Analysis of theAmerican Pie Trailer Brett Tinnion
CameraworkThere is a lot of camerawork through the American Pie trailer for example atthe beginning of the trailer there is an over the shoulder shot of Jim watching porn this is used because it is comical and also it is stereotypical for teenage boys to be doing this so therefore including it in the trailer allows for the audience to quickly associate with the genre of ‘Teen Comedy’ they also dothis because Jim is the main character so it allows for the audience to identify with the main character.
CameraworkThe composition of this shot is there is a wide shot of Jim with his parentsthis shows the contrast in ages and also Jim’s parents are standing over Jim which shows that they are dominant, they have used this in the trailer because it is funny for the audience as Jim has just been caught masturbating which is every teenagers worst nightmare so they includethis to show there awkwardness and also to show what is in store for the audience if they watched the whole ﬁlm, it is also a situation that the audience that relate to.
Camerawork Another camerawork technique used is in the school scene when the group ofboys are sitting down this shows the different ‘social areas’ that they are part of ‘Jim’ is shown as a loser’, ‘Finch’ is a nerd, they have used this because it would appeal to the teenage audience because it is common for there to cliques atschool and this depicts this very well. The shot also emphasises the friendship of the boys which is relatable to the audience as it is common for teenagers to have a strong friendship group.
CameraworkThere is a wide shot used when Nadia is on Jim’s bed to show Jim ejaculating, this is used because it is funny and is also a teenagers worst nightmare for this to happen to themand therefore would make it funny for teenagers to watch as people like to watch other peoples downfall. Also it is comical and because Nadia is shown as good looking and popular it is also used to show that because Jim is portrayed as nerdy that he is even more nerdier than the audience ﬁrst thought. Shots like these in the trailer are comicalfor the audience and therefore would make people want to watch the whole ﬁlm to see what else happens.
Camerawork A wide shot is used when Jim is being laughed at when he is walking into school, there are two sets of teenagers on either side laughing at him which is ateenagers worst nightmare and there would appeal to teenagers and also is funny for the audience because we know why they are laughing at him which shows that this ﬁlm is a ‘Teen Comedy’A long shot is also used when Jim is with the apple pie this is to show fully to theaudience what is happening and therefore is very comical in this scene and wouldmake everyone laugh, he is been told to do this to know ‘what 3rd base feels like’ which also shows teenage peer pressure
Editing Shot reverse shot is used in the trailer for example when the group of boys are in the library it shows Stiﬂer and then cuts to Jim and then ﬁnally toStiﬂer this shows the difference in characters for example Stiﬂer is shown as a jock and Jim is portrayed as a nerd, which would make it appeal to a massaudience. The sense of pace created by this shot reverse shot also creates the high pace lifestyle that teenagers live and also shows that what the boys aretalking about is important and comical and what cause problems for the boys.
Editing Cutting is also used in the trailer when Jim is running home to Nadia they have used this technique as it shows that Jim is in a hurry as he believes he could loose hisvirginity to her, and also it is a relatable for teenagers as there is often pressure to loose your virginity and also it shows the comedy side of the genre as he falls over thebushes. The editing use also portrays to the audience that Jim is obsessed with sex as he is running to get home quickly for Nadia, it is a stereotypical view that teenagers are obsessed with sex and with Jim portraying this view will make Jim relatable to the audience.
Editing There is also eyeline matches used in the trailer for example when Jim is watchingporn in his bedroom this is used because it is stereotypical for teenage boys to watchporn and also because it is ‘illegal’ channels porn it makes it funny which makes it stick to the genre of ‘Teen Comedy’ Eyeline match is also used when Jim is looking at the apple pie this is comical and therefore backs up the genre of ‘Teen Comedy’ as it shows his thoughts that his friends have told him about ‘third base’ and also gives a basis for the title ‘American Pie’
Editing Another editing technique is there text screens that appear throughout the trailer todescribe the storyline and portray even further the ‘Teen Comedy’ drama for exampleit says ‘Theres something about’ ‘Being young’ ‘fantasies’ these are used to make themeasy relatable to the audience as they discuss areas of teenage life that are common in all teenagers.The texts says ‘There’s something about being young, the fantasies, the technique, the temptation, the technology, the moves.’
Sound This is the part of the trailer where the porn is playing There is diegetic sound of the porn at the beginning of the trailer, they have used thisvery effectively as it backs up the idea of comedy in ‘Teen Comedies’ as this is awkwardfor the audience however it is funny and also they use the sound of the porn because it is stereotypical for teenagers to watch porn and having Jim doing this makes the ﬁlm relatable to teenagers and therefore more people would want to see the ﬁlm
Sound This is the part of the trailer where the non-diegetic sound ‘Laid’ playsThere is also non-diegetic sound of music playing towards the end of the trailer the music is up-beat and portrays youthfulness, the music playing is ‘Laid’ this works well with what is on screen as it shows Jim dancing and there is non- diegetic sound to show his youthfulness
Sound ‘Tomorrow I’ll just be some girl you tell your‘It’s not a space shuttle launch it’s sex’ ‘My friends call me Nova as in Casanova’ friends about’ There is a lot of dialogue used in the trailer to portray ‘Teen Comedy’ as they talk about typical teenage things like sex. For example ‘It’s not a space shuttle launch its sex’ ‘Tomorrow i’ll just be some girls you tell your friends about’ the peer pressure of ‘Naked European chick in your bed and you’re not going to do anything about it’ and ﬁnally the cringy statement of ‘my friends call me nova as in casanova’ this portrays the genre very effectively as it is common for teenages to use cheesy chat up lines and also for teenagers to peer pressure there friends into do something, so including these in the trailer make it relatable by teenagers as they focus on the issues that they face every single day.
Sound ‘Brutally honest look at that time in everyones life when we try to hold on to our dignity’Finally, the American Pie trailer uses the technique of voice over to bring across thestory line of the ﬁlm it says ‘Brutally honest look at that time in everyones life when we try to hold on to our dignity’ by saying ‘everyone’ it suggests that this ﬁlm is a ﬁlm for the mass market as it shows the life of every teenager and also it shows that it is a comedy because it says ‘Brutally’ which connotes that it will be funny because it will show the extreme of teenage lives which portrays to the audience that it will be a comedy ﬁlm.
Mise-en-Scene There is many props used in the trailer to show that the ﬁlm is a ‘Teen Comedy’ for example there is the prop of the TV playing porn at the beginning and in themiddle of the trailer there is a prop of a porn magazine with Jim talking to his dadabout ‘women’ this would be incredibly awkward and having the prop of the porn magazine shows how awkward it would be as they are directly look at nakedfemales, and also the prop of the TV playing porn is also comical as it is really loud when the mum and dad walk in, which is every teenagers worse nightmare and having this in the trailer would allow for the genre to really shine through as it is stereotypical for teenagers to be looking at porn
Mise-en-Scene The costumes in the trailer also shows the contrast in characters for example at the beginning Jim is wearing just a tee-shirt whereas his dad is wearing a shirt a tie which shows the age gap and shows the immaturity of Jim and also costumes is used when theyshow them at school, the costumes they wear are just everyday teenage clothing to create verisilmilitude and would allow the audience to relate to them as they are wearingclothing that they would wear and would allow them to clearly show it is a ‘Teen Comedy’
Mise-en-Scene There is low key lighting in the trailer when Jim and Nadia are in the bedroom and when she says ‘touch me Jimmy’ they use this to show nerves and therefore make it comical for the audience and allow the situation to be associated with as it is common for teenagers to get nervous when it comes to having sex. The composition of this shotshows that Jim is nervous as it shows that Jim is looking at Nadia naked, and also the mid shot of Jim also shows his nerves because of his facial expression.
Key Findings I have found many key ﬁndings by analysing the American Pie trailer for example I have learnt that ‘Teen Comedies’ often include crude humour which makes it comical and relatable for teenagers. The trailer also uses cross cutting between scenes to create a sense of fast pace and shows that there are many things involved in a teenagers life. The trailer also showed me that in the genre they often depict social cliques and is often set in school to make the audience relate to the characters. The storyline is predominately about relationships which is a key concept in the teen comedy genre. There is a variety of shots also used in the trailer to create dominance and nerves and the composition of the shot isimportant to show the comical side of the scene and also to show what is going on in the scene.
How does the American Pie trailer comply with conventions of the genre? The American Pie trailer complies with conventions of the ‘Teen Comedy’ very effectively for example the actual storyline of the ﬁlm and the trailer, is shows that a group of boys want to have sex for the ﬁrst time which is a technique used by many ﬁlms for example Superbad and The Inbetweeners Movie. Also it follows conventions bylocating it predominately at a school which is conventional for most ‘Teen Comedies’ for example Mean Girls, locatingat a school allows for it to be accessible by all teenagers as they have to go to school. Another convention followed is by showing awkward conversations with your parents about sex, for example when Jim is talking to his dad and whenhe is caught masturbating, this is conventional as it is the norm for sons to have ‘the chat’ with there dads and it beingan awkward affair so therefore depicting it allows for it to apply to all teenagers. The comedy side is also conventional, American Pie uses crude humour which is stereotypical for ‘Teen Comedies’ for example when Jim is having sex withthe apple pie, this is crude and therefore would be really funny for the audience, this is a technique used in many ﬁlms for example the Inbetweeners Movie when Neil is humping the girl on the boat. Overall, the American Pie trailer follows all the conventions of ‘Teen Comedies’ as American Pie is often referred to as the ﬂagship of Teen Comedies.