Topic 1 – Design & Mise-en-scene A movie is not just a motion picture, it is an art form. An art form that is put together by many shots and with that several shots it makes a scene. Editing shots and scenes can setup the mise-en-scene, also known as staging, and the visual design of a film. In the film, Juno (2007) Directed by Jason Reitman, it starts off showing a pregnant teen walking down a pathway with a sunny d drink, this shows the audience that the director is trying to tell us that Ellen Page is the main character of this film.
The directorial decisions made in this film can be analyzed only if the audience catches what the director is trying to say or make us see. From the lighting to the composition of the film it can set up the mood that the movie is currently in. When watching a movie sometimes the introduction can give the audiences a feel of what the movie is already about. Using a certain type of music, a certain type of clothing and a certain type of light can set up the design of the film throughout the movie.
Juno has both closed space and open space because there is a scene where she stands in front of a chair which the audience can also see the background scenery of the horizon and it zooms in to Ellen Page’s face and she drinks her sunny d and speaks from her mind that only the audience can hear. Dynamic frame is employed in this film because the frame controls our perception of the world inside the movie.
The composition of a film is the process of visualizing and putting visualization into practice such as using deep and flat space. When Juno and her best friend Leah sits on a bench drinking a smoothie talking about what she can do to find a solution of the situation of the baby, when the camera shows an article in the penny saver of the couple that can adopt, and when Juno and her father goes out to see the couple and there is a shot of the van going through a neighborhood with similar buildings, are examples of flat space.
When Paulie Bleeker starts his day to run with his track team and sees Juno in the front of his porch in the chair, when Juno is at the doctors and the camera zooms into varies things such as children and tapping of fingers to see the inside of Juno’s thoughts, when Juno and her best friend are at the mall and sees Vanessa, the upcoming mother that is going to adopt Juno’s baby, the camera focus on her from a second story, are examples of deep space. The director wants the audience to have a depth of perception in the film; from using that style of composition it can show a surprise or suspense within the film.
Music can play a big role in a director’s vision of making this film. Using sound and light can make the audience expect what is going to happen next or maybe can trick the audience of what is expected. Just by using the tempo of sound which beats like someone’s heart can show a sense of suspense, which then you can find the rising action. In the beginning of the film Juno walks to the store and buys a pregnancy test and finds out that she is pregnant is one event that the film demonstrates rising action.
When Juno has the struggle to telling her father and step mother that she is pregnant and when Juno meets the parents in the penny saver for the first time are more key events demonstrating rising action that the director shows in the film. The Climax of the film is when Juno finally gives birth to her child and Pualie Beeker already knows where she is when she doesn’t show up for his track competition which is a typical Hollywood-style of storytelling when he runs to the hospital.
The director choose to manipulate audio the way he does because maybe he wants the audience to watch a film that in today’s world of teen pregnancy but in a more entertaining way but still sending a message to the audience. The visual mise-en-scene contributes to the story and drives each scene forward by putting comedy and issues in a reality. “A movie’s mise-en-scene influences our mood as we watch, much as the decor, lighting, smells, and sounds can influence our emotional response to the real-life place. ” (Barsam 156).
Juno uses elements that create a sense of wonder, a wonder of what is going to happen next. A little laughter can keep the audience’s attention without getting bored of what the scene is about, because the scene can be used to show a big part of what the film is totally about. The visual elements of mise-en-scene are all crucial to shaping our sympathy for, and understanding of, the characters shaped by them. The way Juno reacts to her pregnancy test she already knows who to call first and tell her about her situation. While keeping a secret from her parents until she thinks of a lan to get through with because she knows eventually that they would find out sooner or later. Using props such as a hamburger phone shows that Juno is not an ordinary girl and introducing Leah into the scene shows that she is a more normal girl than Juno is, describing the first act structure, which is the set up. Finding the couple for the new parents and getting to know Vanessa and Mark Loring and figuring out how the new family for the baby is the second act structure because it’s the most important part of the movie, by getting known with the event that is happening.
Finding out that Vanessa and Mark aren’t going to be together to raise the baby because they knew that they wasn’t meant for each other and finding out that Paulie Beeker is going to be with Juno after all what has been happening shows the last act structure of the film. It shows the ending of a film on how the director solves the problem and gives the audience a sense of solution. This film is made different from many other films because of its unique way of setting and events that occur in the movie.
It shows that the director has a vision of having this smart teen overcome an issue in her own way. The visual progress I see in this film is when Paulie Beeker’s mother doesn’t accept Juno by telling him that she is not a girl she wants him to see just because her personality isn’t what every common girl has. This shows that the filmmaker uses an experimental fashion to create this film. Storytelling is a complicated business, especially when one is relating a multifaceted story involving multiple characters and conflicts. Besides being a general for a story or for a kind of movie, narrative is often used to describe the way that movies stories are constructed and presented in order to engage, involve, and orient an audience. This narrative structure – which includes exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and denouement – helps film makers manipulate the viewer’s cinematic experience by selectively conforming to or diverging from audience expectations of storytelling. ” (Barsam 61). This quote from the text explains what a traditional narrative is.
Yes, the director uses traditional narrative. In conclusion, the director of the film Juno reaches out to audience with his own way for telling a story which his own kind of design and composition. Lighting and music plays a big role in the events in the movie because it sets the mood of the story and can also give the vision of what is going to happen. The mise-en-scene gives the audience a sense of unpredictable events that are going to occur because of its color and what is seen or going to happen next.