Mise-en-scene I


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Slides from a University of Calgary Drama class, "Smartphone Movie Making."

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Mise-en-scene I

  1. 1. Mise-en-scene I Photography. The cinematographer, the shots, the angles, lighting and colour symbolism (+ post production) Week 2 University of Calgary Drama 571 Mise-en-scene I
  2. 2. Homework Rideshare (Donovan Cook, 2011) Shot entirely on iPhone (4) on a budget of $34K, Rideshare is a comedy about three strangers who answer a ad to drive a car from LA to DC.
  3. 3. Rideshare. Chart the story. Robert McKee’s Principles •What was the Inciting Incident? (The primary cause of what follows?) •How does the protagonist react to this? (the Quest) •The Progressive Complications? How are the subplots involved? •The Crisis? What is the crisis decision? •The Climax? What’s the “value swing”? •The Resolution? What’s the point of this resolution in terms of dramatic structure? 2. What other technology is being used besides iPhone?
  4. 4. Rideshare Story Structure Escalating Action Plotline Schematic Protagonists’ Quest What’s at Stake? Find Life and Freedom X Inciting Incident Answering the Ad X Crisis Decision X Slushie – Consequence? X Hoover Dam – Border Jumping X Four Corners and Petie Do they break up in Dollywood? X Lemonade’s Disclosure about USC X Car breakdown – Darlene meets the dude (X Climax Subplot Faux Climax) X Climax Abe and Darlene’s fate Lemonade’s Big Surprise X Escalating Actions X Resolution Life and Freedom Meet the Schedule
  5. 5. Mise en SceneMise-en-scène Mise-en-scène : How the visual materials are photographed, staged, and framed (as a captured moment in time). Mise-en-scène -- originally a French theatrical term, meaning “placing on stage.” In movies, mise-en-scene is a blend of the visual conventions of live theatre and converted into a two- dimensional image of the real thing. The “visual” text. Aesthetics of Filmmaking
  6. 6. Systematic Mise en Scene Analysis 15 pt. Systematic Mise en Scene Analysis . 1. Dominant. What is our eye attracted to? 2. Lighting Styles and Key: High-key, low-key, painterly, linear? 3. Shot and Camera Proxemics: What type of shot? How far away? 4. Shot Angles. High, low, neutral. 5. Colour values. What is dominant colour? Colour symbolism? 6. Lens/filter/stock. How do these distort or comment on photography? 7. Subsidiary contrasts. What are the eye-stops after the dominant? 8. Density. How much visual information is packed into the image? Is texture stark, moderate, or highly detailed? Continued next screen “Photographic considerations” Aesthetics of Filmmaking
  7. 7. Systematic Mise en Scene Analysis 15 pt. Systematic Mise-en-scène Analysis 9. Composition. How is the 2-D space segmented and organized? What is the underlying design? 10. Form. Open or closed? Does the image suggest a window that arbitrarily isolates a fragment of the scene? Or is it self contained? 11. Framing. Tight or loose? How much room do the characters have to move around? 12. Depth. On how many planes is the image composed? Does the background and foreground comment on the midground? 13. Character placement. What parts of the framed space are occupied? 14. Staging positions.Which way to they look vis-à-vis the camera 15.Character proxemics. How much space between characters? Continued …
  8. 8. Camera Shots (Proxemics) Cinematography affects “tone” or general atmosphere of a film. Eg the drop-dead awesome beauty of the long shot or establishing shot, in Lawrence of Arabia. Requires a wide angle lens to capture objects at several focal distances and photographed in depth. Aesthetics of Filmmaking
  9. 9. Long, Full, Medium Closeup Extreme Closeup Shots. Proxemics. In this scene of Il Bueno, il brutto, il cattivo, watch for the transition between long shot or establishing shot to the full shot to the medium shot to the closeup to the extreme close up. (Clip From 3’30”) Aesthetics of Filmmaking
  10. 10. Il Bueno, il brutto, il cattivo aka The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Sergio Leone, 1966) DOP (Cinematographer): Writing credits Luciano Vincenzoni &Sergio Leone Genre: Action / Western / Drama (more) Music: Ennio Morricone Tagline: For Three Men The Civil War Wasn't Hell. It Was Practice! Plot Outline: Three gunmen set out to find a hidden fortune. Who will walk away with the cash? User Comments: The best of Eastwood's "spaghetti westerns" Cast overview, first billed only: Clint Eastwood .... Joe Lee Van Cleef .... Sentenza Elli Wallach .... Tuco From imdb
  11. 11. Camera Angles Aesthetics of Filmmaking Five basic angles in cinema: 1. The bird’s eye view 2. The high angle 3. The eye-level shot 4. The low angle 5. The oblique angle
  12. 12. Camera Angles Aesthetics of Filmmaking Watch how the “status” of the characters change in Psycho scene through use of high and low angles.
  13. 13. Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1988) DOP (Cinematographer): John L. Russell Writing credits Robert Bloch (novel) Joseph Stefano (screenplay) Genre: Horror / Thriller Tagline: A new- and altogether different- screen excitement!!! (more) Plot Outline: A young female embezzeler arrives at the Bates Motel which has terrible secrets of its own. Cast: Anthony Perkins .... Norman Bates Janet Leigh .... Marion Crane Vera Miles .... Lila Crane John Gavin .... Sam Loomis From imdb
  14. 14. Light and Dark Styles of lighting: High Key, Comedies, musicals, bright even light with few shadows. Example we saw? High Contrast, Harsh shafts of light, dramatic streaks of blackness. Example? Hitchcock staged many of his most violent scenes in the glaring light. Painterly style of light eg. Girl with the Pearl Earring. Soft-focus, sensuous, romantic. Linear style is austere, deglamourized, razor-sharp deep focus. High-key cinematography favoured by realists. Aesthetics of Filmmaking
  15. 15. Colour Expressionism Colour tends to be a subconscious element in film. Strongly emotional in appeal, expressive and atmospheric rather than conspicuous or intellectual. Psychologists have discovered that people actively attempt to interpret the lines of a composition but accept colour passively, permitting it to suggest moods rather than objects. Some filmmakers deliberately alternate episodes in black and white with sequences in colour. Example of these two points: Girl with the Pearl Earring. (Colour saturated and muted in post production.) Aesthetics of Filmmaking From: Giannetti, Louis, and Jim Leach. (2005) Understanding Movies, Third Canadian Edition). Pearson: Toronto.