Bend It Like Beckham ?
00:00 | 01:39


The rich language of the cinema provides the foundation for JBFC's Visual Glossary. Clips from some of our greatest visual storytellers put these terms in context, showing how filmmakers use these concepts and techniques to create iconic imagery, memorable characters, and powerful stories.

Extreme Close-Up

A framing that shows only a detail.

Eyeline Match

A cut from a shot of a character to a shot of what he or she is looking at, maintaining the proper angles and distance.


An editing transition that dissolves from black or into black.


An editing technique that jumps backward in the story to show an earlier time, interrupting the story’s timeline.


The sharpness of an image.

Foley Sound

The process of adding sound during postproduction that emphasizes established sounds of the film.


Giving clues or hints to suggest events that will occur later on in the film.

Fourth Wall

When the character looks into the camera and directly addresses the audience.


A single image; when a series of frames is shown in quick succession, the illusion of movement is created.

Frame Rate

The number of frames that are displayed per second.

Freeze Frame

The movement of the film image appears to stop, becoming a still image.


Types of film recognized by narrative or stylistic conventions. Genre examples: horror, fantasy, comedy, science fiction.

Graphic Match

The juxtaposing of two consecutive shots that have similar compositional elements.

Hand Held

A camera technique where the camera is held by hand or with a harness, giving the shot a shaky effect. The shakiness establishes a sense of realness in the style of documentary.

High Angle

The camera is positioned to looking down on the subject, creating a sense of weakness and powerlessness in the character or setting.

High-Key Lighting

Lighting that creates little contrast between the light and dark areas of the shot.

Jump Cut

An editing technique in which the continuity of a single shot is disrupted by dropping one or more frames. This makes the subjects appear to instantly move to a new location within the frame.


The placing of two images side by side in space or time.

Kuleshov Effect

The idea that juxtaposing two shots can create greater meaning via the relationship established between them.

Live Action

A filmmaking technique that records subjects, people and places, in real time.

Long Take

A technique in which a shot continues for a lengthy period of time before cutting to the next shot.

Low Angle

The camera positioned looking up at the subject, creating a sense or feeling of power and dominance in the character or setting.

Low-Key Lighting

Lighting that creates substantial contrast between light and dark areas of the shot, often using a strong single source of light.


An editing technique in which two shots with the same movement are cut together, making it seem uninterrupted.

Medium Shot

A framing showing the subject or setting from the waist up.


All the visual elements that are placed in a scene for the camera; this involves the set, set decoration, props, costumes, lighting. Mise-En-Scene means "putting in the scene" in French.


An editing technique that favors the expressive power of the juxtaposition of shots over narrative continuity or realism. Montage means “editing” in French.


The repetition of an element to demonstrate symbolic meaning.

Multiple Takes

When shooting, takes of each shot are generally numbered, starting with "take one" and the number of each successive take is increased (with the director calling for "take two" or "take eighteen") until the filming of the shot is completed.

Non-Diegetic Sound

Sound that does not originate from the world of the film, such as narration or musical score.