 am (UTC)
SQUEEEEE!!!!! I saw this and hit download and spent the next 15 minutes pacing the room impatiently. Loooooong wait. But totally worth it! :D Thank you for the brief synopsis. Very enlightening in conjunction with the vid.

The thing that hits me most with this vid is the pace of it, the way it picks up toward the end without you even quite noticing. That's masterful, is what it is.

Love the titles, with the bird sounds, and what gorgeous fitting font!

First I was jolted by the dog sounds prior to fade-out, but then you follow straight through with the hunt, so it becomes a little bit of genius instead.

Lovely opening images, and I especially loved the way you circled back to all of them at the end, but I'm jumping the gun here, aren't I? Back to the start.

Refraining from commenting on all on-beat int. motion as I think you're a bit beyond that now - not that it isn't important, but it's almost matter of course when it comes to you. What I'm truly impressed by is the subtler audio-syncing, which I will comment on as we go through.

0:18 ducking deer!
0:22 running deer!
0:24 lovely eye motion on the woo-hoo
0:30 oh, gorgeous puppet movements on the shorter beats
0:31 cape!
I love that her running away is intercut with the people closing in on the deer. It sets the imagery up early and then runs with it throughout the vid.
0:49 love the tugging of crockery on the piano
0:51 love love LOVE that movement of the cane
1:00 cane shadow on the wall on beat! Very clever-looking
Then, new segment, introducing Cary Elwes (who, might I say as I veer off-topic, looks quite pudgy. I'm glad he lost the baby fat! :D)
1:06 like the fast-slow here as you move into the shot of him.
"Pretty daisies" clip looks like the matrons trussing her up to meet Elwes, yes? Very appropriate lyric match.
1:12 do I actually hear a splash at this point?
1:25 love that little jolt
1:32 choral bit = wedding. Genius! Love the ensuing pan - slow - pan away + fade out
1:39 then the motion carries right through with the person in front of the camera moving away for the reveal
The winks on beat had me laughing out loud.
1:47 is the third dancer a sly nod to the "come through" lyric? Cos I thought that was dead clever.
"do you need a woman to look after you?" and he shakes his head No at 1:53. Genius!
The ensuing bit is just a ray of sunshine in all the bleakness. It's lovely to watch things progress.
I assume the "nine iron in the backseat" clips have greater significance in context. They look like they do - all these people being watchful of the two main characters caught blissfully unawares. It feels very sinister.
2:25 crazy hair but lovely blocking! And I like how she smiled on the music.
2:33 hands! I love the cross fade, the prolonged clip... that subtle little smile on the quiet piano (GENIUS!) then the payoff turn as the next segment kicks in. Gorgeous.
And the pace picks up! Back with the hunting imagery.
2:56 bubbly cauldron!
bradcpubradcpu on April 13th, 2007 08:17 am (UTC)
I'm just thrilled that you liked this! It was agonizing knowing that you were listening to the song while I was vidding it, and presumably picturing how you would interpret the music if you were doing it. Plus with the obscurity of the fandom and somewhat convoluted twists and turns of narrative in the source... So, yeah, I'm big with the "whew" at the moment.

Woo! You mentioned the titles! It's pathetic how happy that makes me. I've been trying to focus a little more on my titles lately and make them more a cohesive part of the vids - mainly because yours are always done so well.

What I'm truly impressed by is the subtler audio-syncing
:) Thank you so much! That was my focus for most of the editing process... to try to visualize as much of the music as I could without making it a vid "about editing" (as opposed to a story).

Odd thing: I did all of the editing with headphones on, and I was about halfway through the timeline when I listened to the song through the computer speakers for the first time - and realized that it sounds completely different that way! Many of the music cues I used are nearly inaudible when you hear the song over speakers. Lesson learned.

That opening sequence with the hunt, the eye, and so on - and, to a lesser extent, the ending sequence that mirrors it - were heavily influenced by the responses to the "visual vs. context" thread a few weeks ago. Seeing your reaction makes me more confident that it was the right choice to break away from context there. I guess it's all a matter of trusting the viewer, as well as yourself.

love love LOVE that movement of the cane
I do too! It was one of the shots that made me want to do the vid.

The "pretty daisies" clip was preparation for their wedding. Urm, and they had never met, so also for their meeting. She was being whipped in the previous segment because she refused to marry him at first. I originally had an HBC line over the whorehouse raid at the Elwes reveal: "I just don't see why!" But the sound quality just didn't work with the song. Killed more dialogue later in the vid for the same reason.

1:12 do I actually hear a splash at this point?
Hopefully. :) One of the subtler cues. I was really worried about how well some of these would - urm - come through.

1:47 is the third dancer a sly nod to the "come through" lyric?
I had a lot of fun with that segment. I really liked the dancers' sort of demented smiles and clumsiness. There are other shots of them going through each others' arms and getting all tangled up, but I didn't want to go overboard with it.

I assume the "nine iron in the backseat" clips have greater significance in context
They were basically married so that they could be sent to the slaughter. Their parents (and others) were just kind of watching them and waiting. Sounds like that came across more so than not.

The segment I mentioned in the email was the arrest/crowning. I was still working on the 2:57-3:05 segment at the time. But I was pleased with the previous segment because visually it seemed to work a lot better than I had expected. I really need to stop crowing about things like that in emails. I was just honestly surprised.

Regardless of whether this gets a huge reception, you can be secure in the knowledge that it is indeed awesome. I loved it.
That is a huge reception as far as I'm concerned! You know how much your opinion means to me. I seriously appreciate you taking the time to tell me, especially when time is such a rare commodity for you.

So many vids to catch up on now that I have technology again! Icebound Stream and your YA vid are at the top of the list.
Nickyobsessive24 on April 12th, 2007 09:50 am (UTC)
2:57 - 3:05 is an absolutely amazing sequence of images. In one of your last emails you said there was one segment that you were extremely happy with - I'm going to go out on a limb and ask if this is it? Because it's my favourite bit. Just amazing editing and arrangement. I LOVE that you acknowledged the interesting percussions coming to the forefront without actually resorting to chunky cutting.
"Do you need a woman to look after you" takes on a different meaning at 3:20. I love it.
3:35, I love how you timed that tear. It doesn't glide down the face on the beat, it actually drops there. I think it's very distinctive.
3:46 waahhhh!!!!! Painful!!!
Again I love the sequence of clips here, the intercutting. And now I can return to what I said at the start, which is that you realise you've seen all these images before, and it's a sequence of huge payoff moments. The puppet and the deer were gorgeous.
4:03 - birds to music! That was amazing. And also a bit of a coincidence as you know I'm obsessed with Sisabet's Icebound Stream right now and one of the most memorable sequences in hers was also to do with a clip of birds coming in on an amazingly appropriate audio match. Anyway, I digress. Fabulous clip choice here.
LOVED the axe swinging down. Oh!

Regardless of whether this gets a huge reception, you can be secure in the knowledge that it is indeed awesome. I loved it. And you know I don't say things that I don't mean. So there! :P
Nickyobsessive24 on April 12th, 2007 09:58 am (UTC)
1. It was only when I read your notes prior to watching the vid that I realised this Lady Jane was that Lady Jane. If I had known earlier I think I would have clicked on a bit earlier to what you were doing. D'oh!

2. Don't think that I'm not gonna rec this. It's just that I've already posted twice today, so I'm going to save the rec for tomorrow. :)
Sharvie_sharvie_ on April 12th, 2007 10:53 am (UTC)
It's always another beauty when it's from you. I think whatever pondering you did about context and narrative structure paid off. I've never seen this movie but followed along wonderfully. You didn't say whether she picked to convert or not. I guessed not since they made a movie of it and well, you hear more about the people who stuck to it. But the vid explained all of this and the end didn't leave me guessing. Even if I may have missed subtle hints here and there, it all made sense.

I also thought you did a great job of picking scenes that hit the right note. The way their relationship started off stiff but in time they became really close and cared for one another. That was hard to miss. Again, subtleties I might have missed but you painted with broad enough strokes that it all fit wonderfully together. And I do so love your style.

You also really feel her pain. I sensed she longed for her books or studying. She really couldn't have cared less about the government or the pomp and circumstance that her elders tried to instill in her. The beginning of the vid hammered home the hostile and oppressive environment. The deer especially seemed to be a metaphor for her wild nature and inability to be tamed. But, I may have been reading waaaaay to much into that. *bg*

p.s. Oh, I was going through some of my files. Turns out Kristen did do an Equilibrium video to VAST's Touch as well. Different but just as stunning. *bg*
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 12th, 2007 06:27 pm (UTC)
It's so amazing (and relieving) that you were able to follow along and enjoy it despite having not seen the movie. It's a kind of convoluted 2 and a half hours of political intrigue, so I was doubtful that I'd be able to make any kind of transparent statement in 4 mins.

Nope, she never converted, which is why she was beheaded. Her husband was executed as well, but that isn't shown in the movie so I didn't have a way to tell the viewer that.

The angsty relationship stuff is actually the section that inspired the "context vs. visual impact" post. I was stuck on that for about a week. In the end I decided to try to show the flow of emotions instead of the flow of events. It's very nice that seems to have come across!

I sensed she longed for her books or studying. She really couldn't have cared less about the government or the pomp and circumstance that her elders tried to instill in her.
Reading that makes me a happy Brad. You definitely weren't reading too much into it, or no more than I *hoped* you'd read into it.

It's wonderful that you picked up on that.

Have you ever seen Kristen's Queen of the Damned vid "System"? Definitely worth checking out, just for the visual flow.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: DW Madame Pompadourbop_radar on April 12th, 2007 12:28 pm (UTC)
Wow! What an interesting vid. I found the imagery very striking--the deer and the puppet were particularly strong. I loved the intro with the dialogue from the movie. Jane seemed a really compelling figure--childlike in some ways, mature beyond her years in others. The vid felt in no way 'static' so I was interested to hear you had problems with the source--it didn't show at all. I'm totally in awe!

(Oh, and the vid totally made me want to see the movie, though I kinda sorta really hate Helena Bonham Carter. Eeep!)
bradcpubradcpu on April 12th, 2007 06:18 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much, bop! It's such an obscure fandom and I felt like I was taking a lot of chances, so it's really encouraging to read your reaction. Hey, it's encouraging that you even watched it.

I really think all of the metaphorical imagery here - the deer, the puppet, etc. - was meant to be taken this way in the movie. But condensing it all into 4 mins. (instead of 2 and a half hours) makes it a lot more obvious. There was originally more dialogue throughout the vid, but the film's sound was just so much quieter than the song that I couldn't make it sound right.

Heh, I'm glad you enjoyed it despite your mild dislike (seething hatred) for Helena Bonham Carter. I'm not fond of her recent work, but I really like her older stuff - mid 80s to mid 90s.
(no subject) - bop_radar on April 12th, 2007 11:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Milly: (DW) Billie Photomilly on April 13th, 2007 03:58 am (UTC)
I feel like saying 'you bastard!' right now, because this vid totally sucker punched me. I didn't expect it to have this much of an emotional impact on me, and I can't quite put it into words so I'll say this: after the vid finished, I was crying, looking at the screen for a good five minutes and not moving. The finale sequence just killed me. The intercutting, and the doe, in combination to her being so young...

I'm so gonna have to watch this movie now.
Milly: (Btvs) Michelle T.milly on April 13th, 2007 04:00 am (UTC)
I would have said so much more, it's deserving of so much more... But I'm sorry, I just *can't*. Which I think, speaks tons.
(no subject) - bradcpu on April 13th, 2007 08:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - milly on April 13th, 2007 03:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
ck2110ck2110 on April 13th, 2007 05:11 am (UTC)
Ok, just watched Brad! I really have to go back and watch that movie again, it's been such a long time. Helena Bonham Carter is sooo young!

Anyway, I really liked what you did with this. The song was a perfect choice for the movie and her character. I loved how you didn't go the whole flashy effect route, it was all very simple and clean. Very dramatic. I loved the opening dialogue, sets up the video very nicely. And that ending... Man, you are the master!
bradcpubradcpu on April 13th, 2007 08:35 am (UTC)
I'm glad you liked it, Chad! Helena is just incredibly young here. It's hard to believe she was ever that young.

it was all very simple and clean. Very dramatic
It's great to read that because that's just the look I was going for. Since it's a vid about religion and humanity, I tried to take a less-is-more approach and just focus on pacing and imagery. It's reassuring to see that you think it worked! I really appreciate you checking it out.
Gabby "Punks jump up to get beat down" Reeve: lightsextagteam on April 13th, 2007 06:33 am (UTC)
Oh my god, this is beautiful! I've never even heard of the movie before and wasn't sure what to expect but I was completely blown away by the vid.

I loved the opening dialogue and the visual metaphors (the deer, the puppet and the birds especially); not to mention the use of the music, which I thought you pulled off beautifully, most memorably in the wedding scene and in the final scenes of her reaching blindly for the chopping block, although there were subtle touches that I really liked throughout. I also loved the way you showed her and her husband coming together, the scenes of them breaking the wine glasses and in the field were so playful and sweet. The section around 3:02-3:06 was also just gorgeous.

This vid is truly amazing, thank you so much for sharing it!
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 13th, 2007 08:53 am (UTC)
What a wonderful reply! Thank you so much. It's such an obscure film - it's really reassuring and relieving to see it come across so well. I was agonizing over it, but the film's visuals are so poetic and powerfully emotional that I felt like I had to try.

I'm also loving what you had to say about the use of the music. It's incredibly fulfilling to see people picking up on all of the subtleties.

More than anything, I'm just really glad you enjoyed watching it. Thanks for taking the time to tell me so.
messyjessie58: ghost worldmessyjessie58 on April 13th, 2007 02:02 pm (UTC)
wowwwww you are really good. there is litterally too much awesome in there for me to point out. whats interesting is how all the awesomeness is subtle until you realize how captivated you are and then its like 'wow!! the awesomeness!' .....

my favorite part was the sequence when the axe is tilting infront of her face on the throne :)
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 13th, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Jessie! I love that you liked the subtlety of it. :) I had to fight myself to keep from doing too much to it, you know? The movie's so pretty and the story's so powerful that if I try to screw around with it, I just mess it up.

I'm glad you mentioned the axe shot. Helena looks so fragile and has such a great overwhelmed, wide-eyed look, so I wanted to really play that up. It's cool that it worked for you.
(Deleted comment)
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 14th, 2007 07:57 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it! Thanks for letting me know.
Dualbunny: innocentdualbunny on April 15th, 2007 06:55 am (UTC)
This is fantastic. The thing I'm left with at the end is how beautifully you tug all of these threads together by the time it wraps up. The groundwork feels so subtle, and then by the time the tragic end is staring me in the face, I find out I'm attached to so much more than I would have imagined going in.

And I think you did a wonderful job making an older (relatively speaking) film feel dynamic--as much through your cutting as through the reliance on emotion. Really really lovely vid. :)
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 16th, 2007 07:06 am (UTC)
It's just so wonderful to read this. I was desperately hoping that some of the feeling you described would come across, but seeing it written out like that - under your name - is just so immensely rewarding. That aside, it's amazing that you'd take the plunge with me in a fandom you don't know. That makes it mean even more.

The movie's extremely pretty in a distinctive kind of way, just not very vid-friendly. But I wanted everyone to see the pretty and see why it moved me, you know? It sounds like you did, and that's just all kinds of neat. :)
chasa: lingerchasarumba on April 19th, 2007 12:49 am (UTC)
Here via obsessive24's rec. I've never seen the movie, but you move through the story in such a well thought out way that it's quite comprehensible all the same, and then you add a gut-level emotional punch with those gorgeous parallels (hunt/doe/puppet) as bookends. This is beautifully and powerfully cut.
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 19th, 2007 08:38 am (UTC)
Thank you so very much. The movie runs a (very) good two-and-a-half-plus hours, and I spent a long time mulling over how to condense that into something that retains a bit of the unique beauty I love about it. So reading your reply is quite reassuring. Glad you enjoyed it, and I appreciate you taking the time to tell me so.
kiki_miserychickiki_miserychic on April 20th, 2007 08:16 pm (UTC)
You make pretty daisies pretty daisies love
I have no knowledge of the source, but I love this. I can feel how much you put into it and what it is to you. The motion is wonderful and the black and forth parts. I can get the gist of the story, which is all that really needed. It can definitely be appreciated on a visual level as well as an intellectual one. [Shallow note: Cary Elwes, take me now.] The pacing flowing and matches with the music to the point where I’ll associate the song to the movie from now. I’ll forever see little HBC reaching for the chopping block when I hear the song and I've been listening to it since the album came out. The whole thing is so elegantly and gracefully done.
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 21st, 2007 05:55 am (UTC)
Re: You make pretty daisies pretty daisies love
I’ll forever see little HBC reaching for the chopping block when I hear the song

That's really incredible to hear but also kinda sad. I've been seeing that in my head every time I heard the song for forever. I guess the goal here was to make you see it too, which I'm not sure is a good thing. Still, just selfishly, it's awesome that what I was trying to do came through so clearly.

You're right that the source means a lot to me, on many levels. I identify with the themes of searching for answers and clinging to beliefs. Plus I was about HBC's age when I first saw this film, and I crushed on her for years afterward.

Ooh, I just saw you recced it too! Wow, thank you - really. You know you're my Vid God, so that's major squeeage you're hearing from me.
sapote3sapote3 on April 23rd, 2007 11:51 pm (UTC)
I'm not familiar with the canon, but your narrative arc was clear and interesting, and you made good visual points (the puppet and the chessboard, the whipping stool and the chopping block) without making them too overbearing. I can see how it was a challenging source, but you made it work. I enjoyed watching this!
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 25th, 2007 04:46 am (UTC)
It's wonderful that the narrative and connections clicked for you even though you don't know the source. It's a fine line, and I admit I wasn't entirely sure I had struck the right balance there. Really glad you enjoyed it!

Yep, the source was challenging. But now I'm working on a vid using a very well-shot modern show, and it's much easier because I'm used to working with a static, 20-year-old film.
yourlibrarian: GiftVidders: ruugeryourlibrarian on April 24th, 2007 11:09 pm (UTC)
Just wanted to say I thought the song was such a great choice for the vid, and it's just perfectly put together. It's been years since I saw the film but I think you captured it well.
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on April 25th, 2007 04:50 am (UTC)
Thanks a lot! It really means a lot to hear that from someone who's seen the movie. It's insanely obscure, which is odd considering the cast. I appreciate you letting me know what you thought.
lysimache: Stealing Beauty: Liv at night with candllysimache on May 27th, 2007 07:45 pm (UTC)
What a lovely vid! I haven't seen the movie in years, but this vid captured much of what I liked about it (they were both so *young*, goodness!) -- it was beautiful. Very nice match with the song.

Thanks for sharing this!
bradcpu: Serenitybradcpu on May 28th, 2007 03:50 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much! I was really afraid no one would even watch this because the film was kind of obscure. It's so nice to hear from someone who's seen it. I really appreciate the compliments about the vid, and I'm thrilled that you enjoyed it.