Riffs - Future Boy Conan #06, Castle of Cagliostro
I'm trying to get over a throat illness which is laying me low, so I'll write the episode #07 essay for the Future Boy Conan tomorrow. Tonight, I'll show you a riff that I spotted from last night's episode.
This is early in the episode, when Conan tries to break Lana out of her prison. The bad guy has a gun and is trying to shoot Conan, but Lana rushes him and tries to push the gun away. Bad guy pushes back, then swats Lana to the wall, sending the bullet cartridge scattering in all directions. This same pair of shots was also used by Miyazaki in Castle of Cagliostro, as we can see from these screenshots. It's interesting that the villains in Conan and Cagliostro both look and sound so similar. Maybe it's just me. But Miyazaki had more of a melodramatic flair back then, so his villains all hail from the Snidley Whiplash school.
Anyway, these two scenes are a good example of Miyazaki's effective use of editing to create a compelling action sequence. He knows how to time his cuts properly, and use the inherent motion in changing camera angles. Proper composition of your shots is key. This is how you are able to portray action with very limited resources, a skill the greatest Japanese animators know by heart.
Okay, kids, time to let the flu medicine knock me out. Enjoy the Friday and expect the Conan #07 essay tomorrow.