Anything But Ordinary

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Title: Anything But Ordinary
Creator: Aelora
Date: 2006
Format: wmv
Length: 15MB
Music: "Anything But Ordinary" by Avril Lavigne
Genre: character study, Ronon Dex
Fandom: Stargate Atlantis
Footage: Intro to the character of Ronon Dex in his first four eps.
URL: offline

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Anything But Ordinary is a Stargate Atlantis vid by Aelora. It is a character study of Ronon Dex.

Vidder's note: "Intro to the character of Ronon Dex in his first four eps."


This vid was reviewed by Saeva at the reel vidding community on January 19, 2006:

Overall impression: Overall, I thought the vid was decently put together but it's not one that I'd set aside to keep during one of my periodic folder cleaning sessions. While the cutting was fair, I had some trouble with song, and consequently clip, choice that the vid couldn't overcome.

Titles: The titles were more or less complete, though I wouldn't have minded if they'd clarified that 'Aelora' was an LJ name because I know that if I was looking for the maker of this vid six months from now I'm not necessarily going to assume Livejournal.

Music: I'll admit that I spent most of the vid confused as to why, other than the fact that Ronon Dex isn't ordinary to Atlantis's concept of it, this song was chosen. There was a bit of dissonance between the subject and the song choice here for me and while I liked the chorus bits more than the rest of it I think a better song along a similar song could have been chosen.

Narration, tone, and movement:

Narration - The vid certainly did what it set out to do in introducing Ronon Dex as a character and the narration was very clear, first establishing him as focus and then using that to create a tone to the vid. Whether the tone fits the character or not is another question and I think that, intentionally or not, it really highlighted the lighter parts of this character's introduction into this world.

Tone and movement - There were two parts to the tone here, one created by the darker, more violent clips selected and the other created by the music. I think that while in some parts—namely the ones in which Dex's face was the focus—this really worked out fairly well and each 'leave me here to bleed' from the chorus hits home there are other parts—where action is the focus—that it all falls apart.

I found myself laughing at pieces that I don't think I was meant to giggle at because the light beat of the song made them seem laughable. (It doesn't help that Jason Momoa, who plays Dex, has a bumbling gait and anything that focuses too heavily on him waddling along is going to create an odd visual effect.)

Cuts, Transitions, Effects & Colouring/Coloring:

This is a very simple vid, which isn't necessarily bad, but does leave me with a dearth of discussion material. That being said, the cuts I can talk about.

Overall, I thought the cuts were fairly decent, where nothing was too jarring and only a few of the clips dragged too far or seem too out of place. There were, however, a few moments where I winced when something seemed to be cut oddly, which I'll mention in the next section.

Specific notes:

  • 00:16 - The first musical change here, cutting to Dex 'sparring' with the soldiers, is one of those moments that make me start and giggle because the music doesn't feel hard enough for that particular scene. It, however, is nice synching.
  • 00:25-00:30 - I really liked the use of clip here.
  • 01:02 - Advertisements from SciFi come on here and it's a little jarring.
  • 01:19-01:49 - The clips in this verse could do with being broken up a little bit. Some of them feel like they drag against the beats.
  • 01:57-02:03 - Overall, I get the feeling that this song was chosen around this particular line and it works very well here, with this clip, and using Dex's facial expressions to work with the music.
  • 02:07-02:18 - The two clips immediately afterwards, however, are jarring because they go from the bright orange-red of the flashback to the pitch black of darkness within the same beat. While the cutting/clip choice works well here the visual response isn't very pleasing.
  • 02:29-02:53 - This is a nice bit of cutting and matching with the music. It makes me curious what you might do with a more fitting—and stronger—song.
  • 03:22 - The repetition of that particular clip doesn't work for me.
  • 04:04 - I do like the last two clips.

Final notes: I think, mostly, this vid suffers from a lack of available clips. It's very much an emotion-character song and vid where half the vid is forced into using clips for what could, and probably should, be an action vid.

Now that we have more available source material for Ronon my biggest suggestion would be to separate the two from each other—the emotion clips from the action clips—and use mostly the former if you were interested in remastering this particular vid. It'd wear down the dissonance by quite a bit.