Film lecture one
Semiology – developed out of structural theories
Image one – at the denotative value (literal value)
Connotative value (associative or symbolic meaning, what we’re reading into the photo)
Dorothy is feeling powerless so the photo shows her small
Denotative – parallel shot to image 1 shot. (Demonstrating parallelism)
Accidents are not accidents in the final shot of the movie (when she trips on the road)
Connotative – she still feels isolated even though she is surrounded by the munchkins. The
movie is about Dorothy’s journey of self-discovery, even though there are other characters she
is on this journey alone.
Oz is her interior landscape. Shown in colour to show her optimism and fantasy. Her problems
aren’t solved just because she enters her dream world.
We can take away from these images that you can’t run away from your problems.
Superficial meaning/explicit meaning
Film was made during the dust bowl, and war is brewing in Europe (World War II)
Original novel was written in 1900
Chose kanas as the setting on purpose. Her outfit is red, white, and blue.
This film is a propaganda as a nation that is emerging from the greatest disaster that it had ever
endured and the coming of world war II
The film shows that home is extremely important and your nation’s roots are bigger than your
own backyard. “No place like home” creating a sense of nationality.
Why is Dorothy an orphan? Why weren’t her parents ever mentioned during the film?
What do shots signify as a narrative unit, what do they convey, why are they sequenced the way
they are are huge questions during film.
Semiology – philosophy of signs and symbols derives from a swiss theorist as a language from
the meaning of language. Meaning is created through difference. He saw languages as a
system of signs. (signifier, and a signify. Ex: fish – your mind immediately thinks of the fish and
what it looks like and does) the noise that these images portrays is called a speech arch. Fish
consists of the signifier; the sound and the signify; is the creature in nature. We use language to
construct a reality for ourselves. And dish is different from fish, dish is used to serve fish.
Different languages use different signifiers and signifies to portray different concepts. Different
cultures also adapt different speeches for the same objects.
Film is its own language and it creates its own meaning. film works within a s