BJ Rochinich (Ancient Shores, SPB columnist)
SPB: What got you interested in film beyond casual observation?
Rochinich: I took a psychology of cinema class in college that showed me what I'm seeing when watching a film. The audio and cinematography that construct a film can be looked at closely to gain a better grasp on the intent of the film. Like the lower-third in the news or used in documentaries, there are interesting consistencies in film-making that have been affected by years of progress in the art. The combinations of those variables are things that I enjoy looking at, reading about, and discussing.
One of my favorite pieces of analysis comes from Jim Emerson regarding the truck chase scene in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight.
My late uncle who held an artistic and intellectual influential post in my life, graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute in the ‘70s. I received all of his reading material from this part of his life. Over the years my ability to comprehend film analysis has improved based on re-reading these books, in addition to taking film classes in college. Comparing the use of extras and budget now against the early 20th century has been a particularly interesting subject. Eisentein's creation and application of the montage makes for substantial comparison to its use in decades since, and it's one of those things that is often mentioned in modern terms for the song playing over it.
Film has an enduring affect on cultural history. It's evolution is constant and broadens every day. Analysis of film beyond casual observation makes for a fulfilling exploration.