Acting and Acting Styles

Week 4 Blog

Introduction to film

Nadia McRae

Ryan Ogrodnik

02/19/2015

Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) lives in a futuristic world in which society is divided into five factions. As each person enters adulthood, he or she must choose a faction and commit to it for life. Tris chooses Dauntless — those who pursue bravery above all else. However, her initiation leads to the discovery that she is a Divergent and will never be able to fit into just one faction. Warned that she must conceal her status, Tris uncovers a looming war which threatens everyone she loves.

  • Shailene Woodley I would have to say is a Star. A star is a distinctive screen persona who is well known and popular with the moviegoing public, often to the point that some avid movie fans become deeply curious about the actor’s private life. SInce he major role in The fault in our stars and now Divergent I myself have become very fond of her as an actress and can not wait to see more of her in future movies. Shailene Diann Woodley is an American actress. Her first roles included Amy Juergens in The Secret Life of the American Teenager and of Felicity Merriman in the 2005 film Felicity: An American Girl Adventure.
  • Ansel Elgort is an American actor, music producer, and DJ under the name “Ansølo”. As a film actor, he is known for playing Tommy Ross in Carrie, Caleb Prior in Divergent and Augustus Waters in The Fault in Our Stars. He would be considered a personality actor just because he is just starting to branch out in his acting career and is not as well known yet. Personality actors are, at some level, playing themselves (or at least that is the perception). Films with strong personality actors can make it difficult for audiences to differentiate between the actor and the character.
  • Theo James is an actor, known for Divergent (2014), Underworld: Awakening (2012) and The Inbetweeners Movie (2011).  He would be considered a character actor because they are so effective at this, they often are not immediately recognized by the public and may take years to achieve “star” status, even though they are constantly in demand.

When it comes to how i classify each actor the way I did lets stat off with Shailene Woodley she has been branching out since her major show series of the show The secret life of an American Teenager which was a big success and then The fault in our stars story based on the author of John Green which is also a book as well. Ansel Elgort in my opinion can be the same person in movies and as himself which puts him in an akward category when it comes to film just because he has not played in other major motion pictures besides The fault in our stars which was an amazing movie itself and i believe he played excellent in the movie I would just like to see him more in different roles. Theo James has to be a character actor just because he can play different roles in different movie settings which i like that because it lets you see the actor in a different light of there acting career but because they dont have big or major parts they are not noticed as much which is where Theo james comes to place.

Out of all the actors i choose Shailene Woodley is my numbe one and because her popular roles in the past and now with her major role coming up in the sequel to Divergent in Insurgent she is truely a star at its finest and i believe in the future that her role will change and she will become a wild card just because as an actress she has proven herself in different lights. She can be an emotional played actress like in the fault in our stars which is a tear jerker, to being a pregnant teenager, to being a hardcore tough woman in action movies, so she has already proven that she can play different roles and will be a success in the future.

Reference

Wikipedia.com

Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. (2014). Film: From watching to seeing (2nd ed.). San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc

Week 3 Blog

Categories and Functions of sound

Nadia McRae

ENG225: Introduction to Film

Ryan Ogrodnik

Once sound became an established part of moviemaking, individual elements of it became increasingly important. Indeed, sound production would become as important a part of making a movie as any other—if not as well known or well respected. During the Silent Era, the responsibility for adding music to films (and sometimes limited sound effects) lay with the theaters. Sound technology suddenly enabled the filmmakers to have control over these, as well as adding audible dialogue. The three basic categories of film sound—dialogue, sound effects, and music—require careful balancing to serve the story; because of this, each category is typically recorded separately and mixed together during the final editing process.

Dialouge Characters talking to one another in films, known as dialogue, is now so much a part of the movie experience that audiences take it for granted. But creating scenes in which characters talk to one another as they do in real life is no easy task. This was especially the case early on, when filmmakers often used the new technology basically as a way to show it off. For a couple of years, background music was considered an old-fashioned relic of the Silent Era. Films exploited natural sound effects, but especially dialogue (hence the term “talking pictures”). Now that spoken dialogue could be heard, numerous films were quickly made of stage plays, but the results often looked more “stagey” than cinematic. Settings were generally limited to a few rooms instead of numerous indoor and outdoor locations as with silent films. The camera had to be confined within a soundproof booth so its mechanism wouldn’t be recorded, instead of free to move throughout the set like in silent films. Actors suddenly needed to stay close to the microphones instead of being free to move around.

Sound effects

In Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the hugely successful 2009 sequel to the first Transformers movie, in which cars and trucks are revealed to be aliens who have disguised themselves, the sounds of explosions might as well be a credited member of the cast, so ubiquitous are they. The bone-crunchingly loud, theater-rattling explosions serve one purpose only: to enhance the action. The sound of these explosions simply does not allow the audience to passively watch the film; it serves instead as a rush of adrenaline. The film received an Oscar nomination for Best Sound Editing (its only nomination); nevertheless, it was lambasted by critics.

Music

Music has been a crucial part of the moviegoing experience since before the advent of recorded sound in films. So important was its use that over time directors began inserting indications for specific music to be played at specific times. After the conversion to talkies, music became a basic element of constructing a movie, as essential an element as lights and cameras. However, sometimes even the best directors have a hard time keeping that in mind.

Disney wanted to increase the eye value of the many paintings making up a picture by achieving a soft-focus effect on the backgrounds, illuminating the various levels of each scene individually, and separating” background from foreground, thus keeping background objects to their proper relative size. Resembling a printing press, the camera stands eleven feet tall and is six feet square. Made with almost micrometer precision, it permits the photographing of foreground and background cels accurately, even when the first is held firmly in place two feet from the lens and the lowest rests in its frame nine feet away. Where the script calls for the camera to “truck up” for a close-up, the lens actually remains stationary, while the various cels are moved upward. By this means, houses, trees, the moon, and any other background features, retain their relative sizes.

In cartoons, all sounds are recorded before the cameras begin to turn. These sounds are later synchronized with movements and charted on the basis of units of time. Since twenty-four “frames,” or separate pictures run through the projector every second, action and sound effects must be timed accordingly. Each beat of music is timed by an electrical metronome, and everything else is related to these beats. Recently,  actors and musicians, all fitted with earphones, as they recorded dialogue and music. Actors followed a rhythmic pattern in speaking, and the director followed a prescribed tempo in wielding his baton. Each syllable, each musical note, started on a musical beat and ended on a musical beat. When an animator drew the various lip movements required to form a word, he frequently consulted the sound track, to know precisely in how many frames he must complete the drawings. When the dwarfs tumbled into dishes and glassware, knocking them crashing to the floor, he listened to the sound film that he might synchronize the pictures to the noise. Sound presents a constant problem to the cartoon maker, for he cannot store noises on film in concrete vaults for future use, as in the case of live action. Here, again, he must match action and noise, frame by frame. In one scene, one of the dwarfs climbs the stairs, becomes frightened, and the six other dwarfs, taking fright, run pell-mell into the dishes. Falling crockery sounds like something entirely different through a loud speaker, so the sound crew carefully stacked an assortment of boxes on the sound stage, hung the mike near-by, and recorded the series of bumps and crashes as they tumbled to the floor. Later, artists, listening to a play-back of the sound track, matched it bump by bump, the pictures being drawn to synchronize with the noises. Breaking glass later was matched when two men dropped a large pane eight feet from a ladder to the floor.

I think if you took out the main category of Snow White meeting the seven dwarfs it would totally thow off the whole movie. First of all the fact that she met these seven small people it really bought light to the movie that even though she was able to help them find happiness in all they do they were able to uplift her spirit as well and help her find the love in the prince and she was able to live happily ever after once and for all even through all the hardships the queen tried to invest on her.

Resources

The Making of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. (2014). Film: From watching to seeing (2nd ed.). San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc

Week 2 Blog

Title: Knocked up

Genre: Romantic comedy

Lighting: Low key Lighting & High key

The lighting used in the movie “Knocked Up” was for the most part filmed in high-key lighting, however some parts are filmed in low-key lighting. For example the scene were they are at bar the the low-key lighting used in this scene would be the type of lighting that would be in a real bar. This type of technique helps add to the theme. The high-key lighting contributes to the film, because it is a comedy and a traditional three-point lighting would not work for this movie, making it less funny most definitely. The brightness adds to the lightness feel of the movie for me, would not work as well any other way. The film also used natural light in some scenes adding to the realness of the movie. Which reminds us that this is the sort of things that people really deal with in life, but seeing the humorous side of it. The scene that had more of a higher lighting would be in the hospital when Allison is giving birth because it is bright and there are plenty of lights used in the movie. Even though the movie is really based on four main scenes and places the lighting always stays decent since the movie is not a big movie based on a huge theme. It really is just in a house and based on people and there regular lives that they go through.

Now if the scenes were different and the all the lighting’s were different i don’t think the movie would have turned out the same. The main reason why I like this movie because it is not your average movie where they talk about the same things and go through what every other movies experience. When it came to this movie it really is showing what happens to people in real life they just added a lot of comedy to it which made it even more great to watch. So yes it tells the story of two totally different people who find themselves in a popular situation of becoming pregnant off a one night stand which i don’ t think we see this enough in movies. But when it comes down to making the final decision to have the baby that is where the movie comes to light.

Reference

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0478311/plotsummary

Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. (2014). Film: From watching to seeing (2nd ed.)

Week One Blog

Title: The Notebook

Writer: Nicholas Sparks

Director: Nick Cassavetes

Year: 2004

Actors: Ryan Gosling , Rachel McAdams, James Garner, Bruce Williamson, Barbara Weetman, Gena Rowlands

Story: The Notebook is a 2004 romantic drama film directed by Nick Cassavetes, based on the romance novel of the same name by Nicholas Sparks. The film stars Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams as a young couple who fall in love during the early 1940s. Their story is narrated from the present day by an elderly man played by James Garner, telling the tale to a fellow nursing home resident, played by Gena Rowlands.

Plot: In a nursing home, resident Duke reads a romance story for an old woman who has senile dementia with memory loss. In the late 1930s, wealthy seventeen year-old Allie Hamilton is spending summer vacation in Seabrook. Local worker Noah Calhoun meets Allie at a carnival and they soon fall in love with each other. One day, Noah brings Allie to an ancient house that he dreams of buying and restoring. But Allie’s parents do not approve of their romance since Noah belongs to another social class, and they travel to New York with her. Noah writes 365 letters to Allie, but her mother Anne Hamilton does not deliver them to her daughter. Three years later, the United States joins the World War II and Noah and his best friend Fin enlist in the army, and Allie works as an army nurse. She meets injured soldier Lon Hammond in the hospital. After the war, they meet each other again and Lon, who is wealthy and handsome, proposes. Meanwhile Noah buys and restores the old house and many people want to buy it. When Allie accidentally sees the photo of Noah and his house in a newspaper, she feels divided between her first love and her commitment with Lon. Meanwhile Duke stops reading to the old lady since his children are visiting him in the nursing home.

Chronology: This movie was told in chronological order. The way this movie is a tear jerker because the whole point of the movie was Noah reading Allie the story of their love in hopes that she would find her way back to him by remembering everything they went through over the years in their lives. So the ending finished with the two of them in bed and they ended up passing away together holding hands. So in reality like Noah wanted the story he read to Allie the whole time did indeed bring her back to him and when she finally could remember that is when there love reconnected once and for all.

The chronological story shows that it helped the main character by showing that Noah never wanted to give up on Noah and that no matter where Allie was she would always be apart of him and this movie shows that.

How did this aesthetic choice contribute to the general effect on the audience? well i think that if the movie had been told differently the ending to the movie would not have been significant like it was and does not give you that guessing feeling at the end that makes you wonder what would have happened or will there be a second movie. So i like the whole chronological feeling to this movie and i think the setup of it was perfect in every way.

Resources