Tuesday, 27 December 2011


We have also spoken about the different locations of where we want to film each snippet.. for the final shot when we see the couple holding hands we thought about filming at the Bickerley which is a dis-used train track where and a public pathway. The backdrop would be romantic which contrasts to the couple in shot. Here are a couple of pictures...

Another potential place would be Hightown Lakes:

Rom-Com Planning and initial ideas.

So me Zoe and Effie have come up with what we hope to be a successful story opening!
We are sticking to our protagonist narrating at the beginning, explaining her pet hates surrounding men. This will then cut to a shot of told hands, then it will zoom out to reveal a couple (a grubby male, who is unattractive and gruesome and an ordinary girl.. the female protagonist). 

To make our audience be able to relate to the story we asked some of our friends what they didnt like about boys, and the three of us also came up with some. Sorry lads! Examples of these are: hands down their trouserscontaminating objects around, leaving the toilet seats up.
We also want to focus on the little things (inspired by Amelie) like when they come up  behind you and pinch your waist and not closing the cupboard doors. 

Title Sequences
We also have been thinking about the use of titles and want to be really imaginative and artistic. These are conventions that we found in other indie films. We want the titles to be on the objects in the scene; such as on the cereal box in the left open fridge and titles on toilet seat/toilet roll inspired by the media text 'Napoleon Dynamite"

Thursday, 8 December 2011

500 Days of Summer Prologue

As you've probably guessed by now 500 days of summer is pretty much my favourite rom com, but I've found the opening prologue from the opening of the film, its humourous and breifly introduced each protagonist!
Narrator: This is a story of boy meets girl. The boy, Tom Hansen of Margate, New Jersey, grew up believing that he'd never truly be happy until the day he met the one. This belief stemmed from early exposure to sad British pop music and a total mis-reading of the movie 'The Graduate'. The girl, Summer Finn of Shinnecock, Michigan, did not share this belief. Since the disintegration of her parent's marriage she'd only love two things. The first was her long dark hair. The second was how easily she could cut it off and not feel a thing. Tom meets Summer on January 8th. He knows almost immediately she is who he has been searching for. This is a story of boy meets girl, but you should know upfront, this is not a love story

Monday, 5 December 2011

Rom Coms for men?

I have started looking at our main audience "young adults."  Obviously this involves men as well as women so I have done some research into what the web think what rom coms men enjoy.
I'm going to post the films with their openings if possible, if not their trailers and ask a couple of boys what ones they prefered and why.....

   "Practical Magic"

"The Mirror Has Two Faces"


"Its Complicated"

"The princess Bride"

"Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind"

"Groundhog Day"

Joe-"I liked the last five because they are funny and involve women, although some of them are a bit dated"

Pete- "I liked Eternal Sunshine and It's Complicated because I recognise the actors."

Ash- "I liked Eternal Sunshine.. and Groundhog day because of the actors and it looks funnier."

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Research research research

Last week we looked at doing a more quirky, indie Rom Com which i really like.
  • Awkwardness!!! Lots of swaying back and forth on the feet, uncomfortable situations... 
  • Pick up on tiny details, littlest things. The beginning of Amelie is a great example, like what each characters likes and dislikes are, iufortunately I cant find a decent clip of this anywhere. 
  • Artistic 
  • Ordinary looking people.
  • Down beat 
  • Warm clothing seemed to occur a lot, winter time. 
  • Indie music.. gentle 
We looked at some indie rom com trailers... these were:

Garden State

Lars and The Real Girl

Eagle Vs Shark


Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Film opening brief

So its time to start our film opening and the brief I have chosen is:
A ‘relationship’ comedy/drama made by an independent production company, aimed at young adults.
I'm pretty excited to get started however the group I am with, Zoe and Effie, have completely different ideas for the  story. They are inspired by openings such as The Holiday with the non-diegetic speech of Kate Winslet, and Love Actually with all the couples together.
As much as I love the films I think its all a bit cliche and soppy, and because its an indie film i want it to attract both sexes. I want it to be just as funny as the romance.
I like the idea of having two contrasting protagonists that are the lovers for example in 'Knocked Up'.

I like the shots of "This is Allison's Life" and "This is Ben's Life" you can really see the contrast of the characters, having text like this in my opening is an idea I would like to consider.

I'm also inspired by this split scene from 500 Days Of Summer:

The faded edges and costumes give it that Indie, vintage feel and thats what I really like. Also using something like "This is ..... life" and having a split screen we can show the two protagonists getting ready for their day of work.. maybe the day they are going to meet.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

'Breakfast at Tiffanys' opening scene analysis

I am analysing Blake Edwards' "Breakfast at Tiffanys". I originally wanted to analyse '500 Days of Summer' opening but i couldnt find it anywhere at all! So I have settled for something I enjoy just as much, it may not be very exciting but I think it sets the film up brilliantly.
Shot 1 ELS

 Shot 2 Low angle

 Shot 3 MS
 Shot 4 MS
Shot 5 MS/CU
 Shot 6 LS
 Shot 7 ELS
Shot 8 High  angle

How are character types established?
Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) is first seen in the first shot. Her clothing suggests she's an upper class socialite with money also this is portrayed by the way she holds herself. You can tell she's into expensive things like jewellery and in shot 8 you can see that she is running away from a man, suggesting she's mischievous.  

How is the location established? 
The location is also established in the first shot with the american style buildings and the shop of 'Tiffany & Co' show that it is set in New York. The cars and fashion also show that this was set in the '60s.

How is the narrative constructed? 
The narrative of this is simply the question of who is this woman? Why is she trying to get away from this man? The beginning does not give too much away wanting you to watch on.

How does it reflect the genre of the film?
The calm music of the infamous 'Moon River' reflects the romance in the movie. There is no action in this scene which straight away shows that if you want action you're watching the wrong movie. When I first watched this film I was expecting it to be just a romantic film, but actually a few more shots in we see that it is also a comedy. Creating a hybrid genre of a rom-com.

Is the opening appropriate for the genre? 
Yes, I think it is definitely appropriate, it is very unlikely that a calm slow opening like this would be used for any other genres.

How have the titles been used? 
You can see in shot 4 that the font for the titles are golden and easy to read, this reflects the laid back elegance of the film. They are straight to point of who is the cast and crew and fits in with the main warm colours in the mise en scene.

Is the opening effective in your view?
I think that opening is effective, normally I don't really like a slow opening as it can drag on a bit. But because it is an older film and it runs smoothly into the actual film I do like it. Unlike for example the opening sequence in 'The Notebook' I think the music is too slow and drags on.


Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Finished preliminary!

After lots of chocolate cake, filming and 6 double lessons I have finally finished my preliminary task. Overall I enjoyed the whole process but it is nice to be able to finally move on, after watching it 100 times due to editing! I am surprised by how it all fitted together, considering it was my first time doing anything like this, it didnt turn out to be a disaster. I got to grips with the editing programme quite quickly and even experimented with some things. Here are some screen shots of my film in the process of being edited.

It took me a lot of time to find the right music for my task because it was hard to find something that fitted well with the tense genre. At first I wanted to to have something quite upbeat, like mission impossible but the walking was too slow, and there definitely wasnt enough action to keep in time with the beat. So I then decided I needed to have music that built to a climax until Zoe blew out the candles. Thankfully Joe is a film fanatic and suggested that I used something from The Dark Knight, there was 2 different choices, Why So Serious (which is in my overall production) and the 2nd was Aggressive Expansion. I experiemented with both songs started them at different times, in the end I decided that Why So Serious fitted better with the timings, I even cut a 'boom' sound from near the end of the song and put it in the end of the section I chose. I decided to fade the song out at the end other than just ending it to make it more smoother and less obvious.
At first I found it challenging dubbing the sound from one scene to another, but I think I was quite fortunate because when I added the sound over the surprise scene it seemed to fit perfectly. When Zoe starts to talk however was harder because if you held it on a bit before you could hear Joe talking so its quite obvious.
   I did envovle a point of veiw shot before zoe opens the door, but the way the camera was a bit shakey it looked like someone was following her and that might have been watching her.
The filming of the conversion was quite shakey camera work, but it adds to the awkwardness of the situation. While I was experimenting with the program I learned how to do a split screen so I used this at the end of our task, for the credits and background music of 'Teenage Dirtbag' because it was up beat. I faded the end of the song and went to black to finish it off.
    So now its off to youtube for anyone to see. Eeek!

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Filming for Preliminary

Last Monday 26th September my group started and completed our preliminary task. It was exciting as it was something new and different to ya usual lesson in school. We used the big camera for filming our scenes which was challenging as it was heavy and trying to keep the camera still and not shake was hard, for me anyway!

Setting up/Filming
So after getting our equiptment ready we had the crucial job of finding a room! This admittedly took quite some time, but in the end we found a small room in music.
The first scene we decided to film was the easiest... the cake lit on its own in the picture next to this paragraph, me and Katie were the ones that set up the posistion and cake trying to keep it central. After that we followed our story boards adding and taking away shots along the way. We all had a ago at filming and being filmed, although I would've liked to film with the camera a bit more as it would have been nice to get some experience ready for our film openings. Although I was 'director of photography' which basically is taking the pictures for evidence of filming. We finished filming under 2 hours, this was celebrated by eating the chocolate cake!

I definately cannot wait to start filming more and more as it is such a fun experience.
Now we are currently in the post-production stage editing our scenes. I find this really fun and creative as you can experiment with cutting different scenes and the sounds. We are now on our 3rd double for editing and I'm nearly all done, I just can't wait to see the finished product!

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Beginning of preliminary task

So tomorrow we are going to start shooting our first preliminary task, wahoo! Our short scene is going to at first be really intense and sinister but turn out to be a surprise party... gone wrong! We have completed a story board with lots of lovely pictures drawn by zoe but there's been a bit of trouble uploading the picture so hopefully i'll post it soon, but for now this is our first set of notes for our task, it's a bit messy but i think thats sentimental value..
Originally we did like the idea of the conversation happening between the actor and the cake (its actually just someone hiding in a cupboard) but we thought that it might be a bit too weird, and not very exciting, even if it is quite imaginative. 

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

A Beautiful Mind Shot Annalysation

Medium shot, the actor is central in the rule of thirds. His eye level is on the top line but looking down showing he is shy. In the mise on scene you can see someone else is in the room, but not in focus portaying that he is alone. The shallow spacing creates a sense of isolation. The loose framing also isolates him on his own.

This is a long shot with loose framing. It shows the surrounding that it is a formal event. The main action is in the middle. You can see it is a busy scene and outside. It looks quite intimidating as it is a wide shot.

This is a close up of the window. The blurred action in the backround suggests that it is not important. The bars on the window show the seperation on the person writing on the window and the people playing outside. And it once again shows isolation.

This is an over the shoulder shot, this shows that there two people in the shot. It shows two people having a conversation and you can easily tell the expression on the actor that is talking face.
This is a medium shot. The actor is off centre portraying him on his own, and the paper next to him seems quite intimidating. The lighting is dull, so it gives a calm depressing atmosphere like he is fed up.
This is a close-up. It focuses on the concentration on the actors face, you can see the people in the backround to show that they are expecting something from him. The lighting is dark and sinister.
The low angle shot makes the clock look important. The shadow creates the illusion that it is bigger than it is, and once again more sinister.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Lets get blogging!

Hello, my name is Jess and I am doing A-Level media.
The reason why I chose media was because I am interested in an acting and journalism career! I want to learn what happens behind the scenes with cameras and get a bigger picture of the film industry.
What other subjects are you studying?
The other subjects I am studying are Theatre Studies, English Language and Psychology.
Whos is your favourite band(s)/artist(s) and why?
At the moment my two favourite bands are 'The Midnight Beast' and 'Two Door Cinema Club'. I like The Midnight Beast because they are a comedy band, and admittedly quite good looking! I like Two Door purely because I enjoy their music.  I also love The Killers they are probably one of my all time favourite bands especially the song Mr Brightside. My favourite artist has got to be Beyonce she is just such an amazing woman, and her music is pretty good to!

What are your favourite TV programmes?
Currently my favourite programmes have got to be Beaver Falls, Dirty Sexy Things and ofcourse Celebrity Juice. Celebrity juice ofcourse has Keith Lemon and he is just hilarious! I am not really a person who is glued to the TV 24/7 but if something is on that takes my fancy I will watch it! 
What is your favourite film? Who is your favourite director?
This is a tricky one for me because I love a good movie, I am a fan of nearly all genre's although I am not so good when it comes to scary movies.Two of my favourites are firstly Breakfast at Tiffany's this is because Audrey Hepburn is one of my idols, also I love the fact it is old fashioned and it doesn't involve any CGI's like nowadays! Another movie is 500 Days of Summer, I'm not sure why I am so fond of it, its not really a love story its more of a feel good sort of movie. I like the way it is filmed, one of my favourite scenes has to be the split scene... (the first 51 seconds of the video)

What magazines do you read?
Normally I can read any magazine, unless its 'Mens Health' or just a mens mag in general! The ones I am most likely to pick up off the shelf would be 'Company' and 'Cosmopolitan'. Yes, they are girlie, but I like them, especially the gossipy sections! 
What websites do you read?
I am admittedly more of a social net worker when it comes to me being on the computer. But I am also a lover of blogs, I read a variety of different blogs because I am interested in people and what they have to say. Occasionally when I am really bored I do tend to end up on heat world and I also use IMDB when looking for a new film to watch. http://www.imdb.com/.
So finally I have finished my first post! Happy new blog day! :)