Unit 22 – Task 3

 

Cinematography

This scene features many techniques of cinematography, it begins with what looks like a simple panning shot from the right of the room, to the left, ending with Skylar framed in the left of the shot with nothing else in the frame, its a simple shot framed used the rule of thirds with Skylar in the left third. The scene progresses onto a mid shot and close up of Skylar on the phone talking to Marie, this follows a standard shot reverse shot rule, almost with them looking like they are having a conversation with them in person. Finally there is a dolly tracking shot moving forward to reveal Walter standing in the room with Skylar the whole time, this technique is done to dramatically reveal his presence in the room.

Mise en Scene

The mise en scene in this scene consists of low-key lighting, showing the tone of the scene, with Skylar now living in a dingy small apartment, with what looks like run down and old looking appliances mirroring her own financial and personal situation at this point in the tv series. The lighting in the moment of Walters big reveal is very contrasting, Skylar is in darkness and Walter is in the light, perhaps showing the revealing nature of the scene.

Sound

The sound in the scene starts with a diegetic noise coming from the telephone within the room of the scene. This helps to build suspense within the audience, wondering who Skylar will be talking too. The next sound comes in the form of Marie talking to Skylar via the answer machine. There is some atmospheric background noise coming from outside the apartment, a dog barking, this helps add to the atmosphere of the scene and perhaps makes the audience realise that Walter got into the flat without being seen. Finally the last sound in the scene comes from Skylar and Walter themselves as they begin talking to one another. The lack of non diegetic sound in this scene such as music adds to the realism and importance of the scene so as not to take away from what the audience is watching visually or what the actors are saying.

Editing

The editing used in this scene is very simple, there is some minor cuts between Skylar and Marie while they are talking on the phone which is necessary to show the change in location and who is talking but apart from this there are no cuts, the slow meaningful camera movement used within the scene is enough to build the suspense for the reveal of Walter at the end without any editing being required.

 

 

 

 

 

Cinematography

The cinematography of this scene consists of an establishing shot, to show the location and people involved within the scene, this is done using a crane or a device to get the camera very high in the air with a wide lens to show the scene in its entirety. The 180 degree rule is established after this using two mid shots reversing onto one another showing Clyde and Nick walking towards each other. The next shot features all three actors within it, with Clyde walking towards nick, confident and in control despite his restraints. Using clever camera work this changes when Nick punches Clyde in the face, showing Nick as a powerful person via low angle shots looking up at him striking Clyde in the face. The conversation between them in the rest of the scene is done using close up shots, this is done to show the dialogue and emotion on their faces due to the sensitive nature of what they are talking about, when Nick is talking it is almost always a low angle shot, showing his power over Clyde within the scene.

Mise en Scene

The location of this scene fits very well within the genre of the film, set around the back of the prison, its an unofficial meeting between rivals within the film. The scene features shots of barbed wire, fences and gates showing the security of the prison and location within them. In contrast to a lot of the film, this scene features quite high key lighting, in its outside location it is done to clearly see the characters faces, their emotions and not take away from the dialogue that is being used throughout. The costume in the scene fits the genre perfect, Clyde’s character wearing a stereotypical prison overalls showing his incarceration even more being on the outside of the prison. Nicks character is wearing what seems to be an extremely expensive suit and jacket, looking every bit the top lawyer that he is. His bodyguard too, wearing dark clothes and gloves showing his position well.

Sound

This scene only features diegetic sound, coming from sources such as the gates moving, the violence between the characters, the gun being pointed at Clyde’s head and the most important part, the dialogue. The lack of non diegetic sound and not much diegetic sound apart from the dialogue makes the audience listen and take in what is being said between the characters.

Editing

This entire scene is an example of continuity editing with the pace of the cuts in the scene changing pace with the action, for example when Nick punches Clyde, the pace of the cuts increases and when the action is slower they don’t happen as often, allowing the audience to focus on the dialogue that is being said. There is a use of match on action when the violence begins with a cut happening exactly when Nick punches clyde, matching to the shot on the floor as he is being his again. Once again the lack of over complicated editing allows the audience to concentrate on what is being said.

 

 

 

Unit 22 – Task 2

Breaking Bad

 

Breaking Bad as a whole is a non-linear show. This is because it includes things such as flashbacks, flash forwards and multi stranded narratives. We know there are multi narratives because Breaking Bad doesn’t only focus of Walter, even though he and Jessie are the protagonists, there are also very in-depth storylines for other characters such as Hank, Skylar, Marie and Walt Junior,  and many many other characters.  An example of a flash back is shown in the clip i have attached, in this scene Walter and Jessie are cleaning up blood and guts of somebody they had just killed and dissolved in acid in a bath. This scene is constantly crosscutting with a flashback scene of Walter discussing the elemental composition of a human being. The use of flashback is obvious during this scene as the flashback scene is very dark which is a convention of flashback and also Walter have an obvious amount of hair which makes it clear to the audience that it is a flashback as Walter has cancer in the show and is bald.

Breaking Bad as a whole series uses flashbacks throughout to highlight important moments for example, when Hank is sitting on a toilet and finds a book of Walters that has ‘W.W’ written on (Walters initials) then there is a flashback scene of Hank finding evidence of the huge drug case that has the initials W.W written one, then shows Hank’s face as he has a realisation that Walter is Heisenberg, this flashback scene was used to show Hank’s train of thought to the audience so that we know that he has finally realised Heisenberg is Walt. Without the flashback clip the audience could be confused as to what he has realised as his initials aren’t a huge part of the story line.

Breaking Bad is structured in Toderovs narrative theory. Toderovs narrative theory is a three part structure where they begin with equilibrium, where everything is balanced, then something comes along to disrupt that equilibrium (disequilibrium) and then reaches a resolution, when equilibrium is restored or because of the disruption there is a new normal, a new equilibrium and Breaking Bad definitely uses this structure. For example, Walt’s equilibrium is being a Chemistry teacher in a high school, working in a car wash part time and having a very normal life with a wife and a teenaged son. The event that disrupts this equilibrium is when Walt finds out he has lung cancer. This changes his equilibrium as Walter gets into making meth with one of his old drug dealer students Jessie so he can pay for his treatment and leave money for his family once he dies, which is a complete contrast to his old, normal life. As the show progresses Walter gets more and more into the drug business and this then becomes his new equilibrium as he never goes back to his old, boring life. Cooking meth, killing people and doing deals with the cartel becomes Walt’s new equilibrium until the very end of the show.

 

Breaking Bad uses cliff hangers (open endings). In almost every season finale there is a cliff hanger, they use this so that it makes viewers always come back to watch the next season so they can find out what happens. Breaking Bad use this very well, an example of one of their cliff hangers was the end of season 3 where Jessie turns up to a mans house and points a gun at his face, there is an extreme close-up of the gun and then you hear a very loud gunshot and the screen turns black and the season ends. This made fans and viewers very excited for the next season as they had room to create their own outcome of the situation Jessie was in before the next season where they find out what actually happened. Cliff hangers allow an audience to interpret their own meanings/outcomes of the cliff hanger and breaking bad do this at the end of every season because it creates discussions about the show which will inevitably make the show more popular. They carried on season finale cliff  hangers until the very end, the last episode of the last season, Walter gets shot and the last shot of the entire series is Walt laying on the ground with blood coming from underneath him with his eyes open. A lot of fans have made conspiracies that Walt didn’t die because he was never shown actually dying, only lying on the floor, shot, you don’t see if somebody comes and saves him etc. This final scene is still a talking point 3 years on which has kept the show so popular.

Law Abiding Citizen 

Law Abiding Citizen is a film with a linear narrative. A linear narrative is when a story is presented in a logical manner by telling what happens from one point in time to the next without using flashbacks or flash-forwards and then returning to the present, it has a clear beginning, middle and end. This film is an example of a linear narrative structure. For example, the beginning shows a short scene showing the audience a normal family about to eat dinner, then two men come in, they stab Clyde (the protagonist) and kill his wife and daughter in front of him. This is the beginning of the film and this scene is what the rest of the film is about as he is trying to avenge the death of his family and the unjust course system that let the killers have time off their sentence. Other scenes in the beginning consists of the basic information that the audience need such as the sentence that the murderers get and how one of the murderers death (given by the court) was tampered with to make sure he had a painful death. The middle is when Clyde gets arrested for the death of Clarence Darby (the murderer) and all the action happens, all the bombs, murders and plots happen in the middle, the middle is the most action pact part. The end section starts when all the cars blow up with the lawyers inside of them, this is when the film gets darker and more serious as they are ‘running out of time’ before Clyde kills them all. The final scene ends with Clyde realising they had planted a bomb in his cell and he dies with his daughters necklace in his hand. This shows that Law Abiding Citizen has a clear linear narrative structure.

This film doesn’t have an cliff hangers or open endings, it is a very closed ending. As an audience we know it is a closed ending because we see the main protagonist die in a bomb and the whole prison blow up as Jamie Fox (the other protagonist) walks away unharmed. This shows a closed ending because we know Clyde is dead therefore no more harm can or will come to anybody else.

Law Abiding Citizen follows toderovs narrative theory. Clyde’s equilibrium is a normal, all american family life, he has a happy young daughter and wife and they all live in a big suburban house together. The disequilibrium occurs when Clyde’s wife and daughter are murdered in front of him, this completely disrupts and ruins Clyde’s life. When the course case happens against the murderers, one gets a death sentence and the other made a deal with the lawyer (Jamie Fox’s character) which got a huge amount of time off his sentence, this also upsets the equilibrium because of the unjust course system. This sets Clyde off on a killing/revenge spree which is what the main part/middle of the film is about. The equilibrium never goes back to normal as his family are gone and he is in prison, he now has a new equilibrium which is carrying out his plots and murders to send a message that the court system is corrupt which he will inevitably die doing.

Unit 22 – Task 1

Breaking Bad –

 

Breaking Bad is a long running extremely popular TV series. It follows many standard conventions to that of a standard series on television. These conventions include: Characters that are constant throughout the show (Jesse, Walter, Skylar etc.) These characters develop and change throughout the shows course, for better or worse they are constantly reacting and developing based on what is happening around them in terms of meeting other characters or what is happening in their environment.From the beginning there are many locations that the audience subsequently become familyiar with, these locations are used again and again which is a common convention of a series based tv show. As the show processes, gains popularity and in turn, money, the locations change, get bigger or even are destroyed to make an impact on the story and the audience.There is a constant emphasis on past events, with characters talking about things that have happened in previous episodes and how it is effecting them now, this type of storytelling lends itself to a tv series.

The genre of this particular show comes under that of Crime Drama/Anti Hero. The conventions of these two genres can be seen constantly throughout the shows history, for example: Constant drug references throughout, in an illegal way more often than not, as a way for Walter and Jesse to make money. Even though the idea of cooking meth was something that came about in an innocent way. There are also constant references to gangs and drug cartels throughout the show, with a war between good and bad constantly happening (police and gangs etc) An example of anti hero would be that Jesse and Walter are doing highly illegal, dangerous activities to make money and will stop at nothing to achieve their goals, even to go as far as murder. Yet the audience are rooting for them and not the police or the stereotypical ‘good guys’ at all. Hanks character is stereotypical of the crime genre too, a man that is notoriously hunting for this mysterious drug lord character that intact his brother in law. Even though Skylar is almost seen as a victim of much of Walters actions, but we as the audience in fact hate her because we are rooting for the opposite character, the anti hero.

The audience for this type of show is mainly men from the ages of 25-40 opening up to male and females of 18-50 the longer the show runs, with more characters being appealing to a wider audience, for example Jesse drawing in a younger audience due to his age and comedy aspect of a lot of his acting.

The psychographics associated with watching a show like this would be explorers and succeeders. The first would enjoy watching it as they would perhaps be able to relate to the character of Walter or Skylar, being slightly older and in a career or marriage they might see this show as something drastic that could happen to themselves. The second would be a younger type of person that would be watching, perhaps someone that is looking to the show as a form of escapism or being able to relate to some of the things that happen in the show, or even relate to some of the younger characters such as Jesse.

The longer the show ran on for, the larger the target audience became with more countries being able to watch the show with it finally being released on Netflix allowing an international viewership.

Law Abiding Citizen –

 

Law Abiding Citizen is an action film/anti hero movie that follows the main conventions to that of a single drama film, those conventions include: Establishing a main character from the very beginning, someone who the audience instantly knows that they are rooting for, by having a scene that makes the audience sympathise and relate to him before any of the bad things happen later in the film. There is also a phase of establishing other characters, those who oppose or rate differently to the main protagonist. These two conventions are very stereotypical of a drama. Another convention of a drama is that of this film being quite a linear narrative, it has a clear beginning, middle and end.

Unlike a series or a serial, there is nothing in this film that will be familiar to the audience, because it is a one off film there are no characters or locations/sets that they would be familiar with.

The genre of this film would fall under anti hero/action thriller these two genres can be seen throughout the film with its constant use of violence, fast paced action scenes and the fact that the main character, the person that the audience is predominantly rooting for is murdering people and committing crimes as a way of avenging his murdered family. despite this, as the film progresses the audience might in turn start to relate or root for the lawyers character more, as he is trying to stop a man from committing these awful acts against innocent people.

The audience of this film would predominantly be males between the ages of 15-30 with its stereotypical action thriller trailer and advertising with Gerard Butler and Jamie Fox being very popular hollywood characters this would draw in their desired target audience right away. Gerard Butler and Jamie Fox are both attractive and prolific mainstream actors that have potential to draw a female audience due to them both being conventionally attractive.

The psychographics of the audience that will be interested in watching this type of film will predominantly be explorers and strugglers, they will be interested in watching this kind of film as a form of escapism, to watch something that probably won’t happen in everyday life come to life on the screen infant of them.