A Dry Spicy Take Regarding AC.

Kain424

Pro Adventurer
#51
Sure, though only in the sense that animation can more readily literalize a storyboard and concept art. If anything, it makes it easier.
 

looneymoon

hedgehog pandacat
AKA
Rishi
#52
I'm not sure why you'd say that - animation editors have a more dynamic role in storyboarding/pre-production as well as what happens in post. Saying that makes editing "easier" is still considering the role as if it were in a live action pipeline - that it's mainly relegated to the cutting phase that happens in post-production. This is not the case. The point of the post I was making is that you're essentially comparing two different jobs if you take a look at something like Advent Children to Bohemian Rhapsody or Legends of the Fall.

Here's a video that breaks it down:

 

Kain424

Pro Adventurer
#53
This is a fantastic video. It's what I was saying about them being able to "literalize a storyboard", but I see I should not have used the word "easier" at all. It's clear the editor is far more closely involved than I had thought. And I still think the editing of Advent Children is quite good. Maybe even more impressive now that I have more of an understanding of the process in animation.
 
#54
I have some issues with the cut of ACC, I feel like it made previously implicit things explicit, and therefore blunter and less effective. But in regard to the other things:

The rerun of Red running is just saying 'hey, relax, this still happens, we didn't undo the ending of FF7.' It links to the following scene because the conversation is about rebuilding and ruins.

]

Context for someone with foreknowledge:

Rebuilding City- Okay, they're rebuilding, probably after Meteorfall.

Northern Cave-final dungeon. The Turks are looking for something in the Northern Cave, where we last saw Jenova and Sephiroth. That's bad. Something else is looking too. Also bad.

Re Bartender answering phone. She answers in the name of 'Strife delivery service.', and before she answers, says 'he's not here anymore.'

So, what do we know from those vignettes?

The Turks are looking for something in the North Cave, along with an unidentified third party.

Cloud was living with Tifa in a new bar, running a business together, but is no longer there. Someone has called looking for him. They took in a (sick) kid together.

That's a hell of a lot of storytelling in a very short time.

About later, the tension with Cloud and Tifa isn't really about whether he goes after the kids or not, it's about whether he'll successfully save them or not.

Context for non FF viewer:

Someone with access to helicopters (powerful?) is looking for something important at a remote location. There's a fight. They have to flee in a hurry. Helicopter people have important thing? Or was it left behind?

We go from a ruined city, to a rebuilding city, and a conversation about rebuilding after catastrophe, and 'short memories.' after just showing that the city is remembered 500 years later.This is the weakest part of the opening, though.

The bar gets a call looking for someone who was once there, but isn't now. A sick child and a little girl also live there. We get glimpses of their
So...broken relationship? Strained? Some kind of catastrophe happened two years ago, everyone is still rebuilding and recovering.
 

Strangelove

AI Researcher
AKA
hitoshura
#55
i have been reading a book based on joseph campbell's 'a hero with a thousand faces'/hero's journey ('the writer's journey' by christopher vogler), or rereading because someone gave me a newer edition than the one i own, and it made me wonder how you would map advent children onto it as an excuse to put it into practice instead of just reading it

Act One:
Ordinary World
Call to Adventure
Refusal of the Call
Meeting with the Mentor
Crossing the First Threshold

Act Two:
Tests, Allies, Enemies
Approach to the Inmost Cave
Ordeal
Reward

Act Three:
The Road Back
Resurrection
Return with the Elixir


1. Heroes are introduced in the ORDINARY WORLD, where
2. they receive the CALL TO ADVENTURE.
3. They are RELUCTANT at first or REFUSE THE CALL, but
4. are encouraged by a MENTOR to
5. CROSS THE FIRST THRESHOLD and enter the Special World, where
6. they encounter TESTS, ALLIES, AND ENEMIES.
7. They APPROACH THE INMOST CAVE, crossing a second threshold
8. where they endure the ORDEAL.
9. They take possession of their REWARD and
10. are pursued on THE ROAD BACK to the Ordinary World.
11. They cross the third threshold, experience a RESURRECTION, and are transformed by the experience.
12. They RETURN WITH THE ELIXIR, a boon or treasure to benefit the Ordinary World.


i have not watched ac in a while so going off memory, i would roughly map it something like this?


1 - ordinary world
cloud's isolating himself from everyone out of guilt

2 - call to adventure
first appearance of kadaj, and meeting rufus

3 - refusual of the call
cloud turns down rufus' request

4 - meeting with the mentor
the conversation with tifa and aerith???

5 - crossing the first threshold
cloud going to the forgotten city to save the children

6 - tests, allies, and enemies
turks, tifa, aerith, battle with kadaj and co, rescue by vincent?

7 - approach the inmost cave
forgotten city battle and conversation with vincent? battle(s) in edge?

8 - ordeal
the whole sequence from the bahamut battle to the sephiroth battle?

9 - reward
defeating sephiroth and the appearance of the spring in the church?

10 - the road back
final encounter with kadaj, or more precisely yazoo and loz

11 - resurrection
being healed by aerith/zack and sent back

12 - return with the elixir
the spring with water that heals geostigma and more abstractly cloud's resolution of his guilt, everybody happy


one of the things the books mentions is that stories don't have to rigidly follow this structure and can play around by skipping or combining steps (campbell's original has more steps, i believe), spreading roles across multiple characters, etc. some of the steps i'm a bit fuzzy on without having viewed the film again, like would tifa and aerith both fulfil a mentor role in pushing cloud forward towards action and resolving his guilt (namely the scene with tifa in marlene and denzel's room and aerith appearing on the way to the forgotten city)? is there a specific moment that would make the most apt 'inmost cave' scene? i'm tempted to say that cloud's resolution starts at the conversation with vincent about sins being forgiven, but does that peak a bit too early and then the latter half of the film is a protracted series of fight scenes, a holdover from when the project was just a short little action scene to test out fancy new graphics?

anyway this post is an excuse to remind me to finish this book
 

Nandemoyasan

Lv. 25 Adventurer
AKA
Johnny
#57
(...)If FFVII was somehow a good film, FFVI must've been a fucking religious experience, lol.
Sounds about right. No, I'm not kidding. :)

If you think AC is so lacking in character development and fleshing out its story, what is it that it needed? What's an example of what you'd change and add to it so it'd meet the threshold of a "good film?"
It wastes far too much time on stylistic touches and not enough on exposition of the rather complicated plotline. I get that they were trying to show off their CG skills, but I feel like a lot of the panning, loving shots of scenery and weird camera angles to craft tension where it's not necessary to do so were time spent in the production schedule that could have gone to two or three more scenes in the 1st Act (Perhaps between the ancillary characters who are not Cloud/Tifa) explaining more of what the heck is going on here.

In my opinion, that would fix everything everyone is saying they dislike about it. It just needs a bit more exposition to fix the story and establish the stakes at hand. If it did that, it would be free to get all 'artsy fartsy' in Act 2 and 3 at its leisure. But the 'epicness' that it seems to presume it has earned, does not seem earned to me.

Hypothetical Scene 1: Barrett at his Oil find w/Cid and Yuffie, talking about how Mako energy was being exploited by Shinra and it's the life energy of the planet (to establish backstory and world parameters, and explain how geostigma is spreading)

Hypothetical Scene 2: Reeve, Yuffie, and Red XIII going over medical facility plans for helping Geostigma sufferers in Edge City (to explain why it's a practical problem and remove the dark, mysterious nature of the disease, and make it scarier).

Hypothetical Scene 3: Vincent and Barrett take a trip to the Shinra Mansion to retrieve information on their mako-extraction/prospecting activities, for the use in Project mentioned in Scene 2, and having a discussion of how and why Sephiroth came to exist, to explain what and who he is and give some meaning to Cloud and his fight scene at the end.

None of these would have been terribly time consuming, or would have needed to be very talky. And if they had more stuff like this, I could watch AC. As it is, it comes off as a bunch of artsy-fartsy meandering leading up to a fight scene that is emblematic of FF7, but not very accessible to non-fans.
 
#58
@ Strangelove - that all sounds spot on. (I teach the Hero's Journey in Classic Civ).

Although I'd add that normally there's a problem in the Ordinary World, and when the hero receives the call to adventure, that call is related to the problem, and when he gets the 'elixir', it enables him to solve the problem. In this case, the problem is Geostigma, which is the lingering legacy of Jenova, poisoning and killing people. Also, in the standard HJ the hero returns to his ordinary world after the quest, but Cloud doesn't return to his world of guilty self-isolation; he leaves that behind him.
 

Kain424

Pro Adventurer
#59
Hypothetical Scene 1: Barrett at his Oil find w/Cid and Yuffie, talking about how Mako energy was being exploited by Shinra and it's the life energy of the planet (to establish backstory and world parameters, and explain how geostigma is spreading)
I like the idea of a scene like this because 1) it's a bit fan-servicey, with more time spent with some of the other characters. It would be nice to see more of what they are up to and explore how things are coming along without the use of Mako energy.

Hypothetical Scene 2: Reeve, Yuffie, and Red XIII going over medical facility plans for helping Geostigma sufferers in Edge City (to explain why it's a practical problem and remove the dark, mysterious nature of the disease, and make it scarier).
Nah, it's mysterious nature helps it work for the film. A lack of clarity in the problem is one of the strengths in the film. Cloud, infected and confused, is separate from the group. His isolation has left him depressed and disassociated, which I think works.

Hypothetical Scene 3: Vincent and Barrett take a trip to the Shinra Mansion to retrieve information on their mako-extraction/prospecting activities, for the use in Project mentioned in Scene 2, and having a discussion of how and why Sephiroth came to exist, to explain what and who he is and give some meaning to Cloud and his fight scene at the end.
Unnecessary, as we already have this information and there's a bit too much travel as it stands.

it comes off as a bunch of artsy-fartsy meandering leading up to a fight scene that is emblematic of FF7, but not very accessible to non-fans.
Well, since it's technically the 5th or 6th part of a 7 or 8 part series, it probably makes sense to not be the most "accessible to non-fans". But, that's often the case with sequels.
 
#61
I enjoyed AC for what it was. That being said, when connecting it with the original story of the game it felt like it took some of the oomph away from Final Fantasy VII. That probably makes no sense, but it's just how I felt. Part of that reason is probably because I generally think movies should stay movies and games should stay games. That isn't always the case, but it's how I usually prefer things to go. Because of that, I sort of just consider AC it's own thing if that makes sense.

I would have much rather had a FF7 game sequel than AC. I'm hoping that possibility still exists after the remake releases to completion. It just felt weird sort of having the reigns in FF7 to having to just watch everything unfold in AC, but maybe that's just me.
 
#62
I wonder if this is because new entrants don't expect to know everything? An ff fan is there going 'this thing wasn't explained', while a new watcher is thinking. 'okay, this place has a history I don't know.'

The core story is understandable fine from the film,you don't know the details, but the gist comes across fine.

Sephiroth: dead guy trying to revive. Needs JENOVA's head to do so.

Cloud: Sick former hero.

Rufus/Turks: Old enemies of dubious reliability, allies of circumstance.

You don't need much more, really.
 

Mr. Ite

Pro Adventurer
AKA
Mr. Ite
#63
...when connecting it with the original story of the game it felt like it took some of the oomph away from Final Fantasy VII. That probably makes no sense, but it's just how I felt. Part of that reason is probably because I generally think movies should stay movies and games should stay games. That isn't always the case, but it's how I usually prefer things to go. Because of that, I sort of just consider AC it's own thing if that makes sense.
Part of it for me was that it took my involvement away from the story's resolution. The "edge" that games have as a storytelling medium is the interactivity. The story could not have finished had I not strategized and taken down those three bosses at the end. The movie said "that was a false victory, here's the real one, and you aren't going to help this time." I understand that Sephiroth and Jenova seemed like they were required, and more people would have been pissed had they not appeared... but I really would have liked a more stand-alone movie that didn't take the wind out of the game's finale.
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Makoeyes987, the notorious liar Marquis Halim Ondore IV, Cupcake, Smooth Criminal, Xelloss, Christian Bale, Ma'at
#64
Come on, guys. It's all thanks to you getting them all to level 99 that they were able to move that fast, jump that high and do a no-materia speed run against Bahamut SIN in the first place!

Your hours of grinding paid off in a way they'll never forget!
 

Kain424

Pro Adventurer
#66
While I don't think a lot games have risen to that high art level in which so many view films, I do agree there are things games can do that movies cannot. There is a vast potential in games to be the best possible medium, and I think they will one day get there. It just hasn't quite coalesced yet.

That said, and as much as I do try to defend Advent Children, I also have to admit Final Fantasy VII is miles better.
 

Nandemoyasan

Lv. 25 Adventurer
AKA
Johnny
#69
While I don't think a lot games have risen to that high art level in which so many view films, I do agree there are things games can do that movies cannot.
At what point does the nature of historical record (that thing just keeps getting bigger) become akin to cancer? That's what cancer is; a thing in a living body which just keeps getting bigger, while interfering with the function of that thing.

Radical concept, I know. Everyone loves to espouse the virtue of history (Georges Santayana quote necessary or unneccessary?) and learning from what has come before, but for the last 100 years or so, an absolute crapton of our 'history' has literally just been artistic expression. I feel that the history of art should be treated with a far greater prejudice than that of historical documentation which might be actually useful.

So, then, when considering whether a work of art is 'historically important' or not...

What questions would you ask?

I'd start by saying, 'How can this be any benefit to us as a species? How does it make us more wise, more compassionate, more useful to each other? What lessons are here to learn? What emotions does it evoke? Why should someone read/look at/listen to/watch/play this thing?'

So, (and I guess this might be an entirely different thread topic), why should someone play Final Fantasy or experience its ancillary materials (such as AC) is the question I think would be most relevant to ask.
 

ChipNoir

Internet Ghost
AKA
Mister Spooks.
#71
So while I was sick I decided on a whim to watch ACC and...I'm surprised how much more engaging it because of all the little extra moments.

Honestly, I'd probably find ACC perfect if it was part of a mini series that included On The Way To A Smile in the same style as an equally long movie, or splitting the whole thing into four or five episodes together with ACC. It just doesn't quite have enough of it's own, but there's seeds of something good here.
 

Kain424

Pro Adventurer
#72
I suppose I don't really separate it. All the materials work to further a singular narrative for me.

I'd start by saying, 'How can this be any benefit to us as a species? How does it make us more wise, more compassionate, more useful to each other? What lessons are here to learn? What emotions does it evoke? Why should someone read/look at/listen to/watch/play this thing?'
I suppose I would just say that art is far too subjective to work on that broad of a level. Plenty of people simply can't stand abstract art or even expressionism. What really matters is how it works on an individual level.
 
#73
I mean, the historical importance of FF7 is probably just that it was one of the first JRPGs to achieve mainstream success abroad. The works of art that benefit the species most are the fairy tales you hear when you grow up, with morals like 'work hard', 'be yourself' and such. Everything you need to know to live a good life can be learned from Batman.
 
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