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Patrick Colm Hogan

Our emotional responses are determined not only by actual experience, but also by anticipation. Indeed, we respond not only to anticipations per se, but to the relation between anticipations and experiences. Such anticipations operate on different time scales, linked with distinct neurological substrates. Some—such as those involving expectations about the immediate trajectory of objects—are very brief. The relations between experience and very short-term expectations can have significant emotional consequences. One purpose of the standard continuity editing system is to avoid disruptions in our short-term projections. However, the manipulation of discontinuities, thus the controlled disruption of short-term anticipations, can significantly contribute to the emotional impact of film. It is possible to isolate distinct varieties of anticipation and disruption, examining their emotional consequences in different cases. Muzaffar Ali's Umrao Jaan provides a virtual catalogue of such disruptions and their emotional effects.