Class Notes (834,152)
Canada (508,380)
FS103 (28)

Rough Film Lecture Notes

38 Pages
Unlock Document

Film Studies
Sandra Annett

9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Film & Genre – Lec 1 Reading – Film as an art from a technological apparatus, and an industry, is intertwined with society (Pramaggiore & Wallis, 6) What is a Genre Genres create and responds to audience expectations In class film – Coming Attractions - Why are they called trailers? They trail a film and what is coming the following week - The perfect film, they will never let you down - A “hook” - Started as posters - Thomas Edison and the first type of trailers - 1904, slide art for Mafioso in his laboratory - 1909, changed to glass slides –new technology - The First Trailer – static scenes from the movie - Paramount 1919, trailers for all features, bigger budget - Simplify the process for exhibitors - Herman Robins, national screen service president - Silent trailers and movies - 1927, movies and trailers used sound and voice - 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Tutorial leader: Tim Plett Why study film? - Grounded in history - Societal Values - Cultural norms - Educate or provide commentary for current events - Reflection - Tool to change peoples views - Movies are a constructed reality - Influences on the director - Become a more active, involved observer Textbook: Page 3-8 and from 9-36 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM *Camera angles* (Third Man) Narrative Structure - Syuzhet and Fabula Syuzhet: Selection and ordering of actions explicitly presented on screen (Includes main/sub plots and flashbacks) Fabula: The chronological narrative in its entirety, that implicitly stands behind the events depicted. (Includes the characters back story) Three Act Structure Act One: Exposition, set up and intro of the protagonist -> Turning point Act Two: Complications, problems arise, often caused by the antagonist -> Climax Act Three: Action leading to resolution and the denouement or results ->Film may provide closure or open ended Four Part Structure 1) Exposition: Intro of pro an antagonist and their world -> initial turning point 2) Complicating action: does not lead directly to climax, but to another -> major turning point halfway through 3) Development: character must change goal or face additional struggles -> Climax 4) Epilogue: what happened afterwards Episodic narrative - Instead of cause-effect structure and build to climax, presents a series of episodes - In comedy and animation shorts, episodes may be a series of gags ( Example: Wile E Coyote and Roadrunner) - Repetition and anticipation - In drama, episodes follow a character without a single fixed goal going about their life (400 Blows), anti-hero Frame Narrative - “Story within a story” - A character tells a story and the films development takes place in the flashbacks or as visualizations (ex Forest Gump, Inception, Shutter Island, Princess Bride, Notebook) City Lights – Four Part or Episodic? Four Part 1) Exposition: meet the tramp ->Turning point: meets flower girl 2) Complicating action: meets rich man, tries to convince flower girl he’s rich ->Major turning point: finding out about the flower girls debt and illness 3) Development: street sweeper, boxing ->Climax: tramp is arrested 4) Flower girl can see, he is out of jail, they officially meet Comedy and Drama - Oldest genres, identified by Aristotle - Dependent on denouement (Comedy=Happy ending, Tragedy=sad ending) - Film comedy; funny, light tone, laughs - Film drama: serious tone, deeply concerned with the trials and tribulation of human life - Still dependent on narrative structure. Does the film give us closer? Is that closer uplifting and hear-warming or depressing and heart-wrenching. Subgenres of Comedy - Slapstick/Physical comedy (Ex Jim Carry) - Deadpan/Black comedy (Ex Who framed Rodger rabbit) - Situation Comedy “Sitcom” (Ex Seinfeld) - Parody (Ex Tropic Thunder) - Gross-out Comedy (Ex Fat Bastard) “Stoner comedy” – sub sub genre - Mockumentary - Romantic Comedy “Romcom” Subgenres of Drama - Romantic Drama/Melodrama - Historical/Costume drama - Crime drama - Musical Drama? (Ex. Sweeny Todd) - Psychodrama (Ex Black swan) - Survival drama Charlie Spencer Chaplin - Born in 1889 in London England - Childhood of poverty and abuse - Vaudeville and stage performer in England - 1913 Joined keystone studios in the US - 1914 First little tramp film - 1919 co-founder of independent United Artists Studios - 1920 Starred in popular silent films - 1928 Sound film invented - 1931 City Lights, first post sound film, used scored music and sound effects with silent character comedy - Films that followed including Modern Times Audience Expectations and the Contract of Chaplin Films (5 Major) 1) Central persona of the Tramp 2) Romance b/w tramp and female lead 3) Inventive visual comedy -> water gag/cheese soap gag 4) Sympathy, pathos for the tramp 5) Two contrasting morals views -> Money vs Love 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM The Third Man What is Film Noir? - Post World War 2: Lines, German expressionism - Intense, not cheerful, darkness, serious - Cynicism: support for war, destruction and death as a result Hard boiled – jaded, not nice, film noir. Example: Batman Cinematography - Short cut especially at the beginning - Close up of people - Static camera, characters move in and out of scene - Long shots to show place/scene - Longer cuts for building of tension - For example: canted or Dutch angle used when is something or someone mysterious, can’t be figured out 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Film Noir: From Hollywood to Europe Key element SOUND Sound - How are music and lyrics used within the story and in the film as a whole ex background music - What is the role of dialogue? Is it natural or polished - Do sound effects play any role in the film? Cinematography - Definition: the craft of photographing moving images with a camera - This includes:  recording the image onto film stock or digital hard drive  positioning and moving the camera focusing the image using different lenses and filters - The Camera:  The Director of Photography (DP) or cinematographer makes artistic and technical decisions about the cinematography  The Camera man or camera operators and crew: start and stop shooting, move the camera on a dolly or track, select and focus lenses  The Lens is the eye of the camera. It has an aperture to let in light, and a focal length to capture images at different distances and depths. Normal lens: approximate o Wide angle – Car race, landscape o Fish-eye – Drug scenes, peep whole o Telephoto lens – Natural, very focused and shallow, one focus - Focus  Rack focus: changes to shift our audiences attention  Depth of field: the “range of acceptable sharpness before and behind the plane of focus” (149)  Deep focus: everything in a shot is in focus, from foreground to background Ex Citizen Kane - The Shot and the Take  The shot is a single uninterrupted series of frames  Takes are different versions of the same shot  Long take is a shot lasting more than 1 minute, establishing shots (the first scene) that are long shots are very effective. Example of a long shot: Touch of Evil, opening scene - The camera positioning  The importance variable for any shot are camera height angle on the action and distance from the action (138)  Eye level shots: eye level of an adult human characters. Places us on an equal footing with protagonist  High angle shot the camera is positioned about and looks down on the action. Characters seem small, less powerful  Low angle shot the camera is positioned below and looks up at the action. Emphasizes the power of the one being looked up to.  Canted or Dutch angle: camera is not level but tilted to one side, created a diagonal line.  Overhead or birds eye shot: camera is directly over the action pointing down - Camera Shots  Extreme long Shot (ELS): people are tiny surrounded by landscape  Long Shot (LS): a human figure can be seen head to toe  Medium Long Shot (MLS): a human figure can be seen from the knees up  Medium Shot: a human from the waist up  Medium Close Up (MCU): from the chest up  Close Up (CU) or Big Close Up (BCU): focuses on a section of the body like the head (CU), face (BCU), hands, legs  Extreme Close Up (ECU): focuses on a small section of the body like and eye of a finger  Two shot: two figures are visible - Camera Movements  Horizontal o Panshot: turned horizontally while fixed on a tripod  Vertical o Tilt: tipping the camera vertically whole fixed on a tripod  Moving through space o Tracking shot: moving the camera along a track on a wheeled platform called a dolly o Crane shot: moving the camera up, down an through the air using a crane o Aerial shots: filming from a plane or helicopter o Handheld shots: taken from a smaller, lighter handheld camera. May be “shaky-cam” or “steadicam” Film Noir: Period, style, or genre? - Period  Classic period of film noir began in 1941 with The Maltese Falcon and ended in 1958 with Touch of Evil  Responded to the cultural climate of post WW2 weariness and cynicism  Neo-noir: noir films made in 1970s and after, including Chinatown (1974) and Pulp Fiction (1994)  Precursors in Fritz Lang’s films, especially M - Style  Influenced by German Expressionism  Visual elements o Wide angle and fish eye lenses o Canted camera angle and extreme long shots and close ups o Deep focus o Chiaroscuro: sharp contrast of light and shadows o Slats of light through vertical blinds - Genre  Narrative elements o Crime and investigation o Investigator (detective, journalist etc.) who is drawn into in the underworld o Femme Fatale (strong woman character, embroiled in plots, complexity in woman after the war) o Voice-over narration  Settings o Contemporary period (1940s-50s) o Urban underground: seedy bars, dark stairways, run-down apartments, sewers and tunnels o Nighttime and dusk (Third man) William Park – What is Film Noir? - It is a genre and consists of a fallible protagonist - It is also a style, debt of focus, oblique camera, - It was also a period, gloomy outlook of the post WW2 Europe Noir: The Third Man  Carol Reed used Hollywood noir conventions in a European setting  International film  How is it similar or different to American film noir 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Key Element: Lighting and Composition -Light dark areas, shadows, dramatic shadows, what are the lines like? (vertical, horizontal) are the characters framed in posts like windows floors or against sky. Sound History - “Silent films” were never totally silent: they always had a live music and sometimes dialogue performed in-theatre - “Record talkies” a photograph record played at the same time as a film - First sound-synched feature film: The Jazz Singer (Alan Crosland, 1927) The Optical Soundtrack - 1928-30: Shift to optical soundtrack instead of records - Walt Disney was a pioneer in optical soundtrack - First synchronized optical soundtrack was a cartoon “Steamboat Willie” (Disney 1928) - Late 1930s early 40s: Shift from direct sound recorded on location to rerecording Comparing and Contrasting Sound and Image - Filmmakers can use sound to go with and enhance the image, or sounds that contrast the image for emotional or comic impact - Some possible contrasts include:  Onscreen and off-screen space  Diegetic and non-diegetic sound (ex: dancing in the dark scene)  Image mood and sound mood Three Components of Film Sound Dialogue - Dialogue (what the characters say) includes the texts (words) the actors line reading (inflection) and the subtext (implications) - The actor or actresses voice itself is an important part of dialogue, including:  Volume (quiet/loud)  Pitch (high/low)  Accent and Diction (indicates class, education, nationality, personality)  Acoustics (how voice reverberates in space) Sound Effects - Sound effects are created by Foley artists and added in post-production - Sound effects clarify actions, define setting and mood using components like:  Volume (balance of dialogue to sound effects)  Acoustic qualities (clear/muffled; mechanical/natural)  Regularity (sporadic noises/regular sounds) Music - Music can be used to establish setting and mood, to define characters (as motifs) and to create irony or distance (contrast of music and image) - Music can be analyzed concretely by talking about:  Patterns of development (repetition, variations)  Lyrics  Tempo and Volume (fast & loud/quiet & slow)  Instrumentation  Cultural connections The Musical - “As a distinct genre, the musical refers to films that involved the performance of song/dance by the min characters and also include singling/dancing as an important element” (Barry Keith Grant,1) - Create a “charmed space’ where everyone can perform perfectly - Classical period: 1930s-60s - Post classical period: revivals in the late 1970s )grease), late 1980s (Dirty Dancing), and 2000s (Moulin Rouge) Sub-genres of the Musical - Broadway musical: a film adaptation of an already-established stage musical (Chicago – play 1926, Broadway 1975, film 2002) - Animated musical: an animated film with frequent song and dance numbers (Disney films from Snow white 1937 to the Princess and the Frog 2009) Main Hollywood Subgenres - Backstage musical: characters are performers and deliver their performance on stage or to attentive audience  The Broadway Melody (1929)  Busby Berkeley musical’s of the 1930s - Integrated musical: characters do not need an audience or orchestra to make music; they just burst into song  West Side Story (1961)  The Sound of Music (1965) - The Bandwagon leans towards the Backstage musical subgenre Getting on the Bandwagon - Produced at MGM by Arthur Freed (producer of Wizard of Oz an Singin’ in the Rain) - Some songs from Broadway musicals The Band Wagon (1931) and Flying Colors (1932) added a lot of extra dancing and plot elements for Fred Astaire, wanted to show him off - Part of Fred Astaire’s comeback from retirement Genre to Genre: Noir goes Musical -How are music, dialogue and dancing used o create a musical version of film noir? - Does this scene use noire-style cinematography (canted angles, heavy shadows) or is he cinematography different for musicals? - How are the settings and costumes  Body are handled differently in dance then in noir  Settings are very different (colours) 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Yojimbo  Development of characters o Wandering hero – isolated, searching for meaning, still separated from the politics of the town, fighting for money or justice, switch with the woman being taken advantage of  Casting o Toshiru has played samurai before, slow, deliberate movements, stoic strong male (macho) character, intelligent, found out the politics and exploited it  Acting methodology o Type casted character, compared to the other samurai who ran away  Guy with gun – Smart villain  Ugly goofy guy – henchmen  Multiple extras – establishing shots of unhappy town Create Mood  Setting o Isolation o Hot and Dry  Lighting – samurai is always well lit o Hard Light  Focused shadows o Soft Light  Most of the movie o Natural Light  First big gang fight o 3-Point Lighting Support themes  What are the themes in the movie? o Danger of risk taking o Violence vs. Non-violence (parallel) The Western (pages 388-92)  How does Yojimo fit into the genre? 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM MIDTERM Covers - All films from City Lights to Start Wars - Major film studies terminology from the readings (connect to films) - Important names and given dates in lecture Format - Part 1: Multiple choice/fill in the blanks - Part 2: Short definitions of film terms and examples - Part 3: Short answer 9/12/2013 8:33:00 AM Key Element : Special effects (Star Wars) - Mechanical and Physical (created on set) - visual effects (created in the camera or editing room) - How are special effects used to enhance the narrative? Mise-en-Scene - From stage heater terminology for “putting in the scene” - Refers to “staging a scene through the artful arrangement of actors, scenery, lighting Setting  Real or imaginary places where the films action occurs  Maybe created though sets in studio shoots or captured through on location shooting  Matte Paintings were used as a backdrop, now a green screen  Settings often play Acting and Character  Acting includes: o The actors dialogue and body language, used to convey a character type o The costumes the actor wears o The props the actor uses to define his or her character  Example: Captain Jack Sparrow  The character of the cowboy is defined by: o The cowboy hat, boots, spurs, belt buckles and bandoliers o Silent type, stoic, minimal dialogue, drawl o Horse o Gun o Cigarette/cigar/chewing tobacco o Unemotional, straight-faced  The Two most Common Acting Styles o Personification:  When actors “play themselves or a specific character type (ex. John Wayne in The Shootist) o Impersonation:  When actors immerse themselves in the character. “Method acting” (Ex. Hailee Steinfeld in True Grit)  Other examples: Halle Berry, not brushing her teeth  Putting the actor in the scene o Figure Placement: How the actors bodies are placed in the scene to suggest character relations. o Composition:  Space o Composition is the “visual arrangement of objects, actors and space within the frame”  Foreground: the front area closest to the camera  Middle ground or mid-ground: figures that appear with the other objects before and behind them  Background: the scenery that appears behind everything else  Framing o Where things are placed within the frame and their directions. Framing includes:  Balanced and symmetry  Lines and diagonals  Tight framing (little space around figures)  Loose framing (lots of space around figures  Lighting o Tree main lights:  The Key light (strongest and brightest, casts shadows)  The Fill light (weaker, takes out shadows)  The Back light (make someone pop, stand out from the background) o The relative intensity of the key light to the fill light create the lighting ratio. Three Main Lighting Ratios:  High Key lighting: key and fill are equally strong. Creates a bright, even illumination with very little
More Less

Related notes for FS103

Log In


Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.