‘Dear Mum’ Analysis

I have watched a short film of the drama genre, called ‘Dear Mum’, as part of my research into short films within the drama genre. It has been created by Roxanne Pedder and was released on June 12th 2016. 

This short film is all about suicide and self harm. It is based on a seventeen year old girl who has written her mother a suicide letter. Throughout the film, the mother reminisces back to the memories they shared together whilst reading the letter. By the end of it, she has broken down into tears, when her daughter walks in. This is unexpected for the mother, as well as the audience as we assume that the daughter already committed suicide. The film then ends with a loving conversation between the mother and daughter about how the mother is always going to be there for the daughter.  Soft, slow music is used in the background which helps create a dramatic effect as well as the emotional story line. The overall tone is very serious, which is supported by the great acting and serious facial expressions. The generic conventions of a dramatic short film have been followed, as there is an unexpected twist towards the end, which keeps the audience intrigued. This short film undoubtedly fits into the drama genre as it creates a very dramatic, emotional impact on the audience. Personally, I quite liked this short film as it follows the main conventions of short films, as well the conventions of the drama genre. It has also been clearly thought out, as the audience is captivated throughout. By the end of the film, the audience feels emotionally impacted as it is presented to be very realistic and maybe even relatable to some people. The director has portrayed the main theme: depression and suicide, in an authentic way as it speaks out to the audience and has an impact on them. 

Overall, I believe that this video has achieved its purpose as it conveys the difficulties that certain individuals go through, as well as representing the strong relationship between a mother and daughter. The audience is left thinking about this film long after the end of the film, which makes it clear that this film is of the drama genre as it is important for the audience to be emotionally impacted by the end of it.  

The camera, editing, sound and mise en scene has evidently been considered and thought through by the director as it all portrayed in an emotional yet realistic way. A lot of the same shot types have been used to constantly create the same type of effect on the audience. A lot of flashbacks have been used to portray the happy memories that the mother and daughter shared together, and the mise en scene also makes everything seem very realistic, especially the location and clothing. The sound has also been thought out very well as the slow music adds to the emotional effect and there is a voice over, which creates a tense effect. I have analysed the film in more detail as part of my research. 

Textual Analysis

The film begins with a high angle shot of a girl writing the words, ‘Dear Mum’ on a red envelope. The high angle suggests that she is vulnerable. Non diegetic sound is used as slow music can be heard in the background, creating a serious atmosphere. This then fades to a medium shot of a lady doing the vacuum in a house. The background music continues, and diegetic sound is also used as the sound of the vacuum can also be heard. The lady begins to pick up some clothes that have been thrown on the floor under a bed, where she picks up the read envelope that was seen in the first shot. This then cuts to a high angle shot as the lady picks up the envelope and looks at it, suggesting that she is in a weak, vulnerable position. This then cuts to a close up shot of her face, emphasising her serious facial expressions. 

A medium shot is used as she opens the envelope and takes out the letter and begins to read it. At this point, the audience can infer that this is the mother of the girl who wrote the letter. A voice over then begins to play, which is the voice of the daughter reading the letter, allowing the audience to know what the letter says. A close up shot is used of the mother’s face as she begins to cry whilst reading the letter. Flash backs then begin as a black and white medium shot is used to present the daughter laying on her bed as the mother cuddles her. This then cuts to another black and white medium shot of the two baking together. From this, the audience can infer that the mother is reminiscing their times together.

This then cuts to another medium shot, of the daughter doing self harm as she cuts her arm. After a few seconds, another medium shot is used to present the mother crying whilst reading the letter. This then cuts to another black and white shot of the mother and daughter at a beach, which then cuts again to a medium shot of them sitting, talking and having tea together. This reveals that they both shared a close, loving relationship together, therefore the mother is extremely affected by this letter that she is reading. This is supported by the next shot which is a medium shot of the mother breaking down completely as she bursts into more tears, but she still continues to read the letter. This then cuts to a black and white shot of the two arguing, presenting their bad times to the audience, which then cuts back to them being at the beach again. Due to this, the audience can infer that the good times outdo the bad times as that is what the flashbacks are focused on more. 

The following shot is a medium shot of the mother crying whilst reading the letter, which is followed by another black and white medium shot of the daughter crying on her own in bed, emphasising the pain she had to go through. This then cuts to another black and white shot of the two baking together. This then becomes blurred, which cuts back to the mother reading the letter. The voice over then ends as the mother continues to sob and mourn over her daughter’s death. A door can be heard opening in the background, however the audience is unaware of who this could be as the mother does not look up from the letter. 

A medium shot is used to present the daughter walking into the room and hugging her mother, leaving the audience shocked as to how the daughter is alive. This then fades to black, which is followed by a medium shot of the two exchanging dialogue as they have a conversation about how the mother is always there for the daughter. This then fades to black and some white text appears on the screen, giving information about suicide helplines and then the credits begin to roll. 

‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’ Magazine Review Analysis

Empire magazine has included a film review of ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’ in its July edition as the movie was released at the end of May. Generally, it received a positive response as it has been rated 7/10 stars on imdb.

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Layout

The page has been divided into three sections, as there are three different movie reviews on this page. However, the largest section is for the review of the movie, ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’. The top section of this section is an image of what seems to be a screenshot of a scene from the movie. This captures the reader’s attention as the reader is instantly aware that this page is based on the movie ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’. The bottom part of this section is the actual review of the film. The title ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’ is presented on the top left of the review in black, bold writing. Therefore, the reader clearly knows which movie is reviewed if they were unable to guess by the image above. Just below the title is star rating, as well as the release date of the movie and the movie length. Below this is the names of the directors and main cast, followed by a brief description of the plot, giving the reader an insight to what the movie is about. 2/5 stars have been presented which reveals to the reader that the review is going to be negative. A thick, black line is seen to go across the first column, separating the information regarding the movie and the actual review. The review itself has been separated into three columns, making it easier to read. 

Imagery

One image has been presented which seems to be from a scene of the actual movie. This is an effective image as it gives an insight into the movie, as well as revealing some of the characters who are presented to be covered in heavy makeup, making them seem scary, which also gives the reader an insight to what the movie is about, as well as the age rating as it does not seem suitable for young children. The image gives the reader information about the movie, without having to read anything. The size of the image plays a significant part in creating this effect as it is quite large, and takes up a quarter of the section dedicated to this movie, which makes it stands out and the reader is instantly drawn to it. Part of the setting can also be seen in the background of the image, which allows the reader to interpret what the general setting of the movie will be. 

Colour

There is a bright yellow border on the outer sides of this page which contrasts with the dark colours of the image. The text, which takes up the majority of the section is also black, which makes the yellow border significant as it makes the page stand out and intriguing. This links to the colour of the image as mainly dark colours are used, creating a visual reflection of the movie. The use of colour is important to intrigue readers as people need to be visually pleased in order to want to read something. Therefore, Empire magazine have made a convenient choice of including a yellow border, as it brightens the page up a lot more. The overall use of colours on the page are a good choice as it is not too dull, nor too bright. There is a nice, balanced contrast which makes the image and text stand out to the reader, as well as being visually gratifying.

Language

The review itself has been written by Dan Jolin, which is revealed at the end of the review. He discusses the  plot of the movie, characters and the previous ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean’ movies. Jolin’s language is a mixture of sophistication and colloquialism; he does not use informal language, however he includes words such as ‘er’ which can be seen as colloquial language. 

Generally, the reader can infer that this movie is going to be a negative review as it is revealed at the top of the page, that the movie has been rated 2/5 stars. Although Jolin shares his negative opinions of the movie, the review itself seems to be unbiased as he discusses the repetitive plot, however he also gives facts as well as opinions. This is important as the reader feels content with the review as it is not all based on this man’s opinion on the movie, but also the factual side of it. Therefore, the reader feels content whilst reading this review as it is clearly not a biased review as various aspects are explored.

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this is a good review as a true reflection of the movie has been given. Although, I haven’t seen ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’ myself, I can clearly see that this is an honest representation, due to the use of imagery and the text. Despite the fact that the review has negative opinions of the movie, the reader feels content with the review as it seems to give a true representation of the movie.

The layout, colours and imagery is also very effective as it intrigues the reader to actually read the review. Everything on the page stands out, without it being all thrown to the reader at once. It all follows the generic codes and conventions of a magazine film review as it includes the title in bold writing, details about the movie, description of the plot and a star rating is given. Also, an image is included giving an insight to the movie, as well as making it visually appealing and the review itself is written in columns. Quite formal language has also been used, which is expected from a movie review.

In conclusion, this film review is very intriguing to the reader and makes them want to read the review, therefore its purpose has been fulfilled.

‘Nine’ Website Analysis

This is the official website homepage for the movie ‘Nine’ which was released in 2009. This movie consists of multiple genres: romance, drama and musical which is reflected through its website homepage.

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This website homepage is very visual rather than being more text based. The intention of this website being more visual is to give the viewers an insight to what the movie is like as they want to be able to reflect the movie through the website.

Layout

In the top left corner of the header, the title ‘Nine’ is presented. In the middle of the header are three drop down menus and five tabs, which allow the viewer to learn about the movie, the fans and the crafting of the movie. Information on the cast, film makers, production and screenplay is also available for the viewers. It is also revealed to the viewer that this movie has received four Oscar nominations as this is presented in the top centre of the page. A large image is used for the background, which presents various characters from the movie, which all seem to be women, hinting that this is a movie which explores the theme of female empowerment, which is good as the viewer already feels intrigued to learn more about this movie. This also hints at their target audience, which seems to woman due to the choice of characters, and they way they are presented. The fact that this movie is of the romance and drama genres, also suggests that this movie is typically aimed at women. 

Imagery

The main focus of this homepage is the background image which presents the main characters to be standing under a spotlight, hinting to the viewer that the movie is a musical. All of these characters are women, whose body language suggests that they are quite fierce, independent characters, especially as they are standing under a spotlight. This allows the viewer to infer that the general story line of the movie revolves around these strong female characters. This image is significant as the movie is reflected through the visuals of the website. In the background of the image, someone can be seen sitting on a sofa, however due to the use of low key lighting, this person’s face cannot be seen. This makes the viewer feel curious as they are intrigued to learn more about the characters, as well as the story line. This also reflects the drama genre of the movie as the low key lighting creates a serious, mysterious tone overall. 

Colour

Dark colours are used all over which creates a serious, mysterious tone to the homepage. A lot of black is used as the header is black, as well as the majority of the background. In contrast to this, a lot of gold is used throughout the page. This makes the page stand out overall and captures the viewer’s attention. The use of gold on this page is important as it removes any interpretations of the movie to be of the horror or thriller genre. If the dark colours were consistent throughout the whole page, the wrong effect would have been created and it would not reflect the movie correctly whereas all the colours that have been used work well together to reflect the themes of the movie accurately. Due to the use of colours overall, hints of romance and drama are given in a subtle way, which would attract viewers who like movies like this. 

Typography

The title ‘Nine’ is placed in the top left of the page and is in white capital letters, making it stand out more than the text beside it, which is the tabs, which is also in white capital letters. The text below the header is in large, gold capital letters, and is the largest text on the whole page, which reveals that it is extremely significant. This stands out the most on the page as it is the largest contradiction with the black background, therefore it stands out the most, as well as looking very appealing. All of the text on the homepage is in capital letters, which typically connotes shouting and anger, however this isn’t the message that the viewer receives from it, due to the background image, colours and layout. The white text at the top of the page stands out from the black background, but not as much as the gold text due to it being a bigger size. This is good because this creates a positive view of the film straight away.

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this website homepage is a good representation of the movie due to the use of imagery and colours. It seems to be well thought out as everything has been laid out and presented well, as the homepage gives a visual reflection of the movie, as well as there are also various options to learn more about the movie. I think this is an effective website homepage for a movie as it is very enticing as the viewer is intrigued to learn more about the movie. I can assume that a lot of money has been spent on the creation of this website due to the production and effectiveness of it. I, personally have not seen this movie before but after looking at the website and exploring it more, I am definitely intrigued to watch the movie as I can infer that it is a well produced movie, as the website is made to a high quality, therefore the movie must be of high quality too. I can also guess the tone of the movie through the use of colours and layout of the website as it creates a tense, yet romantic effect, due to the use of colours and imagery, which also intrigues me to want to watch the movie. I already know that the main genres are drama, romance and musical which is clearly reflected through this homepage, which also gives the viewer an insight into the movie. Furthermore, I will be watching ‘Nine’ due to the impact that the website has had on me. 

‘Burns’ Analysis

I have watched a short film of the drama genre, called ‘Burns’, as part of my research into short films within the drama genre. It has been directed by Lovina Yavari and was released on June 5th 2016. 

This short film is based on a teenage girl who is not doing well in high school as she has gotten in trouble with the head teacher and her mother had to be called in. Throughout the film, her mother yells at her for multiple reasons and the audience also learns that her father had to leave for a while, therefore he is not in her life anymore; the audience can infer that her parents are divorced and that is why he left. Due to this young girl having a tough time, she begins to use a lighter to burn herself, as a form of self harm. By the end, her whole body is burnt and she is in hospital. It is quite an emotional film and the slow music in the background helps create a dramatic effect as well as supporting the emotional story line. The overall tone is very serious, which is supported by the great acting and dialogue. This short film undoubtedly fits into the drama genre as it creates a very dramatic, emotional impact on the audience. Personally, I quite liked this short film as it follows the main conventions of short films, as well the conventions of the drama genre. It has also been clearly thought out, as the audience is captivated throughout. By the end of the film, the audience feels emotionally impacted as it is presented to be very realistic and maybe even relatable to some people.

Overall, I believe that this video has achieved its purpose as it conveys the difficulties of teenage lives as well as representing the weak relationship some teenagers share with their parents, and how this affects them. 

The camera, editing, sound and mise en scene has evidently been considered and thought through by the director as it all portrayed in an emotional yet realistic way. The sound has been thought out very well as the slow music adds to the emotional effect and the use of dialogue as it is also quite effective. I have analysed the film in more detail as part of my research. 

Textual Analysis

The film begins with a black screen, with the sound of school bells ringing, instantly revealing the setting without any image. After two seconds, the bell stops and a medium shot is used to present a high school girl sitting on a chair in a school corridor. Her body language suggests that she is in a vulnerable situation as she puts her head between her knees and fiddles with a lighter in her hand. This then cuts to a medium close up shot of her playing with the same lighter in her hand in a car. A voice can be heard, which the audience is able to assume is her mother as she says, “Do you know hard I have worked to get you to where you are?” in a firm tone. This then cuts to a low angle shot of the mother, emphasising the power she has over her daughter as she yells at her. This then cuts back to the medium shot of the teenage girl sitting in the school corridor once again. Her mother then walks out of a room, near by where the girl is sitting. The words, “Let’s go” can be heard from the mother, as she speaks it in an angry tone. The teenage girl then grabs her schoolbag and follows her mother.

A medium shot has been used as the mother and daughter enter their house. Diegetic sound is used as their footsteps can be heard. Dialogue is used by the mother as she angrily tells her daughter to do her homework. Low key lighting is used which reflect the daughter’s depressed emotions. This then cuts to the daughter’s bedroom, where a soft focus is used as only the girl is in focus as everything else is slightly blurred. A medium shot is used to present an image of the daughter with her father, which she then picks up. This then cuts to flashback, where a medium shot is used to present the father and daughter exchanging dialogue with one another. He is presented to give her a lighter, whilst saying, “I’ll be back”. A soft focus is used as everything else is slightly blurred out, however the mother can be seen smoking in the background and going back inside the house. Due to this, the audience can infer that the parents have separated, which is why the father left.

This then cuts to a medium shot, presenting the girl sitting in her room again. Slow music plays in the background as she looks at the lighter that her father gave her. This then cuts to a close up shot of her face, as her painful facial expressions can be clearly seen, allowing the audience to infer that she is hurting herself with the lighter. This interpretation is then proved to be true as the camera cuts to a close up shot of her burnt arm. All of a sudden, the mother’s voice can be heard as she bangs on the door whilst yelling at her daughter again. Due to the daughter not expecting this, it seems as if she has dropped the lighter and her room is on fire as the camera focuses on her concerned facial expressions through a medium shot. Smoke can also be seen, proving to the audience that her room is on fire.

A black screen can be seen for a couple of seconds, followed by a close up shot of the lighter, which has been slightly burnt being placed on a glass table. An over the shoulder is used as the mother can be seen sitting on one end of the table with concerned facial expressions. Dialogue is used as she says, “So, what are we going to do about this?”. This is then followed by another over the shoulder shot, as the daughter is revealed to be covered in bandages as her whole body has been burnt. This then cuts to a side view medium shots, presenting both the characters sitting opposite each other in silence. This then cuts to a medium shot of the daughter as it seems like she is about to say something, but the screen goes black and the film ends. 

‘Baywatch’ Magazine Review Analysis

Empire magazine has included a film review of ‘Baywatch’ in its July edition as the movie was released at the end of May. Generally, it received a fairly positive response as it has been rated 5.7/10 stars on imdb.

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Layout

The page has been separated into three different sections, as there are three different movie reviews on this page. The review for ‘Baywatch’ is one of the smaller reviews, therefore it takes up a small section of the page. It is not the main review that stands out, as this movie did not do so well, which is revealed through the one star rating that is presented near the title. Although the review itself is quite small, there is an image of what seems to be a screenshot from a scene of the movie. This captures the reader’s attention as they get an insight into what the film is about, which then makes them want to read the review. Below the image, the title ‘Baywatch’ is presented in black, bold writing. Therefore, the reader clearly knows which movie is reviewed if they were unable to guess by the image above. Just below the title is star rating, as well as the release date of the movie, the certified rating of the movie and the movie length. Below this is the name of the director and main cast, followed by a brief description of the plot, giving the reader an insight to what the movie is about. 1/5 stars have been presented which reveals to the reader that the review is going to be negative. A thick, black line is seen to go across the first column, separating the information regarding the movie and the actual review. The review itself is quite short as it is only one paragraph.

Imagery

One image has been presented on this section of the page which seems to be from a scene of the actual movie. This is an effective image as it presents the two main characters, who are also extremely famous actors; Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron. This instantly attracts the reader as they assume that this is going to be a good movie, due to the actors that are in it. They are both presented to be standing on a beach, revealing the general setting of the movie, as they both shake hands, allowing the reader to assume that they are friends. The image gives the reader information about the movie, without having to read anything.

Colour

There is a bright yellow border on the outer sides of this page which makes the page stand out as a whole. The image itself is quite bright, which creates a visual reflection of the movie, as well as capturing the audience’s attention. The contrasts with the text, which is black. This makes the yellow border significant as it makes the page stand out and intriguing. The use of colour is important to intrigue readers as people need to be visually pleased in order to want to read something. Therefore, Empire magazine have made a convenient choice of including a yellow border, as it brightens the page up a lot more. The overall use of colours on the page are a good choice as it is not too dull, nor too bright. There is a nice, balanced contrast which makes the image and text stand out to the reader, as well as being visually gratifying.

Language

The review itself has been written by someone who is known by the initials ‘NDS’, which is revealed at the end of the review. They briefly discuss the plot of the movie, but mainly focuses on how bad the movie is, which is presented through formal language which has been used throughout the review. 

Generally, the reader can infer that this movie is going to be an extremely negative review as the movie has been rated 1/5 stars at the top of the page. These expectations have been met as the review is all negative and not a single positive thing has been said about the movie, director or actors. Therefore, the reader does not feel content whilst reading this review as it is clearly a very biased review as everything about the movie is presented in a negative view, and no other opinions or facts have been given. 

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this is a not a good review as it seems extremely biased. Although, I haven’t seen ‘Baywatch’ myself, I can clearly see that this is is not an honest representation, due to the text. Despite the fact that the review is all negative and seems one sided, the image itself gives the reader an insight into the movie, which may intrigue them to watch it. It definitely intrigues the reader to read the review, but the majority may be left disappointed. Before I read this review, my expectations of this movie were fairly positive, due to the promotion of the movie as well as other reviews I have read, therefore I was shocked after reading this review. I feel like this review has failed to reveal the movie in its true colours. 

On the other hand, the layout, colours and imagery is very effective as it intrigues the reader to actually read the review. Everything on the page stands out, without it being all thrown to the reader at once. It all follows the generic codes and conventions of a magazine film review as it includes the title in bold writing, details about the movie, description of the plot and a star rating is given. Also, an image is included giving an insight to the movie, as well as making it visually appealing. 

In conclusion, this film review is very intriguing to the reader and makes them want to read the review, therefore its purpose has been fulfilled. The text also puts off the reader from watching the movie which means the writer’s purpose of the review has also been fulfilled as it remains in the reader’s mind.

‘Hunger Games’ Website analysis

This is the official website homepage for the movie, ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2. This movie was released in 2015 by Lionsgate. This movie consists of multiple genres: sci-fi, drama, thriller and adventure which are all reflected through its website homepage.

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This website homepage is very visual rather than being more text based. The intention of this website being more visual is to give the viewers an insight to what the movie is like as they want to be able to reflect the movie through the website.

Layout

There is a header at the top of the page which contains a drop down bar, the movie title and some tabs. The tabs allow the viewer to get tickets to watch the movie in cinema, learn more about the other films in the series, explore their app, visit the tribute page as well as read some news about the movie. The title is placed in the centre left which stands out to the viewer. Below this is a video which is the trailer to the movie, as well a twitter link, which is a form of promotion as this makes the viewer aware that they have their own twitter account.

Imagery

The main focus of this homepage is on the image of the protagonist, Katniss Everdeen who . The image used for the website seems to be an image from the movie itself, which is good as it gives the viewer an insight into the movie. This is significant as the movie is constantly reflected through the visuals of the website. The protagonist in the movie is played by Jennifer Lawrence, who is well known for these Hunger Games movies. The background image is of a black screen with a lot of flames, which reflects the adventure genre of the movie. The character, Katniss Everdeen is standing in front of these flames, which makes her seem fierce and strong. This hints at the thriller, adventure and drama genres of the movie due to the tense effect it creates on the viewer.

Colour

Dull, dark colours are used all over which creates a mysterious tone to the homepage. A lot of black is used as the background is black, as well as the header. The orange flames stands out to the viewer due to the heavy contrast in colours. This creates emphasis on the adventure genre. Although there is a small use of bright colours, it is extremely significant as it makes the page a lot more visually appealing. Due to the use of bright colours being limited, any interpretations of the movie to be happy and joyful, as it is not. If a lot of bright colours were consistent throughout the whole page, the wrong effect would have been created and it would not reflect the movie correctly whereas all the colours that have been used work well together to reflect the themes of the movie accurately. 

Typography

The title ‘The Hunger Games’ is placed in the centre left of the page and is in big, bold, white capital letters, making it stand out, as well as the the top left corner in orange letters. However, the orange writing is smaller, therefore it does not stand out as much as the white text. However, both colours stand out from the dark background, as it should capture the viewer’s attention.  All of the text on the homepage is in capital letters, which typically connotes shouting and anger, which is supported by the fierce background image, as well as the chosen colours as it all creates a fierce effect. The tabs at the top of the page are also in white, but the size is small which means it does not stand out significantly. Nevertheless, the white text stands out from the black background, but not as much as the title due to it being a bigger size. This is good because the viewer’s attention should go directly to the title and then everywhere else after. 

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this website homepage is a good representation of the movie due to the use of imagery and colours. Everything has been laid out and presented well, as the homepage gives a visual reflection of the movie, as well as there being various options to learn more about the movie. I think this is an effective website homepage for a movie as it is very enticing as the viewer is intrigued to learn more about the movie. I can assume that a lot of money has been spent on the creation of this website due to the production and effectiveness of it. I have seen this movie before and in my opinion, I think that this website homepage creates an accurate representation of the film itself. The website is very well produced and is made to a high quality, which reflects the high quality of the film.  I think that the viewer is able to guess the tone of the movie through the use of colours and layout of the website as it creates a tense, yet adventurous effect, which also intrigues viewers to want to watch the movie. I already know that the main genres are thriller, adventure and drama which are clearly reflected through this homepage, however an insight to the movie is also given through the imagery used. Furthermore, I think that this website homepage is extremely effective as it is visually gratifying and definitely intrigues the viewer to watch the trailer, learn more about the movie and actually watch the movie. It is clear to see that a lot of time and money has been spent on its production, which creates a good impression for the movie, especially as The Hunger Games series are popular world wide. Due to this, people already had high expectations of the movie, and any form of promotion for this movie, including this website, and I personally think that these expectations have been met. I think that this website has influenced many viewers to watch the movie.  

‘Are You Living an Insta Lie?’ Analysis

I have watched a short film of the drama genre, called ‘Are You Living an Insta Lie? Social Media Vs. Reality’, as part of my research into short films within the drama genre. It has been released by an international aniti-bullying charity, called Ditch The Label, on 20th February 2017.

This short film is based on today’s society and how social media, specifically Instagram sugarcoats people’s lives. People tend to make their lives seem a lot better on social media because they want others to be envious, however the reality is that everybody lives a simple life. But for some reason, receiving likes on social media helps people feel validated and satisfied with their lives. This film is not very emotional but definitely fits the drama genre as it sends out a message to the audience about the effect that social media has on us. The generic conventions of a dramatic short film have been followed, as a message is conveyed, however it is not emotional. Nevertheless, it does create an impact on the audience as they are left thinking about the message it gives out. Personally, I quite liked this short film as it i short and simple, and has a clear message that I was left thinking about after the film had ended. It has clearly been thought out, as the audience is captivated throughout. By the end of the film, the audience feels impacted as it is presented to be very realistic and relatable to most, if not all of the viewers. The director has portrayed the main theme of social media and its influence on society in an authentic way as it has been filmed, edited and acted out to a high standard, presenting our lives in its true reality.

The camera, editing, sound and mise en scene has evidently been considered and thought through by the director as it all portrayed in a very realistic way. A lot of quick cuts have been used to present how fast our lives are going as well as the lack of attention to detail. The mise en scene also makes everything seem very realistic, especially the locations and clothing. The sound has also been thought out very well as the fast, cheerful music helps create the effect of our lives being sugarcoated. I have analysed the film in more detail as part of my research. 

Textual Analysis

The film begins with a medium shot of a young woman standing in her bathroom, looking in the mirror, whilst wearing her pyjamas. Quick cuts are used between medium shots, presenting this young lady to be washing her face. Non diegetic sound begins as fast background music begins to play. This fits in well with the quick cuts and zoom ins as the young lady begins to brush her teeth and apply basic, natural looking makeup to her face. This then cuts to a medium shot of her laying back in bed, next to her boyfriend who seems to be asleep. A bird’s eye view shot is used to present them both laying in bed, as the girl begins to take a selfie of her laying in bed. Editing techniques have been used as the image that she took appears as a small square on the screen, with her caption which says, “Gooood morning!!! #iwokeuplikethis”. This instantly reveals to the audience that she has pretended to not even leave her bed yet, whereas she has actually washed her face and applied makeup, to make herself seem much more better looking than she really does when she wakes up. Due to this, the audience is able to infer that she either wishes to make people feel envious of her, or she wants people to like her photo, to make herself feel validated in society. 

This then quickly cuts to a medium shot of a young man sitting in his car whilst looking at his phone. The image of the previous girl is also on the left of the screen, revealing that he is looking at her photo. The fast background music continues, as the man puts away his phone and gets out of his car. The camera then tracks him walking to this scenic area and places a helmet over his head. He then takes out his phone and takes a selfie which is portrayed through a medium shot. This then cuts to a long shot as he stands in this are and posts his photo to Instagram, which is presented as the small square with his image and caption is presented once again. The caption says, “30km bike ride done! #Fitspo #HillClimb #CyclingLife”. This once again supports the main idea of using social media to sugarcoat our lives as the audience has clearly seen that he did no cycling, and instead drove to this area. 

This then transitions to the next shot, which is a medium shot of a woman who seems to be in her work office. The image of the previous man overshadows this shot to create an effect to make it seem like she is looking at his photo. Close up shots are used of her hand as she neatly places certain things on her desk. This then cuts to a birds eye view of what seems to be a very neat, organised desk. Quick cuts are then used to portray the side of her desk which is very messy, however the caption of the photo is seen to be, “Getting organised! #cleardeskclearmind #office”. 

Another transition is used a zoom in is used to transition into the next shot, which is a medium shot of a young man who seems to be sitting in a cafe or restaurant whilst looking at his phone. This then cuts to a side view medium shot of the man outside the cafe, as he takes out his phone and take a photo of the kale smoothie in his hand. This then cuts to a long shot of him walking down a street, which then cuts to a medium shot as he takes a sip from his smoothie. His facial expressions display a sense of disgust, revealing that he doesn’t like it. This is supported by the fact that he throws his smoothie in the bin after just one sip. He then posts his photo on Instagram, as the small square appears in the corner, presenting his photo and caption, which is “Super healthy breakfast! New me! #juicecleanse #tastesbetterthanitlooks”.

This then transitions into the next shot which is a medium shot of another young man who is looking at the previous man’s photo in his bedroom. A speed up effect is then used of this young man trying on different clothes whilst looking in the mirror and taking mirror photos of himself, showing off his outfits. This then quickly cuts to a medium shot of him sitting on his bed and looking at his phone. The small square appears in the top right corner as he adds various filters on his photo to make it seem more appealing. The final image and caption is then presented which says, “Stylin’ #effortlessselfie #oneshotwonder”.

Another transition is used as a young woman can be seen sitting in a public area whilst looking at the previous man’s photo. The camera pans around the table, presenting a group of young friends all sitting whilst looking at their phones. A long shot is then used as the waitress takes a photo of all them. As soon as she is done, they all get back to looking at their phones. A medium shot is used to present one of the friends who posts the photo onto Instagram, which is presented with the small square. The caption reads, “Love spending quality time with these guys x #goodtimes laughs #besties”. The audience knows that this is sugarcoated as the group of friends haven’t even spoken properly as they have been spending all their time on their phones.

A medium shot is used as a man is presented to be sitting on his sofa whilst looking at their laptop. This then cuts to a close up shot of him applying heavy makeup and dressing up like a drag queen. He then takes a selfie of himself, which is presented in a small square, followed by the caption, “BIG night ahead”, even though the audience knows he is staying at home. A medium shot is used as he takes off all his makeup, as well as creating emphasis on his happy facial expressions, implying that having others think that you have a fun, busy life helps you feel validated. 

This then transitions to another man who is also sitting on his sofa looking at his laptop, which is presented through a medium shot. A speed up effect is used as his girlfriend enters the room and he begins to watch TV. A medium shot is used as she sits next to him, but his main focus is the TV. She then takes out her phone and takes a photo of herself kissing her boyfriend’s cheek. She then tries to take another one but he pushes her away. A medium shot is used as she leaves the room and he continues to watch TV. This then cuts to another medium shot as she sits on her bed and posts the photo, followed by the caption, “Awwww, ❤ my man xxx #relationshipgoals #bae”. This implies that she has a great, loving relationship with her boyfriend, whereas the audience has seen the opposing reality.  Editing techniques are used as likes begin to appear on the screen, the woman then smiles whilst looking at her phone and the film ends. This leaves the audience with the idea that no matter what our lives are like, we can make them seem better through social media, and then feel validated by the amount of likes we receive. 

‘Stockholm My Love’ Magazine Review Analysis

Empire magazine has included a film review of ‘Stockholm My Love’ in its July edition as the movie was released in June. Generally, it received a fairly negative response as it has been rated 4.6/10 stars on imdb. 

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Layout

The page has been separated into three different sections, as there are three different movie reviews on this page. The review for ‘Stockholm My Love’ is one of the smaller reviews, therefore it takes up a small section of the page. It is not the main review that stands out, as this movie did not do so well. Although the review itself is quite small, there is an image of what seems to be a screenshot from a scene of the movie. This captures the reader’s attention as they get an insight into what the film is about, which then makes them want to read the review. Below the image, the title ‘Stockholm My Love’ is presented in black, bold writing. Therefore, the reader clearly knows which movie is reviewed if they were unable to guess by the image above. Just below the title is star rating, as well as the release date of the movie, the certified rating of the movie and the movie length. Below this is the name of the director and main cast, followed by a brief description of the plot, giving the reader an insight to what the movie is about. 3/5 stars have been presented which reveals to the reader that the review is likely to include a mixture of opinions. A thick, black line is seen to go across the first column, separating the information regarding the movie and the actual review. The review itself is quite short as it is only one paragraph.

Imagery

One image has been presented on the page which seems to be from a scene of the actual movie. This is an effective image as it seems to present the protagonist who is standing in the rain, suggesting that it is of the drama genre. From her facial expressions and body language, she seems to be quite shy and unhappy. The image gives the reader information about the movie, without having to read anything. The size of the image is quite small, however it still captures the reader’s attention due to the image itself. Part of the setting can also be seen in the background of the image, which allows the reader to interpret what the general setting of the movie will be. 

Colour

There is a bright yellow border on the outer sides of this page which contrasts with the dark colours of the image, making both, the border and the image stand out on the page. The text, which takes up most of the section of this review is black, which makes the yellow border significant as it makes the page stand out and intriguing. The use of colour is important to intrigue readers as people need to be visually pleased in order to want to read something. Therefore, Empire magazine have made a convenient choice of including a yellow border, as it brightens the page up a lot more. The colours of the image also make the image stand out as they are different to all the other images on the page. It is the only dark image on a bright coloured page, therefore it intrigues the reader. The overall use of colours on the page are a good choice as it is not too dull, nor too bright. There is a nice, balanced contrast which makes the image and text stand out to the reader, as well as being visually gratifying. 

Language

The review itself has been written by someone who is known by the initials ‘DP’, which is revealed at the end of the review. They discuss the plot of the movie as well as the main themes, such as remorse, recovery, sanctuary, escape and happiness. DP’s language is quite formal and sophisticated throughout.

Generally, the reader can infer that this review is going to be a mixture of positive and negative opinions as the movie didn’t do so great, and at the top of the page, the 3/5 star rating has been revealed. However, the review itself does not reveal many opinions, but mainly the story line. Although, DP does say that parts of the movie may be “an acquired taste”, which reveals that this movie is not for everyone. Nevertheless, the reader feels content whilst reading this review as it is clearly not a biased review as it is mainly factual rather that opinion based. 

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this is a good review as a true reflection of the movie has been given. Although, I haven’t seen ‘Stockholm My Love’ myself, I can clearly see that this is an honest representation, due to the use of imagery and the text. I think that some readers feel intrigued to watch the movie after reading the review as it explains the story line, which seems quite good. Although DP talks about how it may be an acquired taste, people now know what to expect so they will not be disappointed. Due to my expectations of this review being both, positive and negative, I feel like this review reveals the movie in its true colours as it is very raw. This review does not sugarcoat the movie in any way which is what is expected from a movie review.

The layout, colours and imagery is also very effective as it intrigues the reader to actually read the review. Everything on the page stands out, without it being all thrown to the reader at once. It all follows the generic codes and conventions of a magazine film review as it includes the title in bold writing, details about the movie, description of the plot and a star rating is given. Also, an image is included giving an insight to the movie, as well as making it visually appealing.

In conclusion, this film review is very intriguing to the reader and makes them want to read the review, therefore its purpose has been fulfilled.

‘Curfew’ Website Analysis

This is the website homepage for the short film, ‘Curfew’. This film was released in 2012 and was directed by Shawn Christensen. It did very well as it was rated 4.7/5 stars on iTunes, as well as winning an Academy Award for Best Short Film. This film is of the drama genre which is reflected through its website homepage.

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This website homepage is very visual rather than being more text based. The intention of this website being more visual is to give the viewers an insight to what the movie is like as well as revealing how well it has done. 

Layout

The menu at the top consists of seven tabs, allowing the viewer to learn about the film, read some news about the film, watch the trailer, learn about any related festivals, awards, press and music. The title is right beside these tabs, in big, bold, white capital letters. Below the title, is an image of a young girl, who is presumably the protagonist. Below this is another bar, which credits the director of the film, as well as providing social media links. Apple, Twitter and Facebook can be seen, allowing the viewer to follow the film’s social media accounts, as a form of promotion. Below this, a large grey area can be seen where there is a list of all the awards this film has won. 

Imagery

There is an image of a young girl at the top of the homepage, which stands out to the viewer as the website is not very colourful. The girl seems to be looking downwards, suggesting that she is unhappy. She is holding a teddy bear in her hand, and her facial expression reveal that she is tired. It can be inferred that the image used for this website is from a scene of the film, but this is not certain. This image is significant as the tone of the film seems to be reflected through this image; serious and unhappy, which links well the the drama genre. It can also be assumed that the image is of the protagonist of the film, as she must be an important character if she is the main focus. Not much of the setting can be seen through the image, which intrigues the viewer to learn more about the girl in the image and her story. 

Colour

Quite dull  colours are used all over the page which creates a serious tone to the homepage. A lot of black and grey is used as the background of the image is black, and the background for the list of awards is grey. The title is in white, which contrasts with the dull colours, making it stand out to the viewer. The text in the tabs is also in white, making it easy to read. To contrast with the dull colours, a hint of orange is used as the two bars, one at the top of the page and one in the centre, is orange. This use of colour is important as it is important for the website homepage to be appealing to look at. I think that this use of orange is good, as it stands out and adds colour to the page, as well as supporting the serious, mysterious tone of the website. It also removes any interpretations of the movie to be of the horror genre. If the dark colours were consistent throughout the whole page, the wrong effect could have been created and it would not reflect the movie correctly whereas all the colours that have been used work well together to reflect the themes of the film accurately. 

Typography

The title ‘Curfew’ is placed at the top right corner of the page and is in big, bold, white capital letters, making it stand out. The credit to the director is also in the same colour, however it is much smaller in size,  which reveals that it is not as significant. This is the same with the social media links, and the tabs. The title is slightly placed over the image of the girl, but does not make the image unclear in any way. In fact, it makes the title stand out more and the viewer’s attention is captured by it due to the contrasting colours. All of the text on the homepage is in capital letters, which typically connotes shouting and anger, however this effect is not given. The list of the awards is at the bottom of the page, and is in black writing instead of white. This separates it from the rest of the text, making the viewer intrigued to read it and see what it is. This is good because the viewer then learns about all the different awards the film has received, creating a positive view of the film.

Overall Opinion

Overall, I think that this website homepage is a good reflection of the drama genre due to the use of imagery and colours. Everything has been laid out and presented well, as the homepage gives a visual reflection of the film, as well as there being various options to learn more about the film. I think this is an effective website homepage for a film as it is very enticing as the viewer is intrigued to learn more about the film. I can assume that quite a bit of money and effort has been spent on the creation of this website due to the production and effectiveness of it. I, personally have not seen this film before but after looking at the website and exploring it more, I am definitely intrigued to watch the film as I can infer that it is a good film, as the website is made to a good standard and it has received a lot of awards. I can also guess the tone of the movie through the use of colours and layout of the website as it creates a tense, mysterious effect, which also intrigues me to want to watch the movie. I already know that the main genre is drama which is clearly reflected through this homepage, however an insight to the movie is also given through the imagery used. Furthermore, I will be watching ‘Curfew’ due to the impact that the website has had on me. 

‘Alone Time’ Analysis

I have watched a short film of the drama genre, called ‘Alone Time’, as part of my research into short films within the drama genre. It has been directed by Rod Blackhurst and was released on September 29th 2014. 

This short film is based on a young woman who lives in the busy city of New York. She is constantly presented to be busy with work and unhappy with her life overall, therefore she decides to go camping for a couple of days to have some alone time, hence the title. She finally gets the peace and quiet that she needed, only to find out that she has a stalker. She learns this when she looks back at the photos she took from her camping trip. This is quite unexpected for the audience as it is not obvious throughout the film that she has a stalker, unless you look closely. The overall tone is quite calm, which is what makes the plot twist at the end so unexpected and dramatic. The generic conventions of a dramatic short film have been followed, as there is an unexpected twist towards the end, which makes the audience intrigued to know more. Personally, I quite liked this short film as it follows the main conventions of short films, as well the conventions of the drama genre, however it could be a bit shorted and have the same impact. The film is quite realistic and can even be relatable for some people; the audience is left intrigued to know more about her stalker and how she deals with the situation. 

Overall, I believe that this video has achieved its purpose as it leaves the audience with an unexpected turn of events and leaves them thinking about the film. It also gives out the message that it can be good to have some alone time and take a break from the busy lives that people live, as well as being careful and being more aware of our surroundings. 

The camera, editing, sound and mise en scene has evidently been considered and thought through by the director as it all portrayed very realistically. The mise en scene is the most significant aspect of the film as the choice of lighting, costumes and location is what makes the film seem to realistic and relatable, therefore allowing it to have a larger impact on the audience. 

Textual Analysis

The film begins with a black screen with the words “Based on a true story” in white letters presented in the centre of the screen. This instantly creates a dramatic effect on the audience as the audience is now aware that whatever they are about to see is going to be real and has happened to somebody in real life. After five seconds, the actual film begins with a long shot of a ship sailing in the water, in front of many buildings. This clearly reveals to the audience that the main location is based in a city. Diegetic sound is used as the sound of the ship can be heard very loudly. The title then appears on top of the shot of the ship, in white capital letters. This then cuts to an outdoor area, where a woman can be seen facing away from the camera. However, low key lighting is used which makes it difficult for the audience to see the face of this person. Non diegetic sound is used as slow background music can be heard, as well as some chattering in the background, revealing that this person is not alone. A medium shot is used to portray the side of the protagonist’s face, which once again can not clearly be seen due to the low key lighting. However, it is evident that she is in a formal party setting, and is not enjoying herself. 

The following shot is a medium shot of a train going past the protagonist as she waits at a train station. Diegetic sound is used as the sound of the train can be heard. This then cuts to a long shot of the protagonist at her office job. Non diegetic sound is used as phones can be heard ringing in the background as well as some chattering. The camera slowly zooms in towards the protagonist. This then quickly cuts to a close up shot of her hands typing as someone places some files on her desk, making her stop typing. The camera then tilts upwards to her face as minimum dialogue is exchanged between the protagonist and presumably, her boss. This then cuts to a long shot of the protagonist walking down some stairs in a train station. Diegetic sound is used as her footsteps can be heard. She then walks out of the frame, which then cuts to a side view medium shot as she waits for a train. A man can be seen stepping into the frame as he walks past her whilst looking at her, however she takes no notice. He then becomes out of focus as everything seems to be blurred besides the protagonist. The train then arrives and the protagonist enters the train, however the man is still in frame as he watches her enter and then enter himself in a nearby carriage. 

A close up shot is used to present some food in a tray, which then cuts to a medium shot of the protagonist standing in her kitchen with her tray of food. Low key lighting is used, representing the darkness and sorrow in her own life. This then cuts to a medium shot of an alarm clock presenting the time to be 5:13 am. The camera then pans to the right to present the protagonist laying in bed awake. This then cuts to a long shot of the protagonist standing in a crowded city. She has very serious facial expressions as she stands still, whilst everyone around her is walking, except for one man who is standing behind her. The audience can infer that this is the same man from the train station who seems to be stalking her. As she begins to walk ahead, he begins to walk too as if he is following her. A medium shot is used to present the protagonist back at work as she spills coffee over her papers. The camera remains on her face for a few seconds, emphasising her unhappy, stressed facial expressions. 

A long shot is used to present the protagonist in her home as she clumsily drops a bag. Low key lighting has been used, suggesting that she is still unhappy in her life and that darkness is following her everywhere. A medium shot is then used to reveal her facial expressions as she seems to be thinking of something.  This is supported by the next shot of her talking through the phone leaving a message to someone saying that she is going camping for a few days to have some needed alone time. Non diegetic sound is then used as some slow background music begins to play as a medium shot is used of the protagonist driving in her car. A medium shot is then used of the protagonist in a shop as she waits to pay for a couple of necessities for her trip. The camera then emphasises on the disposable camera she picks up and adds to the things she is buying. This is the first time in the whole film where the protagonist can be seen smiling, and high key lighting is used. A side view medium shot is then used of her driving in her car once again, however the scenery through the window has changed from a city to a more country side atmosphere. The camera stays on her face for a few seconds, emphasising her smile as she is finally happy. The background music also speeds up and sounds a lot more cheerful and happier, reflecting the protagonist’s emotions. 

A medium shot is used of the protagonist getting out of her car as she places her camping bag on her back and walks into the trees and bushes. A long shot is used to present the trees and bushes as she walks between them. Non diegetic sound is used as the sounds of crickets and birds can be heard in the background, making it seem more realistic and emphasising the natural environment. Another long shot has been used as the protagonist enters an area where there is a river in front of her. A medium shot is used as she takes out her camera and take a photo of the river due to the beautiful scenery. This then cuts to a medium shot of the protagonist setting up her tent besides the river. A medium shot is then used to present her in the river as she slowly dives in and begins to swim. This then cuts to a close up shot of a camp fire that she has made. The camera then pans towards her, giving the audience a better image of her. Diegetic sound has been used as the crackling of the fire can be heard. This then cuts to the protagonist sitting inside her tent, getting ready to sleep. The following shot is a long shot of the sky, from which the camera pans downwards to reveal the natural atmosphere once again. The protagonist is then presented to be opening her tent up and getting out of it. The camera pans around her as she takes more photos on her disposable camera of the environment she is in. 

Loud sirens can be heard as the location changes back to the city. A long shot has been used to present the protagonist leaving a shop where it seems that she has got all her photos from her disposable camera printed. This then cuts to the protagonist sitting at a table, looking through her photos and smiling. The camera then moves position so it focuses on the photos that she is looking at, allowing the audience to see them too. The camera is constantly cutting between the photos and her reactions to the photos, when she suddenly has shocked and fearful facial expressions. The camera then cuts onto the photo itself, which is an image of the protagonist sleeping in her tent, which means that somebody was stalking her. The camera then focuses on the protagonist’s face through a medium shot as she looks directly at the camera. The screen then goes black and the credits begin to roll.