Wiring Supercuts

John Johnston’s post yesterday about Videogrep really piqued my imagination.

Videogrep is a python script that searches through dialog in videos and then cuts together a new video based on what it finds. Basically, it’s a command-line “supercut” generator.

In other words, if I can get this thing wired up, I can create a supercut video of every mention of “the game” throughout all of season 1. How sick is that? This is my new goal in life. The script will search through the subtitles (.srt files) and link them with timestamps of the video to immediately cut the scene and link it with every other scene that has a mention of “the game.” John included some examples to give you an idea of how this might work.

A good one is every mention of “know” in Blade Runner—I love this:

And here’s an example of every time “jungle” is mentioned in Apocalypse Now:

And John even threw in an example from episode 1 of season 1 of The Wire featuring every mention of “Barsksdale.”

It begs the question, apropos of this week’s focus, are such automated, script-based videos an example of digital storytelling? On top of that, what term would you search across a single episode, or even the entire first season?

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7 Responses to Wiring Supercuts

  1. Pingback: New blog post: "Wiring Supercuts" http://bavatuesdays.com/wiring-supercuts/ #ds106 #wire106

  2. John says:

    Hi Jim,
    Thanks for the linkage:-)

    For what it is worth getting all ‘the games’ from season 1 into one video can be done in one pass. You just point the script at a folder full of matched video and srt files.
    Not sure if it is storytelling but it is digital and fun.

  3. Mariana Funes says:

    Yes, it is storytelling. It is like Scalar books, a film with multiple paths. Selecting the key words is the thing, no? In choosing it you are choosing a theme that illustrates a different element from the story than the linear original one. When I was listening to the ‘game’ I thought that is you infinite looped it, you would have a kind of auditory gif – but may be you need visual as well as the audio…

    Like you John, not sure why but it is hugely appealing to me. I put it done to my love of words and relating unrelated things. I just wish it was easier to set up and use. I have kept away from the command line so far…

  4. It’s elements of story, it’s story-ish. What I love about ds106 is the idea that a story is not always a self contained blob of media, as much as a GIF is a lens to look at character and moment, or can be part of something bigger. Likewise, the context one can add around a supercut like these, the interpretations one can make, the ways seeing all those moments can help you find a different narrative theme– are all part os storytelling elements.

  5. Travis Peed says:

    I think this is a really cool idea and could create some interesting short videos. I do believe this is an example of digital story telling. I agree with Alan in the sense that it is story-ish. It doesn’t necessarily have the traditional story line but it still tells a glimpse of a story. To someone who has not seen any episodes of the wire they would not really appreciate it nor understand it but for those who have, the quick glimpses of scenes reminds us of what happened throughout the episodes. I would be interested in seeing what “McNulty” would create using this software.

  6. Pingback: The Game Supercut | bavatuesdays

  7. Pingback: 106 drop in » Blog Archive » all in the game

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