How great films frame and block actors

In a time when many popular films are not very imaginative in choice of shots, this look at staging and blocking in 12 Angry Men is a wonderful reminder of the possibilities for more.

Six Ways to Build Scenic Density:

1) Move your characters through the spaces inside the frame
2) Have the background and foreground interact
3) Let characters take over shots
4) Move from one story to the next instead of cutting
5) Allow conversations and reactions to play in the same shot
6) Hold off on closeups for moments of prime emphasis

Andrew also has a nice essay on inspiration and not settling into a routine. It's good advice for anyone, not just film nerds who do video essays. He gives a big shout-out to Neil Gaiman for a big epiphany!

12 Angry Men- A Lesson in Staging (YouTube / The Royal Ocean Film Society)