Understanding the Concept of Jump Cut & How to Jump Cut like A Pro

By Cecilia Hwung | Last Update:

SUMMARY: This is the all-around guide on the definition of jump cut, top jump cut examples in film, how to utilize and disable jump cut, and much more. Let's check it!

To under the meaning of a film, you should get to know the language of film just like learning a foreign language in the first place, including its words (individual shots), grammar (editing skills), common practices (inspirations), etc. A good storyteller that masters the language the film can answer the questions: who, what, where, when, why and how more effectively and convey the core message to the audience in a better way.

If you take shots as nouns, you can take edit points as verbs that connect one shot to another. This post is going to uncover jump cut and how it works in footages in the following section. Let's check it!

What Is a Jump Cut

A jump cut is a creative choice that appears a discontinuity/abrupt switch between two shots that are similar in content and framing. It's usually used to transmit the passage of time, add tension, impact, and much more in the right scene.

However, film production at the earliest time followed the rule that applied continuity of action across the edit point to avoid jump cut. That is very similar to our daily life. Everything goes step-by-step: get-up, shower, breakfast, coffee, on-duty, etc.

However, if the movie only uses this way of telling stories, it will become very lengthy and boring.

What Is Jump Cut
What Is Jump Cut

Top Jump Cut Examples in Film

One of the best ways to learn the language of film is to watch those outstanding films and see how the filmmakers craft their projects using different editing tricks. This part has gathered 5 top films that employ jump cut to tell the stories. Without further ado, let's jump right in!

1. Breathless (1960)

In Godard's Breathless, he connects several shots with the same camera, the same scene and the same subject by employing the "abnormal" montage skill – jump cut.

It aims to shorten part of the time when the car is driving. Removing the long, meaningless, and boring journey to compress the running time and accelerate the development of the plot. More so, it shows the boredom of the actress.

This film aroused widespread concern at that time and broken the traditional rule of post production. Since then, film is no longer limited by continuity only.

Jump Cut in Breathless
Jump Cut in Breathless

2. Little Shop of Horrors (1986)

Little Shop of Horrors is a comedy, horror, musical film directed by Frank Oz. The story is about a nerdy florist shop worker Seymour Krelborn purchases an unidentified plant that feeds only on human blood instead of fresh water.

The monster plant suggests that Seymour kill someone in exchange for romance and success. But Seymour's afraid of the plant's growing appetite and finally destroys it using an electrical cable.

The jump cut in this scene emphasizes the fact that the flower shop has been struggling for a lack of customers. And Mr. Mushnik's decision to shut down the store. This follows the idea to display strange plants in the shop to win more customers.

Jump Cut in Little Shop of Horrors
Jump Cut in Little Shop of Horrors

3. A Bronx Tale (1993)

A Bronx Tale, the directorial debut of Robert De Niro, is a film adaptation of Chazz Palminteri's 1989 play of the same name. The story tells that a 9-year-old boy and his father live in an Italian-American community in the Bronx, New York. The young boy's fascinated by a local mafia led by Sonny. While the father prefers a law-abiding life and wants to have nothing to do with the mafia.

The jump cut arranges at the start of the film where is introducing daily life in the Bronx. There is a group of young gangsters is playing baseball right on the street. Jump cutting these shots can speed up the development of the story and move to the point faster.

Jump Cut in A Bronx Tale
Jump Cut in A Bronx Tale

4. Snatch (2000)

Snatch, a comedy and crime film, is directed and written by Guy Ritchie who started in directing music video and advertisement in his early career.

The story contains two labyrinthine plots: Franky "Four-Fingers" steals some diamonds from an Antwerp jeweler, then he plans to sell small diamonds in London and hand over the huge diamond to his boss Avi. Meanwhile, a boxing promoter Turkish is trying to fix a boxing match for his leader Brick Top.

The use of the jump cut at the beginning is just amazing. The director connects several scenes with a few small objects – a huge diamond, a safe, a wad of bills, a bag, jewelers, pokers, a book- and introduced casts in each scene using jump cut to speed things up and show the British dark humor.

Jump Cut in Snatch
Jump Cut in Snatch

5. Contratiempo/The Invisible Guest (2016)

A Spanish murder mystery directed by Oriol Paulo. The Invisible Guest talks about a young and wealthy businessman Adrián Doria accused of the murder of his lover, Laura Vidal. To help him out, Adrián's lawyer Felix hired a senior and prestigious witness preparation expert, Virginia Goodman to help Adrián create a credible defense.

The jump cut of the film occurs in the scene where Adrián talks with his wife in a detention center and his wife leaves heartbrokenly. And the jump cut here serves a purpose that tells how awful and vulnerable Adrian feels.

Jump Cut in The Invisible Guest
Jump Cut in The Invisible Guest

How to Jump Cut Your Video Like A Pro

To utilize jump cut properly in your content, you should understand the concept of jump cut at the get-go. I believe you have already figured it out by checking the context above. Plus, you should have a smart video cutter to help you out.

VideoProc is an intuitive and nifty video cutter running on both Windows and macOS. With the help of VideoProc, you can jump cut your video in a few clicks, which takes you only a little train to master.

VideoProc - A Simple Video Cutter to Jump Cut your Video

  • It contains the ability to cut, trim, split videos. Plus, you can montage your projects and export them at one take.
  • Support level-3 hardware encoding powered by Intel, AMD, and NVIDIA.
  • It recognizes over 370 input formats and supports more than 420 output formats. You don't have to worry about its profile library.
  • It has bonus features like adding filters, subtitles, watermarks, ripping YouTube videos, recording PC/iPhone screen, and much more.

How to jump cut your videos using VideoProc

1. Launch VideoProc and add media files to it

If you don't have VideoProc, you can free download the application by clicking the download buttons above. After that, launch VideoProc and select the Video at the main screen.

You can drag and drop from the desktop to import video sources directly. Or you can click the +Video button at the top ribbon to import an individual file or folders.

After that, you should select an output format for your videos at the bottom tool bar.

Add Media Files to VideoProc
Add Media Files to VideoProc

2. Enable the video cutter to jump cut

Single click on the clip you are going to cut and select Cut to enable the video cutter.

Move the slider to adjust the start point and end point, then click the Cut button in orange to have a clip trimmed. More so, you can click on the Edit button to fine tune the start point and end point of a clip.

When you have a few clips selected, click Done at the lower right corner. And the clips will be merged into one. And that results in a jump cut effect.

Enable the Video Cutter to Jump Cut in VideoProc
Enable the Video Cutter to Jump Cut in VideoProc

3. Initiate the video cutting

You will return to the video processing interface after video cutting. To start the video cutting, click on the RUN button at the lower right corner. Output videos will be available in a blink.

Initial the Video Cutting in Videoproc
Initial the Video Cutting in Videoproc

Don't Like Jump Cuts? How to Avoid It?

Jump cut is one of the creative choices for your content. It serves special purposes in a particular place, so that you should not apply this transition to every edit point in your content. However, the mainstream is always continuity editing. More so, the abuse of jump cut can easily cause an unpleasant effect on audiences.

If you want to remove the jump cut in your movie, take Smooth Cut in DaVinci Resolve 16 a try. It smooths out the transition by generating new frames between the two clips, so that it looks like one seamless clip.

How to Avoid Jump Cut Using Resolve 16

1. Download and install the Resolve 16 to your computer

Resolve 16 is a free video editing software and available from its official website. Fill out a form and you can download this Resolve 16 for free.

2. Add media files to the media pool

In the Media page, load and drag the video sources to the media pool for editing. After that, navigate to the Cut page.

3. Apply smooth cut

Drag the clips from the media pool to the timeline and move the play head near the edit point. Then, click the Smooth Cut button to smooth out the transition.

Smooth Cut in Resolve 16
Smooth Cut in Resolve 16

To fine tune the transition, you can select the smooth cut in the upper or lower timeline. And you can adjust the transition duration in the large viewer.

Fine Tune Smooth Cut in Resolve 16
Fine Tune Smooth Cut in Resolve 16

4. Render and export videos

Once the smooth cut is complete, go to the Deliver page for exporting output files. In the Render Settings window, you can make your own file format or select a ready-to-go preset > click Add to Render Queue > click on Start Render.

FAQs about Jump Cut

Where to Use Jump Cut?

Sometime, there could be some dead time in your video that is boring for audiences. You can jump cut the procedures to fast forward the story. More so, you can take jump cut as an editing skill that can convey the passage of time or make something/someone appears like magic.

Jump Cut VS Match Cut

Beginners are always confused about the gap between the jump cut and the match cut. A jump cut is used between the Same shots, while a match cut is used to Similar shots that match in either the action, composition, and dialogue.

Read Full Review of Match Cuts >>

About The Author

Cecilia Hwung is the marketing manager of Digiarty Software and the editor-in-chief of VideoProc team. She pursues common progress with her team and expects to share more creative content and useful information to readers. She has strong interest in copywriting and rich experience in video editing tips.

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