Evaluation Questions: AS Practical Work By Niall Donnelly
1. In what ways does yourmedia product use, develop orchallenge forms andconventions of real mediaproducts?
I believe that our project did very much stick to the traditional media conventionsthat typical Italian-American Gangster Films carry such as the classic ‘Tommy Gun’that has always been a personal favourite for the gangsters portrayed in the film.George and I did work very hard on trying to live up to the traditional conventionsof the Gangster film for the simple fact is that they work so well, an example of awell-known gangster film is ‘The Godfather’ which was released in 1972 and is stilla classic even today, so by sticking to the same known and loved traits of thegangster film, we were able to satisfy the gangster film lovers who by the film’s verynature, would be the target market for the finished film.Below you can see that we modelled our own Don around the Don from ‘TheGodfather’ played by Marlon Brando. 1972 2012
2. How does your mediaproduct represent particularsocial groups?
In our product, it was very much based on the lives of men who had moved from theirhome country of Italy in order to pursue ‘The American Dream’ and are , at the film’spresent, Brooklyn’s biggest crime syndicate, known only as ‘The Italian Mafia’.Everyone featured in the production is of Italian descent and have strong Italian accentsto enforce that idea. Stereotypically, Italian’s are known to be close and personal withtheir families and we have translated this into the family that is ‘The Italian Mafia’, theidea that the Mafia is a family is another media convention that allows us to portray theItalian social group to the audience.At another angle, we portray the social class as the gangsters being at a higher classthan the man they are hunting for as they are in smartly dressed suits and hats thatadvocate the impression that they are at quite a high social class and status. On theother hand the character ‘Pauly’ was dressed in much lower class dress consisting ofbland, natural colours that make us aware that he isn’t as well off as the gunmenchasing him. Its this kind of assumption and character development that allowstheories regarding backstories to be explored, Pauly might have borrowed money fromthe mafia and was unable to pay it back for example, nothing was implied for theaudience to think this, but it does allows us to create more to deliver to the audiencebearing in mind the time constraints we were given.
3. What kind of MediaInstitution might distributeyour media product and why?
The media institution that might distribute our media product would be a company such asParamount Pictures UK or 20th Century fox that have a controlling a significant portion ofthe Film production/Distribution market, meaning either would be a viable choice if we weregiven the option to choose a specific studio. Paramount Pictures was the companyresponsible for distributing the Original Godfather movie, meaning they have experience inmarketing and distributing movies of this genre. I highly doubt however, that movieproduction companies such as 20th century fox and Paramount UK would agree to distributean unknown movie from a small British independent film company so we would need to finda smaller film distribution studio that would be more willing to pick our film up todistribute.
4. What would be theaudience for your mediaproduct?
Our product could easily be marketed to all ages. There is little to alienate the elderly,middle-aged or family viewers, but it would not be suitable for very young children to seeon their own. Our main target audience would be men or women between the ages of 15 to56. these are the age groups that are practically attracted to the action/gangster genre. Thisgenre practically appeals to men due to the levels of violence and the wide usage offirearms. The main audience would be men over twenty who have their own means oftransport and a disposable income. It is this specific age group that is most likely to attendthe cinema or buy films of this type for pure entertainment. Although our product ismarketable to most ages [15 to 56] and both sexes it is best to market this product tofinancially independent young males. Overall, our product falls into the boundary of PG,because while it doesn’t display violence or other controversial spectacles, it does displayweaponry so children can watch this film under their parent’s disgression.
We thought to attract and address our audience, we would make a promotional posteradvertsing our product, to create the poster, we went through a variety of prototypes totry and create a very bold yet striking design that would interest and entice our potentialaudience and developed the idea of a silhouette of three gunmen, (which linked in to thethree gunmen featured in Piccola Italia), and so Niall drew the initial silhouettes whileGeorge began preparing the template for the promotional poster, when we had completedboth we then proceded to combine the two for the final design, Niall then went andcompleted the finishing touches to make the poster complete, the final poster is picturedbelow.
6. What have you learnt abouttechnologies from the processof constructing this product?
We used a variety of technoligcal devices in order to complete our project,they are as follows:ImovieImovie was the sole video editing software we used in order for any post productionediting we did during the project, we used this software on the Apple iMac to edit theclip’s sound and trim clips to make professional looking videos.BloggerBlogger is the blog-hosting website I used to showcase my portfolio of work I have beendoing throughout the year, it helps keep all the posts organised and time-stamped.GoogleGoogle is the search engine used to collect relevant data and images regarding our project,I personally believe it was the most invaluable tool at our disposal throughout the project,we helped a great deal with fact finding and statistics.TripodThe tripod helped keep the Video Camera steady throughout the filming process, and wewouldn’t have had such a smooth and proffessional video outcome without the use of thistool.Video CameraThe video camera was an absolutely necessary tool as it captured all the video we usedthroughout the project, it was an easy product design to use and allowed us to write thevideo to wither the internal hard drive or tape (dependant on model).
7. Looking back at yourpreliminary task, what do youfeel you have learnt in theprogression from it to the fullproduct?
As I look back onto my preliminary task, I notice that I was fairly inexperienced when itcame to media techniques and conventions, so I can safely say I have learnt a wealth ofknowledge about Camerawork, editing, sound and mise en scene which are all vital piecesof Televised media. The difference between my preliminary task and my final product is anoutstanding difference in both professionalism and in content purely because I have beenintroduced to new ways of approaching a task such as a filming project that would requirequite a lot of planning for it to come off without a hitch, whereas in the preliminary, it wasvery unrehearsed and it showed in the final product of the preliminary task. To me, thefinished product of ‘Piccola Italia’ is my greatest achievement throughout my AS levelsbecause it is a project I have been most interested in, I also spent a lot of time in the MediaStudies office polishing and fine-tuning Piccola Italia so the finished product could live upto the way I envisioned it, and it’s safe to say, it has.