Evaluation Alana Coulter


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EvaluationAlana Coulter

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For my media coursework I have been given a main task to follow. I have created a

two minute opening of my film called ‘The Truth’. My films open with the Sandbach

Studios and Coulter Productions to show who has distributed my film, I also used

opening credits such as the title which sweeps across the screen and the actors

names: Sarah De L’Ecluse, Sarah Davis and Shammie Robshaw-Bryan, the actors

credits fade in and out of the corners of the screen revealing who they are subtly. I

decided to use a young cast in order for my target audience to connect with the

characters. My film has a genre of adventure and is set in the small town of

Sandbach, in my preliminary task I filmed in the Glasshouse bar in the centre of the

town, I wanted to film in a quiet location in order for my camera to pick up the

sound clearly.

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My main task, ‘The Truth’ uses forms and conventions of editing in existing films, I

have chosen to open my main task with a white title centred on a black background

which sweeps across the screen, I have been influenced to do this by films like ‘The

Motorcycle Diaries’; I think this worked well as I felt the white text on the black

background was very simple, tidy but bold which represents the truth in reality being

very blunt and to the point. I have also used some conventions of casting; I have

decided to use an all-female cast, which I have taken this idea from existing films

such as ‘’ Using an all-female cast would create a more specific target

audience and bring 12- 16 year old girls into the cinema to watch the film. I found

casting all-female roles very difficult as they wouldn’t keep on task, in addition they

also felt embarrassed acting around each other, therefore they kept laughing.

How does the film use forms and conventions of real media products?

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‘The Truth’ develops the conventions of sound in existing films; I have chosen to

do this by overlaying a soundtrack onto the film. I used the song ‘You failed to

mention it John’ by a local up and coming band, The Flares with a unique

instrumental indie sound. I found this difficult, as the diegetic sound became

hidden behind the high volume of the soundtrack; I also had difficulty with

fading out the music. However using this music emphasised the genre of an

adventure aimed at teenagers. In addition, I have also developed forms and

conventions of camera shots in existing films, by using a variety of shots such

as: establishing shots and mid shots of the characters within their own setting.

Using these camera shots has improved my film opening as each shot is

important as the shots introduce the characters who will be in the film.


How does the film develop forms and conventions of real media products?

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For my main task, I challenged forms and conventions of fast cut

editing in existing films. I decided to go against the films I researched

such as ‘Twilight: New Moon’ and use fast cuts to establish each of

the central characters although doing this created the continuity

editing to become rare in the scene as I used jump cuts to establish

the central characters. I have also further challenged my film by

using credits immediately, but many films usually show the credits

throughout the first 30 minutes of their film. I chose to do this

because my cast are unknown as the film is an independent movie,

whereas films such as ‘New Moon’ don’t need them as the cast are

well known as the film is mainstream and a sequel.

How does the film challenge forms and conventional real media products?

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Through my main task, I’ve used an age specific cast of seventeen; this is

to portray a social group of high school teenagers. I found this has worked

well, as the target audience are able to easily relate to the characters,

being around the same age. My main task represented three different

types of high school stereotypical teenagers: the geek, the dumb blonde

and the misfit. By using these stereotypes, it aims the film at a variety of

teenagers; I portrayed these stereotypes through the mise-en-scene. I

used props such as chemistry, biology and physics books to depict the

geek character, and decided to manipulate the idea of beauty over

education through the dumb blonde by using props such as lip gloss and


How does your media product represent particular social groups?

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Independent film institutions such as Entertainment Films could

distribute my film; I have chosen this institution to distribute my film,

as the British leading company is based in London and is well known

for distributing popular upcoming films such as ‘The Artist’. This

company’s success has increased and grown, winning many awards

internationally. Having the location of the company in London, shows

the popularity of the distributor as it’s based in the capital. If the film

was to be premiered, I would choose to have the event in Manchester,

a popular and media cultural city.

What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why?

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The target audience of the film is aimed at 14-17 year olds, who are in high

school/sixth form. I have chosen this age, as the audience will be able to relate

and connect to the characters in the film and are more likely to go to the

cinema with groups of friends, in addition this target audience is very popular,

from my research of the films ‘Twilight’ and ‘New Moon’ they created a very

wide audience of teenagers around this age, impacting the box office. The film

is aimed at girls, as the narrative is based around a group of female friends,

who are exploring who they are through the film, expressing their thoughts

and feelings about their life situations, this creates an element of the genre

‘rites of passage’. The ways in which they overcome these situations could

advise some of the viewers. The reason for watching would be for escapism

and enjoyment and some of the viewers may watch the film due to the genre

of adventure.

Who would be the audience for your media product?

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I have used non-diegetic sound to attract my audience, I have used up beat music in my

film from a band called The Flares, which would address the audience as teenagers are

more open to listening to unusual music. I used upbeat and fast paced instrumental music

in the opening of the film to create a quick introduction of the characters, the fast pace

sounds could represent the heart pace speeding up, this reflects on the genre of

adventure. I have also used un-known actors to address my audience, as having an

unknown cast makes the characters become more relatable as they are viewed as just

another high school teen, this has been shown through my research of the film ‘Twilight’ as

the actors Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner weren’t very popular until the film released.

The setting I have chosen for my film of the character’s bedrooms also attracts the

teenage audience as they may feel like they have visited a friend’s house; this feeling is

created with the mise-en-scene of props like photographs and old toys creating a personal

touch to the setting.

How did you attract/address your audience?

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To construct my project I have created a blog, to update people on my latest

work, with researching, planning, and filming for both preliminary tasks and

main tasks. I have found that posting presentations and word documents

have made my research and planning for interactive. This has improved my

work, as blogging keeps track of each time you post, showing how long it’s

taken to do the research, planning and creation of the main task.

To construct my main task I used a Canon video camera to film each shot of

the main task. However I found this camera was not picking up the natural

diegetic sounds of the zipping of the rucksack or the cars driving past. To

overcome this issue I had to re-film my scene in a quiet environment in

order to hear the natural sounds. I was also able to emphasise the diegetic

sound by increasing the sound wave on iMovie.

What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?

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When editing my film, I used iMovie to construct each shot together, I

found this editing software, time consuming when it came to finalising the

main task. This is because adding in titles in the opening delays the sound.

This became a problem for me as I chose to use music to overlay the film,

adding titles to the film delayed the music making it not as smooth as I

would have liked it. Due to this I wasn’t able to alyn my music with the

camera shots like I wished.

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From my preliminary task to the main task, I feel I have progressed

my shooting and planning by using a variety of camera shots and

angles such as: close up, establishing shot, mid shot, and long shot.

This has helped me introduce and establish my characters, such as

the character: Jessica. I have used an establishing shot of Jessica to

establish her family’s social class of a lower/working class

background; this is shown through the combination of camera shot

with the narrative of her running down the road to school contrasting

to the other characters driving to school.

Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?

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From my preliminary task I learned about lighting, I need to make sure

I have the same lighting throughout the film in order for a good

continuity, therefore if it’s set at the same time on the same day it

must be the same. I used this vital information for my main task by

checking the weather conditions and news in order for me to achieve

the same weather on each shot. If not, to use the editing software to

brighten up the lighting.

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In conclusion I think the genre and the narrative will appeal to the target

audience of 12-16 year old girls. However if I could improve anything, I

would improve the non-diegetic sound issues I had. Making the fade in the

music in time with the shots. I would change the time of when I filmed the

scene, as I captured the shots with different weather conditions, as I only

had limited time and had to work around other student’s schedules who

were going to be featuring in my film. Therefore next time, I could film on

the same day. I think the editing worked well, by using iMovie I was able to

control the volume of the diegetic, and non-diegetic sounds, the cropping

the scenes, and editing the speed of the fading in and dissolving of the

titles and the credits.