Manipulate Meaning: Kuleshov Effect

We had to read this article on the Kuleshov Effect. It says how it’s the “single most important concept to editing, if not to filmmaking itself. It’s a cornerstone of visual storytelling; through this phenomenon that we can suggest meaning and manipulate space, as well as time. It is a fundamental aspect of “movie magic,” one which every filmmaker needs to understand.

It was introduced by Russian film maker Lev Kuleshov, who shot a short film with three different groups. Each of the three shots had the face of a well known actor, but each time they were followed by three different things. In this way, a new story was told each time, despite the actor having the same expression each time.

Hunger, sadness and lust (Curatormagazine)

This article was a really interesting read, and has definitely changed the way I will view films as well as food for thought when creating my own.

“Through the Kuleshov Effect, the audience creates and imposes their own meaning onto uninflicted individual shots.”


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