Beautiful (Heroes vid)
|Creator:||Yusagi aka darkbunnyrabbit|
|Music:||"Beautiful Disaster" by Kelly Clarkson|
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Vidder's summary: "(spoilers up to 23, AU) After Simone left Isaac, Claire met him on a trip to NYC. She quickly finds herself falling for the broken-spirited man, but questions herself as to whether its really worth it to spend so much time on something that could melt in her face- and whether its love or pity she truly feels for the man who so quickly latched himself to her."
Reactions/ReviewsFrom the 2007 review at the reel:
The coloration and shot choices were well done. If you are already partial to this pairing, then you will enjoy it. However, to a ship-neutral viewer, the pair suffers from lack of source and the shots can thus get repetitive. Titles: There weren’t any titles embedded in the vid. They could probably have been worked in at the beginning, but I didn’t miss them per se.
Music choice: I think this song is a decent fit for the subject material. I would definitely describe Issac as a “beautiful disaster.” It should be noted that as this is an AU, the author had the flexibility to fit the narrative to the song, and not vice versa.
I like the song itself fine, but I think a more dynamic song would have supported the more dramatic parts of the narrative better. The song gets a bit repetitive, and lacks interesting instrumentation. The result isn’t that the song choice fails—it works—but I feel you could have done even more with a stronger song. For far wiser words than mine on song choice, see: http://laurashapiro.livejournal.com/955.html
Narration, Tone and Movement:
The narration is from Claire’s POV. It shows her attraction and pity toward Issac. She is caught between loving him, and wondering whether or not she should.
Tone: The tone of the vid is set by the pacing and the footage coloration and fits the subject matter. The best part about the vid, in my opinion, is the coloring, which is mostly blue and high-contrast, but also with a lovely softness to it. This helps match the footage together and gives the piece a reflective, dreamy quality that the shots would not otherwise have.
The pacing of the clips fit the flow of the song well. You did a good job picking fairly dynamic shots, which is difficult for a concept (AU love affair between people that I don’t ever think meet on screen) so reliant on relatively static shots of single people talking at/looking toward the camera. However, I think you could have pushed this a little further, and I’ve given specific suggestions in the time-stamp section.
Cuts, Transitions, Effects & Colouring/Coloring:
The cuts were appropriately straightforward. The transitions were restrained and mostly featured fades.
Overall the cuts tended to be long, and this generally fit with the pacing of the song. However, I think that a few sections of quicker cuts would have had the dual effect of heightening interest and also making it seem more like the characters were talking to each other.
The entire vid had a feathered black frame around it that contributed nicely to the feeling of “AU” or dream state. It probably also helped isolate Claire and Issac from the other canon characters, so it was a good choice.
There were a few zoom/pulse effects used in the beginning of the vid that I found a bit unnecessary. I mentioned the coloration in the “tone” section; it was well done.
Specific vid & music notes:
[:02 - :07] I found the zoom/pulses to be a little too much
[:07 - :08] “He drums in his dreams” I didn’t understand the lyric/shot match here. Maybe a shot of him painting while drugged instead? I like the section you do on his painting later, but I don’t think that introducing Issac as a painter would necessarily take away from that section.
[:26 - :28] Great look of Claire’s here. Subtle and gorgeous. Like she’s—ahem—thinking about an intimate moment.
[:35] Good shot choice of Claire running. Overall, any time you can reasonably show something other than them looking at the camera, I’d go for it, for variety.
[:51] Good longing look choice for “don’t know what he’s after”
[1:18 ish] I love the idea of having Issac shoot Claire, just because it’s neat visually, and would certainly be interesting in an AU. However, this is a good example of how I feel that the music just isn’t giving you enough to work with—this shot is one of the pivotal shots of the vid, but this “disaster” line doesn’t particularly stick out to me. You did well placing it right before the bridge, so it would literally be a turning point in the music, but I still want more definition. I feel the same way about the shots of Issac dying later in the vid. I wouldn’t change these at this point, but it’s just something to maybe keep in mind if you return to the subject matter.
[1:20 – 1:30] I thought this section was the right idea—comparing Issac’s paintings to his “magic and mayhem” is fitting, and the shots especially of painted Claire are nice. I like this whole section so much that I’m wishing it either extended through the bridge or that his paintings were used more throughout. This might have been another way to connect them; Issac was often painting Claire.
[1:55] This is an example of a missed opportunity for use of movement—the camera drags us up and to the left, but it is to a blank sky, and the shot afterward doesn’t seem to connect to it. Maybe you could have continued to zoom, to the balcony view of New York, and then to him painting that view on “don’t know what he’s after”? My example could be crap, but my point is simply to always try to use strong movement when you can.
[2:19] The split shot doesn’t work for me mostly because it introduces a hard line in a piece that’s all about softness. I’m also not sure how his death works with the narrative, but that could just be my being dense.
[3:01 – 10] Great shot choices.
[3:29] This shot of Issac in pain actually works for me, because it plays on that fine line where you almost can’t identify it—is it pleasure on his face? Is he in bed? Oh wait, he’s in pain? That ambiguity fits with the “beautiful disaster” theme. [3:40] I’m glad you didn’t switch to a laughing shot here. Good call.
[3:44 – end] These shots work really well. The hands-in-hair motion on “disaster” is charmingly understated. And the little tiny half smiles on both of them at the end are perfect.Final word: You've got some really good stuff here. I recommend stretching more with your song choice next time and mixing in more purely thematic (as opposed to literal) visuals."