In what ways does your mediaproduct use, develop or challengeforms and conventions of real mediaproducts?
This is the first shot of Maddie aka Georgiana/George in our film opening. It introduces hersleeping on a park bench. She is wearing a tatty grey hoodie and tracksuitbottoms, showing her lack of money and care for herself, which juxtaposes the socialperceptions of teenagers and their vanity.The parkbench showsherhomelessness,which is therunning themeof the film.Originally Ifilmed it in theday, thenadded an effecton iMoviewhich made itlook like it wasdark because Iwanted toshow the placethat she sleepsat night, and italso shows herisolation fromher family andfriends.I also chose her to be sleeping on a park bench because of society’sstereotypical perception, and in Hollywood films, of homeless‘hobos’ are drunks who sleep on park benches.
This shot is a close up of our actor Maddie’s face. I think this shot is effective becausethe framing around her face shows her isolation and loneliness, and her emotionsdisplayed on her face. I did Maddie’s makeup before filming, making her very paleand using makeup to put dark shadows under her eyes. This was to make her look illand uncared for.I like the factthat Maddieis outsideWaitrosebecause it isa busyshop, and allthe peoplecoming outcontrast toour characterGeorgebecause shecannot affordto goshopping.In all the shots, including this one, leading up to thedialogue with Billy, she is the subject of the shot, andthe only person filling the frame. This suggests thatshe has no friends or family, or anywhere else to go.
Me and Charlotte chose the name ‘Dead End’ because it represents our character’slife, and that she has no where to go. It is also a name for an alley, which is where shespends her time. Also it connotes that her journey of life cannot lead anywhere, and thisis it for her. It is also an urban theme, which connects with our genre of socialrealism, and the setting for the film opening.We have chosen a plain dark background because we wanted our opening to be dark andmysterious, and it also stands out in the sequence of shots, catching the audience’sattention.The font is astandardlettering, and isalso similar tothe font usedon street namesigns, whichrelates to thefact that DeadEnd refers to analley with nowhere to go.
This is a medium shot, showing Maddie begging for money on the streets, and someonegiving her their spare change. Her condition and her actions contrast with the clothesshop behind her, because it shows the juxtaposition between the different classes livingside by side, some of them can afford to spend money on new clothes, and others can’t.I perform a small cameo role in this shot. I used the tripod to capture the recording,and I walked by and gave money to Maddie. I liked doing this cameo role as I felt likeother directors such as John Malkovich and Quentin Tarentino, who both havestarred as cameo roles in films that have produced and directed.
This is the first time Billy is introduced, it is just his silhouette, his dark figurecontrasting with the bright street behind him, this foreshadows his dark nature, andthe possibility of his dark influence on George’s life. He also has his hood up, which is astereotypical gang reference, and that gangs hide their faces under hoods so no onecan see them. This links him to a criminal background.The settingbehind Billy isthe highstreet, wherethe montageof clips beforethis one, tookplace, linkingthe settingand him.
I think this shot portrays Billy’s character well because he looks very suspicious, with hishood up, and he is also looking Maddie up and down, like he is sizing her up. Maddie islooking away, trying to ignore him, hoping he will go away.They aresitting on thedirtyfloor, whichshows theyhave no wherebetter to go-represents herhomelessness.They are both wearing hoods, but Billy’s is up, and hers isdown. This represents Maddie’s vulnerability compared to theother character, and how he is hidden away, and she is in theopen. Also suggests that at this moment in the film, she hasnothing to hide, but he does.
This is a close up of Maddie’s face. To do this shot, I had Maddie hold the cameradirectly in front of her face whilst walking around so that her face was centre shot andthat her surroundings were moving around her. This created a slightly dizzy effect,which is what I wanted.
In this shot Maddie is sitting on a park bench, a similar one to the one she woke up on.This represents the amount of time she spends by herself in the park. Her posture andbody are very tight and closed, this could show how she is very cold, or the fact that sheis upset, and is holding herself.Whilst editing, I lowered the exposure, so that the shot was drained of colour, but notblack and white. This was to show Maddie’s loneliness and represents what her life is like-drained of anything interesting. Her facial expression is very sad, which represents theloneliness being homeless brings.
This medium shot shows the emotions of Maddie’s face and shows her reaction toBilly talking. Her body language is very withdrawn, and it is obvious she feelsuncomfortable being in Billy’s presence. This is heightened because Billy is shown tobe very close to Maddie, despite them not knowing each other, and he has his hoodup, which could be seen as suspicious.I haven’t used any special effects in this shot because I wanted it to seem realistic, andlike the audience are sitting next to Billy, so that they feel involved in the scene.
For the montage of shots at the beginning, before the dialogue, I tried to create a washedout, dark effect by adjusting with the contrast and brightness in the shots, so that Maddielooks pale, and her environment is unappealing. But I didn’t edit the dialogue with Billybecause I wanted it to be naturalistic, and so the audience know that the conversation ishappening in the present, and they feel like they are watching the conversation in the alleywith the characters.I used a lack of props for a reason. The only props that Maddie handles is the handful ofchange I throw to her. I did this to show her lack of possessions, and that she only has whatshe has on her back. This also makes the money more meaningful and more valuable, becauseit is so little to me, but a big deal to her and its all she has, because she has nothing and is livingon the streets.In all the shots in the film, Maddie is wearing the same clothes, which shows that despitemontage of shots throughout different days in her life, she only has a few possessions, andthe fact that she cant afford to buy more clothes, like everybody else can.In my film opening, I wanted to show how Maddie was unfortunate being homeless, and Iwanted the audience to feel sorry for her with the use of her body language and characteristicfacial expressions, the drained colours I added to the footage in editing and the contrast tothe other people around her.Additional notes on my film opening