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Woman in Black Poster Textual Analysis

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Woman in Black Poster Textual Analysis

  1. 1. Woman in Black Poster AnalysisPurpose of PostersFilm posters are form of advertising that help to raise awareness of an upcoming filmrelease. Posters often follow a variety of conventions including having a striking image, thefilm title, actors/actresses names, the release date, age certificate, and director orproduction names. These details provide a consumer with all the information they need toknow about the film and the style and appearance of the poster will help audiences identifywhat the film’s genre is. Film posters can be displayed in a variety of places from being onstreet billboards, and buses to featuring in magazines and online.The Woman in BlackThe Woman in Black has a variety of film posters meaning that these can appeal to a massaudience. Similarly, from first impressions when looking at the series of posters availableand having previously analysed the trailer, the style of images, text and atmosphere used inthis poster are consistent to the film trailer, reflecting how the poster supports the trailer.ColourThe most noticeable aspect of this poster is the choice of colours that have been used. Byusing only grey, black and white, a negative atmosphere is created as the poster appearsdull and ghostly. This instantly allows an audience to be able to identify that the film is ofthe horror genre and implies that the supernatural will play a significant role. This is shownthrough the white and black shadows that form a ghostly figure in the background.Charlotte Page
  2. 2. As the protagonist is in the foreground of the poster, he is unable to see the figure behindhim therefore; this could be an example of dramatic irony as the audience are aware ofwhat may happen whereas the character is not. Furthermore, the lack of colour can be seento reflect the Victorian era that the film is set in as the greyness suggests that this is set inthe past. Image& Character The image used for this poster is a close-up of the main character that features in the film. The choice of using a close-up shot allows an audience to see the characters emotional state which here appears serious and quite distant as he shows little expression. Through the rule of thirds, attention is drawn towards the eye and this is highlighted through the faint hint of blue. The connotation of the colour blue in this context portrays the idea of coldness and sadness which is fitting to the film’s storyline. Furthermore, the image of the main protagonist, Arthur Kipps, has a grey shade surrounding him, perhaps highlighting that this character is distant and the greyness foreshadows the ghost that dominates the film.The actor chosen to play the main protagonist can be seen to represent the target audienceas he too is a young adult, like most of the consumers of the film. The age certificate of theWoman in Black is as 12A, so by using a younger actor, audiences can be enticed to go andview the film as the character is more relatable to them in terms of age.LightingLighting on this poster is successful in creating an eerie atmosphere. The light highlights thecharacter which not only makes the eye go to him but portrays an idea that he is quite paleand drawn from the shadows that are created which is fitting to the ghost story.Similarly, the darkness in the background suggests danger and the unknown as the mistmakes it difficult to see anything that may be coming.Text StyleThe text used appears simple yet bold as the capital letters andwhite colour allows the writing to stand out against the greybackground. Furthermore, the white emphasises the ghostlytheme in the style and colour as the reflection of the textcreates an eerie atmosphere of feeling cold and haunted.In an article by Chris Frost, ‘How to Design for Newspapers &Magazines,’ he lists a series of text colours and backgrounds that are readable, a black ordark grey background with white text is fairly readable but if the white writing is too bright,Charlotte Page
  3. 3. light is reflected from it and it becomes difficult to read. Therefore, the text used in thisposter is successful as the white has been dimmed down slightly and the background hasalso been made lighter which means the text is readable.LanguageThe use of a rhetorical question, “do you believe in ghosts?” createsthe feeling that the poster is directly talking to the consumer. Byplacing this text next to the faint outline of the ghost in thebackground of the poster enforces that ghosts and the supernaturalwill play a significant role in the film. This encourages audiences toview the film as by using a question, a sense of mystery is created asapart from knowing that a ghost is involved, no other information isrevealed.Furthermore, by using Daniel Radcliffe’s name on the poster can also persuade consumersto view the film as he a well-known actor and with this being his first role outside of theHarry Potter franchise, audiences may be intrigued to go and view the film in which byincluding the release date, encourages audiences to watch.LayoutThe placement of the image on the left hand side of the poster makes the character havevery little breathing space and creates a feeling of claustrophobia and unease as a sense ofentrapment is created.By having very little in the background connotes that this character is alone and this isfearful for an audience as they are aware of the ghostly figure forming whereas thecharacter is not.In an article ‘How to Read a Film Poster’ by Tom Brownlee, he explores the concept ofanchorage which is considering whether the pictures match the words of the poster and inthis case the image and text do link together as they both have a ghostly feel to them buteven from analysing the image and the text separately this supernatural atmosphere is alsocreated particularly, from the colour and lighting.InfluencesFrom this we have seen how affective the use of colour can be as the use of grey, black andwhite is successful in creating an instant ambience which makes it easier for the consumerto identify this film from the poster as a horror. Therefore, the choice of colour will besomething that we carefully consider when creating all of our media products.Furthermore, the shot type used and the positioning of the image achieves a claustrophobicatmosphere as the layout of the poster gives the character very little breathing space inwhich this suitable for the style of the film and foreshadows the plot as the protagonistbecomes trapped in the house. From this we have been influenced to carefully consider howwe arrange the elements of our poster as this analysis has shown how everything cancommunicate a message to the consumer.Charlotte Page

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