Mise-en-scene and representation Theoretical notions key terms 4 basic aspects of the mise-en-scene Setting Costume and make-up Figure Expression and Movement Lighting Setting Can dynamically contribute to the narrative action Human beings less important than in theatre Controlling setting Controlling setting: location (existing) vs. studio (constructed). Props part of setting operated actively, prop may become a motif (curtain in Psycho). Colour often used to create parallels (Almodovar). Costume and makeup Important source of information Crucial in suggesting genre Stylization or reconstruction figure expression and movement Not only people as characters (animals, robots, aliens etc. Terminator, Star Wars, Robocop, Lassie, Free Willy) Actors performance: visual elements (appearance, gestures, facial expression) and sound elements (voice, effects) Acting and actuality: individual performance vs. ‘typage’. Acting LIGHTING Gives shape to objects by shadow / light distinction Draws our attention Articulates textures (e.g. rough – diffused reflection vs. smooth – gleam or sparkle) Light Lighting can be discussed in terms of its quality, direction, source, and colour: Quality: intensity of illumination: Hard lighting creates clearly defined shadows. Soft lighting – crates gradual transition from highlights to shadows. 3-point system Classical, three-point system of illumination: 1. key light; 2. fill light (to get rid of shadows); 3. back light widely used in Hollywood films and TV productions Colour usually as white as possible but sometimes filters are used to simulate a natural light source – candlelight, sunset etc. wash-over effect – domination of one hue (e.g green). other features of mise-en-scene Décor – may indicate characters’ emotions or dominant mood of the film (contrast – Ziemia obiecana, mood – Space Odyssey 2001 – furniture, spacecraft design etc.) Mise-en-scene Critical tool in the creation of cinematic space “Magic” of the cinema “Glamour” and “glitz” Articulation of aspirations Cinema helps dreams and aspirations to gain a more concrete form. Interesting relationship - stereotypes: Cinema builds stereotypes. Cinema takes from common stereotypes. 1920-1930 in Hollywood Technical sophistication complex camera movements editing refined 1927 Crucial moment in the history of the cinema Introduction of sound with many consequences for the development of the art. A true revolution and challenge. Jazz Singer 1927 – first widely distributed sound movie. Jazz Singer Huge commercial success. Not a sound movie in a modern sense. Silent movie with some song sequences. Conversion within 2 years, all films with sound. Consequences Early results rather unimpressive, technology clumsy and awkward (some time needed to make the technology more user-friendly and more reliable). Change of guard disappearance of certain actors and directors New careers – vaudeville actors, etc. Change of guard Griffith and Eisenstein: no longer successful Early sound films: Initially loss of fluidity, primitive, silly. Era of the MUSICAL 1930s – the Studio System The Majors: MGM, 20th c. FOX, Columbia, Universal Studios, RKO, Warner Bros. “Film factories” Actors and directors on contract: several films a year. “Star system” Focus on glitz and glamour Representations of glamorous lifestyles. Artificial jobs – focus on leisure and consumption. Warner Bros. - more realistic, representation of the working class people, more down-to-earth plots. Sex and violence in the 1930s Freaks, Scarface Condemnation and calls for censorship Hollywood Production Code introduced after 1934 Cinema of the code no bathroom with toilet no single bed for unmarried characters. crime – always punished. no kissing or touching etc. Result: Creativity!