How Do Filmakers Utilize Cinematographic Techniques? (Research Paper Sample)
How do filmakers utilize cinematographic techniques? Some of the most significant aspects of cinematography include the creative use of sound and visual effects to convey important themes. For instance, the use of visual effects to depict blood help to convey the way war and death destroys life and societies, thereby emphasizing the dangers of war to human life.source..
How Do Filmakers Utilize Cinematographic Techniques?
Some of the most significant aspects of cinematography include the creative use of sound and visual effects to convey important themes. For instance, the use of visual effects to depict blood help to convey the way war and death destroys life and societies, thereby emphasizing the dangers of war to human life. Sound effects also play an important role in symbolizing the mood of a given scene, for example using a mournful song to depict situations of sadness such as funerals and death. However, the use of these effects appears to be a recent adaptation in cinema, which limited the ability of earlier filmmakers to fully utilize visual and audio effects. This impact is evident in the differences between the movies The Boys in the Band (1970) by William Friedkin, which used close-up shots, stationary camera, longer holding of characters on the screen and group shots to convey intimacy and sexual attraction between characters.
The Boys in the Band is about a group of middle-aged men who meet for a birthday party of one them, a meeting that forces them to confront their sexual identities as closeted gays in a conservative American society. One obvious limitation that the movie’s director faced as a result of the low level of technology in the early 1970s is the inability to sweep the camera around the set to focus on each character’s dialogue. This is perhaps because of the challenges of moving the mounted cameras from one character to another, compared to the flexibility of modern cameras that allows photographers to easily capture different parts of the set. As a result of this challenge, director tried to keep a number of people on the screen at the same time to allow the audiences follow the dialogue easily. This is because the inability to move the camera swiftly without compromising the stability and balance of the shots makes it difficult to follow each character as they spoke. Having the actors scattered on the set will result in a situation whereby the camera would still be focused on a different character while it was another one’s turn to speak. This is partly due to the fact that the technology that allowed the merging of sounds and images was not yet developed, making it difficult to record dialogues and pictures separately. Consequently, the film’s mise en scene was limited to having group shots.
However, this strategy was effective in subtly conveying intimacy and connection between different pairs of characters. Considering that the major thematic concern of the movie is the sexual attraction of people of the same gender, capturing them in groups not only closes the physical distance between them, but most importantly, symbolically conveys the bond of intimacy between them. This is best captured from the characters’ body language and nonverbal cues, such as touching one another and moving into each other’s personal space when talking. In this regard, shooting the scenes depicting the characters in tight groups helps to convey the idea of sexual attraction and intimacy between different pairs of characters. As William Friedkin observed in an interview, the strategy was remarkably effective in “sustaining a sense of interconnectedness and inescapability, vital to the tone of the piece” (Parman 2018). This statement suggests the director’s use of a limitation in technology to suit the thematic ideas that he wanted to convey. It is a case of adapting to what is possible, and tailoring the depiction of scenes to suit the available technology and in the process, imbue the film with symbolic meaning, such as the intimacy among the characters.
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