Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Takes and double takes

Take. The filming of a scene without interruption.

In filmmaking, a ‘take’ is a scene shot without interruption.

On the other hand, a double take is a delayed reaction to an unusual remark or circumstance. For example, if you walk down the road dressed as Darth Vader, a passerby might glance at you, continue on their way, and then a second later, stop and turn around in surprise.

Double takes are used as a comic device in the cinema. In the clip above from Dinner at Eight, when Jean Harlow mentions she's reading a book about the future, Marie Dressler does a fabulous double take.

An interesting variation on this is a spit take, in which the double take causes the character to spit out whatever they are drinking, like this talk show host.


  1. And the list might still grow, isn't it? I guess it TAKES time to think a catchy article on this. I challenge you: Take (II) ;)

  2. Giulia De Dominicis16 May, 2011 18:06

    Your blog has been nominated for our Top 100 Language Lovers 2011 competition.
    Read more here: http://www.lexiophiles.com/featured-articles/top-100-language-lovers-2011-competition-starts-today-%E2%80%93-nominate-your-favorite

    Good luck!

    Giulia - On behalf of the bab.la and Lexiophiles team