Cinemetrics - A 'Fingerprint' for Films - Raindance

The aim of Cinemetrics, a project created by graphic designer and coder Frederic Brodbeck, is to measure and visualise film data. Characteristics such as colour, dialogue, lighting and editing structure are analysed and transformed into graphical representations or as he calls it a digital ‘fingerprints’.

Brodbeck created this as part of his final thesis at the Royal Academy of Art in Hague. Although there were several infographics dealing with singular characteristics of a film, he wanted to create one that captured the films in their entirety. He therefore would divide a film into separate components (video, audio, subtitles) and then processed them frame by frame, analysing colour, movement etc…

This is done through a computer program that extracts, processes data from these films and transforms them into a moving visual image. The infographic looks like a donut with a slice taken out. The bigger the donut the longer the film. The donut is divided into segments representing 10 shots. Two colour palettes  are used one for the entire film and one for each chapter. The colours used depend on their prevalence in the shots. The segments move in and out depending on the amount of motion in the shots. Here is Brodbeck’s video describing the process in more detail –

So just by glancing at these donut you can tell if it is a film heavy on action or dialogue. For example a donut with darker colours and faster movings, smaller segments is more likely to be an thriller, action or horror film. A Donut with larger slower moving segment and bright colour palette is more likely to be a romantic comedy. Brodbeck believes its a much simpler and faster way of choosing films based on how colourful they are and how much dialogue/movement there is.

For more information check out his website –