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Evaluation Task 1
I think that our video is quite easily recognised as an opening sequence, it shows all the
conventions of a regular opening sequence one might see in a real film.
The first thing that people will see in the video is our
main company ident, which is how
all opening sequences start, then
there is a secondary ident, maybe
an ‘in association with’ type thing
that some films have.
Both idents are very simple with simple names as well, both idents
also have their own sounds to go with them and the Walking Pictures one even has a little
bit of animation on the text, although it is very minimal and looks a bit rubbish. Walking
Pictures lasts about 4 seconds and Damkos Pictures lasts about three, to show that it is the
additional, less important one.
The first Text Graphics/title credits is that of the
name of the film, some films such as Scott Pilgrim
(2010)show the name of the film first, whereas
other films like Hard Candy (2005) show the name
after some important credits such as the names of
the main characters or director. In Scott Pilgrim the
only credits before the title were industrial credits.
The font of our main title is different from that of all the other credits,
as to make it stand out, it is also much bigger and stylised in the form
of graffiti, fitting with the character that we had originally wished to
create. The first normal credits are
that of the director Becky, to show
that she is important, she is then also
credited with sound as well as Izzy and
then there is Jack, the main character
with a mid-close up of him, which is
something that films (like Juno) do a lot to establish who the main
character is. The next credits are the names of the other 2 people who
worked on the film, me and Izzy again, we aren’t credited with anything at this point so
usually that would mean that we are actors in the film, which is true as we both appear but
only I have a speaking part. The final credit is ‘produced by 073 media group’ which is
usually something more likely to appear at the beginning of a titles and credits opening
sequence, but we thought it looked better at the end.
The editing style of our video is that of a continuity sequence, it is a stereotypical ‘getting
up’ sequence that millions of films of our genre (teen drama) use, accompanied by a funky
soundtrack as to not make it too boring. The reason we used a getting up sequence is
because it’s a good way of subtly establishing the character and his habits in a short amount
of time, one can begin to understand the character right at the beginning and have already
formed an opinion by the end.
One technique that we used is to take multiple shots of
the same thing from different angles, an example is
shown her where the alarm clock is in a long shot, and
then again in a mid-close up of the same alarm clock, this
gives the illusion of continuity, although we didn’t do it as
well as we could have, as it is quite obvious that the alarm
clock has moved (been knocked on the floor) so maybe
that is something to work on.
The setting for our video is exactly the same as almost every teen drama ever, the 2 main
locations are the main character’s house, and the main character’s school/college, even
though most of our opening sequence is filmed on the road, it is not an important setting
it’s just a cliché place for filming titles and opening sequences.
School is a very popular setting for teen dramas, as
films like The Breakfast Club (1985) take place
exclusively at school, and in one continuous day.
Other examples are films like Submarine (2010) and
Juno (2008), these other 2 examples don’t take place
exclusively at school like Breakfast club, but school
plays a big part in both.
Our opening sequence has very few words but there are certain narrative elements that
allow us to discern what the story may be about, It starts with the main character coming
home late at night or early in the morning presumably from a party (we find out later that
he was at a party, or at least his attractive friend was.) He stumbles in and falls asleep, only
to be woken up a few hours later to go to school
(the fact that he was partying on a school night gives
us an idea of the kinda bloke he is, also it is quite
hard to see in the dark and in the few frames that it
is shown but there is a big empty alcohol bottle on
his bedside table, which obviously is not a healthy
habit.) He changes from one bland grey outfit to
another and proceeds to leave the house, stopping to eat some cold (and horrible) pizza
possibly from the night before or even older, maybe showing that he doesn’t have parents
or more likely that he has bad parents. His body language in general and the way he
conducts himslef show that maybe he isn’t as happy as a teenage boy should be, or maybe
he is even depressed.
The 2 characters that we meet entirely juxtapose the
personalities of the other, as when Jack first sees his friend,
he doesn’t act as if hes just seen a friend, it is made
obviouse straight away that his nameless friend is the fun
one, and his dialogue extends fun to possibly rebellious, or
at least he likes to think he
is and Jack’s reaction shows
that he has learn’t to just go
along with it and pretty much
ignore him. It is similar to
when the 2 friends meet in
shifty (2008), clearly they are
good friend but there is a level of
awkwardness in the way they behave
around eachother. Their meaningless
exchange of mild banter makes us aware of the fact that Jack may have a
love interest, which extends our knowledge of the story. A love interest
just like in Submarine.
Originally my idea was to copy Subamarine in the way that the clothes of the main character
Oliver are opposite to that of Jordanna, to show that they are very different people.
Although in the end the clothes that the characters wear are quite dark, and maybe too dark
for some of them as the 2 supporting character actually wear darker clothes than the main
character which may be misleading.
The use of props is quite minimal in the final version, as we decorated the bedroom with
loads of different things to show what sort of guy Jack was but most of the shots were cut or
weren’t even filmed, the only props that made an appearance and possibly had an effect
were the pizza boxes and empty alcohol bottle (also some messy shelves of CDs because
he’s cool and reclusive and still listens to old CDs, like the old/not modern music he listens
to on his ipod and plays whilst he walks.)
We used lots of different camera shots whilst filming to see what looked good, in the end
we mostly used a mixture of close ups and long shots, close ups in his bedroom and in his
house to give off a tight, claustrophobic feel, like
he feels trapped. And when he walks it’s mostly
long shot and some extreme long shot to
symbolise his isolation, and his lonliness with the
occasional mid-close up to show his emotions
and allow the auidience to see how he reacts to
certain situations such as seeing his friend.
The editing is quite simple, nothing fancy as we didn’t want it to seem like a montage, the
occasional transition here and there like between the idents and the live picture.
A couple of seconds of film were edited out as Jack put his hoodie on, and the transition
between the two shots makes it seem like time has passed and so keeps up continuity going
even though there was a cut, we didn’t want it to seem like a jump cut.
Until Jack leaves the house it is all diegetic sound (apart from idents obviously) this makes us
feel attached and the diegetic sound is different to what the other groups did, as for nearly
all of their opening sequence it started with music and the music remained predominantly
throughout the video, for us the diegetic/non-diegetic was about 50/50 which I think is a
good balance, but very few films do that. Music really adds to films, it undoubtedly makes
them better, which is why not having music at the beginning of ours is a bit strange and
people picked up on that when we showed the class, Joanna said ‘The start is very different
to all of ours as a whole, due to no music at the beginning’, most people noticed the lack of
music and said that they would have preferred there to be music all the way through and
that is fair enough but I feel as if the lack of music makes you feel a bit uncomfortable, and a
bit awkward, which wasn’t really the desired effect but still interesting I think.
I don’t think that there is anything that really breaks with the conventions, but maybe the
general quality could be improved as on more than one occasion we made mistakes, our
video was probably the least professional looking out of the class, with sound errors like
hearing things you’re not meant to and not hearing things you are, also people picked up on
some dodgy camera work in places, that was quite minor but arguably detracted from the
quality of the final piece, also some lighting equipment was seen in the very first shot which
is almost comical in its own way.