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  • 1. Ken Ishii When we analyse film, we have 2 ways we analyse it, we analyse the genre and then look at whether it is an auteur theory or a genre theory, an auteur film is where a director breaks a genre convention and make a film that doesn't stick to the genre. Luc Besson's Leon, we think that the film is going to be a typical action thriller but instead of using a heroic, handsome main character, he used an immigrant that migrated to New York, he’s not got a body build of a typical main character in a action film. He also used a 12 year old girl instead of a sexy woman that normally accompanies the main character. Also the 12 year old girl had a disturbing sexual attraction to Leon and that certainly breaks conventions. On the other hand, a genre theory is like Marc Forster's 007- Quantum Of Solace, that film sticks to its genre in many ways as the main character is a handsome, muscular man who cannot be defeated by anyone, he has the cars and gadgets that he needs an there is always a sexy bond girl he has by his side. Unlike Leon, he dies at the end of a film in a heroic way, he goes everywhere by foot and public transport and he has a 12 year old girl instead of a sexy woman. The female representation is presented differently in these both films. In James Bond films, women are represented as sexual objects, with no real character development. James Bond always ends up in bed with the woman. However in ‘Quantum of Solace’ directed by Marc Forster in 2008, they are trying to make female character stronger by showing that she can fight, hold a gun and defend herself but still ends up being rescued by James Bond so this shows us that despite attempts to define female characters in a strong manner, women are not represented fully and are still seen as objects of male desire. This is a convention of James Bond and most action thriller films because women are always seen as attractive and have a bit of power. But in Leon, Leon plays a sort of twisted villain role, he is an assassin because this is all he knows and he only takes on jobs to assassinate. His simple innocence is often shown throughout the film in the way that he handles his money and his other mannerisms. His money is in possession of the man who gives him his work and is given out to Leon when he asks for some. The young girl plays also a very twisted role because young girls are often portrayed as sweet and innocent and blind to the real world around them whereas Mathilda is very rude, she swears, drinks and smokes and acts a lot older than she actually is. During the film, we start to realise that Mathilda is in love with Leon and is sometimes flirty and slightly forward about her feelings and affection.Although it is stated quite obviously throughout the films multiple times Leon is not a Paedophile a lot of people will always jump to this conclusion because of the unusual relationship between Leon and Mathilda. A lot of people will argue and debate whether Luc Besson is an auteur director but it is clear through this film that the traditional codes and conventions of an action/crime thriller have been broken and or at least twisted in some way of the female representation compared to James Bond. Companies also tend to sponsor a film that sticks to its convention rather than an auteur film as films like Leon will damage the reputation of a company as the film features a 13 year old child having sexual feelings towards a fully grown man. As for Quantum of Solace, no conventions are broken and they feature a product in a way where it makes the audience want the product as they portray the product as something very cool and also simply because James Bond has a reputation of being a cool person, anything that he uses and wears makes people want to have the product so they can be
  • 2. Ken Ishii cool. Napoleon dynamite is also a film directed by an auteur Jared Hess. The film is based on a listless and alienated teenager that decides to help his new friend Pedro win the class presidency in their high school, but Napoleon wants to be recognised more in school and be accepted by everyone. The reason this film is an auteur film is that this kind of genre of film that is based on a high school is normally based on the popular person in school, but in this film, the main character is on the geeky kid in school that doesn’t really get recognised, so Jared Hess has decided to show what the life of a geeky kid is like. Napoleon also associated with a New Mexican friend called Pedro; he is a weird looking character and seems to be very quiet. But Pedro decides to ask the stereotypical rich popular girl out to prom with him. This breaks conventions as normally in a film that sticks to conventions, it normally a popular guy in the baseball team that asks the popular girl. Also during the film, we find out that the weird looking, quiet Pedro has cousins that are Mexican gangbangers and Pedro can rely on them to help him whenever he is in trouble or in need of help. But in a film that sticks to conventions, normally the quiet kid tends to get bullied and has no one to help him and has to stick up for himself. Mean Girls (Dir. Mark Waters) is in the same genre as Napoleon Dynamite as both films are based on American teen high school life, but Mean Girls sticks to its genre unlike Napoleon dynamite. The film is based on a girl called Cady Heron that’s just moved from African Bush Country to the USA after living there for 15 years and she is sent to a normal high school but she isn’t used to the teenagers and how they behave. But on the second day, she gets accepted by the most popular girls in school, unlike Napoleon Dynamite, he doesn’t get accepted by anyone except for Pedro as they are both lonely. Cady also just has a typical family, living with mum and dad and they aren’t as crazy as Napoleon Dynamite’s family, as Napoleon lives with his brother and grandma. The girls that accept Cady in their group are all the stereotypical girls you see in high school films; plastic, loves the colour pink, doesn’t like anyone except for the people in their group, bitchy and causing trouble. Regina George, the group leader is also the stereotypical girl you see in this type of films, she’s the most popular, most people like her, blonde and she has rich parents. As this is a film that sticks to its genre, companies place their products in the film as they won’t lose their reputation of using their products in the film, for example, Regina George drives a Lexus, Regina’s mum drives a BMW and Cady gets a Louis Vuitton handbag. Pulp Fiction (Dir. Quentin Tarantino)This film includes the theme of racism and over use of the ‘n-word’. A technique that he uses in this film is violence, he uses it to add to the narrative for example the protagonists are retrieving a briefcase for their employer during this they kill three of the four people in the apartment on purpose. They end up killing the last by accident on the way back from the job. The reasoning behind the violence is to show more of the character than just listening to a long monologue by them and it is also sometimes used for comedy and entertainment. This also positions the audience in an unconventional manner, Tarantino develops
  • 3. Ken Ishii the characters throughout the film so the audience end up liking them all, but then they commit acts of violence or are racist challenges the audience. Unlike most films Pulp Fiction doesn’t have any disliked characters by the audience. The narrative of this film isn’t clear because it is time disordered this creates a narrative enigma, for example the film starts with two lovers discussing whether they can rob the restaurant and make money from it which having their breakfast there. This is the scene which conflicts the expectations of the audience and they can’t make connection with the film until the end. As they decide to rob the restaurant the scene breaks off and the movie title credits roll. Once the title credits end the films goes straight to the scene where the two protagonists are retrieving a briefcase.