First and Final Frames

These supercuts from filmmaker Jacob T. Swinney put the first and final shots of dozens of famous films side by side for comparison. For some films, the two shots are very similar or symmetrical in content or tone. Others show distinctive contrasts in narrative progression, echoing ideas if not composition. And others are just markedly different from one another. What all of these juxtapositions share in common is that they provide an unorthodox way of understanding the frames that come between them; they can reveal so much about the many minutes of intervening movie time, even if they’re only a few seconds long. This is what I really adore about movies; the best ones, like these, so often reward deeper inspection.

Swinney’s first video, above, cuts together fifty-five films. His second one, below, cuts together seventy more and, helpfully, adds titles beneath each selection. They’re both completely engrossing.