Cinemetrics is the thesis project of Frederic Brodbeck‘s at the Royal Academy of Arts (KABK), Den Haag. It aims to create a visual “fingerprint” for film using the editing structure, color, speech and motion. Different characteristics are analysed using python and openCV, and data visualised using a custom Processing application. This allows films to be interpreted or compared side by side.
Being someone who really enjoys movies and cinema, I always notice little things about the style of a movie, so film and its characteristics were an interesting starting point for this project. Furthermore my thesis is about generative / computational design and what role writing code plays regarding new approaches in (graphic) design. It was clear that for my graduation project I would use the methods I described in the thesis and that it would involve a certain amount of programming in order to visualize data. However, today there are already a lot of information graphics using meta-data related to film and cinema (budget, box office data, awards won, relationship between characters etc.). That’s why I wanted to use the movie itself as a source of data, to see what sort of information can be extracted from it, to find ways of visualizing it and to create the necessary tools to do this.
Tools for disassembling video files into their components (video, audio, subtitles, etc.) and processing them (shot detection, average shot length, motion measuring, color palettes), as well as an interactive application to generate and compare different movie fingerprints are all available as code here.
To accompany the analysis, poster series show the most important steps of the process. They explains where the data comes from and what techniques have been used.
Frederic Brodbeck is graphic designer and creative coder. Recently graduated from the Graphic Design department at the KABK