The Dynamic Frame: Camera Movement in Classical Hollywood

6.2 Notorious

When the camera spots Alicia and starts to descend, we might expect it to pick out a detail, but we cannot be certain what that detail will be. If anything, the camera appears to be moving toward Sebastian, not Alicia. At the last possible moment, Alicia’s hand slides into the center, snapping into sharpness, and she unclenches her fist to reveal the key. On a macrolevel, the shot produces suspense, generating questions about what happens next. On a microlevel, the shot produces surprise, withholding information about what is in Alicia’s hand until the end.

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