How does your media productrepresent particular social groups?
AgeTeenagers, especially that of females, are usually portrayed in psychological thrillers as being naive and insecure. Ourcharacter Katie of which she is 14 years old, does reflect these qualities towards the end of our film when she hurts herselfas if she is letting her guard down. Camera angles that we used to infer these qualities were low angle shots to show hersubmissiveness and vulnerability. However, we also represented her as very confident and aware, in the sense that she isphysically active and outgoing. This is shown by her cycling to school at the start of the film and being a gymnast. Cameraangles we used to highlight this presentation were straight on angle shots, and panning shots to connote to the audiencethat the female character goes where she wants to go. We chose to implement this representation of her, as we wanted todefy the conventions of the typical young vulnerable female character in psychological thrillers and present our character asbeing completely different from other representations of females. This is further supported later on in our synopsis.We made our male character relatively young, compared to the typical thriller conventions of a significantly older male,connoting that something is wrong due to the obvious age difference. We chose to do the opposite of this representation sothat the audience would not necessarily be able to tell who the villain was due to the youth of the male (who is in his earlytwenties). This made him even more sinister and untrustworthy. This is due to the fact that it creates doubt in the audience’smind as to what his intentions are. This was shown by close ups of his face to stands for how visibly young he is, but weshowed that he was still sinister through his facial expression. We can tell see that he is abusing his position of power.
EthnicityWhite teenage females are usually presented as being very prevalent in society, doing many extra-curricular activities; such as in The Roommate. They are shown as being enthusiastic and innocent, weadhered to these stereotypical conventions used in psychological thrillers. We presented this by ourfemale character’s back flips and somersaults, to show that she is hard working and enjoys self-improving.Our female character Katie is a dedicated and focused gymnast, who is represented as a perfectionistthrough the different camera angles we had used, and in the scene when she has fallen over and isirritated with herself. This was done by low angles and a still shot of when Katie hurts herself, so we couldfilm all her reactions and emotions.Black males are usually presented as being sinister (villain) and dominant in psychological thrillers, such asin Safe House. We stuck to these thriller conventions so that the audience would identify with ease whatcharacter stood for which representation. We represented this by the close ups and extreme close ups ofhis face to make the audience uncomfortable with being in such closeness with a character they were justintroduced to. This makes them question why we chose to do this so early on in the film, questioning themale’s character.
Gender We portrayed women as being victimised in ‘The Unexpected’ as women are typically presented as being treated in this way in psychological thrillers. We juxtaposed the role of power between our male character and our female character to convey the sense of difference in their status. This is achieved by the variety of camera angles and mise en scene, camera placements of the two characters.Males are presented as being more dominant and more powerful generally in psychological thrillers, this is how we portrayed our male character. Our male character is represented as an obsessive character, focusing on Katie’s photo in the register. This scene causes the audience to wonder why the point of view shot is just concentrated on her, disregarding the other gymnasts. This makes the audience feel that he has a special interest in her and is obsessed with her. When the other female character approaches Sean, he completely ignores her and carries on looking at the photograph of Katie, stating that males do what they like and females get mistreated by males.This is carried out by the over the shoulder shot of Sean, to signify his dominance and the close ups of his face to infer that he is sinister and dominating over Katie.