Bohemian Rhapsody’s Bad Editing: A Breakdown

Bohemi­an Rhap­sody may have won the Oscar for Best Edit­ing. But video essay­ist Thomas Flight isn’t per­suad­ed. In a 13-minute video, Flight decon­structs a 104-sec­ond clip from the biopic, reveal­ing the exces­sive 60 cuts that make up the scene. That trans­lates into a dizzy­ing cut every 1.8 sec­onds on aver­age.

For Thomas Flight, Bohemi­an Rhap­sody is noth­ing short of a “mas­ter­class in bad edit­ing.” For you, Flight’s video offers a nice short crash course in film edit­ing.

Accord­ing to The Wash­ing­ton Post, the pub scene decon­struct­ed in Flight’s video was actu­al­ly edit­ed by Dex­ter Fletcher–and not John Ottman, the film edi­tor who helped sal­vage the film and then won top hon­ors at the Oscars. Asked about the botched scene, Ottman told WaPo: “When­ev­er I see it, I want to put a bag over my head. Because that’s not my aes­thet­ic. If there’s ever an extend­ed ver­sion of the film where I can put a cou­ple scenes back, I will recut that scene!”

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

How to Film Thought: A Close Look at the Mas­ter­ful Edit­ing of Sher­lock, Star­ring Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch

The Alche­my of Film Edit­ing, Explored in a New Video Essay That Breaks Down Han­nah and Her Sis­ters, The Empire Strikes Back & Oth­er Films

Scenes from Bohemi­an Rhap­sody Com­pared to Real Life: A 21-Minute Com­pi­la­tion

Hear How Queen’s “Bohemi­an Rhap­sody” Would Sound If Sung by John­ny Cash, David Bowie, Janis Joplin, Frank Sina­tra & 38 Oth­er Artists


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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.