September 29, 2009

The animated film ‘9’ directed by Shane Acker with the aid of producing by Tim Burton is based on the story about 9 rag dolls which each contains the souls of their creator. The story tends to move really fast, most of the time we see the use of fast paced, especially in the fighting scenes where the rag dolls and the machines are attaching each other.

The theme for this movie is straight, which is about survival and team work. Since each dolls contains different powers and weaknesses therefore the only way they will survive these whole situations and conflicts is for them to stay together and work as a team.




The color in 9 is so much of a Tim Burton Style which is slightly the same tone as ” the nightmare before christmas”. However, the lighting also helps give more meaning towards the character, for example, where the character 9 always holds the beacon which in a way lights up all their hopes and believes through their journey, in contrast, the machines; they are all lit up with red light source, which simplifies the death, evil, or blood.

From the information I’ve learned, the original version of 9 were meant to be a none-dialog animated film, but was later on changed to make it easier for the mass audience, never the less, from my opinion I would prefer this film to be a MOS film, because it would make the already perfected mise en scene stand out more, and shows more the work of body language.


Killer of Sheep.

September 29, 2009

Instead of making an ordinary gangster film like other movies in the mid 70s, Charles Burnett chooses to pick up on the ideas of life, family love and survival in a harsh world as his themes. The name of the film ‘Killer of Sheep’ can be simply identified as the role of the main character in the film, Stan, who works at the slaughterhouse as a killer of sheep. On the other hand if we look deeper in an abstract way, the sheep can be symbolized as the innocence.

The story begins with the scene of the boy getting beat up, the father then comes in and says to the boy; to be a man and fight back or if the next time you come back I’ll beat you up myself. From the first dialogue, it shows that not only the adults that are living in a harsh world, even the kids are living it too. And because we never see this boy again further in the film, it can suggest that the boy is Stan, the main character which has grown up and became the actual killer of sheep who works at the slaughterhouse.

The use of slow pace in this film allows the audience to feel the repetition or the routine in each characters’ lives. Through out the whole film there is no character development or solutions to their problems, however, despite the fact that the characters are living in a harsh world; they also tend to find a way to appreciate the little details in their lives, for example, in the scene where  Stan and his friends are holding cups against their cheeks to feel the warmth from the cups, as well as the scene where the daughter is playing with her father and her mother looks at her in a warm passionate way.

The film ends with its name “Killer of sheep”; as it once again cuts back at the slaughter house with stan in it. Nothing has changed and this provides the idea of life just goes on.

The film ‘En regardant le film’ directed by Zhang Yimou begins with the close up shot of a boy smiling, without using any dialogue we can tell that he is the main character of the film. Once he turns back the camera cuts to another shot which is the shot of the kids running to the same direction and this sort of gives a hint to the audience that something important is about to happen.

The main theme of this film is about the contrast between the old traditional life style and the civilized life style, the use of shots and camera angles helps to support the theme perfectly. For example in the scene where the out door theater is being set up, the director chooses to use only close up and medium shots to focus on the little details such as the technical elements; the screen, the speaker, the film projector etc. At the same time we can also see reactions and emotions of the kids in the village through these types of shot as well.

The use of wide shot in En regadant le film is rare to find, there are only 2-3 wide shots that are shown in the film, however each of them does state out clearly about how the lives of these people in the village is like. They live in the middle of nowhere, the hills are around them and this is the extremely important point because it allows the audience to understand how important the movie night is to these people.

Another interesting subject for this film is the color, even though the whole film is shot in color but the color appears to be grey and even greenish sometimes. I suggest the reason for this is because the director wanted the audience to get the idea of the uncivilized life there fore he avoided to use bright color which normally refers to something fresh and new.