• An Example of Classic Costume Drama is the epic (1939) historical romance film “Gone With The Wind”. An
American adaptation from Margaret Mitchell's Pulitzer-winning 1936 novel and produced by David O. Selznick.
• In the first 2 minuets of the film the director purely focuses on the beauty of the landscape in which the movie
is set, romanticising the natural elements with an addition of dramatic mood setting music that adds to the
feel. A sweep is also used to introduce the title.
• With various classic old fashioned films showing the credits at the beginning of the film, the opening
immediately introduces the institutions and technical elements that have allowed them to create the film such
as “Selznick international in association with Retro – Goldwyn – Mayer” and “Presenting its Technicolor
production of…”. The credits also introduce the author of the original novel as well as any
producers, editors, main stars or actors, designers or creative directors and so on.
• In less then 10 seconds the director is shown to the audience with the use of creating a sign that resembles
that of the period, instantly ploughing in the institutional elements that are to be granted recognition.
• The credits are placed over moving pictures to establish any main stars and the important names that helped
produce the film such as costume designers, set makers editors etc. With the editors using a wild western style
typography to indicate the setting of the film (Set in the 19th-century American South)
A collection of screen shots showed in the
opening sequence of Anna Karenina. In
comparison with Gone With The Wind, the
classic, old fashioned film uses a variation of
very fixed shots only use the very basic
establishing type shots to indicate the romantic
and naturally beautiful landscape in which the
film is set. However, the modern example of
costume drama film immediately tells us where
the story is set with text telling us the country
and year in which the characters are placed. This
means that the director does not have to waste
time showing where the film is set and they can
then take the audience straight into the action
or story of the film.
• Comparing Gone With The Wind with the 2012 modern Adaptation of
Karenina, there is a clear difference in structure and form in the opening
sequence of the film. The movie uses a variety of different camera angles
and shots such as wide shots, close ups, mid shots, establishing shots.
• Where as Gone With The Wind uses only establishing shots of the scenery,
Anna Karenina uses a short shot that uses the stage to tell the audience
where the setting is and what year and changes quickly to the start of the
story, providing a much more interesting opening with a wider variety of
cleverly flowing shots.
• However, both films use fonts that are suited to their countries of origin,
GWTW using wild western style typography where as Anna Karenina uses
eastern European style font that echo's the feel of Imperial Russia.
IC2 Screen Shots
The opening sequence of insidious
chapter 2 uses the codes and
conventions of modern horror film by
using eerie music, menacing font and
slow panning of the camera to create a
slow build up of tension.
Insidious Chapter 2
• With a classic example of modern horror, The 2013 Canadian-American
supernatural horror film directed by James Wan, the film sticks to the usual
conventions of Modern Horror.
• The film uses various examples of peripheral vision in its filming with a collection
of eerie sound and special effects to emphasis the horror and unsettling story.
• The opening sequence uses special affects to create the effect that the text fades
away with trail similar to that of a spirit to indicate the idea of the living world
and the spirit world.
• With very slow camera panning and a collection of shots such as medium shots,
over the shoulder shots establishing shots and close ups, the unique way in
which the film is edited fits the genre perfectly, in a way that allows the beginning
to establish the growing tension that is eventually broken at the end of the film.
• The opening sequence in a film is very important to both the film director
and the audience as this is the most crucial time in which interest must be
created. If a film does not capture the audience interest within the opening
of a movie, it always normally means that they will not be captivated by the
rest of the film.
• In order for film makers to establish the genre of the film and the story
which the film is telling, the film makers must follow a certain code of
conventions that is associated to each genre type.
• For example a costume drama film is a period piece. This means that the
director must ensure that elaborate costumes, sets and properties featured
in the film must capture the ambience of the particular era in which the film
• Horror films often feature scenes that startle the viewer symbols of death
and the supernatural are frequent themes. Which means that the sub
genres of fantasy, supernatural, and thriller may also relate to a horror film.
• If the director of the film does not follow the codes and conventions of each
genre of film, this means that the audience will become confused as to what
type of film they are watching and effectively are falsely lead.