Advanced Portfolio
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Advanced Portfolio. Produce a promotion package for a new film. To include a teaser trailer (DVD), together with 2 of the following: A website for the film A film magazine front cover, featuring the film A poster for the film. Theoretical Approach – Postmodernism/Postmodern Theory.

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Advanced portfolio

Advanced Portfolio

  • Produce a promotion package for a new film. To include a teaser trailer (DVD), together with 2 of the following:

  • A website for the film

  • A film magazine front cover, featuring the film

  • A poster for the film.

Theoretical Approach – Postmodernism/Postmodern Theory


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Postmodern Theory

Post modernism reflects our changing globalised culture from the 1960s. It reflects a ‘confused’ time where traditional values are less clear.

The Postmodern Condition: A Book on Knowledge by Jean-François Lyotard.

This book reflects our digital age where media saturation presents a mix of cultural beliefs. Postmodernists borrow ideas and present hybrid versions to make sense of our confused times.

A lot of postmodern films and TV shows are pastiche; meaning that it borrows from and parodies other films or ideas as well as being satirical. For example South Park, Family Guy, Tarantino’s films; Kill Bill.Family Guy with its references and parodies of other films (Star Wars). Kill Bill homages so many other films and styles of films; the bride’s yellow jumpsuit (Bruce Lee), the music (spaghettis westerns) etc. South Park imitates and exaggerates films/news/music in a comedic, and usually offensive way.


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Uses in media

  • Challenging narratives (themes or representations)

  • Non – linear/anti narrative/meta referencing

  • Hybridisation

  • Intertextuality

  • Pastiche – copy/parody/satire

  • Bricolage – using specific iconography (yellow jumpsuit – Kill Bill)

  • Homage – paying respect. (Tarantino)

  • ‘High art’ editing camera work – time remapping

  • Simulacra or hyperreality.


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Crime Genre

  • Lloyd Hughes (Rough Guide to Gangster Film 2005)

  • Crime films originates from Hollywood Gangster films from the silent era (1920’s) to today

  • It reflected the prohibition era (1920’s) which lead to criminal gangs racketeering. Each era tends to reflect society’s waves of fear (it’s context)

  • Generic Iconography:

  • Themes: ‘Ascension’ killing/rival killings/the heist.

  • Characters: Alienated Hero/Buddies/Hitmen/Henchmen/Bent Cops/Good Cops/Canaries/Femme Fatales

  • Mise en scene: Tuxedos/Suits/Dark lighting/Dark rundown sets/High status cars (Warner Bros)

  • Sound: Moody Scores/‘Wise Guy’ language

  • Violence/weapons/drug use/swearing/gambling/mafia


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Crime Genre – Historical Perspective

  • 1930s – Original Gangster Films: Reflected the prohibition era of the 1920s when real life mobsters, such as Al Capone, took control of bootlegging through their speakeasies. E.g Little Caesar (1930) and The Public Enemy (1931)

    American Crime

    1940/50s – Film Noir: Studios copied the 1930s dark lighting and minimal sets and updated the themes to reflect a more sinister side of life; reflecting wartime turmoil.

    British Noir

    1940/50s - British Noir: Reflecting post war anxieties, British Crime followed Film Noir conventions charting the darker side of civilian life. E.g. Brighton Rock (1947) and The Third Man (1949). Starring Richard Attenborough and Orson Welles.


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Crime Genre Timeline

American Crime

1940/50s – Film Noir: Studios copied the 1930s dark lighting and minimal sets and updated the themes to reflect a more sinister side of life; reflecting wartime turmoil. E.g In a Lonely Place (1950) and The Lady in Shanghai (1947) starring Humphrey Bogart and Rita Hayworth.

Crime films originates from Hollywood Gangster films from the silent era (1920’s). Such as The Pleasure Garden (1925, Alfred Hitchcock) Chicago (1927, Frank Erson) and Underworld (1927, Josef von Sternberg) It reflected the prohibition era (1920’s) which lead to criminal gangs racketeering. Each era tends to reflect society’s waves of fear (it’s context)

British Noir

1940/50s - British Noir: Reflecting post war anxieties, British Crime followed Film Noir conventions charting the darker side of civilian life. E.g. Brighton Rock (1947) and The Third Man (1949). Starring Richard Attenborough and Orson Welles.

1930s – Original Gangster Films: Reflected the prohibition era of the 1920s when real life mobsters, such as Al Capone, took control of bootlegging through their speakeasies. E.g Little Caesar (1930) and The Public Enemy (1931)


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Crime Genre Timeline

60s and 70s. Films began to appear that self-consciously acknowledged the conventions of classic film noir as historical archetypes to be revived, rejected, or reimagined. Eventually crime films evolved and came to be known as neo-noir.

2000s – Next Slide.

80s and 90s –

The Coen Brothers; an iconic use of small budget neo noir films – Blood Simple (1984) and Fargo (1996). As well as the Coen Brothers, Quentin Tarantino made milestone marking films such as Reservoir Dogs (1992), and Pulp Fiction (1994).


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Researching Crime Films

Snatch (Guy Ritchie, 2000 ) –

Genre – hybrid, Crime , Comedy, Caper, Spaghetti western.

Iconic characters – Jason Statham (from other crime films) Stereotypical characters (mixed representations) ‘New Laddism’. Brad Pitt playing an Irish traveller/ gypsy, ‘Pikey’, seen as a thief.

Challenging narrative – glorifying crime.

Stylised editing – Time Remapping, Anti Narrative

Postmodernism – more than one main character, cutaways for introductions of characters, time remapping (typical Guy Ritchie)

Iconography - London Gangster genre, guns and diamonds


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Snatch Character Types

Protagonist – Turkish (Jason Statham) – the story is told by this character.

Helpers – Tommy – Turkish’s sidekick?

– Mickey – Irish traveller (pikey)

Antagonists – There are two antagonists; British and American –

Brick Top – Typical British gangster

Cousin Avi – Typical modern American gangster


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Researching Crime Films

Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino, 1994)

Genre – hybrid - Comedy/Crime/Drama/Thriller

Iconic characters – Bruce Willis (Boxer, violent, unorthodox)

Stereotypical characters – Samuel L. Jackson (swearing, little racist, quoting biblical verses)

Stylised editing – the story isn’t in chronological order

Postmodernism – more than one main character, the narrative is set up in co-existing episodes rather than one strung out narrative (non-linear), comedic violence, exaggerated violence, breaking reality (Uma Thurman drawing a square with her fingers)

Iconography – Pulp fiction style poster (20s - 40s popular genre of magazines), The 50s bar – iconographic characters (the host is Ed Sullivan, the singer is Ricky Nelson, Buddy Holly is the waiter, and the waitresses include Marilyn Monroe and Jane Mansfield.


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Pulp Fiction Character Types

The film is played out through episodes; each episode appears to have it’s own protagonist/antagonist.

Throughout the film the protagonists are Vincent Vega (John Travolta), Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) and Butch Coolidge (Bruce Willis).

However, each of these characters possesses anti-hero tendencies – Vincent was meant to kill Butch in his home; Vincent accidently shoots Marvin in the face (comedic elements); Jules shoots a man in his home after the biblical speech, which was intended to terrify the victim. Both Vincent and Jules work for the main antagonist.

The main antagonist is Marsellus Wallace. Marsellus makes Butch take a dive in fight, which he doesn’t, so he can make money off him. He then puts a hit on Butch and forces him to try to leave town. He also is Jules’ and Vincent’s boss.

The helpers are Mia Wallace and Jimmy Dimmick. Mia Wallace could also be seen as the ‘princess’ because of hers and Vincent’s relationship in the film.

Jimmie helps Vincent and Jules clean up their car because Vincent shot Marvin.


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Genre - Dystopia

Dystopia – opposite of utopia (perfect world) Therefore an unsettling world.

Offer a challenging narrative – challenges social structure.

Postmodern Themes – Challenging narrative – hyperrealism (future nightmare) –The Matrix/Inception/

Explore the human flaws/mistakes

Relate to real time fears – technological advances/take overs (The Terminator)

Narratives take place in the aftermath of a disaster: typically nuclear holocaust, war, plague, alien invasion, disaster.

Normal end with the human race returning to a simpler world before technology.


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Dystopia - Characters

Conventionally the main protagonist is a strong male.

Descends into tribes/groups – animal like behaviour (survival instinct) which has a lot of violence and fear – work as a pack for protection and power.

Small human groups – that try and survive together. Hero tries to help them and they remind him of the old world. (The Walking Dead)

Human survivor group - small group from the pre-apocalyptic modern world, struggling to survive in the savage new world. The hero helps them/leads them & they remind him of the past modern world and its humanity as well as offer hope for the future.

The Helper – Often from the alien/infected race who assists the hero in his quest for resolution.


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Dystopia – Sub Genre

Science Fiction - The future gone wrong, ‘Big Brother’ type scenario, where the humans are inferior to technology. –Metropolis (1927) BladeRunner (1982) The Terminator (1984) The Matrix (1999)

Post Apocalyptic – After the end of the world with limited survivors. It includes the idea of Darwinism which reflects the notion of survival individual who proves capable of adapting to a new environment who will survive and eventually advance the new order and new society. E.g. Planet Of The Apes (1968), Mad Max (1981), The Road (2009)

Horror – a chaotic world of mutants or zombies created by human research project. – Dawn Of The Dead (1978), 28 Days Later (2002), I Am Legend (2007), The Walking Dead (2010 -), World War Z (2013).


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Dystopia trailer/Trailer Analysis – 28 Days Later

Directed by Danny Boyle

The dystopic theme of this film is that there is an infection and we are given hints that it is a rage virus developed from monkeys. - “There’s something in the blood”. This is a hybrid of Horror and Dystopia.

The Characters -

The main protagonist in this film, in my opinion, is a 'Postmodern Cowboy' type of character. He is an alienated, confused hero who is the struggling everyday man that doesn't believe that he could be the hero.

There all sorts of hints and pointers of the infected people. The man in the window with red eyes and animalistic features, the crazed mobs of rage riddled 'people' chasing one person.

The 'Reluctant Helpers' shown in this trailer is the younger girl in the dress. For example she tells the army man “they’re all dead, and you’re gonna be next”. This indicates the loss of hope.


28 days later trailer analysis

28 Days Later Trailer Analysis

Sound – During the toll of days at the beginning of the trailer, there are a series of different noises for each specific day. Each of the noises have something to related to a typical infection outbreak. A hazard alarm - typically in a science lab of some kind; the sounds of flies and rats swarming - typically related to death etc. Police sirens inhuman roaring, radio whirs, shattered glass. All of these are typically related to an outbreak. As the day toll rises, the layers of different sounds continue to add up. This is meant to overwhelm the viewers; making them feel uncomfortable. Once the toll has finished there is nothing but silence. This is when the presumed protagonist is introduced.

Editing – The beginning of the trailer is just a rising toll of all the specific days and stages of the infection. Starting at day one: infection. Firstly it shows the specific day, such as day 1, 2 or 3, then it fades to black whilst the overwhelming sounds continue over the top, then the name of the stage comes up afterwards. This continues up to day 28. Then the music stops and all you see is the the presumed main protagonist waking up. After this, the editing pace slows down, whilst showing stills of a deserted London.


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Dystopia Genre/Trailer analysis

District 9 (2009, Neil Blokamp) Trailer –

“There are lots of secrets in District 9” this suggests a lot of mysteries and enigmas throughout the film as this was the last line of the trailer.

There are no hints at a resolution in this trailer. There are no hints of the aliens being let go. But, it does hint that something is going to change dramatically. Perhaps what the NMU agent was sprayed with.

The trailer is 2 minutes and 22 seconds long.

The Dystopic Theme of this film is that the aliens have come to earth and are not “wanted” or “accepted” among the people in the city. The aliens said “We did not mean to land here”.

The two obvious main protagonist characters that are shown in this trailer are the aliens and the NMU agent that gets sprayed by the canister. Although usually the aliens are considered the threat, we are the ones who aren't allowing them to leave and the people don't seem to want them around.


District 9 trailer analysis

District 9 Trailer Analysis

Sound – The first half of the trailer has a fairly neutral feel to the music with the occasional typical bass whir in the matching a cut in the trailer. This is a very typical sound for modern Dystopia/Sci-Fi films and is used quite frequently in the second half of the trailer once the man is sprayed by the metallic tube.. The music and sound becomes a lot more thicker. Meaning that there are a lot more different sounds going on. This indicates panic amongst character, action sequences, fast paced tension filled sequences etc. Also, the typical whir happens a lot more frequently and becomes a lot louder.

Editing – The majority of the first half of the trailer is news archive footage and interviews from the public (within the film). This suggests that part of the film could be done with documentary themes. For the first half of the trailer the editing is fairly neutral. This is because the idea is to set up what has actually happened. For example there are small clips of the NMU team viewing District 9, then a dip to black showing titles such as “They arrived 28 years ago”. During the second half the trailer, the pace of the editing speeds up rapidly indicating, again that there is action sequences, intense moments and panic.


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