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Film Study- film techniques

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Erryn Marsay

on 27 July 2015

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Transcript of Film Study- film techniques

Common Film Techniques
What does the title: Whale Rider suggest about this film?
Genre= type of film
The Plot is the story line of the film
Themes are the messages imparted in the film
A film title is important; because it provides clues for the plot
Genres include comedy, suspense, horror, musical, drama, western, fantasy or science fiction... can you think of other?
Plots are broken into scenes and sequences. Scenes provide the skeleton for the film. Each scene is filmed in a shot sequence. The opening sequence is the most important as it sets the tone and mood of what is to follow...
Common themes include life, death, war, peace, friendship, family, acceptance, love, hate.... what are some of the themes in Whale Rider?
Film Study: Whale Rider
Shots and Angles
Directors tell the story by breaking the plot up into shots and angles
Extreme Long shot
This shot type provides a far distant view of a scene, focusing on landscape. Often used at the beginning of the film
USE: known as an establishing shot it helps establish the setting or location of the film
Long Shot
Long shots include some landscape but people in the shot are recognisable as human, or as male and female.
Use: This shot is frequently used to allow the audience a first glimpse at a key character. The emphasis is on placing the character in the environment.
Full Shot
This shot also includes some landscape, but characters are clearly recognizable and body language is evident.
Use: Full shots provide more detail than long shots and place specific characters in positions where body language can give clues to the scene.
Use: Shots are used when understanding dialogue is important and body language and hints at facial expression aid understanding
Medium Shot or Mid Shot
A medium shot frames more of your subject while still revealing some of the background. If your subject is a person a medium shot would show them from the waist up
Close Ups
Close Ups show the subject in more detail often showing little or no background.
Use: This shot emphasises emotions and reaction to circumstances and conflicts
Extreme Close Up
In an extreme close up the camera focuses on fine details; for example one part of a face or a small but important object.
Use: This shot captures important elements of the film or captures important emotions...
Camera Angles
Camera angles are deliberately chosen to impact on the audience...
High Angle Shot
The camera looks directly down in this shot. This angle is often used to make the object or character below appear ultimately insignificant, vulnerable or powerless... a victim
High Angle Shot
The camera is positioned above the action but from an angle rather than directly above.This angle is used to make the subject look to be endangered, powerless or insignificant
This is the most "normal" angle where the camera is on the same eye line as the person or object being shot. It is meant to give a feeling of inclusion, encouraging the viewer to feel that they are involved in the scene.
In a low angle shot the camera is positioned so that it is looking up towards the action. This shot is used to make the subject appear more important, dominant or powerful
Low Angle shot
Eye Level Shot
Extreme Low Angle Shot
In this shot the camera is positioned below the action... This is used to make the audience feel that they... or the character is imperiled, insignificant or ultimately powerless...
Motifs are any recurring element in a story that has symbolic significance
Consider these motifs and their symbolic meaning...
Other Shot Types:
Over the Shoulder Shot (OSS)
This shot helps to establish the position of each person, and get the feel of looking at one person from the other's point of view.

It's common to cut between these shots during a conversation, alternating the view between the different speakers.
Two Shot
Two-shots are good for establishing a relationship between subjects. A two-shot could also involve movement or action. It is a good way to follow the interaction between two people without getting distracted by their surroundings.
Conflict in Film

The essential element in any genre of narrative, and especially in a drama, is a complication.
In general terms this is a form of conflict. Writers use conflict to engage the audience and keep them reading. There are four main forms that conflict takes and a plot may include just one, or many.

In this type of conflict the protagonist must overcome natural forces eg: climb a mountain, survive a Hurricane or shipwreck, battle a volcanic eruption or earthquake, flood or fire.
Type 1
Man Versus Nature
Type 2
Man Versus Society
Type 2: Man Versus society: In this conflict the protagonist has to fight against societal expectations, family and community, laws etc.
Type 3
In this category the protagonist has to fight an internal battle or personal dilemmas; to steal or not to steal, to overcome a fear or phobia, to find meaning.
Man Versus Himself (Intrapersonal)
Type 4
Man Versus Man (Interpersonal)
This type of conflict involves direct or indirect confrontations with others. It could be a physical fight, a war or just a disagreement.
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