Wednesday, 6 November 2013

ALL Summary of General Openings Conventions

This is our vodcast on general codes and conventions in film openings.

We have looked at 6 films: Napoleon Dynamite, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Withnail and I, Four Lions, The Matrix, and Love Actually.

There are usually no more than 3 idents, and idents in studio movies are usually longer and there are usually more idents in big movies than indie movies. About 15 seconds for studio idents and about 5 seconds for indie film idents. In Napoleon Dynamite, the idents last 55 seconds for all 3 idents. In Four Lions, it is 18 seconds for two idents.

The number of titles shown are usually about 15, although there are usually more titles in studio movies as there are more big stars and more cast and crew because they have a bigger budget so can afford more cast and crew, for example in Napoleon Dynamite, the total title time is 3:30 because it is made by a big company (Fox Searchlight).

The order of the titles is usually: company names, director, cast, crew, director. It usually is set out like 'a ----- production' for the directors name(s).

Opening shot is usually an extreme long shot/establishing shot, showing the setting. For example, in Ferris Bueller's Day Off, the first shot is of Ferris's house.
The Matrix uses an extreme close up for the opening shot because it is the opposite of an extreme long shot. This creates a narrative enigma straight away which fits with the thriller genre.

There is usually an audio bridge, non-diegetic music, then goes into diegetic sound with the non-diegetic music in the background.

Representations of characters - clothing, age, gender, jobs, and speech.


Usually the audience sees the protagonist in the opening of the film, such as in Four Lions.


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