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Once Upon A Time In The West

2398 words - 10 pages

What techniques and methods does Sergio Leone use within 'Once upon a time in the West' to maintain the interest of the viewer? Between 1960 and 1975, 600 westerns were produced. Critics ignored these films, and because Italian companies financed most of them, they called them Spaghetti Westerns. Fans loved this term, which is now fondly used to label any Western made and financed by foreign filmmakers.Europeans have always loved Westerns and have always made them. As early as 1901, European directors tried to produce their own westerns. Very few of the Euro-westerns made by 1960 made it and remained largely unknown, especially by the Americans. People on the Continent relied on the American Western for their entertainment.By 1960, very few American Westerns were produced, and distribution problems made them extremely hard to get hold off in Europe. As a result, European producers began experimenting with homegrown materials, mostly poorly dubbed copies of American Westerns. But still, Westerns could be made on foreign soil and the bulk of these films were not very good, gaining only a small audience.Then in 1962 a director named Sergio Leone was given $200,000 and a load of leftover film equipment and told to make a Western. He made one that was basically supposed to be a throwaway film, Per un Pugno di Dollari -- A Fistful of Dollars. Leone's unique style, artistic camera angles, extension of time, explosive violence presented a twisted view of the West, making his film different from any Western that had come before. Critics put it down for its brutal interpretation of an unromantic West, but audiences loved it, and the Spaghetti Western took off like a bullet! Sergio Leone was born in 1921 in Rome to the film director Vincenzo Leone. Sergio Leone is best known for the creation of the spaghetti westerns. Leone's style grew from copying Kurasawa to then producing his own style. Leone's second film was made in 1968. Once Upon a Time in the West is a major move forward from Leone's earlier westerns. This film is statistically a spaghetti western, yet Leone directs this film with incredible care and beauty. The scenes are slow, beautiful, and powerful. Leone's style with the combination of Morricone's music creates incredible emotional peaks, dramatic camera movements, and, his trademark, the extreme close-up of the eyes of the characters.Sergio Leone has used quite a lot of different camera angles in Once upon a time in the West. Camera angles are important in film production to show the full extent of what's happening especially emotion and action. This has made his films a lot more interesting for the viewer as they are very interesting. The camera angles control the point of view of the viewer. It is important that they are used the best that they can be for a specific shot. A birds' eye or worms' eye view is unnatural and draws attention to itself. This may be all right if there's a reason. However, it may detract from the content of what is...

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