Exploring films outside of hollywood revision


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  • Can they remember what REPRESENTATION is?
  • WEEK 3 AFTER THEMESAnswer questions 1 and 2 using film language
  • Exploring films outside of hollywood revision

    1. 1. Exploring films outside of Hollywood • This is paper 2 and you exam will be on • Tuesday 26th June • The film you are studying is • Tsotsi made in 2005 and directed by • Gavin Hood 1
    2. 2. Aims of the exam paperTo have detailed To haveknowledge of the improvedfilm and its textualthemes analysis skills and apply them to the text To have an understanding of issues of To have increased audience and insight into the institution in context and issues respect of the of equality and film diversity the film represents 2
    3. 3. What do you know about Tsotsi?Tsotsi is an extraordinary film by director Gavin Hood that manages tomap some of the huge contrasts in modern South Africa - its affluence THEMES?and grinding poverty, its haves and have-nots, its energy and optimismalongside the disease, addiction and crime that blights so many lives. MESSAGES? Hood’s film is an updated adaptation of a 1960s novella by eminent South African playwright Athol Fugard, in which the protagonist’s first-person account gives the reader insights into the Tsotsi’s origins and motivations. At a time when so many in South Africa live in fear of random-seeming violence inflicted by so called ‘feral’ young people, this film is a compelling attempt to delve beneath the statistics of modern-day crime – to put an unsentimental but human face on actions that otherwise might seem utterly inexplicable and monstrous. REPRESENTATIONS? Tsotsi as a film encourages empathy and develops your understanding of contemporary global issues – the disparities between wealth and poverty and the implications for society when so many are robbed of their childhoods. It is a film about chance, about opportunity and choice. BASED ON REALITY? 3
    4. 4. What do you know about South Africa?• Over half the population lives below the poverty line – many on just a $1 a day.• A quarter of the population is unemployed.• More than a fifth (21%) of the adult population is infected with HIV/Aids and thousands of children grow up orphaned due to the premature deaths of their parents.• Despite a rapid house-building programme over the last decade it still has many of its people living in shantytowns and squatter camps in shelters constructed from scavenged scrap.• Violent crime, though falling, still costs the lives of over 20,000 people a year - and armed-robbery, car-jacking, rape and aggravated burglary are the stuff of everyday anecdote. Some or all of these are the painful legacies of 50 years of racism, discrimination and neglect and also of the miseries in many other parts of Africa - that make South Africa an incredible melting-pot of nationalities and cultures. 4
    5. 5. How does the film Tsotsi represent South Africa? What impression of the country do you receive and what clues are there in it about the lives of ordinary people living there?The evidence of poverty The evidence that Southand affluence – consider Africa’s capital Johannesburgthe logo on Pumla Dube’s and its townships areshopping bag that Tsotsi lively, energetic, bustlingsteals to carry the baby off places.in – ‘Expect More’. The evidence of strong Evidence of mixed cultural/artistic forces at communities or highly work in the townships segregated communities (clue: consider the language, (apart from the one white music and even the colourful policeman – why is there fabrics and hanging glass and so little evidence of white metal mobiles that Miriam people in this film – produces in her home to crossing Tsotsi’s path?) help make ends meet.) The evidence of pollution The evidence of disease – particularly HIV/Aids (clue: look The prominence of crime and violence out for posters and also Tsotsi’s and the response of the police to flashback memories of his crime and criminals – however young. mother) 5
    6. 6. Representations and Stereotypes Every time we Representation watch a film, we therefore refers to are not seeing the construction of reality, but ‘reality someones version of it. Look at these images and Representation involves using your textual analysis skills determine what or analysing how identities are re- who is being presented or rather constructed represented, consider how to communicate a certain the representation is meaning constructed. 6
    7. 7. Representations and StereotypesA stereotype is a commonly held imageof a person or group, based on an oversimplification of some observed orimagined trait of behaviour orappearance mise-en-scene performance camerawork framing editing sound 7
    8. 8. Representations and StereotypesCharacter Analysis: It’s important thatyou are able to analyse therepresentation of key characters is thefilm. For revision purposes let’s stickwith Tsotsi. In stories it is often suggested that something significant happens that changes things for the hero forever – initiating subsequent developments. The most obvious such ‘agent’ in Tsotsi’s story is the baby but perhaps there are some 8 other more crucial moments in his story that were just as pivotal: as life-changing
    9. 9. How far does Tsotsi change over the course of the film?Describe Tsotsi Describe Tsotsiat the beginning at the end ofof the film the film Describe some events that may have caused him to change 9
    10. 10. How far does Tsotsi change over the course of the film?• Consider the list of events below and • 1. Totsi stealing the baby. • 2. The killing of the old man. decide which you feel might have • 3. Boston’s self-disgust and his needling of Tsotsi been a major cause of later change. leading to the fight. • 4. The sight of Boston’s swollen, infected face. Can you suggest some other events • 5. The conversation with Morris – the crippled in the film and why they are beggar, underneath the flyover. significant for the development of • 6. The first rejection of Aap. • 7. The second rejection of Aap – when they are the story. in the hijacked car chopshop. • 8. The dream of his mother. • 9. Miriam and her home in the township. Her tale of her husband’s death teaches Tsotsi something about his own crimes. • 10. The memory of his father’s brutality triggered when visiting Miriam. • 11. The burglary of the baby’s home and in particular time spent in the baby’s • bedroom. • 12. Butcher’s discovery of the gun and threatening of John Dube – the father. 10
    11. 11. RepresentationsRemember representation is construction Choose a key sequence and explore how one of the following is represented in it SOCIAL CLASS 11
    12. 12. Describe what thefilm says about a Themes and issues How is the film of issue explored in atheme or issue key sequence? 12
    13. 13. Settings and locations in TsotsiName a setting in What does thethe film setting suggest to Describe what it audiences? looks like How does one of the settings relate to the theme or issue you discussed? 13
    14. 14. Tsotsi – the closing scene• Were you happy with the ending of the film?• What is the message at the end?• What do you think will happen to Tsotsi?• How would you have ended the film? 14
    15. 15. Micro Features and their effectTechnique Example EffectCinematography, costume and music Warm golden colours used to show Shows that although it is poor it is also a shanty town (aided by brightly coloured vibrant, colourful place that the African clothing worn, upbeat Kwaito characters call ‘home’. (However at night music played) it becomes more sinister.)Camera shots: Often used to show the shantytown Emphasises the size of the slum. It isHigh Angle and Wide Shot and/or where Tsotsi lives – rows of makeshift sprawling – we see the magnitude ofCrane shots houses and when policemen find Tsotsi’s poverty. His story is just one of many. abandons the car on highway. It also makes it hard for the police to find criminals – they become invisible in the masses.Camera shots: Tsotsi walking on tracks, Two things:Film uses a lot of Tsotsi and gang melting into the 1. Seems stage like – Tsotsi is aWide Shots held for a long time crowd in the railway station, character in morality play – he(alternated with Close Ups to show The pipes in the flashback has to go through certainTsotsi’s face) Tsotsi under bridge with Morris, etc episodes and learn and grow. 2. Shows how the characters lives are intertwined with their setting – eg Tsotsi’s life would be different if he did not grow up poor/orphaned by AIDS/ in Soweto’s township 15
    16. 16. Micro Features and their effectTechnique Example EffectMise-en-scene Tsotsi’s corrugated iron hut is stacked Setting reveals character’s history – with stolen audio-visual equipment life of crime but also practice in townships of ‘making do’- Illegal connection to mains power when he puts on music.Contrast in lighting Warm, earthy colours used for Emphasises the difference in the ‘two township v. cool, sterile lighting used worlds’ in South Africa. We see the to show train station, hospital gap between rich and poor more clearly. The new black middle class (John and Pumla) have access to electricity, clean surroundings, modern amenities. Poor must make do with dirt floors, no running water.Contrast in Mise-en-scene Water pump, use of wooden boxes as Same as above makeshift furniture, houses made from scrap timber in the shanty town. This contrasts with a high-tech security system, high iron gates, spacious modern home with luxurious furnishings. 16
    17. 17. Micro Features and their effectTechnique Example EffectMise-en-scene Colourful pastel mural of African Shows the ‘myth’ of South Africa that plains with animals in baby’s room foreigners come to see - the savannah, the wildlife. The reality that people want to ignore is the poverty.Music / Soundtrack Booming Kwaito music (modern Creates mood – suggests their tough South African music with hip-hop natures. Music brings to mind US beat, strong bass line and spoken gangster rap – we think youth gangs, lyrics) used when Tsotsi and his gang crime, feeling angry / estranged from walk through township and in Soekie’s society, violence. bar where the boys fight.Sound effects Use of ‘snake rattle’ sound effect Creates sense of fear and suspense. when Tsotsi is following Morris and Highlights the sense of J’burg as Miriam dangerous/crime-ridden. Audience fears for the ‘victim’ – suggests predator is stalking his prey. 17
    18. 18. Creative response to Tsotsi• In the exam the last • Whatever task you are question will allow you to given, it is important that show your knowledge and you include a consideration understanding of the ways of performance, issues and in which Tsotsi themes, people and places communicates all the issues and combine these with and ideas that you have your personal response to explored and discussed in the film. class, in a creative way. You • HOMEWORK: may be asked to: • Use blog and revision notes – Write a review for a specific to prepare for practice target audience – Create a poster exam on Tuesday – Design a webpage • www.mrsraji.blogspot.com – Produce a blog 18