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Our short film uses a generic narrative for a Romantic Drama as the audience is introduced to a troubled main protagonist whose problems cease when he finds a companion.
However a quirky enigma is created as the two characters never physically meet, setting up an atmospheric climax, the conclusion of which is left to the audience’s own interpretation. This apeture ending effect creates a significant element of mystery that will ‘get people talking’ so to say. As we believe the best, most entertaining films are those which generate discussions of interest long after the final credits have rolled. Our film can be described as using an experimental narrative as it doesn’t fit with conventional narrative codes such as that of Todorov. The ambiguous nature means it would fit well as an Art House film to appeal to the typical middleclass 30+ audience of specialised films, however it was our aim to introduce a younger audience to specialised films and we feel we have achieved this through the films promotion, simplistic arty narrative and use of teenage actors.
M I S E E N S C E N E We feel the lighting is successful in giving the film a more organic feel as we have relied completely on natural light reflecting upon the relationship of the characters as more authentic and pure. We filmed on a gloomy day to signify the dreary tone in the scene when the boy discovers the tide is in, this shifts significantly at the end when the prominent light of the sun returns to highlight the climatic final meeting between our protagonists – a symbol of hope. The music is also cohesive to the changing tones – with soft slow melodies to illustrate the solitary mood of Boy whilst upbeat acoustic rhythms compliment the free spirited nature of Girl and the optimism as the story progresses.
We used a range of camera angles to build up a more visually interesting narrative , including impressive establishing shots of the seaside scenery, close ups to illustrate the emotions of the characters as well as low angles in the sequences when they draw in the sand. We edited the shots carefully with cross dissolves to ensure smooth fluid transitions as well as a fading out effect to symbolise the passing of time. We also used two sequences of stop-frame animation to move the narrative along in a unique and artistic way, which we feel, will appeal to our audience of young people, as it is a familiar technique with film students and aspiring directors.
C H A R A C T E R S
We have followed the generic conventions of short films by only using two main protagonists so the narrative is focused and cohesive in it’s small space of time. We have challenged the character functions of Propp by reversing the gender roles, it could be said that Girl plays the role of the hero as she saves boy from his sullen Lifestyle – this will appeal to modern audiences.
TIME AND TECHNOLOGY
We incorporated the element of digital technology in simplistic yet effective instances through the use of an i-pod and close-up of a mobile phone, small details which establish the modern-day setting and importance of technology to the teenage protagonists which adds realism. The theme of time is also central to our narrative as the characters had to be ‘in the right place at the right time’ to be aware of each other and communicate. The timing of the tide coming in at the ending of the film is also significant to this theme as it suggests things don’t always last – time will always run out.
ANCILL A RY TASKS
My film poster could be effectively presented at film festivals such as the Edinburgh festival , in large form around the event as well as flyers that could be handed out to festival-goers. This will ensure we are capturing the correct audience of urban, professional middleclass people passionate about films. The main focus of my poster is the content of the film rather than any stars as it is not mainstream, highlighting an ambiguous tagline much in the manner of Spike Jonzes poster for his short ‘I’m Here ’. Likewise the theme is very artistic to appeal to the middleclass art house audience whilst including all the traditional film production titles at the bottom of the poster to look more mainstream appealing . It is also successful for an audience interested in specialized film as it’s not gender biased: despite being a romantic drama the poster isn’t conventional , setting up an intriguing artistic image that will appeal to all.
My double page spread magazine article would suitably fit The Gaurdian, reaching out to their well educated, cultural fan base as we are trying to introduce the audience to specialised film. It uses music as a key promotional tool for the film which will entice Gaurdian readers as well as focusing on the director as a young and independent which will again appeal to the young audience. I think it’s cohesive in layout and theme to the general style of the Guardian as simplistic with an edge and that a new Film section for their magazine will increase readership . I’ve included Screen captures from the film as well as comments from the director which are typical conventions of an article about film seen in such magazines as Empire . Technology is crucial to appeal to a modern audience so having access to advertising space on social networking sites such as Facebook would be an effective marketing tool as well as creating an official page for the film to upload pictures and videos which users can access and ‘like’ to promote further awareness of the film that’s not necessarily in the mainstream. We would have an official site which would stream the full film to all users, much in the manner of Spike Jonzes’ ‘I’m Here’ website.
I think the promotional materials work well for the film, using the poster and flyers at film festivals capture the typical middleclass 30+ audience that appreciate specialised films whilst also using social networking and The Guardian to market the film to a higher A/B/C1 audience . This proved to work effectively for the recent independent feature ‘SUBMARINE’ by targeting a young audience over facebook the film has climbed to the top of the charts surpassing the mainstream. I could have produced a double page spread article for an exclusively film orientated magazine such as Empire or Total Film to ensure I have captured the correct audience for specialised films which are generally the middleclass interested in culture, also if I were to add or change a feature I would probably include an award win on my poster such as “Winner of the short film Palme d’Or” at Cannes, again to entice a conventional audience of specialised festival films.