screening journal 6

Pick one of these films and write about it (example bottom of page)! Must be a page long, PLEASE NO PLAGIARISM

(Easy Rider, Taxi Driver, or Apoc Now)

write a summary of your observations of the film, in at least a paragraph for each of the following 4 film analysis categories:


II. VISUAL STYLE (mise-en-scene and cinematography)




The Hurt Locker

Uses lower res cameras to simulate looking through a robot camera

Slow-motion of explosion scenes focus on the effects on the environment as well as the blast itself, giving a real understanding of the scene

The environment gives a real feel of being present in Iraq (buildings, civilians, explosions)

Dynamic of the military is portrayed excellently. The headquarters, doctor, tanks, vehicles and relationships amongst one another in and out of combat

Unfocused camera lens creates sense of looking through sniper rifle from a long distance

Flies are landing on the soldiers as there shooting at the enemy, how do they get them to do this!? Looks as if some shots were intended for this to happen.

The socio dynamic of the soldiers is portrayed in-depth, Will uses carelessness and adrenaline to get through war, Owen is almost in constant shock and fear, and the ranger is overly cautious.

Camera will take a first-person perspective of soldiers during intense and high stress scenes

I. Most of the story isn’t a dramatic & action-packed war film. It does have these events, but it focuses heavily, in my opinion, on the effects of these events on the soldiers. The psycho and socio aspects of the soldiers. One example is there are multiple scenes of one soldier talking with a doctor about recent events that transpired and gives a real sense of his state of mind and effects the war is having on him. This creates a real in-depth story about the soldiers, giving a real sense of understanding everyone can relate to.

II. The mise-en-scene was of high quality. It almost must be when the narrative follows soldiers through a war in a foreign country. The viewer has to be able to understand the environment and the inner workings of the culture. Your then able to focus on the tension of the two cultures, languages, and lifestyles of Iraqi civilians and the US soldiers. Almost every camera angle and shot were used in the making of the film. I found it interesting when they would take a first-person view of a soldier looking through another camera or rifle scope. It would appear of less quality or distorted to create a different sense of space. When looking through the rifle scope, it would become very blurry and hard to make out objects. Giving a sense of great distance. When looking through the robot camera, the resolution was much lower and created a sense that you were in fact looking at a screen in the perspective of the soldiers.

III. Most of the music was being played when the soldiers were at their bunks when relaxing or drinking. Creates the setting that the environment is much more relaxed than it is when they are on patrol or in an intense situation at war. The editing, sound, and special effects can almost all be tied into some of the same scenes. Usually resulting in a loud explosion of an IED bomb or slow-motion effect of one going off. How they create this so well? I have no idea. But it is amazing how well it’s done. The camera will tend to shift to a rusted car, and you will see the force of the bomb blow sand around it and vibrate the cars frame. Or the ground ripple like a wave in the ocean does as it moves to shore. The intensity of the bombs are captured wonderfully.

IV. I’m told every war movie is in fact an anti-war movie. Even if subtly, this fits into The Hurt Locker. As I’ve said, I interpret the movie to focus heavily on the effects of war on the three main soldiers. Of course, it is portraying most of the effects to be negative on the soldiers. In the end on of the soldiers is shot and will not be able to walk for 6 months. Another is waiting for the day to leave Iraq. And the other gets home to his family and is back in Iraq within a short time period. The behaviors of these men are typical but their perspectives is what makes the movie great. The one with the family is the one who went back to war. The one who didn’t want kids, now wants kids when he leaves the war. The man who was in a constant state of fear seemed the most “level headed” of the rest.

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