Question 1: In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?Nine frame analysis of my film opening sequence called “Retribution”. The genre my film isthriller.Nine frame analysis of an existing film open sequence. This opening sequence is from thefilm called “The Imposters”. The genre of this film is comedy.
I am going to analyse the similarities and differences between the shots in my openingsequence with the shots in the existing opening sequence.Shots one:The first shot from my frame starts the opening sequence by displaying “Twisted PicturesPresents” we have displayed who the film is presented by at the beginning because itinstantly tells the audience who the film is presented by so if the viewer likes the film theyknow which company films to watch. This is a good way of them advertising themselves.Using this for the first shot is useful because the audience always look at what appears first.We have displayed the text using a mid-shot so it is not over powering but not invisible. Thefirst shot from the existing frame uses the same shot of display the film name “TheImposters”, it has also used a mid-shot. The idea that it has a black background is reallygood because it makes the white font stand out; this is why we have also used a blackbackground. However we have challenged these existing conventions because we have notdisplayed the film name at the beginning. This is because we knew that the audience willalready be aware of the film name so it will not make much of a difference if we displayedthe film name later on. Both of the shots have used different font styles. The first shot in myframe uses a cracked font style which fits in with the thriller genre of my film. This contrastswith the first shot from the existing frame which uses a plain simple font style. This alsoshows another way we have challenged media conventions because we have not gone forthe ordinary font style. The music in my opening sequence starts withThere is no music played throughout the first shot of the “The Imposters”, this may havebeen done be to draw the attention of audience of what is going to happen because it is acomedy film and they will be expecting to see something funny. The beginning of our filmsequence starts with horror music called “Halloween theme song”, we used this song at thebeginning as it is fast paced which builds tension for the audience. This shows we havedeveloped existing conventions because the majority of thriller/horror films starts withquick paced music do draw in the attention of the viewers. It is interesting how both thefilm sequences are of different genres but use the same shot, colours and style for theopening scene. This shows how different genres of films can use the same conventions.Shots two:The second shot from my frame shows Lucy (victim) looking into the camera as she isgetting ready for school using a mid-close-up shot showing her hand movements anduniform showing the viewer that she is a school student. This is a stereotypical shot of howgirls concentrate closely on how their visual appearance. The location Lucy is standing in isthe toilet which reflects the genre of the film as thriller/horror because she is standing in a
confined area which indicates she is restricted to moving around and is closed within thatlocation, this is stereotypical of thriller films because a lot of confined locations are used inthem to make the audience feel that someone is watching them. This shot introduces Lucyas being in control of herself, she has got her elbows out telling the audience that she isholding her hips, this reflect the confidence she has in herself. In this shot the audience cansee that she is getting ready to go to school because she is wearing her school uniform. Herstrong personality is also reflected through her clothes for example people that wear blazersand suits often feel superior and well presented. This reflects her bubbly, outgoingpersonality. This shot uses special effects by making this shot black and white as it isshowing a flash back of what Lucy did earlier that morning. Flashbacks are a key conventionof thriller because it reflects time and space causing dis-continuity in the sequences whichconfuses the audience. The flash backs are black and white which is another key feature ofthriller films because they emphasise the use of shadows which can often appear as dark.An example of this is in the film “Psycho” by Alfred Hitchcock. The second shot of “TheImposters” also uses a mid-close-up shot of the man sitting drinking his tea/coffee. This shotallows viewers to see the facial expression on his face looking as if he is disgusted. This shotin itself may be funny for the audience because his face looks grumpy. This shot shows thathe is wearing a suit, dressed smartly so he must be in a high profession. The second shotsfrom both frames show similarities in their clothing. Our film sequence challenges thestereotype that only men wear suits and women cannot. Lucy is also wearing a tie whichchallenges this stereotype further because you rarely see a girl/woman wearing formalclothing with a tie as it can be seen as unusual to some people.Shot 3, 5, 7:The third shot starts by displaying the credit “Jodie Smith”, this is the name of an actor thatcomes later on in the film. The name of the actor is displayed on the bottom left handcorner while the rest of the screen in pitch black, this creates tension. The third shot frommy frame displays another credit “Taylor Matthews”, this is the name Lucy’s abuser. Thiscredit id displayed on the on the bottom right hand corner. The seventh shot from thisframe shoe two credits displayed at the same time, “Lucy Smith” who is the victim and “PaulWalker” who is the main inspector in the film. You can see that our opening sequencedisplays the opening credits in several different positions throughout the sequence. Thisreflects the uncertainty of thriller/horror films because anything can be expected. Similarlythe opening credits to the thriller film “Panic Room” displays its opening credits throughvarious angles as shown below:
This builds on the suspense. Therefore we have used a typical convention for the positioningof the opening credits. However shots three, five and seven in “The imposters” framedisplays all the opening credits in the centre which shows continuity of the creditpositioning throughout the opening sequence. This could be because comedy films do notuse special effects as much.Shots 4:Shot four in the “Retribution” frame shows a high angle of the camera focusing on Lucy asshe is sitting tied to a chai in a basement looking around in a panic. This shot has been usedto make the audience feel that someone is spying in her and it makes viewers want to watchon as they want to see who it is. This shot shows Lucy is still wearing her uniform whichshows that these events happened on the same day. Shot four from “The Imposters” carrieson from shot two which is showing the man getting sugar from another man sitting on atable next to him. This shot uses a wide shot showing the audience that he is sitting in-between high class rich people because the men wearing expensive suits and the womenare wearing formal dresses. The location of this scene shows tree and a lake in the fardistance which connotes nature, calmness, this focuses all the attention of the audience onthe man so viewers find his acting funny. In the fourth shot in my frame lighting is shining onLucy like a spotlight which highlights her as a lonely individual in the basement. Usinglighting as almost a spotlight on the victim makes them appear vulnerable and helpless. Thelow key lighting used in this shot is a common convention of a thriller film which is used torepresent the victims hidden feelings inside them and it also creates suspense.Shots 6:Shot six of the “Retribution” frame shows a wide angle shot of Lucy tied to a chair. Thisshows she is under the control of someone else but cannot escape. You can clearly see thatthe location is in a basement which is typical of thriller movies because they are mainlybased around dark, confined locations. A wide range of mise-en-scene has been used in thisshot showing a lamp used, basket in shot four users can see a rope this informs and showsthe audience where this scene is located and how the abuser has prepared himself for thevictim. This equipment reinforces that the genre of the film is thriller. From this shot the
audience can see that there is going to be a pan around Lucy which will almost make theaudience feel that someone is walking towards her creating tension. Shot six of “TheImposters” frame shows another wide shot of the man standing up welcoming a woman tosit down with him. This informs the audience that he was waiting for someone.Shots 8:Shot eight of the “Retribution” frame shows a high angle shot, zoomed into Lucy’s legsshowing she is sitting and the abusers feet. The use of this high angle is to reinforce hisdominating power over Lucy. This is a common convention because most of the timewomen are made to be the helpless victims while men are represented as strong anddominating because they believe they have string physical power.Shots 9:Shot nine in my frame displays the name of our film which is “Retribution”, it is displayed inred because red typically connoted blood, power, fire etc. Also the font style of the crackedeffect is the same as the title in the first shot this shows continuity from beginning to end.Overall looking at both of the frames you can see that the “Retribution” frame uses a widerange of camera angles and shots, this shows the frequently used conventions of thrillerwhich includes flashy editing and quick shots which create tension in a short period of time.By contrast “The imposters” frame shows blatant continuity between the shots whichreflects the calm sequences of the comedy. More interesting thrillers have to use quick,jumpy shots as a way of keeping the audience engaged, while comedy films are morerelaxed because they know that the audience will be entertained through the humour. Thisalso leads to the difference in the sound used. Also along with the visuals sound plays animportant part in getting a message across to the audience. Thriller films use intense,upbeat sound tracks like we have in our opening sequence to keep the audience engaged,this is typical of most thriller movies.