"Locked down shot" .. What's in a Name?
Updated: May 24, 2021
The title of this film along with the film itself has gone through a period of Metamorphosis. Originally titled 'Delicious endeavors' from the onset, this name encapsulated everything I anticipated the film to be about: using food as a social means to incorporate the importance of co-production between people with and without learning disabilities. However, I had to move away from this title as my film became less about cooking and more a reflexive exercise on the perils of the filming processes itself.
The title of my film 'locked down shot' comes from a cinematic term referring to a shot in which the camera remains fixed while something happens off-screen . It can be an unintentional moment or a stylistic technique used in order to create suspense. I felt as if the term communicated something to me about the 'messiness' of life and the idea of capturing affect through visual methodology without necessarily having the camera pointing at the most obvious moment of action. I wanted to explore and capture moments in the spaces of interest that surrounded big events such as the corona virus pandemic, which, in many cases, is what anthropologist often do by looking at the everyday events that happen within social systems on the micro scale through use of ethnographic methodology. The title is also of course a reference to the current climate in which the film was made. Nation wide lock down where we must stay in our homes in a bid to fight the spread of the Covid 19 virus. Being locked away, whilst keeping me safe, also made me feel displaced from the what was going on in the world, which, in many ways, added to my anxieties concerning the virus much like they way in which lock down shots create suspense within film.
There are several lock down shots within my film but the most important one for me is the scene where I'm hearing about the national ban on social gatherings from members of staff at Discovery Caterings whilst the camera is facing away. New to filming, I was still uncomfortable with the action of pointing a camera directly at someone I had just met and within this chance encounter, I naturally went to lower my camera. However, to me, the scene represents the true haphazardness of the situation and of the filming process which I want the audience to understand. Lock down shots in many ways break down the barrier between the film maker and the audience and destroy the illusion of perfection within the cinematic experience by communicating the presence of the filmmaker. I wanted to connect with my audience as much as possible, not just as the film maker but also acting as a subject myself within the film .