Deconstructing Our Micro-Drama

Our Micro-Drama called The Opposites has many aspects of narrative incorporated into it, such as Propp s 8 recurring character types. As Propp defines on some occasions one character can engage in acts as more than one archetype, this was the case for our micro-drama as we didn t have access to 8 actors therefore some of our recurring character types overlap. Our film includes a villain, donor, magical helper, princess father however in this case princess mother, false hero, hero and a princess. We also used Todorov s Narrative Formula to base our micro-drama upon, an example is at the beginning where the Princess Mercedes and her boyfriend the villain Gaz are talking about Mercedes new ring at the bike shed, this is known as the equilibrium as nothing is problematic as of yet. The dis-equilibrium occurs when Mercedes discovers her priceless ring is missing and that Gaz is selling it on eBay, this is know as the dis-equilibrium as conflict has aroused and the princess is now in distress. Then finally the new equilibrium ends the film, in this case when Ralph the hero buys the ring and returns it to Mercedes, and they become best friends. Our film also features Levi-Strauss binary opposition; this is portrayed through the character Ralph and Mercedes. Ralph being stereotypical geek and Mercedes as a stereotypical chav are juxtaposed to emphasize the contrast between the two social groups. In this case there is a sense of preferred reading of Mercedes belonging with Gaz also a chav but also a sense of oppositional reading of Ralph and Mercedes together because previous in the film Mercedes has shown little interest in Ralph therefore her feelings towards him are not expressed to the end. The film ends with Barthes Narrative Enigma where Gaz threatens Ralph and the audience is left fearing for what will happen to Ralph. Mise-En-Scene was important factor to our micro-drama, props used were such as books to denote a geek , a carton to connote narrative enigma and imply pain and a ring which could be signified as love as the ring tears apart one relationship but brings another together. Location is also another concept of our mise-en-scene, in our film we use the location of a bike shed where Mercedes and Gaz are shot at the beginning of the film, this is a stereotypical chavy place to hang. Also an area of lockers which emphasizes the setting of a secondary school and a table area which signifies studying, where Ralph and his friend Eugine are shot together which could be seen as their place of safety. The film is shot at a secondary school because it is a place where stereotypical groups are forced together and is a time in teenagers lives where their struggling through making hard decisions, emotions and puberty. The typical view of a school is being pushed into different social groups such as geeks, chavs and plastics our micro-drama is a prime example of the classic film theme. We use a range of costumes in our film to emphasize their social background, such as Mercedes and Gaz are seen wearing the stereotypical chavy clothes like hoop earrings, tracksuit bottoms and hoodies whereas Ralph and Eugine are shot wearing the classic geek attire of checked shirts tucked in, braces and oversized glasses. This creates a sense of verisimilitude as the audience can relate to the characters more as they are dressed in a stereotypical manner which attracts more amusement from the audience as they ve seen that clothing style before and the characteristics which follow it. On the other hand parts of the costume exaggerate geek to the audience such as the oversized glasses as this is unrealistic for you to geeks with glasses that big but it signifies to the audience that the character is very geeky .

The target audience in which our micro-drama aims is teenagers mainly pre-mid teens, as they can relate to the characters the most due to them being in the same position of secondary school as the cast of the film. The film isn t aimed specifically at a gender however females would be more likely to enjoy the film than males due to the humour created and also by the cast being all girls some acting as boys. Our secondary audience would be kids younger than teenagers as once again the humour will attract them more and the typical secondary school social differences is something they would be starting to become a custom to. Sound is an important aspect to a film to summarise its genre. In our micro-drama we use a light-hearted, non-diegetic song to introduce the film, this music targets a youth audience and anchors a romantic comedy genre. An issue we found with editing our film is in the opening scene, the only shot outside where the wind creates an unwanted background noise and quietens the characters conversation. Representations play a big part in our micro-drama as social groups is the main aspect of identifying a character therefore we concentrated a lot on portraying this. In social groups within a school the lowest of the social hierarchy is generally seen as the geeks and the highest as the chavs , creating a big contrast in the characters. Chavs are stereotypically expected to pick on geeks the most therefore geeks fear chavs the most that is why it is so unusual that Ralph and Mercedes end up together. As our target audience is teenagers our characters are portrayed to be in their teen years also. Many American high school films follow a similar storyline to this, however this film is set in an English secondary and is exaggerated creating an essence of a spoof version of American films. Common stereotypes of Propp s character archetypes are such as dumb blonde as princess needing rescuing by a strong male hero. However in our micro-drama our Princess isn t your typical dumb blonde, showing hints of the stereotype but towards the end proving to be a smarter, stronger character. This is seen by her making the important decision to change social groups to be with her hero, Ralph this would create a lot of controversy in a typical secondary school. An example where she is shown as a more powerful character is in the scene where she confronts the mean villain, her boyfriend about what has happened. In this scene we used a low angle shot which makes Mercedes look bigger than Gaz, making her look more powerful in the situation. Another contrast we created was our hero, Ralph, being not your typical handsome strong popular hero but a geek who throughout the film is portrayed as slightly creepy and weird, which once again emphasizes the binary opposition between the hero and princess. This creates a moral storyline that suggests to the audience that they shouldn t pick on people for being different because they are good people.