Deconstruction of my Debut Film

Before I start to deconstruct our micro-drama, it's very important to say we're missing a key scene from our movie. This would've been 'the passing of the light saber from the Wizard (Will) to the hero, (Tom). And then the hero (Tom) and his helper (Oli) setting off to try and kill the zombie and save the 'prize' (Jem). But due to a lack of time, we couldn't film this scene. In our micro-drama, we had several different aspects of narrative, to start with we addressed Propp's 8 recurring character types. With limited time and resources, we adapted his idea of 'a princess', stereotypically an attractive girl that the hero wants to marry and in most cases, must save from the villain. With no female in our group, we decided that the 'princess' or 'prize' would be Jem, who would portray a relationship to the wizard (Will). Will also acts as a 'dispatcher', he sends the hero out on his task and Will also acts as a donor – by giving Oli the light saber, he could also be considered as a helper, by identifying that Jem needs saving. Oli acts as a 'helper' to the eventual 'hero' Tom, although at first it would seem that Oli is the hero after been given the light saber, but he gets killed by the villain (Ben). A second aspect of narrative we addressed is 'Todorov's five part narrative formula'. In basic terms, the story starts off with an equilibrium, this equilibrium is then disrupted by an action, it's recognised that there's a disruption, there's then an attempt to repair the disruption, the disruption is repaired and we enter a new equilibrium. In our micro-drama, no clear establishing equilibrium is ever set, but there's a clear disruption as the zombie enters the frame and sends panic into the hero and helper. The disruption is quickly recognised, and the hero and helper then set out to destroy the disruption, they do this by killing the zombie. Although, it does seem a new equilibrium is established when the 'price' and 'hero' are limping away, seemingly victorious, the zombie sits up and it seems that the new equilibrium is not fully established. Our micro-drama only contains one clear binary opposite (which was established by Levi- Strauss), this of good vs evil. This is made quite clear by the certain evilness presented by the zombie (Ben), and the apparent good that the hero (Tom) and the helper (Oli) possess. Due to our cast consisting of single sex actors, we were un-able to put in any binary opposites consisting of male vs female. Our film only had one basic, but was most certainly a major prop. That of a toy light saber, this was key throughout our story as the 'magical object' (to refer to Propp's archetypes), and also as the weapon that kills the zombie, thus restoring the story to a new equilibrium (to refer to Todorov's narrative formula). Other aspects of mise-en-scene we could consider is the way our characters are dressed, they are all dressed very casually and in a realistic fashion. This could add to the 'horror' genre of our film because it does make the whole situation seem far more realistic if the characters seem relatable. Also, the normal setting of a school, this could invoke fear into people, especially those who are in school. These two aspects of mise-en-scene also relate to our target audience, as our film is primarily a 'horror' movie to put it bluntly. Our 'core' audience would be mainly teenagers, possibly ages 15 and over, it would also appeal to those who like the horror genre. Given our film is only just above two minutes long, there isn't copious amounts of time we can have for a specific soundtrack, although we do invoke two main songs that are most distinguishable in our movie, the first and most recognisable is 'Eye of the Tiger – Survivor, 1982). This song is used in a chase scene and is a fast paced, popular song. It

syncs in well with the scene and shot types. The second song we use is not a recognisable song but the sound of it fits in perfectly with the feel of the shot, the hero and prize escaping from the zombie, the song therefore is very uplifting and has a happy feel to it. Some of our sound effects are diegetic, for example when Oli flips out his lightsaber, or when Tom hits the zombie. But we also use a wide variety of non-diegetic sound effects, such as the dramatic music when Oli is getting dragged round the door, or when Tom and Jem are making an escape. Our film has an extremely wide variety of camera shots, we use an extreme close up when the zombie rams his head against the window to create a shock factor, and also show the facial expressions of the zombie. When the hero and prize are making a run from the zombie, we use a point of view shot to give the impression that someone is following them, this quickly switches over to a dutch angle shot of the zombie, to give the firm impression that he is not normal. Following this, a high angle long shot is used when the hero and prize have defeated the zombie, this is used to create a false sense of security and isolation for the two, which becomes apparent when the zombie sits up. The rest of our shots vary from medium long shots to close up, with a wide variety of angles used as well. Editing was used in great deal in our film, we used a variety of transitions to move between different shots and different scenes. We used these because it lets the audience know that there is a change in scene or shot. Also, the opening titles have a 'thunder' soundtrack and a misty background which carries on into the first two shots. This was done to help identify the genre of our movie (horror) and also to make it a little more exciting. If it was just a blank canvas with writing on, people would quickly lose interest.