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Raiders Of The Lost Ark (Steven Spielberg, Usa 1981)

2093 words - 8 pages

Raiders of the Lost Ark (Steven Spielberg, USA 1981)

Harrison Ford stars in the film Raiders of the Lost Ark as a character
called Indiana Jones. The opening sequence has left Indiana’s
character mysterious to the audience but throughout this sequence we
understand his character as bold, cool, calm and a collected leader,
but as the sequence develops and the scene changes we see another side
to Indiana, an intellectual man who dresses smartly and doesn’t seem
cool anymore.

From the opening sequence we know that this film is an
action/adventure because it is packed with excitement, violence and
close encounters with death. The mise en scene or what the audience
see and hear plays an important role in an action/adventure because it
influences what the audience’s reaction to what is happening. An
example of this would be a close up on the facial expressions this
would make the audience more susceptible to feel the same as the
character. These effects can be caused from changing the setting to
altering the camera angles used. Throughout the essay I will discuss
the effect they have introducing the character Indiana Jones.

We are introduced into the film with the paramount trademark of a
mountain but unexpectedly we are brought straight into the film by
merging this symbol with the actual mountain in the South American
rainforest. Spread across the screen is the words South America to
allow the audience to know where the scene is set. The camera angle
then changes to look at the back of three people walking through the
Jungle, then there is a long shot from the side of them looking
through the trees at these three character and in the background you
able to hear the diegetic sounds of a jungle. Although the audience
have been told their locations Spielberg has done this purposefully to
tell the audience that they are in a wild jungle. The positioning of
the characters is important because they are in a line one behind
another this shows the leader of the group is at the front and
therefore the most important. As they get deeper into the jungle it is
noticeable the screen changes from wide screen to take up the entire
screen this is done to make the audience feel that they are getting
deeper into the jungle. Shafts of sunlight through trees are used to
make their adventure mysterious and because little light is used it
makes it dark and shadowy to make the characters more heroic.

As they are walking through the jungle there are noticeable difference
between the three characters, the leader is wearing a leather jacket,
a hat and is wearing a whip whereas the two people following have
rather worn down shabby clothes and are carrying lots of equipment.
This makes Indiana look as if he knows what he is doing whereas the
porters seem as if they didn’t want to come and aren’t prepared....

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