Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Exercise in Cognitive Psychology

Here's me making good use of my BA in Psychology from Fancy Women's Liberal Arts College. This morning I happened to notice an article on by Effie Orfanides called " 'Breaking Dawn' teaser trailer has fans crazy!"

Orfanides goes on to admit it's a fan-made trailer and that the official film trailer will be released closer to Breaking Dawn Part 1's November 2011 release date.

Here's the cool cognitive psych part: even though you know for a fact this "trailer" is made with clips of the other 3 Twilight movies, interspersed with clips of actors who are not Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart, the way the human brain works will still cause your mind to interpret these images as a unified whole, making it seem authentic.

Try it on this clip, another fan-made from the one Orfanides mentions in her article, but one which I think is of better quality.

Did you fool yourself? If so, here's why: we perceive stimuli, not according to their individual characteristics, but organized in groups of information. It would take too much time and brain power to perceive every mental image individually, so our brains have created shortcuts.

One of those shortcuts in closure. You hear someone say "Shut the" and you shut the door, even though you never heard the word "door." Your mind fills in gaps with information that should logically go there.

Other shortcuts include continuity and contiguity. Continuity allows you to perceive short film clips as a unit. (Count the number of cuts in a 30-second commercial. There are many. TV relies on the principle of continuity.) Contiguity ensures that you'll perceive stimuli--again, video clips in this case--as belonging together simply because they are near each other in space and time.

Pretty cool, huh?


Gabrielle said...

This is quite interesting! I apologize for being so tardy in getting to your blog after you've come to mine twice. Sorry :(

I found you through Shah Wharton's fabulous weekend creation blog hop.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Gabrielle Bisset

Vamchoir said...

When I was watching this video, it seemed authentic (true to the Twilight series) up until the water scene. Then ghostly haunting sounds also seemed to not to fit Twilight-related movies and books. For those reasons the entertainment did not seem to flow (in spite of the way brains are suppose to work).

Did you enjoy reading the last Twilight book in the series? I devoured the first three books and could not finish book four. I guess I felt insulted by the idea that a woman turns-part chicken and suddenly carries a titanium egg inside her pregnant uterus. I also loathed the whole adult-male Jacob imprinting romantically on a newborn (modern reality would suggest that's just pedophilia waiting to happen, since imprinting means 19-year-old Jacob would not have sex until he's nearly 40 if he waits for an infant to mature to adulthood). I loved Jacob in the first few books and wanted good things for him ... felt very disappointed by the turn of events for him. (His romantic fate just seemed dreadful and I wanted so much happiness for him.)

Erin O'Riordan said...

LOL at your take on Book 4, Vamchoir. Supposedly, Nessie's going to grow at an accelerated rate, while Jake's shifter metabolism slows down his aging process. At some point, they'll both appear to be in their twenties. It's only creepy if you do the math ;)

I've got to agree that all the good things happen to Edward and Bella, and Jacob is left with a sort of consolation prize. Don't you hate it when bad things happen to good werewolves (JK Rowling, I'm looking at you!)?

Re ~ what came first, the chicken or the egg: Click the "fan-made" link.