Sunday, November 21, 2010

Short Film Critique: Romantic Comedy

Rationale: Me and the members in my group, John Ababseh and Kevin Choy decided to make a movie that focused on both comedy and romance. Our plan was to create a sense of reality for the audience that shows how people truly are in real life. The film revolves around a boy who does the same thing every day, which is mainly has to do with school and he also is to busy to talk to the girl he likes at school. This can relate to the typical teenager who is focused on school because most teenagers don't have time to talk with friends or spend time with the person they like. I think this film was meant for teenagers who can relate to this experience. I think this movie was a good idea because anyone who has liked someone can relate to this film.

Commentary: My responsibility in the film, even though all members in the group edited their own movie, was that I directed what the actors should do and filmed shots that portrayed what the actors were trying to show like close-ups and long shots. I was also able to write the script for our movie with revised edits from my group members.

Some problems that occurred was that in one of the shots or important shots was that the audio was not recorded and I think it was because the mic cable was not plugged in all the way. This was a problem because it showed the boy working on his assignment that he was previously just assigned and this assignment has a theme that relates to the boy's life. This is important because we needed to show that the boy was thinking about the theme and relating it to his life, but we don't have audio for the audience to hear what the boy is saying so the shot seems unnecessary to the movie. But I think the shot still works because the actor is showing what he's doing because he was just assigned his homework.

Narrative/Story: The story is focused on a boy who constantly does the same routine every day, but towards the end, the boy ends up solving the problems of the person he likes while also finding his true self, which relates to the theme presented in the movie. I think the movie successfully focuses on the theme ("a person's true self can lead to happiness") throughout the film which is supported by the actors and the events that happen to create a pathway for the main character to follow this theme. The personalities of the actors, I think, help support the theme as it tends to relate to their lives and I think the theme is present in not only the main character's life, but also the lives of the sub characters. We did use dialogue to show what the theme is so we can give the audience a clue of what the actors are feeling and going through, so I think the movie did not do a great job of showing what they feel, but they did a great job with saying what they feel.

Casting: I think the actors were appropriate to the film. The boy, girl, and stalker-ex boyfriend were accurately portrayed in a physical way. What added some comedy to the movie was that the stalker-ex boyfriend was kind of wimpier than the boy and he ends up knocking out the boy. The actors stuck with their parts and were able to follow through on what they were suppose to do even if the actor wanted to do something different, we would come to an agreement.

Acting: The actors were good and did a good job of acting out what they felt. The actors did a good job of having the appropriate facial expressions with their dialogue and sometimes exaggerated a little, but not too much, to give the movie more comedy. Sometimes the actors would mess up on part of their acting by looking at the camera or acting out an event that looked fake, but that occurred maybe once or twice and hopefully stayed unnoticeable. Overall the acting was good especially when there was a very awkward scene, the actors would act it out that seemed to fit the scene as well as the emotion and feeling. I think wardrobe was effective in the film as it showed the change in day and it was also effective in showing the change in day. But their was one scene were the boy looks at the girl he likes, but we can't tell which girl he looks at because both had their backs turned, had long black hair, and were wearing the same shade of yellow. But other than that, the wardrobe was good.

Music and Effects: The music in the film is appropriate at times where there is no dialogue. The music expresses the mood in an accurate way and gives the scene its own pace like calm or intense, as well as giving the scene a finished feeling at the end of the movie. The effect that the music gives is accurate to the scenes because it gives the scene an tone that fits with what the actor feels.

Staging and Props: The sets were good and accurate to what events were happening in the movie. Like the school scene has enough students that makes the set look real and as if it were a real class. Other sets worked well with their scene like when the boy and girl are being chased, there are scenes with different streets to show that they are actually going somewhere and they eventually end up in a park with enough area for long shots and the fight scene. Props are not distracting and are appropriate with the scene as well as the time period. The props were just everyday things that people today use every day.

Lighting: The lighting was good on outside scenes that were shot during the day, but some scenes that portrayed the same day had different lighting due to the weather change. Scenes that took place inside had good lighting like the library scene where the lighting was constant at different angle shots and wasn't overbearing to where you can't see the actors. The lighting on the scenes that took place inside the house was difficult to manage because most of the lights were dim and were placed in areas that seemed to be in an important scene. It was difficult to control the lighting in the house because we wanted to make the scene look like a typical house without it being to dark, so we would turn off the light that seemed the most distracting in the scene. Lighting was also difficult in the outside scene at night because the dim street light did not provide enough light to see the actors clearly, but the actors still show to where you can see them and their faces. Overall the lighting was good to where it wasn't a concern that the audience would wonder about and shadows were controlled to where you can't see the camera or the mic.

Title and Credits: The title of my edited version of the film was very sloppy. I didn't spend any time on it and I feel that it doesn't match the movie. I also feel that the title went to fast for it to sink into the audience as they read it, but it's not to fast where no one can read it. The credits are much better because it moves at a constant pace where people can read it and there is not to many words so people can want to read the credits. The credits are short and simple.

Camera Operation: The framing of each shot was good. Some not so good shots involved zooming in or out not very smoothly. There are camera moves that go create with the shot like trucking that works good with a fast pace scene where the boy is running late to school. Some camera movements draw attention like during the jump cuts where the camera would be in a different position, but it's not to noticeable.

Sound: Some of the audio was recorded differently like some with a shotgun mic and some with just the individual camera. This caused the problem with different levels of audio that are distracting. For example, some of the dialogue was hard to hear because of the louder background, so the background noise would be loud and in the next scene it would be the opposite so the audio switches different volume levels. So some scenes have mixtures of volume which means that the volume level isn't constant throughout the film. The dialogue is clear though, but on some scenes we had to turn up the volume because you can hear more of the background than the actor.

Editing: The editing in my version of the film was able to capture the appropriate transitions from one scene to another like with different time or dream of flashback. The transitions were clear and there wasn't many transitions because I think too many transitions is unnecessary. The cuts were good as the attention would draw from one person to another and the cuts were not long so the movie won't be boring. The shots used were appropriate to the movie and showed what the main focus was in the scene like an over the shoulder shot would focus on the speaker and also show where the actor is looking and speaking to. Some shots had a variety of angles to show extension in time or to make the scene seem more interesting. Also shot variety was used to cover the where the scene takes place like the background can be seen with wide angle shots and also to capture everyone in the scene to know what characters are present. The editing throughout the film is fairly smooth. Some unsmooth parts involve jump cuts due to the movement of camera placement. The editing was good throughout the movie, there was no unnecessary shots or cuts throughout the film.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Short Documentary Blog Post: "I Have Broke Parents"

The show documents the lives of two teens who have to deal with the burden of worrying about financial problems of their family. This documentary shows how the two teens, Jobe and Ashley, deal with the stress of having to help out their parents.

I think the video is trying to show that there are people just like us, who often have to deal with a financial struggle that takes away from having a normal teenage life. As the camera focuses on Jobe, he says that due to having to help and worry about his family, he doesn't have time to spend time with his friends. I think that since Jobe knows he can't do the things he wants and is calm and peaceful about it, he seems to be very strong which I think can help improve the situation.

The camera work really supports the character's commentary and what their trying to say. As the character would say something, there would be a video of what that person is talking about. The shots also show how the family is dealing with their situation which gives it a sense of realness and the audience can see their emotion and what they do to make it.

 The editing also contributes to the emotion. There would be voice overs in the video that describe what the person is feeling at the time which gives the audience more attention. It also allows the audience to see the final and perfected vision of the characters as well as the film.
http://www.mtv.com/videos/true-life-i-have-broke-parents/1631544/playlist.jhtml

Documentary Prepro-

Purpose: To inform the how the military impacted a person's life.

Contacts: Military soldiers, family members, civilians

Interview Questions: What does it take to be in the military?
                                How has the military affected your life?
                                How has the military affected family's life?
                           What experiences have you encountered that have changed who you are?
                                Describe the war. How has that affected you?
                               What made you want to join the military?
                                Has the military impacted who you are today?

General flow: The beginning will have a intro of the people involved in the film and background knowledge of the people, military, and other events that recently involve the military(wars, etc.). The middle will probably include pictures of the soldier in the military and probably interviews as well as videos of training or other things. The end would probably show how the person has changed or what they are doing now.

Shot List: Shots of pictures they have in the military
               Videos of training
               Shots of where they live now
               Shots of what they do if they are out of the military or still in it

Scripts: Maybe closeups of the speaker and show their reaction or the emotion in their face if they talk about something personal. Some footage with the voices playing over it that relates to what their talking about.

Intro: Shots of the person or military footage of different wars.

Closing: Maybe shots of airplanes to show that the person is going to a different country.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Baraka Film Response

       "Baraka" is a unique film that has no plot, but has amazing scenes from throughout the world. The film is titled Baraka or "breath" to show how different people and locations throughout the world have their own pace. It seems that these different locations are connected by sharing a similar pulse that seems like breathing as the time is speed up. The film also shows the connection through the different cultures by this "breath" as well as through life itself.
        Baraka gives out the message that everything in the world is connected. The shots sometimes try to compare different cultures as it cuts through all the different locations throughout the world. Like when the Buddists monks are praying in Nepal, it is almost similar to when the Jewish people are praying in Jerusalem.
The absence of voice and text affected the goal of a global perspective by allowing the audience to focus on the locations and pulse of the world while not being distracted by voices. It allows the audience to analyze the movie and create their own opinion of what the theme of the story is.
Some of the modern cities connected with nature. Like when the movie shows the scenes of the flamingos across African waters, sort of relates to the cigarette factory in Indonesia by comparing how close together each of the birds and workers are. It shows that modern society in the city is just like nature in how we go on to survive.
        The film also shows the calmness of spiritual and religious cultures as compared to the fast moving modern cities. The two paces seem to balance each other out as if they work together to pace each other. Like when the monk is walking through the city, he seems peaceful while the city behind him is loud and uproaring. The audience seems to focus more on the monk as much as the background which shows that they are in balance with each other.