Sunday, 27 February 2011

The Dark Knight

Narrative Features
The Dark Knight

Intro of Characters

The main character who plays Batman/Bruce Wayne is shown has the famous recognised Batman, superhero, mysterious and iconic. In the first scene where we see Batman we have several different looking Batman's, but when we see the recognisable Bat mobile we know that this is the real Batman. When we see him in action we can tell the fakes from the real batman as the so called "helping" Batman's, trying to help batman since there has been loss of activity from him trying to save Gotham, they are easily defeated by the villains within the scene. The real Batman has all the cool gadgets which make up for the high technology profile, with the body armour, attachment rope and sharp knife equipment on the arms. As well has this his fighting technique is more clean and careful, he isn't clumsy and defeats the villains with little effort. Later on in the film we see him as his actual character, no deep voice and mysterious aura but a lighter voice, less serious, a witty charm and a handsome face and figure. But he still is arrogant and shows no fear. The Joker on the other hand is revealed as a clever, sneaky and dangerous guy. In the opening scene there are a group of men wearing clown masks all are raiding a bank, but some of them turn on each other and shoot each other. In  the end the joker is one of them and walks away with all the money. Alfred is Batman's/Wayne's Butler he has been Wayne's family's butler all Wayne's Life. So with his aged face, deep wrinkles and fatherly voice, shows how long he has been with Bruce and how well he knows him. He has helped him become Batman and has developed his equipment and made what Bruce does now as a hero and who he is today. As in the scene where he is talking to Bruce, he seems caring and looks upon him as a son. He helps Bruce with the stitches in his arm from the scene before, where a dog attacks him and this shows how he cares about him and still helps him with little things such as that.


China - Hong Kong
U.S.A - Illinois/Chicago, L.A/California
U.K - England/London, Bedfordshire, Surrey, Hertfordshire, Liverpool, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex


Christian Bale - Famous British Actor (Well known for - Batman Begins, American Psycho, Terminator Salvation and Equilibrium

Heathe Ledger - Famous American Actor (Well known for - Brokeback Mountain, 10 things I hate about you and The Patriot)

Michael Caine - Famous British Actor (Well known for - Batman Begins, Children of Men and The Prestige)

Gary Oldman - Famous British Actor (Well known for - Leon, The Fifth Element, Batman Begins, Harry potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire and Harry potter and the Order of the Phoenix)

Morgan Freeman - Famous American Actor (Well known for - The Electric Company, The Shawshank Redemption Se7en and Bruce Almighty)

Record placement and Feature of Credits

At the beginning of the film, there is a similarity with the opening with that in the film "Inception" where they make the Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures introduction black and white, here in The Dark Knight, they gave it a colour filter of dark blue, this includes the DC Comics introduction too, giving it a chilly and dark mood to the film. This gives the audience a chilly or dark frame of mind of the film throughout from the opening.  This blue filter is also continued through the opening where there is a gathering of heavy clouds and the Batman symbol (a bat) appears, formed by the heavy clouds, this zooms in and the bat fills the screen and the whole screen is filled with black and then cuts straight to the opening first scene.

How Effective was this

I found the effect of the introduction to Warner Bros, Legendary Pictures and DC Comics really unique and effective, just like that in "Inception" the blue filter gave it a chilly and dark mood which set me into a frame that the rest of the movie will be like this. I loved this effect and think that other movies should carry this on, it's really creative and attracts the audience. The way it was carried on with the Batman introduction, they tend to be the same, clouds and a large group of bats forming the bat logo which then zooms in. But this time no bats where used but the clouds where and the blue filter being carried on was very effective too, carrying on that chilly and dark atmosphere for the film.


Narrative Features

Intro of Characters
Cobb is shown as a serious character, he dresses in a black suit and is shown with a gun in his possession. Later in the film we are told that he is in someone’s dream and that they are also in some other persons dream, a dream within a dream. He is the lead of the situation and has his friend Arthur to help him. Cobb seems to be able to deal with intense and dangerous situations well, it seems has though he has been doing this job for a long time. Cobb has to deal with his emotions of his children and his wife. His wife is no longer with him but still appears in the dreams, as does his children. His wife is used to wake him up from a dream that he needs to be awakened from, by killing him in the dream. Also by waking up someone up they can for example from the film, Cobb is shaken and slapped in the face outside the dream which he reacts to inside the dream by being pushed around, this seems not to work, so he is shoved into a bath full of water and he wakes up and gets out and the scene continues. Killing people in the dream wake them up but causing them pain is only in the mind. 

He is a determined person and will go to extreme lengths to get what he needs. Arthur is also a serious character, with both these characters being serious it seems what they are doing is highly important. Arthur seems to be close to Cobb has they both end up again with each other after the last complicated scenario of the dream inside another dream after Cobb says "every man for himself" and walks away. Cobb goes looking for someone else to help him when going into people’s minds, he needs someone to create architecture, mazes etc. He finds a student called Ariadne who seems to grasp the dream and its possibilities well, she isn't freaked out and nor does she not believe it. Dressed in normal clothes, red jacket, black pants, white loose shirt and scarf she seems a normal girl but her doesn't match to her intelligence. She's confident in and outside the dream and seems fearless. Cobb and Arthur use a brief case containing technical equipment that link up to those entering someone’s dream and combining their sub conscious.

U.S.A - Los Angeles, California, Warner Bros Studios
U.K - Bedfordshire, Hampshire, London
Canada - Alberta
France - Paris
Japan - Shizuoka

Leonardo DiCaprio - Famous American Actor (Well known for - Titanic, The Department, Catch Me If You Can and Romeo + Juliet)

Ellen Page - Well known Canadian/American Actress (Well known for - Juno, Hard Candy and X-Men: The Last Stand)

Joseph Gordon-Levitt - Well known American Actor (Well known for - 500 Days of Summer, 3rd Rock from the Sun and 10 things I hate about you)

Tom Hardy - Well known British Actor (Well known for - Layer Cake, RocknRolla and Bronson)

Record Placement and Feature of Credits
Only Distributor (Warner Bros) and Legendary Pictures intro segment was played, but in black and white. No other credits are played.

How effective was this
I like the Distributors intro segment in black and white, gives it a uniqueness to the film and shows experimental feel that adds to the style of the film. No actors names where placed it just went straight to it, shows getting straight to the point and is not like other films. I personally loved this and held my attention throughout the film.

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Pulp Fiction

Narrative Features
Pulp Fiction

Intro of Characters
Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) both swear a lot, shows how they are informal and show that they have a comfortable friendship together. They seem calm when handling a gun, seems as though they have been mob hit men for a long time. The witty and humorous quotes gives a light hearted feel to the scene. Both men wear black suits shows smart, serious and professional job. The guns show danger, as the scene goes on Jules shoots a boy (aged 18) and then both Jules and Vincent shoot him dead.  Jules is more serious than Vincent he talks to the group of boys he is questioning seriously but he adds that witty and humorous script to make it a little more light hearted to entertain the audience. Vincent doesn't look too bothered and seems more relaxed and casual. 

Ringo and Yoland are robbers, the scene they are shown at the beginning placed in a cafe/restaurant, they talk about what they have done in the past , robbing wallets etc which shows they are criminals but their appearance is normal both are wearing normal clothes. Ringo wears a patterned open shirt with a black t-shirt underneath and blue jeans and on his finger a gold ring. Yoland is wearing a buttoned cardigan/Jumper, gold necklace half chain with a cowboy boot charm and a black knee length skirt. They discuss robbing a restaurant because the restaurants don't expect it. They decide to do it and begin the robbery. Ringo is talkative and swears a lot. Even though he talks about serious topics, such as crimes he is very calm about it. His partner Yoland is weird with her odd sense of behaviour. she is very quiet until they begin the robbery and she becomes wild and viscous gives that unexpected side for the audience. Ringo is very calm about the robbery giving it that light hearted humour for the audience.

U.S.A - California - L.A, Beverley Hills and North Hollywood

Crimes, Drama, Thriller, Weaponry - Guns - Violence

John Travolta - Famous American Actor (Well known for - Grease, Face/off and Hairspray)

Samuel L. Jackson - Famous American Actor (Well known for - The Incredibles, Star Wars Episode 1-3 and Unbreakable)

Tim Roth - Famous British Actor (Well known for - Reservoir Dogs, Planet of the Apes and The Incredible Hulk)

Bruce Willis - Well known German actor (Well known for - The Sixth Sense, Die Hard, The Fifth Element and Armageddon)

Record Placement and Feature of Credits
Credits started at 4:35 minutes in, scene freezes but sound still operates from that scene. The Distributor is then put on lasts for 5 seconds, in white text, followed by the film title moving up screen in yellow and red, with black background. This zooms out slowly and names of actors come up in white, last for 4 seconds each. The title of film is small and fades away, then credits of actors move up screen other credits shown for 4 seconds.
Music supervisor is shown and the song changes, the same song is played in the car of the opening sequence after the credits end at 6:46

How effective was this
I like the Music supervisor credit when the song changed, very fitting and funny made the credits seem less boring. The credits where too long but putting the important credits first is common within a movie. Found I recognised the songs when played during the credits give it more entertainment to the audience.

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Thriller Research - Top 10 Thriller Movies

Taken from IMDB's Top 50 Thrillers Movies

1.) Pulp Fiction

2.) Inception

3.) The Dark Knight

4.) Goodfellas

5.) Fight Club

6.) Rear Window

7.) Pyscho

8.) The Usual Supsects

9.) The Silence of The Lambs

10.) Se7en

Research - Generic Conventions of a Thriller

Generic Conventions of a Thriller

  • Some form of weapon is used either that be a gun or a knife etc
  • Females are usually targeted to be weak and vulnerable
  • Stairs, Shadows Mirrors are associated with Thrillers
  • Music gives tension
  • Strong light against dark
  • Dark lighting for mysterious and tense scenes
  • The story plays with your mind, makes it more Psychological
  • Plot builds to a climax
  • Characters are caught in a trap, mystery or dangerous situation
  • Characters might not know if their lives are in danger or part of a trap/killing
  • Usual locations for a Thriller are Urban/Cities or Forests/outskirts of a city
  • Detectives or police are usually involved trying to solve a case
  • Heroes have traditionally been portrayed as men, but women have been increasingly popular
  • Crimes are committed on a much larger scale, some are to serial or mass murders, terrorism, Assassination or to overthrow the government
  • The Thriller climax is where the Hero defeats the Villain. The hero saves his own and other people’s lives in the process. Sometimes the Hero dies in the end.
  • Thrillers have now been influenced by horrors, through the gore, violence, terror and deaths/body counts.
  • Music usually creates extra tensions/suspense on the audience and impact it has on the audience when the scene comes to a climax or disaster.

Change of Plan - Syndey has left the UK

Change of Plan

Sydney, who I was working with to film a Rom-Com, has left the UK to go back to New Zealand.  Before I worked with Sydney I was going to work with 3 other girls who were doing a Rom-Com also but then they changed it to a thriller which put me off the idea as I don't particular like Thriller which is why I started working with Sydney as she was going to film a genre that I liked. But in recent events, Sydney has left the UK to go back to New Zealand to live there again.

Discussing the Storyboard
After going back with Alex, Michaela and Shasta I looked at the storyboard they had so far and discussed any changes we could make. I suggested a few ideas for both shots, effects and for the editing process.

The Story - I looked at the storyboard and could get a idea of what the story was about. With further discussion Alex and Michaela went into detail on what the plot was. The title is called "Stage Girls" as we have 2 girls who perform on a stage. The production name is "M.A.S.C Productions each letter representing the first letter of our first names. 
They are 2 girl characters who are performers on stage. There is a male character who is a stalker/Pervert on these 2 girls. He watches them and takes photos of them and has room with a wall with the pictures of the girls. He creeps behind stage and spies on them through the door of their changing room. We are going to include heavy breathing and the male character is going to kiss the photos. We want to make a twisted sort of character.

The Editing and Storyboard sequence
Opening sequence: M.A.S.C Productions will appear on the screen with a picture of theatre masks, giving it that ironic touch for both picture and name. Then the film title will appear "Stage Girls" and this will appear on a mirror which will be written on in lipstick. This will be created by using an actual mirror and lipstick and then taking a photo of it and adding it to the editing process. A panning exterior shot of the theatre (Burnley Mechanics was used) to show the location of where the girls are. It will cut to the girls on the stage, on singing and one playing the piano. We will use Panning, Close ups, Mid and Long shots. After this the camera will zoom to the singers bright red lips and then use a jump cut to where the man is in his room sticking another picture of the girls on his wall. The room won’t be brightly lit and with have a eerie feel in which we well have the man breathing heavily. We will then have another zoom in on one of the picture and use a flash of a camera effect to show a flashback of the time he took the picture.

We looked at opening sequences of Thrillers by other students to look for a style we would like and suit the film best. This gave the group confidence giving us a foundation to work with and an idea we can use and help develop our film.

Further Planning
I really don't like Thrillers but I am going to watch 5 minutes of 3 Thrillers and write their narrative features down just like I did with the Rom-Com’s.