The Lovely Bones
Based on a BOOK of the same name, school girl murdered by neighbour and she then, as a ghost, watches her family struggle after her loss as the town tries to solver her disappearance and murder
Close ups on Susie and Harvey are used thoroughly throughout the scene and the rest of the movie to show us more detail of their different facial expressions and their emotions. The use of close ups also help to reassure the audience that they are the two main protagonists and antagonists that are focused on in the film. Low angles are used thoroughly on the character Harvey to emphasise his authority throughout the film until his final moments when high angle shots are used to show his loss of authority before he falls off a cliff. The opposite techniques are used on Susie, using high angle shots to show her weakness and innocence until the end when her soul is lifted which then uses a low angle shot. Close ups are used on objects around the dug out including the bottle opener which is focussed on to foreshadow later in the film when we discover that this was the weapon Harvey used to murder Susie. A bobble head dog is knocked with a bottle when Harvey is picking them up to offer Susie a drink and so the dogs head is bobbing in close ups throughout the scene, this symbolises Susie being knocked out of her comfort zone and not feeling comfortable in the position that she has been put in. Hand held cameras are used as a way to make the cameras move in a way that feels natural and the audience feels like they are involved in the scene and are going through the same situation as the characters.
Close up shots used – especially on Susie to show suspense and tension building up throughout the scene. Close ups of Harvey opening the bottle with a bottle opener to foreshadow the weapon that he used to kill her. Close ups of bobble head dog, calendar
High angles on Harvey, low angles on Susie to show he has authority over her
Hand held camera used so it naturally moves slightly enough to cause a feeling of unease. At the end grass shot the camera pans up to show the situation being lifted away. When picking up glass bottle, the camera turns around giving it an airy feeling. Camera pans in to Susie’s face to show her fear and how scared she is about the situation and also by using primarily close ups, the ROOM they are in feels smaller giving it a claustrophobic atmosphere
Filters – None
There are no filters in this scene as it makes it feel more natural and realistic. The audience has done this so we are able to imagine ourselves in that space underground. We are then able to create a real image in our head of what it would be like. There are also no filters to show that there are no imperfections. Being an underground space there will be imperfections from nature and other things like that. Harvey has done so well at hiding the imperfections in this underground space, just like he has done so well at hiding his own perfections in his life. He is deemed to have this perfect life. This is why the director has used absolutely no filter in the underground space as Harvey has worked so much on covering up his personal imperfections that a ‘filter’ would spoil the chance to show how ‘perfect’ he really is.
Example – Dim Lighting (the whole ROOM in this scene is dim lit)
The whole scene in this ROOM is dim lit to make it feel creepy and mysterious. Being unable to see certain things in a space makes it uncomfortable because you are unsure of your surroundings. It is candle lit to give a faint glow. This effect of light causes shadows, which are able to shadow different emotions of different people. Shadows are also used to emphasize certain things. In this case the shadows emphasize Harvey and how creepy he really is. The lack of light shows that things are being hidden. This symbolizes Harvey hiding certain emotions. This technique creates effect as it adds to the feeling of the ROOM. It does this by making you feel cautious and unaware. The technique is dim lighting and it affects the audience because it then makes them feel like they have to watch closely. The invites the audience in and allows them to make judgments. The director has done this so that rather than just watching as viewers you are able to experience something. The dim lighting adds to the films genre as its dramatic and mysterious. The technique also adds to the film by making it feel special. This technique is being used to create a secret sort of mood also. It’s like being in a tent with a troch at nighttime. You can only see the parts of the tent that you shine the torch on. This relates as you can only see the parts of the underground room where the candles are lit. You then feel alone because even though there are things outside around you, you are trapped in this space. This also relates to Susie. The dim light gives of a discreet eerie sort of effect, which is unpleasant and uncomfortable. This has helped the audience to create views about the sequence, film, characters and genre. The lighting works together to create the mood of the room. They also work together to create that type of setting, quite a secret secluded area. These techniques all work together to gain an audience response and make them feel apart of the film rather than a viewer.
Example – Candlelight (what you can see in the ROOM has been lit by candle)
Very little light is used in this scene. The only light that has been used is candlelight. The candlelight has been used to make the space feel secluded. The light that the candle gives off is orange. This colour represents enthusiasm, stimulation, attraction, success and determination. These things are all from Harvey’s point of view. He was the designer of this ROOM, which is why he has set it up this way. The technique here is light. This shade of light helps the audience to understand how Harvey is feeling. This type of light stimulates Harvey, which is why it is the only dominant bold colour that fills the room throughout the scene. This technique adds meaning to the film as we are able to see a side of Harvey’s character that leads up to quite a few important moments in the film. Watching this scene will give us insight into later on in the film. This technique is also being used to describe to the audience how some people are able to feel attraction and success with actions such as Harvey’s. The director’s intention here is also to remind us that we are vulnerable as well. Just because it is a fictional movie doesn’t mean that something couldn’t happen. This allows us to expand our knowledge and understanding about the sequence, film, character and genre. The director also intended the audience to picture candlelight and what significant reference it has to them. We are then able to place our own thoughts into this section of the film. The setting is developed by candlelight, as that is what brings the room together. The director has allowed just enough light to create the right sorts of tones and moos without being to over the top. The director gains audience responses here as they are able to contrast candlelight and relate it to mood and tone during this scene.
Example – “Thank you but I really must be going now Mr. Harvey”
The effect that this tone in her voice creates is helplessness. Mr. Harvey immediately shuts down Susie about her request to leave. This makes her feel helpless as the tone in her voice tells us she is scared and in desperate need of escaping the situation. It creates creepy feel to the tone of his voice as from the audience’s point of view you can then put yourself in Susie’s position. We are then able to picture what is around us as the tone draws us closer into the situation. This creates the mood of feeling helpless which creates suspense for the rest of this scene, almost as if we are awaiting our own fate. This technique adds to the meaning of the film as we see her progress through the film feeling helpless and alone which is how she feels now. The genre of this film is drama. This technique gives it the required dramatic feel that a drama movie should contain. This use of diegetic sound allows us to connect with the characters brining us one step closer into her feeling and thoughts. The director intended the audience to think that the film was realistic. In our modern day lives rape and murder is horrifically common. The director wanted us as viewers to gain insight into how careful we need to be. This has now enabled us to understand the sequence, film, character and genre. This technique is also combined with pitch and pace to show us the thoughts in Susie’s mind. The faster she says her dialogue implying the faster she wishes she can get out of there and away from that man. The type of pitch she says it in implies the complete opposite of what she is really feeling. She delivers her dialogue calmly but inside she feels trapped. All these different techniques combine to create the mood and atmosphere of this underground prison. All of these techniques collate together to gain a response from the audience, which is to get out of the situation she is in, any way she can.
Example – Soundtrack and Atmospheric Sound
In this scene we hear a clear example of atmospheric sound. This at the very start of the scene is almost unnoticeable. As the suspense increases so does the soundtrack until it gradually starts to build and over power other elements in the scene. A technique of the soundtrack would be the style of music used. It is a soft eerie tone until it increases to a loud sharp screech at the end of the scene. The effect that this type of music creates is loneliness. It is an empty music. It is not warm or inviting, it’s a cold tone to contrast with the candles light within the room to make it feel light and warm. This technique combines to create effects of fear and worry as the atmospheric sound builds. This technique affects the audience because it makes them feel alone. This way we are able to relate to the character and understand how she feels. From Harvey’s point of view this music is thrilling and inviting and it symbolizes joy, which is what he feels form this situation. The director has used this sound to create suspense and produce a vibe, which is unpleasant. This technique adds meaning to the film because from this music we are able to see Harvey’s thoughts and Susie’s. Harvey’s portray to us that this is what he is fixated and thrives on. Susie’s thoughts are very different, as she feels trapped and alone. From whichever way you analyze this from you will get a different answer from each character as one is the victim in this particular situation. This technique adds to the genre of this film, as the sound effects are thrilling and intense. The director intended the audience to feel alone in this scene. Almost as if they couldn’t escape watching it. Like they were drawn into the film with no way to escape. This then enables us to understand what the director wanted us to think about the sequence, film, genre and character. The director wanted us to feel trapped. The information communicated between techniques is that with diegetic dialogue it would be good. But with atmospheric sound, it adds a whole other mood into the scene. These techniques work together to portray two different characters. A passionate one and a helpless one. The use are used to convey the moos of being underground where the sound makes it feel dark and empty even though it’s full of things. The director gains an audience response by us as viewers sinking deeper and deeper into the underground until we cant escape as that’s how Susie feels.
Mise en scene:
Mise en scene is used to emphasise the tone of the scene with the use of costumes, props, colours and setting. The two characters are wearing standard late 1970s outfits which also help to remind the audience of the setting and the time period the film is set. Both characters start the scene wearing thick coats as well as Susie wearing a Pom Pom hat which helps to show the audience that they had just come from being outside and that the weather is cold. The props seen throughout scene are heavily focused on with extreme close ups as the dog bobble head is used as a symbol for Susie and the bottle opener is focused on to foreshadow the weapon Harvey uses to kill Susie. The orange lighting from the candles symbolises Harvey’s various emotions towards wanting to kill Susie such as his enthusiasm, fascination, creativity, determination, attraction, success, encouragement, and stimulation. The scene is set in Harvey’s underground dug out in the middle of the park during the late 1970’s.
Standard late 1970’s clothing, glasses, etc. Susie wears a home made bobble hat, coats
Glass bottles, bottle opener (close up used to foreshadow it being used to kill salmon) bobble head dog (symbolises Susie being taken out of her comfort zone), glasses
Dark, pale. Grass outside at the end is very dark as its late at night, Orange represents enthusiasm, fascination, happiness, creativity, determination, attraction, success, encouragement, and stimulation (all things from Harvey’s POV)
Underground dug out, late 1973
During the struggle at the end a montage of quick changing shots build suspense and tension between the fighting characters
pace speeds up between shots to build suspense especially at end when Susie is trying to escape